|Average In-Classroom Time,
|All Programs||503.45 hours|
|- Regular Certification||541.23 hours|
|- Alternative Certification||468.18 hours|
SOURCE: U.S. DEPT. OF ED.
How long do Indiana student teachers have to spend leading a classroom before earning their licenses? Anywhere from 0 to 900 hours.
We got to thinking about the standards to which Indiana’s education colleges hold prospective teachers after our Monday post (you know, the one where the right-leaning think tank lambasted educators for setting the bar too low). It turns out few states have a wider range of standards than Indiana — at least in terms the amount of time educators-in-training spend in the classroom student teaching.
Getting a teaching license in Indiana is a lot like getting a drivers license: A student teacher doesn’t need to spend a certain amount of time “behind the wheel” of a classroom to earn a license, he or she only has to earn a degree from an accredited teacher preparation program and pass proficiency tests.
In effect, that means the Indiana Department of Education has passed the buck on to colleges to set the standards in their evaluations of prospective teachers.
|Least Classroom Time Required
For Student Teachers
|Butler University – Alt||0 hours|
|Purdue University North Central – Alt||0 hours|
|IUPUI – Alt||140 hours|
|Taylor University – Alt||300 hours|
|Wabash College – Alt||300 hours|
|Most Classroom Time Required
For Student Teachers
|Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College||640 hours|
|University of Evansville||640 hours|
|University of Indianapolis||640 hours|
|University of Indianapolis – Alt||680 hours|
|Butler University||900 hours|
SOURCE: U.S. DEPT. OF ED.;
The National Council on Teacher Quality, a non-partisan research organization, argues there isn’t a “right” amount of time student teachers should spend in the classroom, but…
In too many areas, anything goes. Programs must adhere to their state requirements and standards, and many also meet accreditation standards. Yet these criteria, when applied to evaluate the design and sequencing of field work, result in approval of programs with wildly disparate field work requirements in most states.
Federal data about the state’s accredited teacher preparation programs analyzed by StateImpact show that most Indiana colleges offer both traditional certification programs as well as “alternative” certification programs.
Alternative certification programs allow those who hold at least a bachelors’ degree in anything but education to obtain a teaching license. Alternative programs typically involve less in-classroom student teaching than traditional programs — some alternative programs, such as those at Butler University, don’t require any student teaching time to earn a certificate.
Ironically enough, Butler University’s traditional certification program requires the most student teaching time of any program in the state: 900 hours (a full school year in grades K-6).