Teacher Education Program Admission, Retention, and Exit Requirements

The criteria for admission to, retention in, and exit from the Teacher Education Program are set by the Teacher Education Council and are subject to change. Policies and procedures related to the Teacher Education Program are provided in the Teacher Education Handbook, posted with other program information on the Department of Teacher Education Web site.

Admission to the Teacher Education Program

Upon completion of EDUC 250: Introduction to Education, candidates may apply for admission to the Teacher Education Program. In cases in which a candidate has taken from another institution a course that can be substituted for EDUC 250: Introduction to Education, an application for admission may be completed once the candidate has completed a minimum of thirty semester hours and has declared a major in education. Admission criteria are

  • Completion of thirty (30) semester hours;
  • Completion of EDUC 250: Introduction to Education with a minimum grade of C;
  • Satisfactory completion of EDUC 298: Pre-Professional Field Experience;
  • Completion of EDUC 210: Educational Technology with a minimum grade of C;
  • Passing scores on the Praxis I exam (the Core Academic Skills for Educators tests in reading, writing, and mathematics);
  • A minimum grade of C in ENGL 110: College Composition I and ENGL 120: College Composition II;
  • A minimum grade of C in COMM 110: Fundamentals of Public Speaking;
  • A minimum cumulative GPA of 2.75;
  • Participation in interview and writing sample assessments;
  • Recommendation from one’s advisor and the instructors of EDUC 250 and EDUC 298;
  • Approval of the Chair of the Department of Teacher Education; and
  • Approval of the Teacher Education Council.

The Chair will notify the candidate in writing of one of the following levels of action for admission to Teacher Education:           

  • Full Admission: This will allow the candidate to enroll in professional education courses.
  • Provisional Admission (one semester): This is used in special cases at the discretion of the Teacher Education Council. It may be granted to a candidate who has not met one or more of the requirements for full admission to the program. Candidates granted provisional admission may enroll in professional education courses. However, they have only one semester to meet all conditions for full admission.  Failure to meet all admission requirements after the one term provisional acceptance will result in dismissal from the program.  
  • Denied Admission: In this case, the candidate is not admitted to the Teacher Education Program and may not enroll in professional education courses. Candidates who have twice been denied admission to the Teacher Education Program will not be allowed to reapply. Applications are reviewed twice per year—at the end of the fall and spring semesters.  Applications are not accepted or reviewed during the summer months.

Retention in the Teacher Education Program

Following admission to the Teacher Education Program, candidates’ good standing will be reviewed each semester by the Teacher Education Council. A candidate may be placed on probation or removed from the program if he or she: 

  • Fails to exhibit professional behavior in all courses, field experiences, and interactions with peers and faculty;
  • Violates the student code of conduct or criminal law;
  • Earns a grade lower than C in any course of the professional education sequence or major requirements;
  • Allows his or her GPA to fall below 2.75; or
  • Displays unsatisfactory knowledge, skills, and dispositions as determined by program faculty.

A candidate placed on probation has one semester in which to rectify the condition resulting in probation. If the condition is not removed at the end of the probationary semester, the candidate will be dismissed from the program.

Teacher Education Program candidates are permitted to retake only one major or professional education course while in the program.

Once admitted into the Teacher Education Program, candidates must take at least one major course each fall and spring semester. Candidates who fail to take a major course in more than one fall or spring semester without first notifying the Department of Teacher Education will be removed from the program and must reapply to be reinstated.

Candidates can apply for readmission only once.

Praxis Exams

The state of North Dakota requires passing scores on a series of three Praxis exams administered by ETS, the Educational Testing Service. The first exam is the Praxis I (the Core Academic Skills for Educators exam), which has subtests for three areas: reading, writing, and mathematics. Candidates complete this exam prior to admission into the Teacher Education Program. 

Candidates also take two Praxis II exams. One is a content exam in their subject area (e.g., math, physical education, English, elementary education), and the other is a pedagogy exam in their licensure level (e.g., elementary, secondary). Testing locations are available in both Dickinson and Bismarck. Information about specific exam codes, required scores for passing, and registration information is available at the following ETS Web site: http://www.ets.org/praxis/nd/

In order to graduate from the Teacher Education Program, candidates must have passing scores on all required Praxis exams.

Professional Education Portfolio

All candidates in the Teacher Education Program prepare a professional education portfolio under the framework of the ten InTASC standards. The purpose of the portfolio is for candidates to link their products and performances to the program outcomes. Candidates select artifacts from their courses and field experiences that demonstrate their proficiency in each of the program outcomes. A key element of the portfolio is candidates’ rationale for artifact selection. Faculty seek to determine how well the candidates understand their educational decision-making as it relates to current research and best practices.

Program faculty designate key assessments in various courses to help candidates understand the link between theory and practice and justify their professional choices. These course-embedded key assessments (one for each InTASC standard) serve as the candidates’ artifacts for their first level of portfolio review. As such, candidates cannot progress in the program without having submitted the requisite artifacts for faculty review. Should a candidate fail to submit a course-embedded key assessment, an incomplete grade (I) will be recorded until the required assignment is submitted. If the candidate does not submit the key assessment within the designated time frame, the course grade will convert from an I to an F, and the candidate will need to repeat the course.

Portfolio Review

A formal portfolio review takes place as part of the candidates’ application for pre-service teaching. Candidates will have self-selected artifacts to demonstrate their proficiency in each of the program outcomes and will have created accompanying rationale narratives that link the artifacts to the candidates’ understanding of the related InTASC standards. A candidate presents his or her portfolio to a faculty team the semester prior to pre-service teaching. The faculty team includes (1) the candidate's advisor and (2) a member of the Teacher Education Program faculty. This oral presentation is evaluated using the Portfolio Review Rubric, posted with other program information on the Department of Teacher Education Web site. During the portfolio review, the faculty evaluation team determines the candidate’s readiness for pre-service teaching and at that time either recommends or denies the candidate’s application to pre-service teach.

Final Portfolio Review

After completion of the pre-service teaching experience, candidates once again give an oral presentation on their development of each of the InTASC standards. The presentation include candidates’ self-selected artifacts as evidence of their proficiency in each of the program outcomes, as well as their verbal articulation of the links between their artifacts and their understanding of each of the standards.

Admission to Pre-Service Teaching

All education candidates must complete a full-time, fourteen-week pre-service teaching experience. 

Admission requirements for Pre-Service Teaching include

  • a 2.75 cumulative GPA;
  • a 2.75 GPA in the major (for elementary education GPA calculations, the major is defined as all courses listed under the major except BIOL 111: Concepts of Biology and its lab - BIOL 111L);
  • a 2.50 GPA in the minor (for those with double majors, one may be treated as a minor for GPA purposes);                 
  • Completion of all major and professional education courses with a grade of C or better (or S for “S/U” courses) by the end of the application term;
  • Recommendation by the Chair of the candidate’s major;
  • Passing scores on all Praxis I and II exams required for licensure;
  • Proof of liability insurance;
  • Fingerprint background check;
  • Successful portfolio defense.

A candidate’s recommendation by his or her Chair represents approval by that department’s faculty members, who review each candidate on the bases of scholastic record, dispositions, eligibility for teacher licensure, and skills in oral and written communication.  The Teacher Education Council will make final decisions regarding admission to Pre-Service Teaching.

Exit from the Teacher Education Program

Candidates who earn a grade of "C" of higher for pre-service teaching and have completed all program requirements may successfully exit the program. Candidates cannot complete pre-service teaching without having successfully completed all required assignments as detailed in the Pre-Service Teaching Handbook, posted with other program information on the Department of Teacher Education Web site.