Advising Information & Resources


As you progress though your degree at California University of Pennsylvania there are many people and places where you can find information to help make your academic decisions. This webpage hopes to provide you with a connection to many university resources.


The information on this website should not be considered official policy or procedure. Policies can change and interpretations can vary. This website is intended as a helpful way to direct you to information about various teacher education policies. Please consult with your academic advisor, course instructor and authoritative documents for official policy.

Office Hours/Schedule an Appointment

All faculty in the Department of Childhood Education are ready to help with your advising needs. I am available for first-come first-served appointments during my scheduled office hours. Often I will be able to meet with you immediately but sometimes, usually just before deadlines such as course scheduling, there will be some wait time so please be patient, bring something to do as you wait or come back at another time. My office is in Keystone 306.

Regular Office Hours As of January 24, 2020

Monday: 2:00-3:00 (online)
Tuesday: 1:30-4:30
Wednesday: 2:30-3:30

As always you are welcome to come visit anytime my office door is open or ask questions by email. My email is (hug) or by phone (x4985).

University Support

Your intellectual development during your academic career may be influenced by physical, emotional, and life events outside of class.  Listed below are some support services to help you deal with these unique circumstances.   When life events affect your academic performance there are people and resources that can support you through the tough times. Listed below are some of those support services. Please contact are not alone!

California U Public Safety - 724-938-4299

Office for Students with Disabilities - 724-938-5781

Student Health Center - 724-938-4232

Counseling & Psychological Services - 724-938-4056

Sexual & Domestic Abuse Crisis Phone - 724-938-4325

Social Equity Office - 724-938-4014

Office of Student Succes - 724-938-1523

Teacher Education Program Handbook

Most questions about the processes and procedures about your teacher education program can be found in the Candidate Handbook for Intial Teacher CertificationTeacher. Please consult this handbook first for answers to your questions.

Forms and Documents

Many of the forms you need such as the Application to Teacher Education Form, Recommendation for Student Teaching and others are available at this College of Education and Human Services website.


Official transcripts can be ordered from Cal U.

For most advising meetings you should bring with you an unofficial copy of your transcript that can be obtained and printed through your Cal U VIP account.

Course Scheduling and Registration

Students in education must meet with an advisor prior to scheduling their courses. After you have attended this mandatory advising meeting your scheduling hold will be removed and you can schedule your courses electronically during your assigned time.

Fall 2015 Registration Information - Childhood Ed Department Advising Info

Degree Works - Degree Works User Guide The Childhood Education Department will use Degree Works to assist in planning your acacemic program. This user guide can help navigating and using Degree Works.

The Scheduling Center in Noss 210 will be open from 7:00am to 5:00pm during the week of registration. The only exception will be Wednesday March 12 when registration will be shut down for review. (Engstrom email, 2/28/14).

General Education Courses - In many degree programs your general education courses are specified on your advising sheet. General education courses that are not specified can be selected from the approved course list. Look for the course number and then look up the course description to decide whether this is the course you wish to take.

Blocked General Education Courses - If you are a junior or senior you may be blocked from taking some General Education courses. Please consult this webpage for information on how to request persimssion to take these courses. In order to take the course you need to download the blocked course form, complete it and turn it in.

Adding Courses/Dropping Courses

Adding classes:
Students who go to the academic departments should be given permits for the
classes which the department controls. These permits should be confirmed by
the students on site. Only the departmental Secretaries and Chairs can enter
permits. Some departments may need to borrow lap tops from the Library or  have a computer
dedicated to confirmation of permits. Most additions should be done by permit.
Each department should develop a list of permits granted so they know how many
have been given; and/or make certain that all are confirmed on site.
Any class additions which cannot be done by permit should use the Schedule Adjustment
(drop/add) Form. These should be signed by the faculty/department chair and taken
by the student to the Dean: Deans staff should enter the classes (Note: this is a change
in the old process—omitting the  Office of Academic Records).
Dropping Classes:
Students can process their own drops online, unless they  have decided not to attend at all.  Banner will not let them drop their last class online.  Please direct them to Academic Records so they can be properly processed.
(Heidi D. Williams, Registrar, 1/20/12)

Course is closed/Course Needs List - If you find that the course you need to take has been filled and is now closed, please do not panic. The procedure for getting into closed sections consists is to submit a needs list course request.  The Childhood Education faculty members and secretaries do not have the capability to permit students into closed sections.  ALL students, regardless of circumstance, must make a request for closed classes electronically.

Please go to the following website and fill out a course needs list request form. You can also go Cal U's webpage and type "needs list" in the search bar (Sheffield email, 4/16/11). The needs list will be turned on on March 10th at 6:00am and will turn off on April 11th. The department chairs will then have a week to review the requests and return them to me for scheduling. Please note that there will only be one run of the needs list requests. (Engstrom email 2/28/14).

Taking Graduate Courses for Undergraduate Credit - Review the university policy on undergraduate credit for graduate courses. The working through your advisor contact the Childhood Department chairperson for permission to take graduate courses.

Middle Level Science Concentration Courses

The goal of the science concentration courses is to prepare you to teach science in grades 4-8. The first thing to consider is what content in on the state middle level science exam. My recommendation is to take a practice test without studying, identify the questions you missed the most and then schedule science courses to address those areas. A second consideration is to think about your career and which areas of science you wish to emphasize in your future position. Once you have completed this preparation then have a conversation with your advisor to select courses that make the most sense for you.

Here is a list of courses to consider.

Life Science: BIO 120 General Zoology; BIO 125 General Botany; ENS 101 Environmental Science

Earth Science: EAS 150 Intro to Geology; EAS 240 Intro to Meteorology; EAS 163 Intro to Oceanography; PHS 145 Astronomy; EAS 210 Soils

Physical Science: CHE 103 Chemistry in Every Day World; PHS 137 Intro to Environ Chemistry; PHY 121 General Physics I

American or British Literature Requirement- This list and the statement below were approved by the Governance Committee on April 19, 2010 to be placed on all Teacher Education advisement sheets.  These are the only courses that meet the PDE requirement for American/British Literature and replace English Comp II for Education Majors.

Beginning fall 2010, all teacher education majors must take one of the following approved American/British literature courses as listed below. This is a PDE requirement.
·  ENG 107 Intro to Fiction
·  ENG 125 The American West
·  ENG 148 Horror in Literature
·  ENG 150 Baseball in Literature
·  ENG 155 Black Literature
·  ENG 160 Intro to British/American Literature
·  ENG 203 Great Books
·  ENG 301 English Literature I
·  ENG 302 English Literature II
·  ENG 337 Survey of American Literature I
·  ENG 338 Survey of American Literature II
·  ENG/LIT 125 The American West
·  ENG/LIT 127 Women as Hero

No student may count English Comp II for a British American Literature course AFTER fall 2010 (Engstrom, 11/7/11).

Honors Students are required to take HON 150 Composition I and HON 250 Composition II for their Honors Program requirements. Either of these courses fulfill the PDE requiprement for 3 credits composition requirement. Honors 250 currently counts as a Brit/American Literature course for the purposes of PA teacher certification.

Psychology Courses - For students in the Early Childhood PreK-grade 4 and Middle Level Grades 4-8 programs the PSY 100 prerequisite is waived because the University Curriculum Committee approved program includes only PSY 216 and 217 or 206 and PSY 208.  PSY 100 does not appear on the advisement sheet. It is not required. The electronic registration requires PSY 100 as a prerequisite and will not let students register for their PSY courses. There are several procedures students can use to override the PSY 100 prerequsite in the electronic registration system.

Option 1 - Students can contact the scheduling center in 210 Noss Hall and request that they overide the PSY 100 requirement. Scheduling center staff will verify they are an education major and manually register them for their PSY course. Students can email ( or phone (724-938-5645) or in person go to Noss Hall 210. Students need their student ID number and the CRN # of the psychology course section they wish to register for. Contact the student success facilitator that focuses on education student issues. (Cathy Gmiter, 2/24/15)

Option 2 - Students can also send an email to their advisor, childhood education secretary or department chair with their: a) CWID number and the b) course section number (#CRN) they wish to register for. The Childhood Department can then send an email to the PSY department secretary, Sheri Anderson ( confirming their status as an education major. Once the PSY Dept has completed the necessary registration information, then the student can register for their PSY courses. (Diane Nettles email, 11/4/17; Holiday Adair email, 3/4/14;Sherri Anderson email, 10/30/14).

Option 3 - To register for these courses students must fill out paperwork to verify to the Psychology Department that they are indeed an education major so the Psychology Department can create an override to the PSY 100 pre-req requirement. Students can fill out a paper add/drop form, get it signed by their advisor or department head and take it to the Psychology Department office in 319 Morgan Hall.

POS 102/ECO 102/GEO 102 Courses - As of SPR 2011 these courses will be regarded as 3 separate co-requisite courses. Students cannot drop a section after the 2/3 point of the class, which would be the end of the 3rd week of class. Students needing to retake less than all 3 of the linked sections will need an add slip with the dean’s signature.

Developmental Math and English Courses - If students encounter closed sections of courses such as DMA 092 or English 100 during registration you should contact the Student Success Office in Noss Hall to discuss your situation and register for the course.

Special Education Courses - Students enrolled as dual special education majors need to take the following courses as corequisite courses which means that you need to take them together in the same semester. Students that are not dual special education majors can take these courses individually (Sheffield email, 4/8/11).


Co-Requisite Courses: ESP 210 & ESP 311

Co-Requisite Courses: ESP 211, ESP 312, & ESP 339

Co-Requisite Courses: ESP 349, ESP 402, & ESP 403


Pre-Requisite Courses for ESP 211, ESP 312, & ESP 339 are ESP 210 & ESP 311

Pre-Requisite Courses for ESP 349, ESP 402, & ESP 403 are ESP 211, ESP 312, & ESP 339

Pre-Requisite Courses for ESP 407 & ESP 412 are ESP 349, ESP 402, & ESP 403

Pre-Requisite Courses for ESP 414 is ESP 412. (Burton email, 2/8/11)

I checked the approved syllabi for ESP 210, 311, 412, and 413. The prerequisite for 412 and 413 is Admission to Teacher Education, for 311 was sophomore status, and 210 none (Dean Koury, 11/8/11).

Special Education Teacher Certification Requirements

In order to be certified in Pennsylvania as a teacher, all initial certification applicants must have 9 credits in special education and 3 credits in English Language Learners. At Cal U these courses are: ESP 210, ESP 311, ESP 412 (elementary) or ESP 413 (secondary). and EDU 350 (PDE communication, March 2011).

Individualized Study Courses - In certain circumstances students may request to take an existing course through an individualized study. Students may request an individualized study course if BOTH of the following conditions are met: 1) A course must be the ONLY course that the student needs to graduate or to apply to student teaching AND 2) the course is not scheduled for the semester in which they need the course. (Post Bac students need to be accepted before making their request)

Application Procedure - The student must first meet with their advisor to explore all other options before requesting an individualized study course. If there are no other options to complete the course the advisor will direct the student to send an email to the Department Chair (and send a copy to their advisor) describing: 1) that they met with their advisor and there are no other options. 2) the course the student needs and 3) the reasons why not completing the course in that semester would create unreasonable hardship. The Department Chair considers whether there is a faculty member available to teach the course through individualized study and then forwards the request to the Dean for consideration. After the Dean informs the Department chair of the decision, the department chair then informs the student whether their request was been approved. (Sheffield email, 2/1/11; Nettles email, 10/19/13; Nettles email 10/29/13).

Course Substitutions - Students who wish to substitute a course for a course on their approved curriculum plan must complete a College of Education Course Substitution Request and submit it to their advisor. The request is forwarded to the Department Chair for approval (Pearl Mitchell email, 11/4/13).

Middle Level Science Course Substitutions - Middle Level majors who wish to substitute a higher level science course for Bio 103 need to email their education advisor with their a) CWID number and b) course registration number (# CRN) of the lecture and lab sections they wish to register for. The advisor will email the Biology Department secretary, Lisa Gillis, to create a registration permit for the courses. Then the student can register for the course. (Robert Whyte email, 10/31/14; Lisa Gillis email 10/31/14).

Late Start Class Registration Procedures

Information about late start classes is available from the Office of Student Retention. Forms and procedures can be found on their website.

English/Math Placement Tests

Students can visit Noss 215 to schedule placement tests in mathematics and/or English. They can also email SAT and ACT scores can be viewed on degree works and placement test scores can be viewed on SOATEST. (Engstrom email 2/28/14).

College-Level Exam Program (CLEP)

Students can earn college course credits by taking examinations rather than taking the course. Information about these exams is located on the Cal U CLEP exam website. You can find study guides and other information from the CLEP website.

Earning Credit For Life Experiences

Students have the opportunity to earn college credit for their prior life experiences. The process at Cal U is referred to as Prior Learning Assessment (PLA). The graduate school policy describes the procedures which are administered by the Office of Student Success. The PLA Checklist document further descripes the procedures and the PLA Proposal Chart document gets the process started (Dan Engstrom & Holly Vandella emails, 1/21/16).

Changing a Major

Students who wish to change their major should obtain a change of major form, complete the required information and submit it to the department head of the academic department they wish to transfer into. (Dr. Nettles email, 11/9/17).

Adding a Minor

Cal U offers a variety of minors (select minor tab on webpage) that typically involve successfully completing specific courses. The process to formally declare a minor is to go to the college office offering the minor (i.e. College of Liberal Studies for Spanish and Music minors); fill out the paper form for adding a minor and turn it in to the college office. Some departments (i.e. music) appreciate you stopping by to alert them so they can add you to their department lists for minors (verbal communications: academic records, liberal studies college office, Modern Language Dept, Music Dept; 11/4/13).

Transferring Courses from other Universities to Cal U

Transfering Courses to Cal U

Students wishing to transfer courses to Cal U should work through Cal U's Office of Articulation and Transfer.

In general, if your GPA at the prior institution was 2.0 or above then many courses will transfer to Cal U (verbal communication, 9/9/13).

The "What Credits Will Transfer to Cal U?" webpage has online tool that shows you which courses from which university will transfer into Cal U.

Field Experiences courses from other universities

As a general rule, the Childhood Education Department does not accept field experience courses taken at other colleges/universities to fulfill the requirements of the following courses:

  • ECE 320 Field Experience Infant/Toddler/Daycare,
  • EDE 320 Intermediate Field Experience 4-6 or
  • EDE 321 Primary Field Experience K-3,
  • ELE 410 PreK field experience
  • ELE 411 K-4 field experience
  • ELM 411 Field Experience 4-6
  • ELM 412 Field Experience 7-8
  • ESP 339 Field Experience: High Incidence
  • ESP 349 Field Experience: Low Incidence

even though the University Articulation and Transfer Office may accept the course for transfer credit.  This is in keeping with the department belief that the field experience courses are an opportunity for faculty to get to know our education majors.  The department believes these courses provide important indicators of students’ potential as a future teacher, such as poise, oral communication skills, and teaching ability. 

However, transfer students can petition to have a field experience course taken at another college/university substituted for an elementary/early childhood education field course.  The following guidelines outline the procedures for the petition.

  1. The grade earned in the course must be a C or better (C- is not acceptable)
  2. The course must be a 3 credit course
  3. No more than one field course substitution per student is permitted
  4. Students must submit to the department chair
    1. Copy of course syllabus
    2. Copy of a minimum of 3 lesson plans along with teacher evaluations of each lesson after it was taught
    3. Evidence of bulletin boards, classroom activities, teaching materials, etc.
    4. Evidence of 45-60 hours in an elementary/early childhood/day care/inclusion/special education classroom (e.g. journal, attendance sheets, etc.)

The decision will be based on the whether the materials submitted meet the standards of the Early, Middle, and Special Education Department field experience course.  If approved, the appropriate notation will be made on the official advisement sheet when the candidate is admitted to teacher education. 

Approved by Elementary/Early Childhood Education Department November 5, 2002; revised August 27, 2004; revised April 12, 2005; revised March 22, 2006; revision approved by Early, Middle, and Special Education Department October 11, 2011.

Grade Point Average

For teacher certification in Pennsylvania, students must earn a grade of C or better in all their major courses, the math courses and the English courses. D grades hurt the overall GPA but can be counted.

Repeat Course/Replace Grade Procedure
Students who received a poor grade in a course may repeat the exact course. Students may request that the new grade replace the old grade in the calculation of their cumulative GPA. The original course grade remains on the transcript but is not counted in the GPA.

After completion of the replacement course, the student needs to contact the Office of Academic Records in person at Dixon 122, by phone at 4434 or by email to a staff person in academic records. Information such as old course, semester taken, new course, semester taken and student identifying information will be needed to request that a grade be replaced (Law, Acad. Records, 3/28/11).

Pennsylvania Department of Education Teacher Testing Information

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania requires that candidates for early childhood and middle level education teacher certification must take professional exams before certification can be awarded. The first exams are basic compentency in math, reading and writing called the Basic Skills Assessments. At Cal U these tests must be successfully passed before students are permited to enroll in restricted upper division courses typically during the fifth semester. The second set of professional exams are called the Instructional Content Tests. They are specific to your teaching certificate and at Cal U must be taken and passed before you can student teach.

