The Liberty University School of Education utilizes a gate system to ensure the successful progression of its candidates through the Educator Preparation Provider (EPP) program. The following gates are described below:
- Gate 1: University Admission and Declaration of Major
- Gate 2: Program Status Check
- Gate 3: Program Admission and Student Teaching Application
- Gate 4: Program Exit and Licensure Application
Please visit www.liberty.edu/uguide for specific requirements at each gate.
Status Check (Gate 2)
- Gate 1: Admission to the University
Please see the admission guidelines found at www.liberty.edu/admissions.
- Gate 2: Program Status Check
Preparation for the Program Status Check (Gate 2) begins in the first EDUC course. Candidates will be presented with an overview of the program and how to proceed to Gate 2. The Program Status Check (Gate 2) includes (but is not limited to) the following:
- A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0;
- Satisfactory conduct / dispositions;
- Required test scores (as stated at www.liberty.edu/uguide;
- Clearance of the required background check;
Please see https://www.liberty.edu/education/epp-undergrad-gates/gate-2/ for specific, current guidelines concerning the Gate 2 Program Status Check.
The student teaching experience is required of all candidates seeking teacher licensure and takes place during the student’s final semester of study. It will involve the commitment of the entire semester for student teaching and related coursework.
|EDUC 475||Seminar in Student Teaching||2|
|EDUC 476||Supervised Student Teaching I||5|
|EDUC 477||Supervised Student Teaching II||5|
Student teaching experiences are arranged to take place within Christian and public school settings in Central Virginia and abroad. A listing of local school divisions may be found at http://www.liberty.edu/uguide. A limited number of external placements in accredited schools are available for students who meet the criteria for external placement. The University seeks to place student teachers in positive classroom settings with well-qualified cooperating teachers.
It is the policy of the Liberty University School of Education that student teaching experiences are performed in the above settings which are supervised directly by faculty members from the University. For this reason, it is not possible to complete student teaching at another institution and then transfer credit to Liberty for the purpose of meeting student teaching requirements. Teacher candidates also will not be issued credit for student teaching because of having a period of non-certified classroom employment. Further information about the student teaching experience may be secured from the Teacher Licensure Office.
The student teaching experience should be approached with a great deal of respect for the responsibilities involved and should be regarded as a very important experience for the aspiring teacher. During the student teaching semester, the candidate will assume an important role in terms of responsibilities and obligations to the school and the candidates where the student teaching is to take place. It is also imperative that student teachers plan to arrange personal time schedules so that proper attention is given to student teaching and those activities associated with outside preparation and school responsibilities.
For these reasons, the School of Education very strongly suggests that teacher candidates should not plan to have significant amounts of outside diversions during the student teaching semester. Examples of activities which have previously caused problems for student teachers include jobs, excessive social commitments, and extracurricular activities. In such circumstances, the quality of the teaching inevitably suffers. For these reasons, planning and prior arrangement to avoid such problems is expected. Please see the Teacher Education Handbook and the Student Teaching Handbook found at http://www.liberty.edu/uguide for specific policies concerning the requirements for student teaching.
Admission to Student Teaching (Gate 3)
Gate 3: Program Admission and Student Teaching Application
Gate 3 is considered the official admission stage for the Liberty University EPP (Educator Preparation Provider) Program. The standards of admission to the EPP are inclusive of those for admission to the University and include other criteria outlined by the School of Education as indicated below. Policies governing admission to the program originate in, or are channeled through the Teacher Education Department. The Department formulates policies, coordinates the EPP program, and works for selective recruitment, admission, and retention of diverse candidates for and in teacher licensure. It must be clearly understood that admission to the University is not synonymous with admission to the EPP. For Gate 3, candidates must complete an application that
- documents they have met the requirements to be in the program and
- makes the official request for a student teaching placement.
The Gate 3: Program Admission / Student Teaching Application includes (but is not limited to) the following:
- Results of current TB test;
- Receipt of current liability insurance;
- Cleared background check;
- Satisfactory conduct / dispositions;
- A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0;
- Completion of all professional education coursework, as well as all courses in the candidate’s major area of study. Grades below a “C” are not acceptable in any EDUC course, or in any concentration course (Elementary and Special Education Licensure), or in any upper level course in the major (Secondary/ Comprehensive Licensure);
- Completion of all required test scores (https://www.liberty.edu/education/epp-undergrad-gates/gate-3/). Licensure tests must be passed before the student teaching application can be accepted and a request for placement can be made; and
- DCP Audit that indicates all coursework except student teaching is completed.
