Secondary Education

Villanova University's teacher education program has been approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) to recommend candidates for Level I Certification in order to teach in Pennsylvania's public schools. For additional information, please see the certification areas listed below, as well as the Undergraduate Education Handbook.

Course Sheets for Secondary Education Content Areas

The Secondary Education major requires 37 credits in Education courses and from 36-56 credits in teaching area Liberal Arts & Sciences courses which the Department requires to satisfy the Pennsylvania Academic Standards in each teaching area. Education majors take the same classes as other Liberal Arts majors, and may qualify to graduate with a double major (see education plans). To complete the certification program, candidates must maintain a 3.0 GPA, pass state required tests,** and demonstrate their abilities in the classroom in a series of field experiences (complete details follow). Pennsylvania is one of 46 states party to an interstate agreement that enables certified candidates to teach in other states.

**Please contact the Department's PDE Program Coordinator, Nancy Franz,  for up-to-date Pennsylvania Department of Education requirements.   

Villanova's goal is not only to meet state requirements, but to graduate fully confident, inspired educators who will lead professional lives exemplifying the intellectual and moral ideals embodied in the University's mission. We invite you to read the Undergraduate Teacher Education Mission Statement in the Undergraduate Student Handbook.

Secondary Education candidates may declare to be an education major in their first year.  The Declare Major form found can be found on the Office of Undergraduate Studies Student Forms and Policy page.

Upon completing 48 credits, students will then need to apply to the Pennsylvania Certification Program within the Department of Education and Counseling. This is required by the Pennsylvanina Department of Education, PDE, and first step in becoming a certified teacher.  PDE requires students to have a minimal 2.8 GPA, six credits in English,  six credits in mathematics, two recommendations from professors.  For a complete listing of requirements, see the Undergraduate Student Handbook.

Secondary Education majors begin their observations in area schools with their first Education course, and continue these field experiences as a requirement for subsequent courses throughout the program. Observations encompass a variety of school settings, including urban, suburban, private and parochial schools. A Field Placement Coordinator helps candidates with placements and maintains ongoing relationships with cooperating school districts. As candidates advance in the program, they assume greater responsibility in the cooperating classrooms, from observation to small group instruction, to large group instruction and lesson planning. The culmination of these experiences is in the final semester of senior year, when candidates teach a full-time schedule under the guidance of their cooperating teacher and their Villanova supervisor. Villanova recommends graduates of the Secondary Education program to the Pennsylvania State Department of Education for their Level I Professional Certification when they have met the requirements. Some of these include graduating with a minimal 3.0 GPA, passing the state-required exams,** satisfactory performance in their field experiences including a minimal B- in student teaching, and successful creation of a presentation electronic portfolio. For a complete listing of requirements, see the Undergraduate Student Handbook.  For student teaching requirements, see the Student Teaching Handbook.

**Please contact the Department's PDE Program Coordinator, Nancy Franz,  for up-to-date Pennsylvania Department of Education requirements, or visit the Pennsylvania Department of Education website.

Villanova graduates are respected education professionals in this area and in neighboring states. This department and Career Services work cooperatively to help graduates secure employment in school districts of their choice. Pennsylvania teachers have a starting salary of over $41,000, with average overall salaries of over $60,000. Schools in area districts also offer excellent benefits and opportunities for continuing education. Teaching offers a life of purpose and vision. The opportunity to educate future generations is a great responsibility. Teachers continue to lead the polls of America's most respected professionals. Villanova's graduates are prepared with at least 36 credits in their teaching areas, and with the addition of the solid liberal arts Core Curriculum, qualify for the federal designation of "Highly Qualified."

Title II of the Higher Education Act of 1998, section 207, requires colleges and universities to make public the results of the Praxis tests required to teach in Pennsylvania's public schools. Villanova teaching candidates must pass the PAPA test of basic skills to enter the program, and have had a 100% pass rate (statewide pass rate ranged from 94% to 99%). The Praxis II subject assessment tests are required for state certification in the specific teaching areas. Following is a chart of Praxis II pass rates. For more information, contact Title II officer, Nancy Franz, at 610.519.5593.