DelVal students build their careers from day one, beginning with a course incorporating professional development and problem-based learning and ending with the creation of a co-curricular transcript that incorporates experiences such as internships, study abroad, research, and civic engagement.
All DelVal students are required to complete four Experience360 Activities in alignment with the Pennsylvania Department of Education Field Work and Student Teaching Competencies. The required Academic E360 credits will be achieved through the Student Teaching experience. As regulated by Chapter 354 of the Pennsylvania Code, the planned sequential field experiences may begin as early as the initial semester of college enrollment, prior to the minimum 12-week full-time student teaching experience.
Field Experience / Career Exploration Experiences (non-credited)
• Field Experience – Stage 1: Observation (1 semester – minimum of 20 hours)
Candidates are observers in a variety of education and education-related settings. Apart from the community and after-school programs, there must also be a range of school and classroom experiences (e.g., urban, suburban, rural; high- and low-performing schools)—the majority of which are taking place at the secondary level—so that candidates have a broad experience and learn as much as possible about secondary learners and secondary education philosophy.
• Field Experience – Stage 2: Exploration (1 semester – minimum of 20 hours)
The candidate works under a certified teacher’s direction with a small group of students. Activities could include tutoring, helping with reading assignments, and so forth.
• Field Experience – Stage 3: Pre-Student Teaching (minimum of 3 semesters)
Pre-student teaching is where candidates will work with small groups of students, in school or in after school settings under the supervision of a certified teacher. For this phase of clinical (field) experience, secondary level candidates will be admitted to the education program, have taken at least one methods course, but will not be in full control of a class. Stage 3 also includes Project Based Field Experience (minimum of 25 hours): Through the project-based field experience, the candidate will have the opportunity to apply competencies related to the cognition, behavior, and development of typical and atypical learners, as well as competencies related to motivational strategies and managing a learning environment in various settings. The student must develop a proposal and present it to the Education Department for approval.
• Student Teaching (12 Credits)
This is a minimum of 12 weeks of full-time student teaching experience during the student’s final semester. The student-teacher must be supervised by faculty with knowledge and experience in the area of certification and a cooperating teacher with appropriate professional educator certification. Student teaching is defined as a set of organized and carefully planned classroom teaching experiences required of all candidates in a preparation program. Student teachers are assigned to one or more classrooms, closely supervised and mentored by a certified teacher, the cooperating teacher, who provides regular feedback to the student on his or her classroom teaching performance. General supervision of student teachers is provided by a Delaware Valley College professional educator.
*Information explaining the stages of Field Experience has been obtained from the PDE website for the Field Experience Framework and Competencies and Project-Based Field Experiences Guidelines.