Education Building, Room 414
915.747.5572
915.747.5755
education@utep.edu

Web sites

College of Education: http://academics.utep.edu/education
Teacher Education Graduate: http://academics.utep.edu/teachered
Education-Psychology Graduate: http://academics.utep.edu/edpsychology
Education Leadership: http://academics.utep.edu/edleadership
Center for Student Success: http://coe.utep.edu/css

Introduction

The mission of the College of Education at UTEP is to prepare effective teachers, counselors, diagnosticians, and school administrators to successfully address the needs of schools and other youth serving agencies, especially those in multicultural communities. To support this mission, the faculty members of the College engage in research and scholarly activities, provide educational services to local schools and community, and strive to demonstrate by example the quality of teaching expected of our graduates.

At the undergraduate level, the College offers programs aimed at providing qualified students an opportunity to attain the knowledge, values, and skills needed to enter the teaching profession and to receive an initial Texas teaching certificate. At the graduate level, the College offers master's degrees in the areas of Reading Education, Curriculum and Instruction (i.e., Bilingual Education, Early Childhood/Elementary Education, Educational Technology, and Engineering), Educational Administration, School Counseling, Community Counseling, Educational Diagnostics, and Special Education. Students who wish to specialize in other subject areas can consult with COE Graduate Faculty for approval. In addition to these graduate degree programs, the College offers graduate-level courses leading to advanced Texas licensure in administration, supervision, counseling, and various teaching specialties. A Doctorate of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Teaching, Learning, and Culture is offered in the Department of Teacher Education and a Doctor of Education (Ed.D) in Educational Leadership and Administration is offered in the Department of Educational Leadership and Foundations. (For information about graduate programs in Education, students should refer to the University's Graduate Catalog.)

The College maintains close ties with practicing professional teachers through field-based teacher preparation programs. The educator preparation programs are approved by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) and by the Texas State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC). Students who successfully complete a certification program are recommended to receive teacher certification in the state of Texas.

Professional certification programs in the College of Education are offered in Early Childhood/Elementary Education; Bilingual Education; Reading Education; Middle, Secondary, and All-Levels Education; Counseling; Special Education; Educational Diagnostics; and Educational Administration.

Students wishing to explore teaching as a career option enroll in education sections of UNIV 1301. In this course, information concerning the teaching profession is presented, and students have an opportunity to discuss career issues with education faculty and public-school practitioners. Education-focused learning communities are available for pre-education students with 0-45 credit hours of academic work. The COE Center for Student Success (CSS) is located in Room 412 of the Education Building. This office provides information about undergraduate degrees, certification, and transfer work. The College administrative offices are located on the fourth floor of the Education Building. Program and faculty offices are located on the first through eighth floors.

Undergraduate Degrees and Teaching Licenses

Early Childhood/Elementary Grades, Middle Grades, and All-Levels Special Education

The College offers a Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies (BIS) degree for students who wish to become certified teachers in Early Childhood/Elementary Grades, Middle Grades, and All-Levels Special Education. Students working on the BIS degree must have their degree plan filed in the College of Education. These students are advised by College of Education faculty and professional staff, and can request degree and certification course substitutions through these individuals.

Secondary Education and All-Levels Education

Students interested in becoming secondary teachers of All-Levels Art, Music, and Physical Education complete a Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Business Administration,  Bachelor of Music, Bachelor of Science, or a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology and Sports Studies with a minor in secondary or all-levels teaching, depending on their specialization area. Programs of-study information appears in the appropriate section of this catalog under the Colleges of Business Administration, Health Sciences, and Liberal Arts and Science. Information on the secondary and all-levels teaching minors is available in the COE CSS.

Students planning to become certified in Texas as secondary or all-levels teachers must have their degree plan and a copy of their current certification plan filed under the college in which they are pursuing their major. These students must also have a copy of their degree plan and a certification plan filed in the College of CSS, Education 412. Students are advised by the faculty of the college of their major for their major program requirements and by the CSS advising staff for their minor or concentration in secondary or all-levels education. Requests for course substitutions for courses pertaining to the major program requirements are handled by the respective college dean’s office. Substitutions pertinent to the secondary or all-levels teaching certificate minor are under the purview of the Dean’s Office of the College Education.

Transfer Students Seeking Degrees in Education

Undergraduate transfer students seeking a bachelor's degree in Interdisciplinary Studies must submit an application for admission and original copies of their transcripts to the Office of Admissions and Recruitment, located in the Academic Services Building. Transfer students cannot be advised in the College of Education until a written evaluation of previous academic work has been prepared by the Office of Admissions and Recruitment.

