Professional and Secondary Education

201 Recitation Hall
West Chester University
West Chester, PA 19383
Dr. Elmore, Chairperson
Dr. Haggard, Graduate Coordinator

Professors [top]

Deborah S. Brown, Ph.D., University of Delaware
Kimberlee S. Brown, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania
Yi-Ming Hsu, Ed.D., University of Georgia
Thomas Mastrilli, Ed.D., University of Pittsburgh
Lesley A. Welsh, Ph.D., University of Connecticut

Associate Professors

David L. Bolton, Ph.D., Florida State University
John Elmore, Ph.D., Kansas State University
Cynthia Haggard, Ed.D., Indiana University
Stephanie L. Hinson, Ed.D., University of Virginia
Jane L. Kenney, Ph.D., Temple University
Paul A. Morgan, Ph.D., Teachers College, Columbia University
Christian V. Penny, Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University

Assistant Professors

Robert Haworth, Ph.D., New Mexico State University
Curry S. Malott, Ph.D., New Mexico State University

Programs of Study [top]

The Department of Professional and Secondary Education offers the master of education, as well as graduate programs leading to teacher certification.

Master of Education in Secondary Education

Dr. Haggard, Program Coordinator

This program is designed primarily to strengthen the professional knowledge, skills, and understanding of the graduate student. Practicing teachers will increase their knowledge base of effective teaching. In addition to the education courses offered, the 15 semester-hour elective area allows students to increase their knowledge in the academic content area.

Admission Requirements

In addition to meeting admission requirements of the University, the student must:

  1. Be approved by the Department of Professional and Secondary Education for graduate work.
  2. Attain an acceptable score on the Graduate Record Examination or the Miller Analogies Test. It is strongly recommended that the applicant have a valid teaching certificate.

Applicants whose certification is not in secondary education may, at the department chairperson's discretion, be required to take course work beyond the minimum semester-hour requirements for the degree.

Upon admission, students will be assigned advisers who will help them to outline the appropriate program. All work for the program must be approved by the program coordinator.

Requirements for Admission to Degree Candidacy

During the precandidacy period, the student must:

  1. Attain full status, if admission status to the program was provisional.
  2. Complete these required courses: EDF 500 and 510, and EDP 550.
  3. Achieve a minimum overall grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 and a minimum GPA of 3.0 in the required courses in the area of concentration.
  4. Show evidence of academic, personal, and professional qualities that satisfy the adviser and the departmental graduate committee.

Curriculum (36 semester hours) [top]

  1. Required courses (9 semester hours)
    EDF 500 or 591, EDF 510 or 511, EDP 550
  2. Area of concentration requirements (12 semester hours)
    A minimum of 12 semester hours must be selected from the following:
    EDF 503, 504, 505, 506, 507, 509, 515, 516, 520, 570, 580, 581, 588, 589, 590; EDP 531; EDS 502, 505, 524, 599; EDT 500, 501, 502, 503, 511; EDU 501, 502
  3. Electives (15 semester hours)
    The electives may be from courses listed above, or from courses in the student's teaching field. They also may be a combination of both.

Comprehensive Examination

Students must perform satisfactorily on a written comprehensive examination.
To be eligible, students must have

  1. Taken the required courses: EDF 500 and 510, and EDP 550.
  2. Completed 28 semester hours of work, including the nine semester hours of required courses and 12 semester hours from the area of concentration.
  3. Attained a minimum overall GPA of 3.0 and a minimum GPA of 3.0 in the required courses and the courses in the area of concentration.
  4. Received the approval of the departmental graduate coordinator.

Students who fail the comprehensive examination are allowed a second attempt. A second failure terminates candidacy.

Secondary Teaching Certificate

The Department of Professional and Secondary Education offers a nondegree program for post-baccalaureate students seeking secondary teaching certification. Students must apply through the Office of Graduate Studies and Extended Education for the certification program and meet admission requirements specified by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) for the University. (See “Formal Admission to Teacher Education for Certification,” page 22-23.) The program consists of six education courses, including a methods course offered by the academic area, plus a full semester of student teaching. Students must have academic course work in their subject area discipline(s) equivalent to an undergraduate B.S.Ed. from West Chester University. Undergraduate transcripts will be evaluated by the content area department to assess any additional course work that may be needed in the academic discipline.

Courses required for certification include EDA 511 and 541, EDF 589, EDP 531 and 550, EDS 505, EDR 545, EDT 500, LAN/ENG 586, and a subject area methods course. (Note: Some course work taken for certification may count for the M.Ed. in secondary education.)

