The College of Education
Dr. Roberto Nava, Dean
COE 291, (406) 657-2286
The College of Education provides an array of undergraduate and graduate programs for educator preparation. Degree programs and specific courses are designed to ensure the comprehensive development of practitioners able to serve children in a variety of settings.
Special Education and Reading majors are available to candidates completing an elementary broadfield major or a secondary educator licensure option.
All new, transfer, and re-admitted students are encouraged to visit Advising & Career Services in McMullen Hall on first floor west, to meet with a center academic advisor. New students will receive information regarding General Education requirements and plan of study worksheets related to their major and minor programs. Transfer and readmitted students will work with a center advisor to complete a transcript evaluation and to develop a plan of study. Students majoring in bachelor degree programs in the College of Education will be advised through Advising & Career Services until they are ready for admission to the Educator Preparation Program. At that time, students will be assigned a faculty member for advising. Students majoring in a content area with the Educator Licensure Option will have two faculty advisors: one in the College of Arts and Sciences and one in the College of Education.
The College of Education is comprised of the following academic department and a public service agency:
- Department of Educational Theory and Practice
- Montana Center for Inclusive Education
Accreditations and Affiliations
The educator preparation programs at Montana State University Billings are accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) and the Montana Board of Public Education.
The College of Education is dedicated to:
- Preparing competent, caring and committed professionals for Montana’s schools;
- Conducting socially significant research to improve the human condition;
- Providing community service to improve the quality of life experienced by Montanans; and
- Providing graduate education designed for the continuing development of professionals.
I dedicate myself to the life of an educator, nurturing others to fulfill their potential, live meaningful lives, and participate fully in our society.
I dedicate myself to assuring excellent educational opportunities for all individuals.
I pledge to make the well-being of my students the fundamental value in my professional decisions and actions.
I recognize parents and community as integral to education and pledge to encourage their involvement.
I dedicate myself to teaching the virtues of honesty, respect, trust, and courage.
I commit myself to continuing my own personal growth and professional development, for I must bear witness in my life to the ideals being encouraged in others.
In cooperation with my colleagues, I pledge to advance education professions.
I pledge myself to serving both educational and larger community needs.
I pledge to fulfill these professional responsibilities with diligence, integrity, and dedication.
Instructional Facilities and Special Partnerships
The Montana Center for Inclusive Education
The Montana Center for Inclusive Education is a statewide service agency in the College of Education. The Center is dedicated to developing resources that promote the inclusion of people with disabilities of all ages and cultural backgrounds into their communities. To meet this mission, the Center works with numerous university and community partners.
The Montana Center serves as a training and technical assistance resource to people with disabilities, families and numerous agencies throughout the state. The activities of the Center are funded by a variety of state and federal resources.
The staff of the Montana Center have professional skills related to disability in the areas of employment, rehabilitation counseling, transition, hearing conservation, community integration, prevention, collaboration, and learning strategies.
The Center serves as the state Regional Education Service Area III (RESA III) that includes the Region III Comprehensive System of Personnel Development (CSPD).
Montana State University Cooperative Programs
The Montana State University campuses at Billings and Bozeman have developed cooperative programs to better serve students who want to earn endorsements and degrees not offered through the authorized curricula on one or the other campus. For Bozeman, MSU Billings offers the special education endorsement program, and the Master of Science in Special Education program. For Billings, MSU-Bozeman offers the school administration endorsement for elementary education and secondary education, and the Master of Education in Educational Administration. Contact the Office of the Dean of Education at either campus for additional information.
The Educator Preparation Program
The faculty of Montana State University Billings recognizes that the preparation of educators is an entire-University responsibility. Therefore, the various preparation programs represent a cooperative effort by the colleges and departments involved.
All candidates from the University who wish to be recommended for the State of Montana Educator License must be formally admitted to the Educator Preparation Program and meet all of the program requirements.
The overall purpose of the Educator Preparation Program is to develop competent educators to meet the challenges of contemporary education. The faculty in the Educator Preparation Program accepts the fact that teaching competence at every level requires steadily changing patterns and greater depths of preparation in order to meet the rising standards of study. Therefore, the faculty assumes responsibility for the selection and admission of those who wish to prepare to teach, for the advisement and retention of those admitted, and for the development of curricula designed for the preparation of educators.