Alternative Certification Program

The College of Education offers an alternative certification program for students who have already completed a bachelor's degree and wish to become early childhood/elementary education, middle grades, secondary, or all-levels teachers. This is a non-degree plan administered by the COE CSS in cooperation with the academic department in which the student's teaching specialization resides.

Admission requirements:

1. Conferred baccalaureate degree from an institution that is recognized by one of the regional accrediting agencies.

2. Overall 2.75 grade point average (GPA) or at least a 2.75 GPA within the last 60 semester credit hours (SCH).

3. Pass the Pre-Admission Content Test (PACT).

4. Pass the Texas Higher Education Assessment (THEA)/ Texas Academic Skills Program (TASP) test.

5. International students are required to pass the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).

6. Non-refundable application fee of $50.

Program requirements:

1. Complete 15 graduate SCH of coursework within the field of study with a minimum GPA of 2.75.

2. 30 clock hours of field-based experience in the selected area of certification.

3. 39 clock hours of professional development workshops.

4. Pass the Qualifying/Practice Exams.

5. Complete six hours of test preparation for each Texas Examinations of Educator Standards (TExES) exam.

6. Pass the TExES exam in the selected field of study.

7. One year of supervised paid teaching internship or 15 consecutive weeks of unpaid student teaching.

8. Recommendation from UTEP and partner school district to the State Board of Educator Certification (SBEC) for a Texas Teaching Certificate.

9. Pay in full ACP program tuition and fees.

Additional Certification Levels, Fields, and Supplemental

Texas-certified teachers who wish to add another level of certification and/or a new field of specialization or endorsement must submit a copy of their state certificate(s) and have a new plan prepared at the COE CSS, Education 412. Teachers who are already certified can add any level of certification or field of specialization available to early childhood/elementary education, middle, secondary, and all-levels UTEP students. The state provides certified teachers an opportunity to add new certification levels and specialization fields by challenging the TExES tests in those areas (H.B. 2185). There are also supplementary certificates offered in Bilingual Education and English as a Second Language (ESOL).

Out-of-State Teachers

Teachers with valid out-of-state teaching credentials who are seeking a Texas certificate must contact the Texas State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) directly in order to have their credentials evaluated. Information is available on the SBEC website (http://www.sbec.state.tx.us). To update their certificate, teachers with expired out-of-state teaching certificates must either contact the state in which they were certified before contacting SBEC, or follow the procedure established for students who have a bachelor's degree and desire an initial Texas certification.

Admission to Teacher Education

Undergraduate students who wish to become early childhood/elementary grades, middle grades, secondary, or all-levels teachers in Texas should have an unofficial degree and certification plan prepared as soon as possible. Pre-education students begin the advising process during the New Student Orientation (NSO) session the summer proceeding the first semester of freshmen classes. Advising continues for pre-education students (individuals who have 0-30 semester credit hours) at the UTEP Academic Advising Center, located on Hawthorne Street. After completing 30 semester credit hours, the student is advised at the COE CSS, located in the Education Building, Room 412. At this time, the student will file a copy of their degree with the CSS. The degree plan will become official once the student has fulfilled all the requirements for admission to teacher education. To be admitted to teacher education, students must fulfill the following criteria:

1. Complete courses within the Communication, Mathematics, and Component Area Option portions of the Core Curriculum with a grade of “C” or better.

2. Provide required passing scores on the Texas Higher Education Assessment (THEA) examination: 220 in writing, 230 in math, and 230 in reading. To register for the test, contact the Student Assessment and Testing Office in the Academic Advising Building.

3. Complete 60 semester hours of college work with a cumulative UTEP GPA of 2.75 or better.

4. File an official degree plan with an advisor at the College of Education CSS.

5. Provide three professional recommendation forms/letters.

6. Meet with advisor and apply for admission to the Teacher Education Program, Education 412.

Until admitted to teacher education, students indicating an intention to become teachers will be classified as pre-education students. According to University policy, students must remain in good standing to progress toward the completion of a degree program (See the appropriate catalog section under Academic Standards). In addition, students can be barred from enrolling in professional education courses if their suitability for the teaching profession is found to be unacceptable.

Field Experience and Student Teaching Requirements

Students are expected to spend a significant amount of time in specially selected schools (partner schools and professional development schools) while they complete their professional development courses as well as their student teaching. Admission to teacher education is for enrollment in professional development courses that involve a field experience component. Additionally, students are required to pass the qualifying and Texas Examinations of Educator Standards (TExES) certification exams prior to enrolling in student teaching.

