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See course descriptions for this department or program
Director, Associate Professor Adam Howard
To these ends the program enables students to study the ways children and adolescents learn and develop; the dynamics of the teaching-learning process; and the psychological, philosophical, historical, social, and cultural dimensions of education. Students in the program also participate in a variety of civic engagement, internship, practicum, and social action experiences to gain practical experience in the fields of education and human development.
Four minors are offered under the auspices of the program
The education minor encourages a wide-ranging liberal arts exploration of educational theories, issues, and practices. Students focus primarily on the psychological, philosophical, historical, social, and cultural foundations of education and gain practical experience working with children and/or adolescents in a variety of classroom contexts. It provides preparation for graduate study in early-childhood, elementary, secondary, or special education, as well as for careers in private-school teaching.
The environmental education minor encourages an interdisciplinary approach to theory, research, and practice in the field of environmental education. These activities seek to make explicit the complex intersections among environmental degradation, cultural critique, and processes of education with an emphasis on educational reform, social justice, and environmental activism in the United States. This minor is intended for those students with an interest in pursuing a career in environmental education, outdoor education, and/or experiential education.
The human development minor encourages an interdisciplinary approach to understanding the development of children and youth. Students consider a variety of perspectives on the study of human development; examine the relationship between individuals and the social, cultural, and historical context in which they live; and gain practical experience working in an institution or agency devoted to fostering human development and improving human lives. It provides initial preparation for careers in education, social work, human services, and/or social policy, as well as for graduate study in a number of different fields and disciplines.
The professional certification minor is approved by the Maine State Board of Education. Students who complete the professional certification minor may select a course of study leading to teacher licensure in Maine for secondary teaching (grades 7-12) in the areas of English, social studies, life science, physical science, or mathematics as well as licensure for grades K-12 in Spanish, German, or French. Maine participates in the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification (NASDTEC) and, through the NASDTEC Interstate Contract, Maine has reciprocity for teacher licensure with 40 other states. An Education Program faculty member will prepare documentation to support Colby graduates when they apply to transfer the Maine teaching certificate to another state.
Candidates for Maine teacher licensure must pass both the Praxis I (basic knowledge and skills) and Praxis II (content area knowledge) exams, undergo a criminal background check and fingerprinting, and complete a portfolio demonstrating competencies in the 10 Maine Initial Teaching Standards. Fees are required for both of the Praxis exams and for the background check. Furthermore, the Maine Department of Education (DOE) charges an application fee. Students may consider applying directly to another state in lieu of completing Maine’s requirements. Students who wish to apply directly to another state without first obtaining Maine licensure must contact the department of education in the other state and should also consult with Colby Education Program faculty.
Colby believes that the best preparation for a teaching career is two-fold: (a) a strong background in the liberal arts, including intensive study of the subject to be taught; and (b) appropriate course work and practical experience in education.
Students interested in professional certification should apply to the program in the spring of their junior year. Candidates must have at least a 3.00 average in their major subject area and have completed the appropriate prerequisites for the student teaching sequence. A ninth semester program is also available to qualified students. Students in the program return to Colby after graduation to complete the Senior Student Teaching sequence by working full time in a local school. There is no charge for this program, but students are responsible for finding their own housing off campus. Students interested in the ninth semester program should apply to the program in the spring of their senior year.
Additional information about the professional certification and ninth semester options is available from the program faculty. Early consultation with program faculty and careful planning of the student’s course of studies is essential for a successful completion of the minor. This is especially important for students studying abroad.
Finally, students also may pursue an independent major in human development under the auspices of the program. Requirements for this major typically include course work in education, psychology, sociology, and anthropology. A formal proposal for such an independent major must be submitted to the Independent Study Committee. For further information please contact the program chair.
Requirements for the Minor in Education
Education 231 and 493; one practicum or internship; and four electives in education.
Requirements for the Minor in Environmental Education
Education 231, 316, and 493; Environmental Studies 118; one practicum or internship; and two electives in environmental studies, to be approved by the program chair.
Requirements for the Minor in Human Development
Education 215 and 493; one practicum or internship; two electives in education; and two electives in other departments, to be approved by the program chair.
Requirements for the Minor in Professional Certification
Education 215, 231, 374, 431; one practicum (351 or 355); the Senior Student Teaching sequence (433, 437); and two electives in education.
Colby College pass rates for Praxis I and Praxis II exams
The Higher Education Act Reauthorization of 1998 requires that the pass rate of Professional Certification students on the state-mandated teacher exams be reported each year. Pass rates for classes that have fewer than 10 students are not reported, and thus the annual pass rates for Colby College are not available. However, the four-year aggregate score is reported, and Colby’s pass rate for the period of 2003-2008 is 100 percent.