Candidates must show evidence of completion of required ETS Praxis I and II tests to student teach. They must pass all Praxis tests to become program completers and qualify for Pennsylvania certification. See the department for current requirements.

The PDE has recently issued new program guidelines for secondary education. Candidates must meet with an adviser to ascertain new requirements.

Master of Education

The master of education program has concentrations in chemistry, French, history, and Spanish, offered cooperatively by the College of Education and the College of Arts and Sciences. The academic requirements for each concentration are found under the respective department listing.

With this degree, students can strengthen their knowledge in the major subject area, as well as their professional knowledge and competence.

Students earning degrees in this program are advised primarily by their academic department representative but also must consult with a professional and secondary education adviser concerning the education portion of their program. Note: This program does not lead to teacher certification without additional course work.

Curriculum (36 semester hours)

  1. Professional education requirements* (12 semester hours)
    1. EDF 510
    2. A minimum of one course from each of the following groups:
      Group 1: EDF 516, 520, 580, 581, 589
      Group 2: EDF 503, 507, 509; EDP 531, 550, 557, 560, 569; EDS 524; EDU 502
      Group 3: EDC 567; EDF 504, 505, 506, 570, 590; EDS 502, EDU 501
  2. Concentration requirements (21-23 semester hours)
    1. EDF 500 (3)
    2. Academic subjects (18-20)
      (See respective academic department for details)
  3. Electives (professional or academic)* (1-3 semester hours)
    *Chosen in conference with the secondary education and academic advisers according to the student's needs.

Comprehensive Examination

The student must perform satisfactorily on the final comprehensive examination covering the subject matter concentration and the professional education requirements.

Graduate Certificate Program in Education for Sustainability

Dr. Morgan, Coordinator

The graduate certificate program in education for sustainability (EFS) is designed for professionals who want to help others (students, co-workers, citizens) better understand the challenge of sustainability and become active participants in solutions. The EFS program consists of six courses that provide the perspective, experiences, and practical methods needed to integrate sustainability into the school, workplace, or community.

Curriculum (18 semester hours)

Required: EDO 500, 510, 520, 550, and two elective courses selected in consultation with the program’s director.

Important information about the educational debt, earnings, and completion rates of students who attended the Certificate Program in Education for Sustainability program.

Graduate Certificate in Educational Technology

Dr. Penny, Coordinator

The educational technology certificate is designed to support professional educators with technology that connects them to data, content, resources, expertise, and learning experiences that empower and inspire them to provide more effective learning for all students. Effective teaching in the 21st century requires innovation, problem solving, creativity, continuous improvement, research, diagnostic use of data, and flexible and personalized approaches to meeting students’ diverse needs and strengths.

Since the department believes the best way to prepare teachers for connected teaching is to have them experience it, this program provides technology-supported learning experiences that promote and enable the use of technology to improve learning, assessment, and instructional practices. The certificate in educational technology supports and develops educator identities as fluent users of advanced technology, creative and collaborative problem solvers, and adaptive, socially aware experts.

Certificate Program
Curriculum (18 semester hours)

  1. Required (15 semester hours)
    EDT 500, 510, 517, 530, 540
  2. Electives (3 semester hours)
    One course selected under advisement

Important information about the educational debt, earnings, and completion rates of students who attended the Certificate in Educational Technology program.

Graduate Certificate in Entrepreneurial Education

Curriculum (18 semester hours)

  1. Required
    EDE 563, EEE 500 (6 semester hours)
  2. Two of the following: EEE 501, 503, 504; MAT 595 (6 semester hours)
  3. Two elective courses (6 semester hours)
    Selected under advisement of the program director

Important information about the educational debt, earnings, and completion rates of students who attended the Certificate in Entrepreneurial Education program.

Course Descriptions [top]

Counselor Education
Symbol: EDC

540 Assessment Methods in Guidance (3) Emphasis is on the test and nontest assessment of intelligence, achievement, special abilities, and aptitudes, including concepts such as reliability, validity, and standardization.

Symbol: EDF

500 Methods and Materials of Research in Education (3) Historical, descriptive, and experimental methods of research. Methods for locating, evaluating, interpreting, and reporting research data. Each student prepares a research prospectus.

501 Research Methods for Teachers (3) Designed to offer a practical and accurate introduction to various research methods that can be applied to a classroom setting for improving teaching practices. PREREQ: EDT 500.

502 Methods and Materials of Research for Counselor Education (3) Designed to enable the counselor to read experimental, quasi-experimental, descriptive, and correlational research reported in the professional journals. Both univariate and multivariate designs are emphasized. PREREQ: EDC 540.