The Texas State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) regulates the certification of educators to teach Texas public-school children. Before an individual can be certified, SBEC must conduct a criminal history background check to ensure an applicant’s suitability to interact with children. Working with the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the agency conducts statewide criminal history background checks on all applicants for educator Certification. Students pursuing educator preparation should be aware that some criminal histories can lead to the denial of certification as a teacher. Students can obtain additional information from SBEC, http://texreg.sos.state.tx.us/public/readtac$ext.ViewTAC?tac_view=3&ti=19&pt=7.

Texas public school districts require applicants for student -teaching or field experiences to undergo a criminal history background check prior to placement in the school district. School districts can deny placement of students with a criminal background. If a school district denies a placement or other field experiences for this reason, the UTEP College of Education can attempt to assist the student in obtaining a placement in an alternate district. Students should be aware, however, that if they are unable to obtain a placement they will not meet UTEP’s requirements for a teaching degree or teacher certification.

Student Teaching Description:

Student teaching for early childhood/elementary grades, middle grades, special education, secondary, and all-levels programs consists of one semester in which students are assigned to partner schools where they spend five days per week for the entire school day for a minimum of 15 weeks engaged in student teaching. In this semester, the major concepts and skills are introduced and student teachers become familiar with the pupils, the teams of teachers, and the community of the partner schools to which they are assigned. The semester has an emphasis on role induction. Student teachers assist teachers mainly through small-group work and begin to experience whole-class instruction. Student teachers demonstrate that they can synthesize the knowledge, values, and experiences of earlier semesters in developing an effective teaching style. Proficiency in all program competencies is assessed during this time.

Student teaching takes place during the spring or fall semester. Students are usually assigned to their student teaching classrooms two weeks prior to the start of the regular semester. Students normally begin the internship their student teaching on the first day of teacher in-service or soon afterward.

Application for Graduation and Certification

Students must apply for graduation during the first month of the semester in which they intend to complete all degree requirements. A graduation fee is required.

Students who are seeking certification must register for and pass the appropriate state certification examinations (TExES). Students apply for certification once they complete all the requirements, including the appropriate TExES tests. A fee is required for the Texas certificate.

In order to be recommended for degree and/or certification, a student must:

 Complete the courses listed in the degree and certification plan with an overall GPA of at least 2.0.

  • Have a 2.5 GPA or better in the teaching field specialization.
  • Have a 2.75 GPA or better in professional education courses.
  • Complete the Texas Education Agency (TEA) application and pay fees.
  • Complete fingerprint/background check requirements.
  • Meet State Board of Educator Certification requirements that are in place at the time you apply for certification.

Note: To receive initial Texas teacher certification, individuals must be free of felony convictions.

Content taken from the 2015-2016 Undergraduate Catalog at College of Education Bachelor of Interdisciplinary studies. 

Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies (BIS)

Students who wish to become Early Childhood/Elementary Grades, Middles Grades, or All-

Levels Special Education teachers and receive an initial Texas teacher certification complete the Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies (BIS) offered in the College of Education.

The BIS degree requires that all students complete:

1. A General Education Core,

2. an Interdisciplinary Major, and

3. a Professional Education Studies component. Students enrolled in the BIS will choose from

three certification levels: Early Childhood/Elementary Education (EC-6), Middle Grades

Education (4-8), and All-Levels Special Education EC-12.

Concentrations

There are three specializations within the Early Childhood/Elementary Grades Education (EC-6)

program:

1. Early Childhood/Elementary Education: Generalist

2. Early Childhood/Elementary Education: Bilingual Education Generalist

3. Early Childhood/Elementary Education: Bilingual Education Generalist (Head Start)

There are six specializations within the Middle Grades Education (4-8) program:

1. Middle Grades Education: Generalist

2. Middle Grades Education: Bilingual Education Generalist

3. Middle Grades Education: English Language Arts-Reading and Social Studies

4. Middle Grades Education: Mathematics and Science

5. Middle Grades Education: English Language Arts-Reading

6. Middle Grades Education: Mathematics

There is one All-Levels (EC-12) Special Education specialization:

1. All-Levels Special Education

Admission to Teacher Education

Undergraduate students who wish to become early childhood/elementary grades, middle grades, secondary, or all-levels teachers in Texas should have an unofficial degree and certification plan prepared as soon as possible. Pre-education students begin the advising process during the New Student Orientation (NSO) session the summer proceeding the first semester of freshmen classes. Advising continues for pre-education students (individuals who have 0-30 semester credit hours) at the UTEP Academic Advising Center, located on Hawthorne Street. After completing 30 semester credit hours, the student is advised at the COE CSS, located in the Education Building, Room 412. At this time, the student will file a copy of their degree plan with the CSS. The degree plan will become official once the student has fulfilled all the requirements for admission to teacher education. To be admitted to teacher education, students must fulfill the following criteria:

1. Complete courses within the Communication, Mathematics, and Component Area Option portions of the Core Curriculum with a grade of “C” or better.

