High praise for teacher education at Furman

June 24, 2013 | Vince Moore

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shutterstock_88269286
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Furman University is one of only four universities in the nation to receive a top rating for its teacher education program, according to a report released today.

Furman joined Vanderbilt, Lipscomb and Ohio State universities as the only schools to receive four stars in the study compiled by the National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ).  According to NCTQ, the programs that rated highly in its report “combine an eye for the talent teachers need, strong content knowledge preparation, and well-structured opportunities to practice the craft of teaching.”

“We are immensely proud of our teacher preparation program, of our students and our faculty, and we are very appreciative of the support from Furman’s administrators,” said Nelly Hecker, chair of the university’s education department. “In celebrating our program, we acknowledge the high quality of our teacher candidates and our graduates’ many accomplishments.”

Hecker added that the program “owes its strength to outstanding faculty who engage teacher candidates in practices supported by empirical evidence and to strong partnerships with public school districts that provide excellent mentors. The retention of our graduates in the field of education has dramatically increased since we extended our teacher preparation program to a fifth year of study giving our candidates more time to enroll in content courses and more time to teach under the guidance of master practitioners and mentors.”

Furman’s teacher education program is nationally known for its high entrance and exit standards. After four years of study and following graduation, Furman’s teacher candidates are required to spend an additional semester completing their teaching internship.  Furman graduates 30-50 teacher candidates each year.

NCTQ assigned overall program ratings to 1,200 teacher education programs, with 0 being the lowest rating and 4 the highest.  There were 105 that earned three or more stars and only four that received the top rating.

Furman’s teacher education program is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).  It is also a member of the American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education (AACTE), the National Network for Educational Renewal (NNER), and the South Carolina Network for Educational Renewal (SCNER).

For more information, visit the Furman education department website or call the Furman News and Media Relations office at 864-294-3107.