Professor Stephen Kuhn and Associate Professor Sandy Watson, Co-Directors
UTeaChattanooga provides preparation for individuals seeking to be professional secondary mathematics or science teachers within public and private educational institutions.
Courses of Study
UTeaChattanooga, through seven departments in the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Engineering and Computer Science, offers seven approved undergraduate programs leading to the Bachelor of Science degree and eligibility for secondary (7-12) teacher licensure in Tennessee and in those states that grant reciprocity privileges to graduates of institutions accredited by NCATE. The seven programs (concentrations) are under the following majors: BS Biology, BS Chemistry, BS Physics, BS Computer Science, BSE Engineering, BS Geology, and BS Applied Mathematics.
UTSM 1010 and 1020: Steps One and Two
As an introduction to the teaching experience, UTeaChattanooga offers two one-credit-hour courses: UTSM 1010 (Step One) and UTSM 1020 (Step Two). These courses are designed to introduce mathematics, engineering, computer science, and science majors to the possibility of teaching as a career and as such, Step 1 has no prerequisite and Step 2 has only Step 1 as a prerequisite. Upon successful completion of each course (grade of C or better), students are rebated the tuition (in-state cost) for one credit hour.
Because Step 1 and Step 2, as well as other courses in the program, require field components, students must purchase liability insurance and must meet the TN mandates regarding criminal background checks: Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 49, Chapter 5, Part 5610 specifies that all students wishing to enter approved teacher training programs in Tennessee are required to have a fingerprint-based criminal history background check. In order to comply with TCA 49-5-5610, students seeking entry into UTeaChattanooga’s Step One course, must complete this requirement satisfactorily prior to their first field experience. Students must also provide proof of current professional liability insurance. Details can be found on the UTeaChattanooga website and questions should be directed to the UTeaChattanooga Master Teachers.
Students pursuing teacher licensure through UTC’s UTeaChattanooga program must meet requirements in four sequential checkpoints. The checkpoints control admission to the UTeaChattanooga program, admission to apprentice teaching, and recommendation for licensure.
Included in the checkpoint requirements are successful completion of specific coursework, achievement of appropriate grade point averages, and appropriate test scores on the ACT, SAT or Praxis I, as well as on the state-mandated Praxis II tests for the licensure area. In addition, specified paperwork must be submitted in each checkpoint, including successful completion of the preliminary portfolio prior to Apprentice Teaching, and final portfolio at the culmination of Apprentice Teaching. Success in meeting checkpoint requirements leads to success in completing the UTeaChattanooga program.
Checkpoint 1: Acceptable fingerprinting check
Checkpoint 2: minimum 22 on the ACT or passing score on Praxis I; minimum 2.5 GPA (UTC and cumulative); successful completion of Step 1 and Step 2; application to UTeaChattanooga submitted; successful interview
Checkpoint 3: minimum 2.5 GPA (UTC, cumulative, UTSM, and content); successful completion of all other UTSM courses (and MATH 2300 for Mathematics majors) except Apprentice Teaching; passing score on preliminary portfolio; successful completion of Praxis II exams; Apprentice Teaching application accepted; resume submitted
Checkpoint 4: Successful completion of Apprentice Teaching; acceptable submission of all documentation (portfolio, reflection, school culture assignment, and secondary student learning evaluations; summary of hours; focused observation forms; completed final evaluation with acceptable scores on all criteria; submission of time capsule)
Admission to UTeaChattanooga*
*Final responsibility for ensuring that these requirements are met prior to being admitted to Apprentice Teaching rests with the student.
Applicants who demonstrate qualifications and characteristics reasonably expected for entry into the teaching profession will be considered for admission to UTeaChattanooga once they have successfully completed UTSM 1010 and UTSM 1020 (students enrolled in UTSU 1020 can be provisionally admitted). Selection of qualified students is usually made on the basis of application concurrent with enrollment in UTSM 2010, Knowing and Learning, with the exception of transfer students who are required to complete a semester of residence at UTC before their admission can be finalized. A student who has not been officially admitted to UTeaChattanooga will not be permitted to register for courses beyond UTSM 1020 in the UTeaChattanooga (UTSM) course sequence. Prior to formal application to UTeaChattanooga, students must consult with an advisor in the College of Arts and Sciences to plan their programs.
