Schools open doors to the world. Every day, students encounter new people, ideas, and experiences. Teachers foster these experiences. They facilitate positive relationships with all types of students and establish safe and caring learning communities. Effective teachers are committed to their students and profession and are active members of their schools and communities.
As a teacher, you will have an immediate impact on the next generation. Students need teachers who will prepare them to meet an ever-changing society. Schools are looking for skilled and knowledgeable individuals to fill that need. With documented nation-wide teacher shortages, the demand for qualified educators is as high as it has ever been, especially in STEM subjects, special education, and English as a Second Language.
At Luther, you’ll receive the quality of education necessary to prepare you for a lifetime of teaching and learning. Our program is founded on three principles: theoretical knowledge of learning and human behavior, knowledge in your subject matter, and teaching competencies. These, combined with our emphasis on the liberal arts, ensure that you will leave Luther ready to become a competent, caring, and inquisitive member of the teaching community.
We believe that field experience—working with real students in real classrooms—is the cornerstone of an effective teacher education program. Our unique practicum structure gives students the opportunity to “try on” teaching, spending several weeks observing teachers full-time and experiencing the day-to-day functions of the classroom. Another month-long practicum, usually during your junior year, lets you teach a unit using the skills and techniques you’ve learned in advanced classes. Finally, a full semester of student teaching—two different seven-week sessions—helps you tie your knowledge and experience together into an effective set of teaching strategies for your own classroom.
Schools today reflect the growing diversity of a world increasingly connected by technology. Teachers who have had diverse experiences help to foster globally minded students. Because of this, and to prepare you for the various teaching jobs you may have in the future, we encourage you to seek out diverse experiences and teaching opportunities. For your student teaching semester, you can apply to teach in any state. You can even apply to student teach abroad.
To hear what recent grads have to say about their experiences within the education department, take a look at our alumni profiles page.
Luther College is accredited by the state of Iowa. In addition, we also have the distinction of being one the four institutions in Iowa to also be accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). This national approval ensures that our program prepares you to know your subject and your learners. It also means that our clinical experiences give you the practical experience so that you’ll enter classrooms with the tools you need to teach effectively. Often, school districts and states more readily grant licensure to candidates who graduate from education programs that have met the rigor of NCATE/CAEP (national) accreditation.
Completers of Luther’s TEP (in recent years) have regularly found teaching positions in Iowa, Minnesota, Illinois, Colorado, and Wisconsin. Our students have also gone to California, Texas, Arizona, and international schools.
This means that when you graduate from Luther, not only will you qualify to apply for licensure in Iowa, but you’ll also have the potential to receive licensure in most other states. In fact, when our completers have passed the particular licensure test(s) the state requires, all have been granted a provisional or initial license in the states to which they have applied for licensure, even if there was a course or two required by the state that our completers had not yet taken.