The best place to find up-to-date information is to access the PA Department of Education testing website and download the Certification Test and Score Requirements. Another location to find information about your Praxis test score is from the ETS Praxis Website for Pennsylvania.

Please refer to Cal U's testing webpage for more information about the tests you are required to take.

Basic Skills Assessments - All teachers in Pennsylvania must demonstrate a basic competency in reading, writing and math in order to be certified as a teacher. At Cal U students must take these exams and receive passing scores in order to be admitted to the teacher education program. Cal U provides information about these exams and the passing scores.

There are several options to document passing scores for the Basic Skills Assessment.

Option 1 SAT

Option 2 ACT -

Option 3 ETS Praxis Core -

Option 4 Pearson PAPA -

Option 5 (Math only) Math 130. If you take Math 130 and earn a grade of A or B, the course can count as the basic skills math requirement. If the math portion of the basic skills test is not taken, then students can NOT use the composite score method to pass their basic skills requirement (which requires all three tests to be taken (Dr. Nettles Email, September 20,2017).

Instructional Content Tests - At Cal U prior to student teaching all students must pass the appropriate instructional content tests. All of the information you need to know about when, where, how much, and what is on the tests can be located at the ETS Praxis website or at the PECT test website. Information about Pennsylvania's requirements, passing scores and other information is located on the ETS website here

When to take Tests - Our best advice is that you should take the tests after you have completed the classes that help you pass the Praxis Tests and far enough before the deadlines so that your scores are reported in a timely manner. Please see your advisor for help in planning the optimum time for you to take the right tests.

Studying for the Tests - It is very important to devote time to studying and passing the tests. It is a waste of your time and money (and if you don't pass it negatively impacts Cal U's pass rate statistics). So do what it takes to pass the test the first time. Form study groups, get notes from other students, ask your instructors for help, buy the study guides, take practice tests....etc.

There are test study courses you can take to help with preparing for the tests. Butler Community College offers a test prep course that some students have found valuable.

Preparing for Praxis Tests - All students should prepare before taking these tests. There are many resources available to help you be successful. First, perform well on the assignments in your classes. Second, study for the tests by obtaining a copy of the free study guides on-line from ETS / PECT Practice Test website or buy one of the many Praxis study guides available in bookstores (Make sure to buy the right study guide for your test. Check the test number when buying a test guide). Cal U's Mandarino Library has copies of practice test guides. Everyone should read the ETS study tips webpage as well as download and read "General Information and Study Tips" and "Reducing Test Anxiety" at the bottom of that webpage. Don't waste your money and time by having to take the Praxis Tests over again....some students have had to change their academic personal plans because they didn't pass the Praxis tests....invest in your future by studing for success and pass the first time!

Butler Community College offers test preparation for the exams that some students have found helpful. This flyer provides information you might find helpful in locating their test prep courses.

Once you have the information about what is on the test .... find a friend, form a study group, and prepare for success!

PreK- Grade 4 Pennsylvania Educator Certification Test (PECT) - All teachers in Pennsylvania must take and pass exams in their content area. At Cal U these exams must be taken and passed during the recommendation for student teaching application. As of April 2012 the new tests are Pennsylvania Educator Certification Tests. To find out what tests you need to take for your major please access this PECT tests website.

Study Guides, Practice Tests and Videos

Middle Level Grades 4-8 Tests - ETS testing centers and test dates.

Certificates for Free Praxis Re-Test

PDE and Praxis have teamed up to allow students, under certain circumstances to take the Praxis exam for free. The guidelines are available here. The procedure we will use at Cal is as follows:
1.      Students can come to our office (Keystone 202) to get the “Pennsylvania Certificate for Re-Test” form. This form comes from ETS and cannot be copied because it is watermarked.

2.      When they come, they should bring their:

a.       Praxis Candidate ID Number – found on the Praxis scoring sheets

b.      Current unofficial transcript – so we can verify their GPA

c.       The test name and code they wish to take

d.      The date on which they wish to take the test

e.      Praxis score reports – all of them. Students must have already failed the test once, but no more than twice. They also must have failed by 3 points or less.

3.      Once we have verified their information we will allow them to complete a certificate, log the information in a spreadsheet and keep a copy of the Certificate form. We will not give them a certificate to take with them to complete because we were only given 100 certificates. They must have all the information when they come to complete the form.

