The School of Education of St. Thomas Aquinas College is dedicated to preparing you for a rewarding career as a teacher, and the best way to do that is to give you many hands-on classroom experiences. Starting in Sophomore year, students take part in field experiences that expose you to real classroom environments, so that when you're a Senior, you will be ready for your student teaching, where you have your own classroom in a local school district.
As early as your freshman year, the School of Education will require you to participate in 100-150 hours of off-campus classroom activities in regional school districts. These activities, known as field experiences, involve direct observation of teaching and teaching related to the teacher education program in which you’re enrolled. You’ll conduct these field-based activities prior to student teaching.
You’ll formally apply for admission to our student teaching program during the second semester of your Junior year.
To be admitted to our student teaching program, you must:
- Maintain a minimum GPA of 2.50 in your General Education courses.
- Maintain a minimum GPA of 2.75 in your Teacher Education courses and in your concentration or major.
- Complete all course and fieldwork requirements (see the undergraduate and MST worksheets in STAC’s Student Teaching Manual).
Student Teaching Placement
Our Director of Clinical Experiences assigns all student teaching placements, which can include high-needs schools and/or schools where professional development commitments have been established between STAC and the school districts. Geographic location (a reasonable travel distance from the campus) is taken into consideration when assigning placements.
Student Teaching Supervision
As a student teacher through STAC, you’ll be placed with certified teachers in your concentration or minor, who serve as mentors and models of professional practice. You will also be assigned a college supervisor, who will regularly meet with you to provide support.
Recommendation for New York State Teacher Certification
The College recommends to the New York State Teacher Certification agency candidates who have successfully completed the Teacher Education program and have satisfied the requirements for state certification. The New York State Education Department issues the appropriate certificate to graduates who have satisfied all requirements. Additionally, you will be eligible to apply for certification throughout the United States.