506 Design and Use of Individualized Learning Packages (3) A review of commercially available individualized learning activity packages that permit students to progress through a learning continuum at their own pace. Students will be required to design and construct individualized learning packages in their teaching areas.

509 Contemporary Teaching Trends (3) Team teaching, programmed instruction, and various media of communication in the elementary and secondary schools are evaluated. Effective adaptation to newer practices is emphasized.

510 Educational Foundations (3) History of education, integrated with educational philosophy and thought; the long evolution of education theory and issues.

511 Foundations of Transformative Education (3) History of education, integrated with educational philosophy and thought; the long evolution of education theory and issues.

520 Comparative Education (3) Major problems of education in a number of other countries are related to similar problems in the United States. Contrasting purposes and philosophies, and differences in organization and administration are analyzed.

580 History of American Education (3) Nature and direction of American education, studied through individual and group research.

581 Philosophy of Education (3) Selected philosophies and their influence on educational principles and practices in a democratic social order.

583 The American School as Social Narrative (3) An integrated exploration of the philosophical culture, social, and physical foundations of schooling and education in the United States.

588 Critical Pedagogy and the Politics of Education (3) This course examines the historical development of critical pedagogy from its roots to its current models. By encouraging students to engage in a critical study of the educational system, this course seeks to aid in the development of analytical skills in regard to educational issues and provide a context within which future issues may be examined as they emerge. PREREQ: EDF 511.

589 Sociological Foundations of Education (3) Study of the socio-cultural influences on the structure of American educational institutions.

591 Introduction to Critical Action Research (3) Students will be introduced to the action research process. At the conclusion of this course, students will demonstrate an understanding of the steps involved in conducting systematic, data-driven inquiry and applying reflective practices in the context of educational and social change.

593 Evaluation of Educational and Social Change (3) This course provides students with techniques to help them evaluate educational and social change within the context and practice of action research. These techniques include both quantitative and qualitative methods. Specifically, students will learn to develop systematic approaches that can be used to assess the effect of changes in educational practices and policies within classrooms, schools, school districts, and society.

595 Critical Action Research Thesis Project (3) Students will design an action research project on a topic of interest related to educational change and transformation. They will formulate their design into a research proposal and defend the proposal. PREREQ: EDF 591 and 593.

599 Workshop in Professional Education (3)

Environmental Education
Symbol: EDO

500 Environmental and Sustainability Education: History, Theory, and Practice (3) Advanced overview of the development of environmental and sustainability education with emphasis on theoretical perspectives and professional applications.

510 Systems and Sustainability (3) Examination of how “systems thinking” applies to learning for sustainability in schools and other institutions. Topics include curriculum, grounds, facilities, and missions.

520 Outdoor and Place-Based Education (3) School and organization-based applications of outdoor and place-based education, with emphases on experiential and authentic learning.

525 Independent Studies in Environmental Education (3) Special research projects, reports, and readings in conservation and outdoor education. PREREQ: Permission of coordinator.

550 Education for Sustainability: Methods and Projects (3) Methods for integrating education for sustainability into schools and nonformal settings, using authentic projects to demonstrate and apply learning.

598 Workshop in Environmental Education (3)

Educational Psychology
Symbol: EDP

501 Young Adolescent/Adolescent Cognition, Development, and Learning Theories (3) This course is a study of the physical, personal, social, and emotional development of early through late adolescence in the context of classroom teaching; it also examines selected learning theories. There is a field component.

531 Principles of Educational Testing (3) Designed to develop in teachers the skills important in the three areas of educational testing: teacher-made tests (objective and essay); computerized programs for grading and reporting results, and for improving the test quality through item-analysis procedure; and the evaluation of the psychometric characteristics of standardized tests.

550 Advanced Educational Psychology (3) Processes by which skills, understanding, concepts, and ideals are acquired; teaching practices in relation to basic research concerning learning; similarities and differences in theories of learning.

553 Assessment for Learning - Early Grades (3) This course is designed to provide students with the knowledge and skills to use multiple developmentally appropriate assessments (authentic, screening, diagnostic, formative, and summative) to guide instruction related to standards, monitor results of intervention and their instructional implications for all students, and report assessment results. PREREQ: EGP 520.

554 Assessment for Learning - Middle Grades (3) This course provides middle grade candidates the knowledge and skills to use multiple developmentally appropriate assessments (authentic, screening, diagnostic, formative, and summative) to guide instruction related to standards, monitor results of interventions and their implications for instruction for all students, and report assessment results. This course has a 25-hour field experience. PREREQ: MGP 520, field clearances.

569 Adolescent Development and Learning (3) Mental, physical, emotional, and social development and behavior of the adolescent with emphasis on various types of learning. Case studies are used.

570 Cognition and Transformation (3) A course in helping students understand theories of learning as they relate to the Pre-K through high school learner, as well as the learner’s cognitive and social development. The course goal is to understand the student’s cognitive and social needs within the framework of his or her education and social contexts, and to empower the student to create educational and social change.

598 Workshop in Educational Psychology (3)

Secondary Education
Symbol: EDS

502 Curriculum Development in a Diverse Society (3) This course is designed to improve candidates’ skills as instructional designers within a diverse society. Students will design an educational program/curriculum that will result in a positive impact on a specific thematic concern.

505 General Methods and Field Experience for Secondary Teachers (3) Students develop strategies that will increase the probability of their becoming successful classroom teachers. Topics include planning, instructional strategies, learning styles, motivation, and classroom management. Students will observe in area schools.

590 Independent Study (1-3) Enrollment by permission only; number of credits determined by department.

599 Workshop Secondary Education (3)

Instructional Technology
Symbol: EDT

500 Integrating Educational Technologies for Effective Instruction (3) This course covers the breadth of the conceptual foundation needed to integrate technology into teaching. In this survey course, the focus is on learning a process for determining which electronic tools and which methods for implementing them are appropriate for classroom situations.

501 Using Internet Resources for Curriculum Development and Assessment (3) An in-depth course utilizing Internet resources for curriculum design, development, and assessment. Particular attention will be paid to the process of moving theory into practice to improve student learning. Extensive exposure to Web-based technologies and on-line resources, including professional journals, will be required in order to enhance familiarity with current educational issues and best practices. PREREQ: EDT 500.

502 Seminar and Field Experience in Educational Technology (3) Supervised use of educational technology integration in the field: clinical application of knowledge balancing the dynamic relationship of learning, teaching, and technology. Portfolio documentation of internship is required, as well as demonstration of professional skills and competencies, and pedagogical knowledge. PREREQ: EDT 500 and 501.

503 Learning and Leading with Technology (3) Participants will design comprehensive technology plans to create enhanced learning environments for all students to succeed. This course develops an informed leader involved with the change process in educational organization. The participants will analyze the impact of technology in the learning environment and identify key elements of professional development and support for change. In addition, educators will become familiar with technology funding sources and the grantwriting process.

510 Instructional Design with Emerging Technology (3) In this course students will apply their understanding of educational technology to the curriculum design process. Students will follow content area and pedagogical best practices in the design process. Special attention will be given to national standards, emerging technologies, and professional development. In addition, students will be required to research current methods and techniques in the application of educational emerging technologies.

511 Social and Cultural Implications of Educational Technology (3) This course is focused on the social, cultural, economic, and educational implications of modern learning technologies. Participants will analyze current theoretical and empirical research for a broader understanding of the dynamic influences of educational technology on social change. The class will explore the positive and negative effects of technology upon the schools and students, as well as global issues, such as the digital divide (i.e., who has and who does not have access to technology, why, and what can be done). PREREQ: EDF 588.

530 Digital Media Production and Storytelling (3) This course offers an introduction to methods and strategies for the design and production of digital media and digital stories. Participants get hands-on experience with multimedia tools, produce their own new media and digital stories, learn to integrate digital stories in a school setting, and develop lessons that involve students in creating and sharing digital stories. Topics include digital storytelling as an educational tool, assessing digital stories, the art and practice of storytelling, the media production process, copyright, and fair use in education.

540 Teaching and Learning Online (3) This course, about teaching and engaging the online learner, is for teachers and teacher candidates to develop strategies that help learners be successful in an online environment. The primary objectives are to understand the emerging field of teaching K-12 students online and the essential differences from traditional face-to-face teaching; perceive the challenges offered by online resources, technologies, and online teaching; integrate various Web 2.0 tools to enhance online teaching and learning; develop strategies to foster student collaboration and communication within an online environment; and comprehend the broad concept of digital citizenship and its implications including ethical and legal issues.

Entrepreneurial Education
Symbol: EEE

500 Entrepreneurial Education (3) Course offers information and practical tools for innovative educators to transform creative ideas into classroom practice.

501 Emerging Science and Technology (3) Course demonstrates problem-based learning and the use of technology to inform education.

503 Applied Learning Seminar (3) Participants will learn and demonstrate the application of problem-based learning appropriate to classroom curriculum.

504 The 21st Century Educator Externship (3) Educators have discussions with leaders in business, industry, and research, as well as spend 35 hours "job shadowing" with professionals.