The application deadlines for placement in student teaching are September 1 for placement in the spring semester and February 1 for placement in the fall semester.
GATE 4: Program Exit and Licensure Application
Candidates are ready to proceed to Gate 4 when they have a conferred degree (with the required GPA, coursework, etc.) and the required paperwork documenting that they are eligible for a teaching license. The Gate 4 checklist for the required documents may be found at https://www.liberty.edu/education/epp-undergrad-gates/gate-4/.
Teacher Licensure Tests
An important requirement for meeting Teacher Licensure standards in the Commonwealth of Virginia is the successful completion of the required tests for licensure. Tests include Praxis Core Mathematics, the Praxis Core Reading, the Praxis Core Writing, the VCLA (Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment), the Praxis Subject Assessment, and the RVE (Reading for Virginia Educators) for Elementary and Special Education candidates.
These tests must be passed before applying for Gate 3. The tests may be repeated, if necessary. More information about the required licensure tests may be found at http://www.liberty.edu/uguide.
Elementary And Special Education Licensure
A teacher candidate who plans to teach in elementary or special education must complete a major in Elementary Education Integrated Studies or Special Education Integrated Studies. The candidate will choose from a specified list of concentrations that have been approved by the respective department chairs. The middle school option provides additional endorsement in the concentration selected. Professional education requirements for teacher candidates preparing to be elementary and special education teachers are outlined in the program DCP. Course requirements are available online at http://www.liberty.edu/education.
A candidate who plans to teach in secondary school must complete a major in the subject area(s) in which the candidate wishes to teach. The secondary areas of licensure available at Liberty are biology, business, computer science, English, history/social sciences, mathematics, and work and family studies. Add-on licensure is available in Algebra I, biology, chemistry, computer science, journalism, speech, and theatre arts.
The typical professional education requirements for candidates preparing to be secondary school teachers are outlined in the program Degree Completion Plan (DCP). Requirements for the various subject matter areas are available on the DCP of the respective major.
Comprehensive licensure includes certification in both elementary and secondary school levels for the teacher candidate who plans to teach in areas such as music (vocal and instrumental), health/physical education, Spanish, special education, teaching English as a second language, studio art, and theatre arts. Requirements vary slightly among majors. Requirements for the various subject matter areas are available on the Degree Completion Plans of the respective majors.
Graduates who have successfully completed Liberty’s Educator Preparation Program are eligible for a standard Collegiate Professional License from the Virginia Department of Education. Though candidates must pass a background check for entrance into the Liberty University School of Education EPP program, the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) also makes determinations concerning the eligibility of candidates.
Please see the VDOE website to see the list of questions that will be asked of each applicant.
Licensure In Other States
Graduates who have successfully completed Liberty’s Educator Preparation Program and who have met all standards for Teacher Licensure in Virginia can be recommended for licensure in other states. The Commonwealth of Virginia operates within the Interstate Licensure Compact, which means that other states in the compact recognize and freely accept incoming licensure applications from Virginia-based programs.
The remaining states utilize different processes to evaluate out-of-state applicants for licensure. In most cases, other states will require proof that the candidate has successfully completed a state-approved Educator Preparation Program. Assistance in securing this license is provided to all of those who are completing student teaching. Licensure applications will be processed after all undergraduate work has been successfully completed.
Teacher Licensure personnel can provide addresses of the various State Departments of Education for those wishing to pursue licensure in other states. The Teacher Licensure personnel will assist candidates in the preparation and submission of the required documents.
As a condition of Liberty’s Certificate of Approval from the Alabama Commission on Higher Education, the following disclaimer pertains to Liberty’s online programs in Teacher Education:
Teacher Education: State Authorization to provide a program related to the preparation of teachers or other P-12 school/system personnel does not indicate eligibility for an Alabama certificate. Applicants for an Alabama certificate based on reciprocity must meet Alabama’s test requirements and submit a valid, renewable professional educator certificate/license issued by another state at the degree level, grade level, and in the teaching field or area of instructional support for which an Alabama certificate is sought and for which Alabama issues a certificate. Applicants for Alabama certification in an area of administration must also document at least three years of full-time employment as an administrator in a P-12 school system(s). www.alsde.edu
Time Frame For Professional Licensure And Field Work
Teacher candidates must have completed all requirements necessary for professional licensure within five years after completion of the undergraduate degree.
Teacher candidates who have received a degree and wish to return to Liberty University for field experience (elementary/ secondary student teaching) for licensure will be subject to the same five-year timeframe.
Each case will be evaluated on an individual basis according to time elapsed from completion of coursework, transcripts, program changes, and recent experiences in the field of education.