Certain requirements are of major importance:
- a broad background in General Education;
- in-depth content preparation in specific teaching fields;
- mastery of professional education knowledge, skills, and dispositions; and
- demonstration of the competencies of the Initial Conceptual Framework.
In order to accomplish these objectives, the prospective educator must acquire a scholarly mastery of the field to be taught and the ability to use methods of critical inquiry. This implies that prospective teachers acquire a superior fund of knowledge and enhanced scholarly ability in their respective academic disciplines. Moreover, prospective educators must have knowledge and understanding of human development and behavior; competence in the techniques of instruction; knowledge of school organization and administration; an understanding of education as a social institution in historical and philosophical perspectives; knowledge, understanding, and experience in culturally diverse settings; and an ability to work with a diverse group of learners.
The College of Education provides a number of supervised clinical and field-based experiences designed to prepare students to work effectively in the education professions. All field-based experiences are systematically designed and selected to provide students with opportunities to observe, plan, and practice in a variety of community settings including schools and social service agencies. The major aim of these experiences is to apply principles and theories from the professional knowledge base in supervised environments. Through a sequence of field-based experiences, students develop skills that allow them to assume full responsibility as a beginning professional. Site and University personnel supervise clinical and field-based experiences.
All practica, internships, and supervised field-based experiences require a valid criminal background report and notarized self-disclosure prior to beginning course work. Students cannot be placed in any field experience until the criminal background report is on file with MSU Billings. The background report on file must meet current policy requirements to participate in any field-based experience.
The criminal background report obtained from the Criminal Justice Information Services Bureau is a fingerprint based report that provides both a state and federal report. Information on the criminal background process can be found in the Fingerprint Handout on the Educational Theory and Practice webpage: www.msubillings.edu/coe/FingerprintInfo.htm
All questions concerning the process can be directed to the Licensure Officer at 406-657-2293.
Students may be required to purchase an insurance policy during the field experience. In some cases the school or agency provides insurance.
Student teaching is the culminating experience in the Educator Preparation Program. Student teaching provides a guided teaching experience in a school setting on a fulltime basis. Student teaching is required for all content teaching majors and teaching minors. During the student teaching term, students concurrently participate in capstone seminars. For further information and basic policies regarding the student teaching experience, students should meet with their faculty advisors and refer to the Student Teaching Handbook, Cooperating Teachers, and University Supervisors.
Field-based internships offer students the opportunity for enhanced experiences in school and community settings. Proposals for internships must be planned by students and their faculty advisor. An internship requires 45 field based hours per credit hour.
In order to provide the highest quality field experience placements for students majoring in elementary or secondary education, deadlines have been set for accepting field placement applications. Field experience placements are the product of a number of elements including student needs, school district requests, and recommendations from faculty. Coordination of these elements requires planning-time. Application deadlines are posted throughout the College each semester. Students who plan to enroll for student teaching must have completed their required coursework prior to the term they plan to student teach.
Teacher Licensure Requirements
Specific educator licensure requirements for the State of Montana have been established by the Office of Public Instruction and approved by the Montana Board of Public Education. All licenses are endorsed by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction for the appropriate level(s) and area(s) of professional competence based upon the recommendation by the Licensure Official of the College of Education. Curriculum programs at MSU Billings prepare students for standard and professional licensure in elementary and secondary teaching and school counseling. Education students who meet all endorsement requirements may be recommended to the state for the endorsement by the Licensure Official of the College of Education.
Processing Procedures for Licensure and Endorsement
- Direct all applications for licensure to the College of Education Licensure Officer.
- All applications for teaching licensure, teaching endorsements, and supervisory endorsements must be reviewed and receive final approval by the Licensure Officer prior to institutional recommendation and final consideration by the State Licensure Office in Helena, Montana.
- The same regulation applies to applicants seeking licensure outside the state of Montana.
Drug and Alcohol Course Requirement
MCA 20-25-603 “All units of the Montana University System and all private colleges and universities in Montana that offer any degree in education shall require that any person who receives any degree in education from that unit, private college, or university must have successfully completed a course in health education to include drug and alcohol education and abuse prior to being awarded his or her degree.”
