Departmental Mission Statement
Wheaton College provides a transformative liberal arts education for intellectually curious students in a collaborative, academically vibrant residential community. Through connected courses covering related topics from multiple perspectives, the Wheaton Curriculum encourages all students to explore the conceptual and methodological approaches to knowledge inherent in the academic disciplines. Students are encouraged to think, learn, analyze, evaluate, understand and express themselves regarding all aspects of their lives.
In this environment, rich in history and a sense of shared purpose, Wheaton’s innovative education programs prepare teacher scholars who pursue both an education major and an in-depth liberal arts major. These connected programs offer preservice educators myriad opportunities to confront issues of what and how to teach in a rapidly changing world. Wheaton prepares education students to be intellectual risk takers, creative problem solvers and reflective practitioners. In turn, they develop the habits of mind and particular strategies necessary to cultivate higher-order thinking among their own students. Through work in and out of college and field classrooms, education students are expected to think critically, analyze issues closely, communicate effectively and provide leadership in these diverse communities in which they will live and work.
In coursework and field experiences, education majors confront contemporary society, engage in study of race, ethnicity, and social justice, and consider how these issues impact their own lives and the lives of their students. The intensity of discourse inside and outside the classroom and the active learning promoted by a distinguished faculty prepare future teachers’ understanding of the world and the leadership role they can play in it. Our graduates pursue many vocations including classroom teachers, administrators, school psychologists, researchers, and professors.
By successfully completing requirements for the secondary, elementary or early childhood education major programs, Wheaton graduates gain Massachusetts teacher licensure. The Education Department also offers a general education minor, a five course non-licensure program.
Massachusetts Professional Standards for Teachers
These standards define the pedagogical and other professional knowledge and skills required of all Massachusetts teachers.
(1) Curriculum, Planning, and Assessment
(2) Teaching All Students
(3) Family and Community Engagement
(4) Professional Culture
Wheaton’s Education Department is the gem of the college. The faculty truly care about the students and prepare them to become effective teachers.
I found the teaching program at Wheaton to be a wonderful experience. I was well prepared and I feel that the department is small but strong, with incredible professors and great courses.
The Education professors at Wheaton are wonderful. I felt very supported and it was clear that the professors really wanted for you to become the best teacher you could be and to think carefully about teaching.
It is a really amazing program. To have this level of professional preparation from a liberal arts undergraduate program is unparalleled.
The collaboration and support for everyone in the program is really phenomenal. And it remains that way after you graduate from Wheaton.
I have gotten shout-outs from my director because of my ‘already established teacher presence in the classroom.’ I owe that to Wheaton and I’m so thankful to have gone through such a strong program.
Sources: Education Department Surveys, Focus Groups, & Alumni Email (2013-2017)
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