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Post-Baccalaureate Certificate: Elementary Education (2004-2005)

Program Description

The Department of Curriculum and Instruction offers certificate programs in a variety of areas. The certificate programs are designed to mirror the organization of the masters degree in elementary education and to provide coherent sequences of courses which focus on the different aspects of each discipline area within elementary education: early childhood, math, science, and social studies.

The overarching educational objective is to provide a broad base of knowledge relating to each of the discipline areas in elementary education. Those completing the certificates will understand the basics of the theories specific to the discipline option they select, including a detailed understanding of the way children learn in each of those disciplines. They will understand how to develop and deliver instruction appropriate for those content/discipline areas.

The certificate programs provide teachers an avenue to fullfill an area of specialization in the master’s degree program. Courses completed in the certificate programs may be used to satisfy degree requirements.

Certificate Requirements

Elementary Education: Early Childhood

  • ECH 571 Theory and Function of Play 3 s.h.
  • ECH 574 Integrated Learning in Early Childhood Education 3 s.h.
  • RDG 569 Reading in Early Childhood 3 s.h.
  • SCED 507 Science in the Early Childhood Classroom 3 s.h.
    TOTAL 12 s.h.

Elementary Education: Mathematics

  • MATH 501 Elementary Mathematics or MATH 502 Geometry for Teachers 3 s.h.
  • MATH 500 Teaching of Elementary Mathematics or MATH 505 The Teaching of Mathematics in Middle Grades and Junior High 3 s.h.
  • Select two of the following:
    • MATH 507 Research in Elementary Mathematics Education
    • MATH 508 Special Topics in Elementary Mathematics
    • MATH 509 Assessment of Mathematics Learning 6 s.h.
    TOTAL 12 s.h.

Elementary Education: Science

  • Select two of the following:
    • SCED 490G Environmental Education for Elementary Teachers
    • SCED 491G Biological Science for Elementary Teachers
    • SCED 492G Physical Science for Elementary Teachers 6 s.h.
  • Select two of the following:
    • SCED 489G Energy Education for Elementary Teachers
    • SCED 505 Science: An Inquiry Approach
    • SCED 507 Science in the Early Childhood Classroom
    • SCED 559 Teaching Earth Science in the Elementary School
    • SCED 561 Measurement in Elementary Science
    • SCED 562 Science Curriculum in the Elementary School 6 s.h.
    TOTAL 12 s.h.

Elementary Education: Social Studies

  • SSED 550 Workshop in Current Developments in Teaching Social Studies 3 s.h.
  • SSED 595 Teaching Social Studies for Global Understanding 3 s.h.
  • Select one of the following:
    • SSED 568 Improvement of Instruction in Elementary School Social Studies
    • SSED 572 Social Studies Curriculum in the Elementary School 3 s.h.
  • Select one of the following:
    • C&I 590-591 Field Study Projects
    • C&I 679 Overseas Study
    • COE 679 Overseas Study 3 s.h.
    TOTAL 12 s.h.

Course Descriptions

College of Education and Human Services

679 Overseas Study. (1–9, repeatable to 18) Course work undertaken as part of approved University overseas study program. Prerequisite: Approval of Study Abroad Coordinator and Department Chairperson.

Curriculum and Instruction

590-591 Field Study Projects. (1-3) Extensive readings, observations, and interpretations of education systems in the United States and selected foreign countries. Prerequisites: Permission of the student’s adviser and the Departmental Graduate Committee.

679 Overseas Study. (1–9, repeatable to 18) Course work undertaken as part of approved University overseas study program. Prerequisite: Approval of Study Abroad Coordinator and Department Chairperson.

Early Childhood Education

571 Theory and Function of Play. (3) Students will engage in a detailed study of theoretical and practical positions regarding development of young children, birth through age eight. The emphasis will be on play as a process for learning and for teaching. Observations of children and application of course content to teaching practices are required.

574 Integrated Learning in Early Childhood Education. (3) In-depth study of the theoretical basis for integrated learning and teaching, and of several approaches for integrating curricular areas: language arts, math, science, social studies, art, and music. The value of curricular integration in meeting the needs of diverse learners will be addressed. Students will explore methods and materials for integrating technological and multimedia materials into the early childhood curriculum.

Mathematics

500 Teaching of Elementary Mathematics. (3) A study of current trends and problems in the teaching of elementary and junior high school mathematics. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor.

501 Elementary Mathematics I. (3) A study of sets, logic, real number system, open sentences, relations, and functions as they apply to the elementary and junior high school curriculum. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor.

502 Geometry for Teachers. (3) A study of geometric concepts as they pertain to the elementary and junior high school curriculum. Topics will be chosen from coordinate, synthetic, and transformational geometry. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor.

505 The Teaching of Mathematics in Middle Grades and Junior High. (3) A study of teaching strategies and current trends in mathematics as they apply to the curriculum of the middle school and the junior high school. Prerequisites: MATH 101 and 201 (with a grade of C or better) or equivalent.

507 Research in Elementary Mathematics Education. (3) A survey, evaluation, and application of recent research relative to the teaching of elementary and junior high school math. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor.

508 Special Topics in Elementary Mathematics. (3, repeatable to 15) Topics will be available on demand in the areas of probability, statistics, computer science, number theory, and history of math. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor.

509 Diagnostic and Prescriptive Teaching of School Mathematics. (3) The assessment of strengths and weaknesses of students in school mathematics with the development of appropriate prescriptive remediation materials and strategies. Prerequisite: Teacher certification, MATH 360 or MATH 361.

Reading

569 Reading in Early Childhood. (3) Designed to help teachers of preschool, kindergarten, and primary grades to plan and design developmentally appropriate programs aimed at facilitating the acquisition of pre-reading and reading abilities. Emphasis on how early guidance and instructional programs can attend to all aspects of language: listening, speaking, reading, and writing.

Science Education

489G Energy Education for Elementary Teachers. (3) Provides content information on basic energy concepts and how to teach them to elementary students. Topics include forms and sources of energy, renewable and nonrenewable energy, changes in energy forms, and energy conservation. Energy curricula will be examined through presentations and laboratory-based activity formats. Prerequisite: Senior standing or bachelor's degree.

490G Environmental Science Education for Elementary Teachers. (3) Provides teachers with background information related to various environmental concepts and issues through numerous activities, including field trips. Topics include map and compass reading, forests, woodlands, ponds, wetlands, rivers, predator/prey relationships, rocks, tree identification, and minerals, water quality testing, and weather.

491G Biological Science for Elementary Teachers. (3) Designed to strengthen teachers’ biological science background. Emphasis is on life science concepts from contemporary elementary curricula, stressing direct experience in laboratory activities. Topics include plant growth, development, physiology, propagation, and classification; microscope work, animal activity, microscopic organisms, human biology, and outdoor biology.

492G Physical Science for Elementary Teachers. (3) Designed to help elementary teachers strengthen their understanding of physical science. Course topics include chemistry, energy, force, heat, light, magnetism, matter, motion, and sound. Students will explore concepts through discussion and laboratory-based activities from classic and contemporary science curricula.

505 Science: An Inquiry Approach. (3) This course is designed to help educators learn and better understand inquiry as an instructional approach. Topics include what inquiry is, how to conduct inquiry, and ways to teach inquiry processes and skills to students, particularly those in upper elementary and middle level grades. The course will involve identifying and conducting an inquiry investigation into some science topic. Prerequisites: SCED 364 or equivalent and graduate standing.

507 Science in the Early Childhood Classroom. (3) This course is designed around a constructivist approach to early childhood science education (preschool-grade 3). The focus of this course is on children - how they experience the world, interact with each other, pose questions and problems, and construct knowledge. Topics will include integrated and thematic curriculum representing the life, earth, physical, and environmental sciences. Current research related to the brain and children’s thinking, and curriculum models dealing with modeling, role playing, cooperative play, and the culture of the early childhood classroom will be emphasized. Alternative assessment models for the early childhood science classroom will also be examined. Prerequisite: Graduate standing.

559 Teaching Earth Science in the Elementary School. (3) This course provides elementary and middle level school teachers with basic content and methodology from contemporary elementary science programs to strengthen their teaching of earth science. Basic content topics will include astronomy, geology, hydrology, meteorology, and oceanology. Background information and methodology will be presented by using content as a vehicle in lectures, demonstrations, experiments, and group activities which will help teachers develop skills in working with equipment and materials, and to help them better understand appropriate instructional strategies in earth science for children at different grade levels.

561 Measurement in Elementary Science. (3) Emphasis will be placed on techniques of measurement development in contemporary elementary science curricula. An activity-centered approach will provide students with an opportunity to develop systems of measurements, calibrate simple measuring devices, and design measurement projects suitable for use in an elementary science program. The introduction and use of the metric system in the elementary school will be stressed.

562 Science Curriculum in the Elementary School. (3) An analysis of the latest curriculum innovations in elementary science education, and the application of recent discoveries in learning theory to the teaching of elementary science. Emphasis will be placed on the development of a contemporary philosophy of elementary science and its contribution to the total science program.

Social Studies Education

550 Workshop in Current Developments in Teaching Social Studies. (1-3, repeatable to 3) Explores current content, techniques, media, and information technology for teaching social studies in school settings. Students will adapt course topics for use in their own classrooms.

568 Improvement of Instruction in Social Studies. (3) This course deals with current developments in techniques, materials and technology for teaching social studies. Explores ways to engage students in social science instruction.

572 Social Studies Curriculum. (3) This course deals with the nature of social studies and its role in the school curriculum. Emphasis is placed on current curriculum developments in social studies and the social sciences.

595 Teaching Social Studies for Global Understanding. (3) Develops the conceptual base for teaching the understanding of global connections including those dealing with social, environmental, economic, technological, and individual cultural dimensions.

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