4.      Students will then need to send the original certificate with their registration form in order to get a Free Praxis test.

Criminal and Child Abuse Clearances

Pennsylvania Law requires that all personel in schools obtain criminal background checks and child abuse clearances BEFORE you can interact with children. This impacts Cal U students who may be required for their courses to go to public schools. It also impacts students who are applying for student teaching. For information on how to obtain clearances you can go to the Department Office or read Clearance Information Spring 18.

Current policy requires that all students submit their clearances to the office of field experiences prior to July 1 of each year. Please see the instructions on the College of Education Clearance website.

Students enrolled in field courses (ELE 200, EDE 320, etc) must have all clearances that are current within the last year. The clearance date needs to be prior to the first day of classes and extend beyond the last day of the semester. One way to organize this is to get your clearances in the summer and then renew them every summer so that they are current during the academic year (Gilmore email; Nov 10, 2010).

PA Child Abuse Clearance - On February 5, 2015 media reports indicate that there is a massive backlog of clearances that state workers are working to address. People are encouraged to use the electronic clearance submission form for faster service and distinguish between the phone number for checking on clearances 877-343-0494 from the number to report child abuse (Childline) 800-932-0313.

Speech and Hearing Screening

As of September 2012, a speech and hearing screening is not required for admission to teacher education. "After consultation with the Communication Disorders program, the COEHS Governance Committee approved the removal of Speech & Hearing tests as requirements for Admission to Teacher Education. The Admission to Teacher Education form is in the process of being updated to show this change. If you have any questions about this issue, please contact your department chair / liaison or myself." (Burton email, 9/25/12).

Speech and hearing screenings can be taken in the Communication Disorders Speech and Hearing Clinic located in Morgan Learning Research Center Room 296. There is no cost and appointments are necessary.

Writing Resumes

Communicating your talents, skills, education and experiences to a potential employer in a brief format is the purpose of a resume. Often, employers receive a stack of resumes to consider for a single position and the first decision on whether to invite some one for an interview is made based on the information contained in the resume. So it is important to put together a high quality resume that communicates your experiences without the format distracting people from the key information you want them to know. To help you find resources for your resume , contact the Career Services Center.

Pre-Service Teacher Professional Seminar Series

The professional seminar series provides you an opportunity to learn about various aspects of the teaching profession. Research on exemplary teachers has described that one characteristic of these top teachers is that they constantly seek to increase their knowledge. This manifests itself in the act of participating in workshops, conferences and other seminars on education topics. Our goal at Cal U is to ask that you practice the habit of searching out and participating in seminars as a life long professional habit. Seminar information and requirements can be located by consulting the Undergraduate Teacher Education Program Handbook.

After reviewing the previous three Teacher Education Handbooks and the presentations given at the mandatory meetings, all teacher education candidates student teaching in Fall 2012 or later MUST use LiveText to document their seminars. No certificates or Activity Transcripts will be accepted. There are no exceptions to this policy (Engstrom email, 10/20/11).

Upcoming Seminars - Information about upcoming seminars can be found by reading your email, reading the electronic bulletin board in the lobby of Keystone Bldg, paper posters in Keystone hallways and the calendar tab on CalU's home page. You can search for upcoming seminars by putting "COEHS" in the keyword box. (GA-Seminar Email, 9/26/12)
Keep track of your seminars! Any seminars you attend must be entered into Livetext. You will need the following information:
Written Summary

Professional Dispositions Survey

A part of becoming a professional educator is to develop the dispositions central to being able to teach children well. The idea is that you should be able to show growth in your dispositions over time. Cal U assesses professional dispositions three times in your Cal U career: 1) in ELE 200 2) when you apply for teacher education and 3) just after student teaching. Information about professional dispositions is on this webpage. When you need the dispositions form for other people to fill out, go to this webpage and look under "dispositions form."

Applying for Admission to Teacher Education

You must apply to be admitted into a teacher education program. The process involves filling out an application form and including documentation such as: transcripts, clearances, professional seminars, etc. Please go to the College of Education website for the most recent information on applying for admission to teacher education.

Here is an example from Spring 2010.

Fall 2013 Information

Dear Students,

This is just a reminder that if you are applying for Admission to Teacher Education, the packet is due by Sept. 15.  Because that is a Sunday, you will need to get it to us by this Friday.

This application must be made if you are out of your window for Admission --- which is 48 to 65 credits.  If your transcript is now at 66 credits, it's time to apply.  (If you are a transfer student, your window is 12-24 Cal U credits. So, if it's your second Cal U semester as a transfer student, you need to apply.)  

If you are out of your window and you have not yet completed requirements, then you must apply for an extension by Friday. Applications for extension require a copy of your transcript and a copy of your PAPA scores.

If your major is Prek-4, make an appointment with Dr. Diehl.  If your major is Grades 4-8, make an appointment with Dr. Hug.  Before you meet, be sure your packet is complete. That means to include a copy of all required documents, be sure your transcript has the courses highlighted as indicated, and have all dates, scores, and identification information already recorded on the "Admission to Teacher Education" form.  We will not process incomplete forms.
Forms are available on the Cal U website.   

Dr. Nettles 9/9/13

Applying for a Recomendation for Student Teaching

As you approach the completion of your coursework you must apply to be recommended for student teaching. Student teaching is not automatic. The process to apply to student teach involves putting together a packet of documents, preparing a professional portfolio, and participating in an interview with a faculty member. Follow this link for more information and the forms you need to apply to student teach.

"WHAT IS REQUIRED (Fall 2017):

Electronic portfolio:
There are now two types of portfolios that you may choose from to submit:

Option A -- The CALU Common Portfolio is the one that you are familiar with, and may have already started to put together. It documents 10 InTASC standards, plus three more Cal U principles.

Option B - The College of Education has adopted a new format for the portfolio. Beginning next year, it will be called the Professional Portfolio, and it will focus only on the candidate's documentation of his or her knowledge, skills, and abilities in professionalism and leadership. We will be piloting this type of portfolio this year.

You may choose to submit either Option A or Option B. Attached is a Portfolio Handbook that describes both types. You decide which one works best for you.
Refer to the handbook for instructions on what to include in your electronic portfolio, put your portfolio together, and then submit it to your interviewer's Livetext account by October 1.

Recommendation for Student Teaching Packet: Please pay close attention to the instructions below when completing your packet.
The link for the form that you need to fill out and follow is
Make sure to fill in the blank at the top with SPRING 2018. If you have trouble accessing this link, you can also find the link on our College of Education webpage.
The recommendation application has a line for an advisor signature. In this department that means “Interviewer” signature. I have identified your interviewer in this email, so please do not contact your advisor to sign the form before you meet with your interviewer.
On the recommendation application you are asked to produce an advisement sheet. THE OFFICE STAFF WILL MAKE A COPY AND GIVE THIS TO YOUR INTERVIEWER. Your interviewer will add it to your packet when you meet.
All other documentation must be provided by you. Make sure you submit CURRENT information that remains current through May 11, 2018. Do not submit a clearance or any other document that will expire before May 11, 2018, as this will prevent your application from moving forward and will jeopardize your approval to student teach.

Your portfolio reviewer will contact you to set up an appointment for an interview. When you go for your interview, ALL of your documents for the Recommendation for Student Teaching packet must be complete, updated, and in the same sequence as listed on the form.

Remember you must submit your LiveText portfolio, and have your application packet ready by Oct. 2, 2017. Failure to do so will jeopardize your qualification for student teaching.

Dr. Nettles (email, September 20, 2017).

Teacher Education Portfolio using LiveText

More information about developing your teacher education portfolio can be located at this website.

Internship Procedures

All students planning to apply for an internship MUST enroll in the Internship Intent Section during the registration period during the semester BEFORE their internship. Directions for indicating your internship intent are located on this webpage. This section will have no credits or billing obligation associated with it, and does not mean that you are registered for credit.  Failure to enroll in this section by the deadline will prohibit you from being approved for an internship.  You will only be officially registered for internship credits once you have:

