The primary function of the Education Department within the philosophy of the University is to provide a teaching-learning environment wherein students acquire a liberal and professional education. Realization of this function is sought by combining academic subject area courses, specialized studies, and professional education. Students are provided opportunities to increase their knowledge, to gain insight into the growth of young children and adolescents, to develop competence in teaching, to formulate a sound philosophy of education, and to realize the need for continuous professional growth.
The continuing mission of the Department of Education is to prepare students to be
- Successful educational leaders;
- Practicing scholars; and
- Lifelong learners.
Students interested in becoming a certified teacher in Texas public schools should contact the Department of Education early in their SRSU RGC career. While most coursework is taken in various departments of the University, it is crucial that the appropriate courses be chosen, sequenced, and completed so students may transition to the Teacher Education Program with minimal disruption. Each teaching area has requirements for certification that must be met.
Specific information regarding Teacher Education requirements may be found in the current University catalog.
Rio Grande College programs that lead to teacher certification:
Students in the EC-6 Generalist concentration will take additional classes in content subjects (English, Mathematics, Social Sciences, Sciences, Fine Arts/Health/PE), Reading, and Pedagogy to provide the in-depth knowledge needed to be a successful elementary and early middle school teacher.
English, Language Arts & Reading 4-8
Students in the ELA/R 4-8 concentration are prepared to teach these three subjects at the upper-elementary and middle school grade levels. Students will take additional English composition, literature, and structure courses from the Languages & Literature Department, in conjunction with Reading & Pedagogy courses from the Education Department, to provide the in-depth knowledge needed to be a successful middle school teacher.
Students in the Math 4-8 concentration are prepared to teach mathematics at the upper-elementary and middle school grade levels. Students will take additional upper level Math courses from the Computer Science and Math Department, in conjunction with Education & Pedagogy courses from the Education Department, to provide the in-depth knowledge needed to be a successful middle school teacher.
Students in the Science 4-8 concentration are prepared to teach science classes at the upper-elementary and middle school grade levels. Students will take additional Sciences courses in biology, chemistry, and geology from the Biology-Geology & Physical Sciences Department, in conjunction with Education & Pedagogy courses from the Education Department. Together, these courses provide the in-depth knowledge needed to be a successful middle school teacher.
Social Studies 4-8
Students in the Social Studies concentration are prepared to teach social studies classes at the upper-elementary and middle school grade levels. Students will take additional Social Science courses in Geography, History, Political Science, and Sociology the Behavioral & Social Science Department, plus coursework in Education & Pedagogy from the Education Department. Together, the courses in this concentration provide students the in-depth knowledge needed to be a successful middle school teacher.
Consult the current SRSU Catalog for full program descriptions and requirements.
Upon acceptance to the university, students choose the program they plan to pursue and request an official degree plan. In addition to RGC departmental and program requirements, students seeking certification have additional requirements established by the Texas Education Agency (TEA). Certification requires the successful completion of an accredited degree program, a clinical/student teaching experience and the completion of certification exams that correlate to the degree and teaching field. In addition to content exams, all students seeking Texas Certification are required to complete the Pedagogy and Professional Responsibilities Exam which addresses grades EC-12.