All students must satisfy official UTeaChattanooga admission standards, the Tennessee Department of Education, and the College of Arts and Sciences. A student who has earned a degree or credit hours at another institution may be required to enroll in additional courses, including the apprentice teaching experience, to verify competency in those teaching fields for which initial teacher licensure or endorsement is being requested through a UTC recommendation.
To be considered for admission to UTeaChattanooga, a student must:
1. Earn an ACT composite test score of 22 or above on the Enhanced ACT or a combined verbal and mathematics score of 1020 or above on the Recentered SAT; if a student does not meet one of these requirements, the student must pass the Praxis I Pre-Professional Skills Test (PPST).
2. File a formal application to UTeaChattanooga signed by a UTeaChattanooga faculty advisor or co-director.
3. Earn a minimum 2.5 cumulative grade point average, a 2.5 average on all courses taken at UTC, a 2.5 in UTSM courses with no grade lower than C, and a 2.5 in content area courses with no grade lower than C.
4. Take and receive a passing score on the UTeaChattanooga writing assessment essay.
5. File a UTeaChattanooga Application for Interview.
6. Complete the UTeaChattanooga interview and receive a positive recommendation from the UTeaChattanooga interview committee.
7. Demonstrate a commitment to: a) professional ethics, b) collaboration, c) diversity, d) self-reflection, e) belief in students’ ability to learn, t) technology, g) the teaching profession, and h) professional growth. These professional dispositions will be assessed in all UTeaChattanooga courses. In addition, specific dispositions are sometimes identified as appropriate for individual programs and as a result of other association/organization affiliations. Violations of the UTC Honor Code or student behavior policies as stated in the current UTC Student Handbook may be reviewed by UTeaChattanooga and may impact the final decision regarding admission to UTeaChattanooga and/or approval for Apprentice Teaching experiences.
Applicants will receive notification of their UTeaChattanooga admission status following the interview. An applicant who is denied admission will be notified of the deficiencies and of suggested resources or activities which may correct these deficiencies; the decision may be appealed. Information pertaining to the appeals procedure may be obtained from the UTeaChattanooga co-directors.
Tests for Admission to Teacher Education Programs
Individuals seeking admission to teacher education programs in Tennessee must pass the Praxis I Pre-Professional Skills Test (PPST). The Tennessee Board of Education has also approved two additional options for admission of teacher candidates. Applicants who have attained an ACT composite test score of 22 or above on the Enhanced ACT or who have attained a combined verbal and mathematics score of 1020 or above on the Recentered SAT shall be exempt from the Praxis I.
UTC is committed to strict adherence to Tennessee Board of Education requirements regarding official admission to UTeaChattanooga. An applicant to UTeaChattanooga may take the required testes) an unlimited number of times.
For full teacher licensure, the Tennessee Board of Education requires the achievement of state approved minimum scores on specified tests of the Praxis II Series. Information about the tests may be obtained from the UTeaChattanooga Office or the UTC Testing Center.
Admission to Apprentice Teaching*
*Final responsibility for ensuring that these requirements are met prior to being admitted to Apprentice Teaching rests with the student.
The application for admission to the Apprentice Teaching course must be filed approximately five months preceding the actual experience. If a student plans to apprentice teach during the spring semester of an academic year, the application must be completed and on file no later than September 1 of the preceding year. For the fall semester of an academic year, the application should be completed and on file no later than the preceding March 1.
Before admission to Apprentice Teaching, the student must:
• Successfully complete all UTeaChattanooga coursework through UTSM 4010 (students enrolled in UTSM 4010 can be provisionally admitted). Exceptions must follow an appeals process.
• Submit an apprentice teaching application with signature of assigned faculty advisor.
• Satisfactorily complete all but at most two courses in content area(s).
• Earn a minimum grade point average of 2.5 on courses completed at UTC, a cumulative 2.5 grade point average on all courses, a 2.5 grade point average in UTSM courses with no grade lower than C, a 2.5 grade point average in content area courses with no grade lower than C.