The internship process is different than other courses that students are registered for.  Students cannot register for an internship on their own; it is a closed course because they must follow the internship process and obtain five approvals on their internship application before they can become registered.
First and foremost, students must work closely with their faculty or program advisor so that their internship and internship site is approved by them.  This includes not only SPT-799, but also MFL-460, PSY-773 and 774, EDE-768, and CED-790.  This also includes the regular, on-campus undergrad students.
Once they are approved to proceed, they must follow the steps to becoming registered for their internship; this includes enrolling in the internship intent for spring or fall (global on-line students are exempt), completing the five required on-line trainings, and ultimately filling out their internship application through InternLink, my internship database.  So you can see that this is not just a matter of adding the internship to the student’s schedule.
After the student submits the internship application, I review it, process it, and send it on for approvals; this is an e-mail approval system that we have designed, and it works very well.  It goes to the Faculty Advisor, Department Chair, internship site contact, the Dean, and either the Director of Summer College or the Dean’s Secretary. THEY ARE THE ONLY PEOPLE WHO SHOULD BE REGISTERING STUDENTS FOR INTERNSHIPS.  They understand the process, the requirements, and they know that, when they receive the student’s internship application, everyone has agreed that this student is able to do the internship.  Please know that this is extremely important – that no one else but the Director of Summer College or the Dean’s Secretary can register students for internships. (Beck email, 2/28/14).

New On-Line Internship Application Process (Primm, 3/2/11).

The Internship Center is happy to announce that we have now implemented a new on-line internship application process for the University. There will no longer be paper internship applications.

It is very important that you complete five on-line orientations listed below BEFORE you begin filling out your internship application. They are required beginning with the summer 2011 semester. The on-line orientations are:

1. Making the Most of Your Internship;
2. Safety and Security Training;
3. Preventing Sexual Harassment;
4. Preventing Employment Discrimination; and
5. Welcoming Diversity.

Below is a link to the webpage where you can access all of the on-line trainings:

Once these trainings are completed, you will then be able to begin your internship application. You may only begin this once you are secured an internship. Below are the steps:

1. Create a profile in InternLink:
2. Beginning on the left side of your home page in InternLink, click on “I want to Create an Internship Application.”
3. Select the term in which you will be doing the internship; select “click here” to begin application process.
4. Once ALL fields are filled out, click on “Submit”. The internship application is then submitted to the Internship Center for review and to initiate the approval workflow process.
5. **Please note: Be sure that all information is correct and completely filled out before you click “Submit.” You will NOT be able to make changes once you have submitted your internship application!

If you have any questions, encounter any problems, or need more information, please contact the Internship Center at 724/938-1578, or e-mail Karen Primm,, or Tracie Beck,

Applying for Post-Bac Teacher Certification

For Elementary and Early Childhood Education Services degree students who wish to pursue teacher certification after you graduate, the application process and forms are located here.

Applying for a Master's Degree and Initial Teacher Certification

For Elementary and Early Childhood Education Services degree students who wish to pursue teacher certification after you graduate by earning a master's degree, the curriculum and application procedures are located here.

National Student Exchange

Need a change of pace? Want to explore the country? You can pay for tuition at your home institution and take classes at another university at many universities across North America. The NSE website provides details. At Cal U contact John Watkins for more information.

Student Teach at McKeever Environmental Learning Center

What a great way to be outside, teach children and learn an amazing amount about teaching. You can do one of your student teaching experiences at the McKeever Center. Go to their website for an application and see Dr. Hug for more details.

Teacher Certification - Pennsylvania Department of Education

Cal U awards degrees. Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) awards teacher certificates. The following section provides information about PDE teacher certification requirements.


Adding on additional teacher certificates by taking a test (PDE Email, 11/5/14)

All [people who currently hold] instructional certificates can add on other instructional areas with the exception of the areas listed after the chart. The chart below clarifies the certificate(s) held and the certificate(s) that can be added on through testing. Note that special education certificate holders can add on content area certificates, but candidates must complete a program to obtain a special education certificate.

Certificate Held

Certificates that can be Added on by Testing


PreK-4, 4-8, 7-12, PK-12


PreK-4, 4-8, 7-12, PK-12

Pre K-4

4-8, 7-12, PK-12


PreK-4, another 4-8 content area , 7-12, PK-12


PreK-4, 4-8, another 7-12 content area , PK-12


PreK-4, 4-8, 7-12, another PK-12 certificate


PreK-4, 4-8, 7-12, PK-12


PreK-4, 4-8, 7-12, another PK-12 certificate


PreK-4, 4-8, 7-12, PK-12


PreK-4, 4-8, 7-12, PK-12

SPED 7-12

7-12, PK-12

The following certificates can only be added by completing a program:

  • Special Education PK-8 (must have a content certificate)
  • Special Education 7-12 (must have a content certificate)
  • Cooperative Education
  • Health and Physical Education.





Last Updated: February 10, 2020