Indian Education for All (IEFA)
The State of Montana requires licensed personnel to have instruction pertaining to the history, traditions, customs, values, beliefs, ethics, and contemporary affairs of American Indians, particularly Indian tribal groups in Montana. While one three-credit course is an Educator Preparation Program requirement, IEFA is infused throughout the program.
Admission to the Educator Preparation Program
The Educator Preparation Program at MSU Billings may be completed by students enrolled in the College of Education, the College of Arts and Sciences, or the College of Allied Health Professions.
All students desiring licensure to teach are required to file an Application for Admission to the Educator Preparation Program. The application is completed during the term following the completion of a minimum of 45 semester hours of credit, or in the case of a transfer student, during the first term of residence above the sophomore level or the first term of graduate studies enrollment. Approved admission is necessary prior to registration for education courses at the 300 and 400 level.
|1. Completion of a minimum of 45 semester credits with a minimum overall grade point average of 2.65 in all coursework completed.||45|
|2. All students must have completed the following General Education Requirements at MSU Billings, or from another regionally accredited institution of post-secondary education, earning a minimum grade point average of 2.65 with a minimum grade of “C” (2.0) in each course.|
|COMX 115||Intro to Interpersonal Comm *||3|
|or COMX 111||Intro to Public Speaking|
|WRIT 101||College Writing I *||3|
|HSTA 101||American History I *||3|
|or HSTA 102||American History II|
|A science course with the lab chosen from those approved for General Education||4|
|A math course chosen from those approved for General Education||3|
|NASX 105||Intro Native American Studies *||3|
|or NASX 205||Native Americans in Contmp Soc|
|3. All students must have completed the following Professional Education Core requirements. A minimum grade of “C” (2.0) and a combined GPA of 3.0 must be earned for the following courses .|
|Professional Education Core|
|EDSP 204||Intro to Tchng Exceptnl Lrnrs||3|
|EDU 105||Education and Democracy *||3|
|Human Growth & Development|
and Human Growth & Development Lab
|EDU 221||Educ Psyc & Measurement||3|
|HTH 201||Health Issues for Educators||1-3|
|or HTH 412||Drugs and Alcohol|
|4. Prior to registration and assignment/placement in any field experience, a student must obtain a fingerprint-based state and federal background check, including a notarized self-disclosure. Students cannot be placed in any field experience until the criminal background report is on file with MSU Billings, current policy requirements have been met, and the students have been cleared by a screening review and determination for program. The candidate must agree that information submitted may need to be shared with faculty and the school district/organization, on a “need to know” basis, to secure the candidate’s field experience placement(s). Field experience placements include sophomore practica, junior field experiences, clinics, student teaching, and internships.|
May satisfy General Education requirements.
Educator Preparation Program Appeals
Candidates proposing a deviation from the program appeal to the College of Education Educator Preparation Program Appeals Committee. Candidates should contact their faculty advisor for assistance with this process. The Committee makes recommendations to the Dean of the College of Education, who has final decision-making authority.