2. Provide required passing scores on the Texas Higher Education Assessment (THEA) examination: 220 in writing, 230 in math, and 230 in reading. To register for the test, contact the Student Assessment and Testing Office in the Academic Advising Building.

3. Complete 60 semester hours of college work with a cumulative UTEP GPA of 2.75 or better.

4. File an official degree plan with an advisor at the College of Education CSS.

5. Provide three professional recommendation forms/letters.

6. Meet with advisor and apply for admission to the Teacher Education Program, Education 412.

Note: Until admitted to teacher education, students indicating an intention to become teachers will be classified as pre-education students. According to University policy, students must remain in good standing to progress toward the completion of a degree program (See the appropriate catalog section under Academic Standards). In addition, students can be barred from enrolling in professional education courses if their suitability for the teaching profession is found to be unacceptable.

Field Experience and Student Teaching Requirements

Students are expected to spend a significant amount of time in specially selected schools (partner schools and professional development schools) while they complete their professional development courses as well as their student teaching. Admission to teacher education is required for enrollment in professional development courses that involve a field experience component. Additionally, students are required to pass the qualifying and Texas Examinations of Educator Standards (TExES) certification exams prior to enrolling in student teaching. The Texas State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) regulates the certification of educators to teach Texas public-school children. Before an individual can be certified, SBEC must conduct a criminal history background check to ensure an applicant’s suitability to interact with children. Working with the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the agency conducts statewide criminal history background checks on all applicants for educator certification. Students pursuing educator preparation should be aware that some criminal histories can lead to the denial of certification as a teacher. Students can obtain additional information from SBEC,

http://texreg.sos.state.tx.us/public/readtac$ext.ViewTAC?tac_view=3&ti=19&pt=7.

Texas public school districts require applicants for student teaching or field experiences to undergo a criminal history background check prior to placement in the school district. School districts can deny placement of students with a criminal background. If a school district denies a placement or other field experiences for this reason, the UTEP College of Education can attempt to assist the student in obtaining a placement in an alternate district. Students should be aware, however, that if they are unable to obtain a placement they will not meet UTEP’s requirements for a teaching degree or teacher certification.

Application for Graduation and Certification

Students must apply for graduation during the first month of the semester in which they intend to complete all degree requirements. A graduation fee is required. Students who are seeking certification must register for and pass the appropriate state certification examinations (TExES). Students apply for certification once they complete all the requirements, including the appropriate TExES tests. A fee is required for the Texas certificate. In order to be recommended for degree and/or certification, a student must:

  • Complete the courses listed in the degree and certification plan with an overall GPA of at least 2.0.
  • Have a 2.5 GPA or better in the teaching field specialization.
  • Have a 2.75 GPA or better in professional education courses.
  • Complete the Texas Education Agency (TEA) application and pay fees.
  • Complete fingerprint/background check requirements.
  • Meet State Board of Educator Certification requirements that are in place at the time you apply for certification.

Note: To receive initial Texas teacher certification, individuals must be free of felony convictions.

Additional information:

For more information please consult the College of Education’s Center for Student Success, Room 412 in the College of Education Building, 915.747.5571.

DEAN: Dr. Cynthia A. Giorgis
ASSOCIATE DEAN: Dr. Robert Trussell

Professors

Cynthia A. Giorgis 
Contact Information: cagiorgis@utep.edu; 915-747-5572
Education: Ph D, University of Arizona

Assistant Professors

Robert Trussell 
Contact Information: rptrussell@utep.edu; 915-747-7520 
Education: BS, Frostburg State University; MA, University of Texas at El Paso; Ph D, University of Missouri-Columbia 
Research Interests: positive behavior support, functional behavior assessment, classroom universals, effective instructional practices for students with autism and emotional/behavioral disorders

Departments and Programs

Educational Leadership and Foundations

Go to information for this department.

Educational Psychology and Special Services

Go to information for this department.

Teacher Education

Go to information for this department.

Programs

Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies