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School of Education Policies

General Policies


Students in need of specialized accommodations and services due to a documented disabiling condition should contact Disability Services. The Office of Disability Services is located in University Crossing and may be contacted in person or by email at Students for whom accommodations are appropriate must present the instructor with official notification from Disability Services at the beginning of each course. Accommodations are not retroactive. Please visit the Disability Services website for further information.

Background Checks

Because this is a professional degree and teacher candidates will be working in local schools, they will be required to submit information for background checks (CORI – Criminal Offender Record Investigation). School districts may refuse to allow a student to complete field and clinical experiences if certain offences are revealed. These circumstances may result in students being unable to complete a teacher preparation program. In compliance with Massachusetts law, schools will also require that teacher candidates be fingerprinted prior to their student teaching practicum; some districts require fingerprinting for any field work conducted in their schools.

Fingerprints are required to be completed every three years unless otherwise requested by a school district. Incoming freshmen receive information regarding fingerprinting prior to the start of their first fall semester and are expected to complete the process before beginning their first education course. Transfer and change of major students are also expected to complete their fingerprint requirements prior to the start of their first semester. The School of Education will coordinate fingerprint requirements for rising seniors before the start of their practicum.

Massachusetts Tests of Educator Licensure (MTEL)

In order to demonstrate their learning and be eligible for teaching licenses in Massachusetts, students will be required to pass the appropriate MTELs (Massachusetts Tests for Educator Licensure).

Students in the licensure pathway for the BA. Ed. will need to satisfy:

  • 01 Communications and Literacy (composed of Reading and Writing sub-tests)
  • 03 General Curriculum (composed of Multi-Subject and Math sub-Tests)
  • 90 Foundations of Reading

Technical Standards for Teaching

The following guidelines have been developed to specify the essential functions students must demonstrate in order to fulfill the requirements for becoming a teacher, a specialist or a principal at the School of Education.

Expected Abilities:

Critical Thinking

The student will be able to thoroughly, efficiently, and reliably:

  1. Recall, interpret, synthesize, evaluate and then apply information from written, verbal and illustrated materials.
  2. Implement the teaching and learning process through recall, application of best teaching practices interpretation, calculation, reassessment, analysis, judgment and synthesis.
  3. Identify and communicate the limits of their knowledge to others when appropriate.
  4. Incorporate new information from students, peers, teachers and relevant literature.


The student will be able to:

  1. Communicate in English effectively and sensitivity with faculty, staff, students, parents and partners in the field.
  2. Be aware of and appropriately react to one's own immediate emotional response.
  3. Accept appropriate feedback and if, necessary, respond by modification of behavior.
  4. Develop professional relationships, providing comfort and reassurance when appropriate, while protecting confidentiality.
  5. Possess ability to function effectively under stress.
  6. Recognize and interpret verbal and non-verbal cues.
  7. Complete reading assignments and search and evaluate the literature.
  8. Complete written records.
  9. Demonstrate the use of professional communication, such as attending, clarifying, coaching, facilitating and responding professionally.

Technical Abilities

The student will be able to:

  1. Observe demonstrations and participate in fieldwork in local schools and other educational settings.
  2. Observe a student at a distance and close at hand, assessing academic and social needs.
  3. Detect and identify subtle changes in student behavior in order to manage the learning environment and to provide students with appropriate services.
  4. Use instructional technology such as personal computers, ipads, data projectors, calculators, smartboard and remote controls.
  5. Have sufficient sensory and motor function to move around a classroom and interact with students.
  6. Respond promptly to students' academic and social/emotional needs.
  7. Have the capacity to work effectively in the student clinical role for up to 8 hours in a local school.