Courses Restricted to Educator Preparation Program Admission
Curriculum and Instruction
|ARTZ 402||Teaching Art I--K-12||3|
|EDU 353||Junior Field Experience||2|
|EDU 397A||Methods: K-8 Language Arts||3|
|EDU 397B||Methods: K-8 Social Studies||3|
|EDU 397C||Methods: K-8 Mathematics||3|
|EDU 397D||Methods: K-8 Science||3|
|EDU 397G||Methods: 5-12 Science||2|
|EDU 397I||Methods: K-12 Music||2|
|EDU 397M||Methods K-8:Intgrtng Arts/Curr||4|
|EDU 492||Independent Study||1-5|
|EDU 495A||Student Teaching: K-12||9|
|EDU 495B||Student Teaching: K-8||9,12|
|EDU 495C||Student Teaching: 5-12||9|
|EDU 497A||Methods: 5-12 Social Studies||2|
|EDU 497B||Methods: 9-12 Mathematics||3|
|EDU 497C||Methods: K-12 Modern Language||2|
|EDU 497D||Methods: 5-12 English||2|
|EDU 406||Phil, Legal & Ethical Issues||3|
Health & Human Performance
|HEE 309||Health Enhancement Strat K-8||3|
|EDU 330||Emergent Literacy||3|
|EDU 333||Rd & Wrtng Across Curriculum||3|
|EDU 432||Lit & Literacy for Young Adlts||3|
|EDU 438||Literacy Assessmnt, Diag, Inst||3|
|EDSP 301||Tchng Stdnts w Lrning Disab||3|
|EDSP 302||Tchng Stdnts w Emot Beha Disor||3|
|EDSP 303||Tchng Stdnts w Intellect Disab||3|
|EDSP 402||Individualizing Curriculum||3|
|EDSP 404||Teaching Special Populations||2|
|EDSP 405||Assess of Students with Excep||3|
|EDSP 461||Positive Behavior Supports||3|
|EDSP 462||Spec Ed Law, Policy, Practice||3|
|EDSP 495||Student Teaching in Special Ed||6-9|
Initial Conceptual Framework
The Initial Conceptual Framework represents the shared vision of members of the faculty in collaboration with members of the professional education community in preparing undergraduate students to become educators in P-12 schools. It provides direction for programs, courses, teaching, candidate performance, scholarship, service, and unit accountability. The Initial Conceptual Framework provides expected performance outcomes of program completers.
Initial Conceptual Framework
Professional and Pedagogical Development
MSU Billings-INTASC Standards
The Learner and Learning
Standard #1: Learner Development. The teacher understands how learners grow and develop, recognizing that patterns of learning and development vary individually within and across the cognitive, linguistic, social, emotional, and physical areas, and designs and implements developmentally appropriate and challenging learning experiences.
Standard #2: Learning Differences. The teacher uses understanding of individual differences and diverse cultures and communities to ensure inclusive learning environments that enable each learner to meet high standards.
Standard #3: Learning Environments. The teacher works with others to create environments that support individual and collaborative learning, and that encourage positive social interaction, active engagement in learning, and self motivation.
Standard #4: Content Knowledge. The teacher understands the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structures of the discipline(s) he or she teaches and creates learning experiences that make the discipline accessible and meaningful for learners to assure mastery of the content.
Standard #5: Application of Content. The teacher understands how to connect concepts and use differing perspectives to engage learners in critical thinking, creativity, and collaborative problem solving related to authentic local and global issues.
Standard #6: Assessment. The teacher understands and uses multiple methods of assessment to engage learners in their own growth, to monitor learner progress, and to guide the teacher’s and learner’s decision making.
Standard #7: Planning for Instruction. The teacher plans instruction that supports every student in meeting rigorous learning goals by drawing upon knowledge of content areas, curriculum, cross-disciplinary skills, and pedagogy, as well as knowledge of learners and the community context.
Standard #8: Instructional Strategies. The teacher understands and uses a variety of instructional strategies to encourage learners to develop deep understanding of content areas and their connections, and to build skills to apply knowledge in meaningful ways.
Standard #9: Professional Learning and Ethical Practice. The teacher engages in ongoing professional learning and uses evidence to continually evaluate his/her practice, particularly the effects of his/her choices and actions on others (learners, families, other professionals, and the community), and adapts practice to meet the needs of each learner.
Standard #10: Leadership and Collaboration. The teacher seeks appropriate leadership roles and opportunities to take responsibility for student learning and to collaborate with learners, families, colleagues, other school professionals, and community members to ensure learner growth and to advance the profession.
Administrative Rules of Montana for Educator Licensure
Montana Professional Educator Preparation Program Standards (PEPPS)
- Early Childhood Studies Minor
- Education Program of Study Associate of Arts Degree
- Elementary Education/Reading Double Major K-8 Bachelor of Science in Education Degree, K-12 Reading Endorsement
- Elementary Education/Special Education (P-12) Double Major Bachelor of Science in Education Degree
- Secondary Education/Reading Double Major 5-12 Bachelor of Science in Education Degree, K-12 Reading Endorsement
- Secondary Education/Special Education (P-12) Double Major Bachelor of Science in Education Degree
- Special Education (P-12) Concentration Non-Endorsable Teaching Minor *Program placed on moratorium*
- Special Education (P-12) Teaching Endorsement *Program placed on moratorium*