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Since the University’s establishment in 1888, teacher education has played an integral role, helping to form our identity and further our institutional pursuits. The Department of Education’s motto, Reflective Constructors of Quality Learning Experiences through Critical Thinking, accurately portrays the Department’s philosophy that teachers, along with other education professionals, have a responsibility to ensure the welfare and enrichment of society. The quality and dispositions of our teachers are primary in the growth and preservation of civilization. Consequently, both the public and the teaching profession demand that those entering the profession be fully qualified to accept the responsibility of being a teacher or other school professional. They must be highly qualified, knowledgeable, and caring education professionals. Acknowledging that all children can learn, the Department is committed to providing training and experiences using research-based “Best Practices” to provide a platform for teacher education candidates to grow with us and lead our schools and communities into the future.
In the Education Unit, the most important professional outcomes for graduates are that the candidates possess a well-developed philosophy and understanding of education, as well as positive dispositions that enable all students to learn. Candidates’ philosophies reflect conceptual, strategic, evaluative, and communicative knowledge. Knowing foundational concepts, forming teaching strategies based on those concepts, evaluating the effectiveness of the strategy, and then communicating the results to all stakeholders form the foundation of Reflective Constructors of Quality Learning Experiences through Critical Thinking.
In pursuit of our mission to serve students in Appalachia and beyond, the Department of Education has incorporated an on-line delivery system for graduate courses/programs. Previously, our exclusively on-campus delivery system had both prevented many students from enrolling in our programs and caused personal and professional challenges for students currently enrolled. The on-line delivery offering for graduate programs allows students to have the flexibility to take graduate course work that fits their professional and personal goals and schedules. Further, it allows the University to address the chronic shortage of teachers in our service region, and in other underserved areas by enabling college graduates to earn teacher certification and additional advanced education degrees/certifications. The on-line delivery does not impact the content of the curriculum. The curricular requirements for both on-line and on-site offerings remain the same regardless of the method of delivery. The University’s online programs are accredited by the state of Kentucky and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.