Teaching begins with asking the right questions.
At Valparaiso University, future teachers explore seven essential questions at the heart of our profession:
- What is the purpose of schooling?
- What am I teaching?
- Who are my students?
- How do students learn?
- What data indicates student learning?
- How can I differentiate instruction to meet the learning needs of all of my students?
- In response, how should I teach?
Together, faculty and students critically examine these questions, seeking and evaluating answers proposed by seminal scholarship and contextualized in school fieldwork placements and practice. Our future teachers use these questions as a framework, developing into equitable, inquiry-based, and effective practitioners, caring mentors, and professional leaders.
Valpo’s teacher education curriculum fulfills the requirements for a teaching license in Indiana, and its impact also extends far beyond the state’s borders.
Valpo graduates benefit from Indiana’s licensure reciprocity agreements with dozens of other states, including Illinois. Because of this, a Valpo degree is truly portable.
Focused on Field Experience
Students’ field placements begin with their first education course and increase each year until students are teaching full time.
In total, students are placed in four or five school settings. The department faculty are intentional about placing students in varied field settings — Pre-K and secondary; rural and urban; affluent and under-resourced.
Valpo offers students the chance to join a community of educators. The experienced faculty develop close mentoring relationships with their students, while a dedicated academic advisor helps students maximize their educational experience. These relationships last well beyond graduation. In fact, many area alumni now work with the department as field site supervisors.
“The Department of Education at Valparaiso University is dedicated to developing exceptional professional educators capable of becoming innovators and leaders in the field of K–12 education.”— Department Mission Statement