• Receive a passing score on the preliminary portfolio.
• Complete the application for and undergo Hamilton County Substitute Teaching Training.
• Submit passing scores on all required Praxis II tests.
• Submit five copies of a resume to UTeaChattanooga office, Collins Street Annex, room 114.
All students seeking teaching licensure must meet the apprentice teaching requirement. Apprentice teaching is a 1/2 day, full-semester experience; participants are placed in cohorts in two schools having different characteristics. Assignments vary according to state requirements for the licensure sought.
Apprentice teaching is evaluated on a satisfactory/no credit basis. Successful completion of apprentice teaching requires successful completion of all apprentice teaching related assignments, receiving satisfying scores on apprentice teaching assessments, and successfully completing all seminar requirements. A student not satisfactorily completing Apprentice Teaching will receive a grade of no credit and may have the opportunity to repeat the course.
Final authority for the apprentice teaching placement and teaching assignment rests with the UTeaChattanooga Co-Directors. As a general rule, a student is neither located in the school from which he or she recently graduated nor placed under the supervision of a relative.
Apprentice Teaching Orientation and Seminar
General orientation seminars concerning Apprentice Teaching are held for all prospective apprentice teachers preceding the apprentice teaching semester. Non-attendance could delay the apprentice teaching experience. Seminars are also held weekly during the apprentice teaching semester, and attendance is mandatory.
Under special circumstances, policies, procedures, and requirements for admission to UTeaChattanooga and apprentice teaching may be waived or revised at the discretion of the Dean of the College Arts and Sciences.
Recommendation for Licensure
UTeaChattanooga will recommend licensure only for those students who have successfully completed one or more of the UTC initial licensure or endorsement programs approved by the Tennessee Department of Education. Application forms may be obtained from the UTeaChattanooga office, room 114, Collins Street Annex.
Tennessee regulations stipulate that the applicant for an initial teaching license or additional endorsement must be recommended by the designated certifying officer and dean of an approved teacher training institution. To receive this recommendation, the applicant must:
1. Obtain official admission to UTeaChattanooga.
2. Earn a minimum grade point average of2.5 in courses completed at UTC, a cumulative 2.5 grade point average on all courses, a 2.5 grade point average in UTSM courses with no grade lower than C, a grade point average of2.S in content area courses with no grade lower than C.
3. Satisfactorily complete the Apprentice Teaching experience or an approved alternative.
4. Fulfill specific departmental requirements in the area of concentration.
5. Achieve minimum scores on the Praxis II tests mandated by the Tennessee Board of Education. (Credit for Apprentice Teaching will not be granted without fulfillment of this requirement.)
UTC does not guarantee that satisfactory completion of a program listed in the UTC Catalog at the time a student is initially admitted to the University will meet all licensure requirements at the time the person applies for initial licensure. This means that UTC will recommend only those applicants who have met all licensure requirements in effect at the time of the University recommendation.
Any student who completes a licensure program at UTC, regardless of whether he or she intends to teach in Tennessee, should apply for Tennessee licensure since many states require an applicant to be licensed in the state where he or she graduated and/or completed an initial licensure program. Licensure standards change frequently; hence, it is prudent to apply for licensure immediately upon graduation or program completion.
A student is considered to have completed UTC’s UTeaChattanooga program when Tennessee standards for the Praxis II tests for licensure are met, all course work requirements have been fulfilled, and the degree appropriate to the program has been awarded.
A student who anticipates teaching outside Tennessee is strongly encouraged to request a check sheet of certification requirements from the Department of Education Office of Certification for the state in which he or she plans to teach. Course and competency requirements to satisfy out-of-state certification standards may be in addition to Tennessee licensure requirements and UTC approved degree requirements.
Graduation with a master’s degree from UTC does not guarantee licensure in any specific area. However, in some instances a student may satisfy all the Tennessee requirements for licensure by completion of a state approved master’s degree program at UTC. Students should refer to the Graduate Catalog for additional information about graduate studies.