Physical Education Teacher Education FAQ's
Q. Why should I want to be a teacher?
A. What physical education teachers say and do will be absorbed by young minds who ultimately will develop an active and healthy lifestyle. Effective teachers awaken interest and kindle enthusiasm. They teach students to see the vitality and worthiness of themselves. Strong teachers of ability and conviction encourage students to marvel, to question, and to seek answers. They inspire tomorrow's leaders and those everyday citizens who make our world a place of wonder. If you want to make a difference, become a teacher.
Q. I want to teach elementary-age students. Why do I need to earn a K-12 physical education certification?
A. Many student teachers want to teach a certain grade level. In reality you must be certified to teach a range of grades. The physical education teacher education major with all-grade certification is a much more complete course of study that increases your marketability when applying for your first teaching position. Once you get your foot in the door, you will be able to transfer into the grade you prefer. The K-12 certification provides the option of teaching elementary, junior high, and high school.
The Manchester curriculum provides future physical education teachers with courses to become proficient in a wide range of physical activities for teaching, an understanding of growth and development of children and adolescents, knowledge of the human body and its response to exercise, and studying the place physical education and sport in our society.
Q. Would it still be possible to coach if I teach in an elementary school?
A. Yes. Several of our graduates have taken positions teaching physical education at the elementary level and coach at a junior high school or high school in their school corporation.
Q. What is certification?
A. Certification is what allows you to teach. The Indiana State Department of Education creates the requirements for certification. Manchester University has created a strong teacher education program that fulfills the requirements set forth.
Q. What if I want more than one certification?
A. Opportunities for employment upon graduation are increased by having more than one certification. You can earn additional certifications by completing the courses required. Your academic advisor can discuss with you adding adapted physical education, health education, or coaching to your physical education teacher education program.
Q. If I graduate with teacher certification will I be able to get a job?
A. Our graduates have enjoyed a high degree of success in obtaining employment in public and private schools in Indiana, as well as throughout the country. Nearly every certified graduate who wants to teach has been offered a teaching position. Those who have chosen adapted physical education, have additional certifications (i.e., Water Safety Instruction, Strength and Conditioning), and those willing to teach in metropolitan school corporations have several choices of positions. Manchester University regularly gets requests for teachers that we are unable to fill. More teachers are needed.
Q. I am excited about a career teaching physical education. How do I go about applying to this major?
A. First Year Students interested in teaching children physical education enroll in EDUC 111 Introduction to Teaching during January session. This course will highlight the exciting career of teaching and provide your first practical experience working with children. It will also help you make Application to Teacher Education. Once you are accepted to Teacher Education, you will Apply to the Major in Physical Education during the fall semester of your sophomore year. These applications will better prepare you to meet with your academic advisor, who can then assist you personally by addressing your individual needs and provide direction to successfully complete program requirements.
Q. What are the general requirements for admission to the Physical Education Teacher Education program?
A. Students applying to the teacher education program should have a strong grade point average, experience working with children, multicultural experience, effective oral and written communication skills, and the ability to meet the standards of the teaching profession.
Q. Is there a minimum grade point average requirement for admission to the program?
A. Yes, a specific GPA is required to enter into and exit the Physical Education Teacher Education program. Students applying to the teacher education program, to enroll in student teaching, and to apply for licensing must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 in their courses.
Q. What kind of experience with children is necessary to apply to the Physical Education Teacher Education program?
A. The Department of Exercise and Sport Sciences is looking for evidence that you have a commitment to the profession of teaching. This evidence can be in the form of paid or volunteer experiences in your local community (child care, youth coaching), in a school (cadet teaching, assistant coaching), or in another setting with school-age children (camp). Additionally, the Education Department provides every student applying for admission with at least 10 hours of experience in a public school classroom during his/her EDUC 111 Introduction to Teaching course.
Q. What is the multicultural experience and how do I obtain it?
A. One of the requirements for Application to Teacher Education is evidence that you have an understanding of and the ability to work with members of different racial and ethnic groups represented in Indiana and the Midwest. This may be demonstrated by documented experiences with school-age children from different racial, ethnic, or cultural groups.
Q. Does Manchester University offer any special programs that would help me gain the multicultural experience and experience with children that I need?
A. The Education Department provides a multicultural experience in EDUC 111 Introduction to Teaching during January session. Students are placed in classrooms in the Fort Wayne Community Schools to provide tutoring to elementary school children. In addition, the on-campus Physical Education Teaching Laboratory is also a great way to gain experience, contribute to the local community, and make a difference in the life of a child. The University also provides a Celebrating Diversity Workshop each semester for our teaching majors.
Q. Is there a writing proficiency component to the application?
A. The application process in the Department of Exercise and Sport Sciences includes a written essay (Personal Statement) that is factored into your admission. Additionally, students need to demonstrate proficiency in writing in ENG 110 University Writing during the first year. The Department of Exercise and Sport Sciences also offers courses that support students' written communication skills.
Q. How long does the program take to complete?
A. The length of your program will vary according to your academic background. On average, student teachers will complete their degree requirements in 4 years (about 8 semesters; carrying a minimum of 13-16 credit hours per semester). A 4 year plan will be completed with your academic advisor at the end of the first year. The plan will give you an idea of the length of time it will take to complete your program and become a certified teacher.
Q. What are the requirements to become certified to teach physical education?
A. To be certified to teach in Indiana, you will need a bachelor's degree, completion of a teacher education program (such as Manchester University's program), passing scores on the Praxis national teacher exams, fingerprint clearance, and fees.
Q. What are the Praxis exams?
A. Individuals who complete the education degree program at Manchester University, who wish to teach in Indiana, must pass the Praxis national teacher exams. Praxis I includes the professional knowledge tests and Praxis II is the subject knowledge tests (health, physical education).
Q. How do I let the state know that I have completed the Teacher Education program at Manchester University?
A. Following a successful student teaching experience in the spring semester of your senior year, students will complete their licensing application. The Education Department will then recommend individuals who have completed the Teacher Education program for certification to the state.
Q. What if I plan to teach in another state?
A. Teachers who apply for certification in another state will most likely find the process easier if they are already certified. We recommend that student teachers apply for Indiana licensure, then contact the Department of Education in the state in which they are interested in teaching for its recommendations.
Q. Is the Teacher Education program at Manchester University accredited?
A. Yes. Our program in nationally accredited by the National Council of Accreditation for Teacher Education (NCATE), state accredited by the Indiana State Department of Education, and has an exemplary rating from the Board. Accreditation responds to the public's expectation that universitys produce teachers who meet rigorous standards and who can help students learn.
Q. What are Education Workshops?
A. Informational non-credit workshops are regularly offered throughout the program. The meetings are typically held during the fall semester. Students are excused from their classes to hear nationally-known speakers on a variety of topics. The workshops provide pertinent program information and allow students to participate in discussions about topics of interest, such as Fit4Learning, Praxis, portfolios, reflections, etc.
Q. What is a portfolio?
A. Portfolios are electronic collections of artifacts (assignments, papers) that document your progress (knowledge, skill, and disposition) throughout the program. You will submit your digital portfolio several times before completing the program. The first submission is in the fall semester of your sophomore year during the Application to the Major process. The second and third submissions are during required courses in your sophomore and junior years. The last one is submitted during the final student teaching semester and must receive an acceptable evaluation rating.
Q. Is there a dress code to be in the Physical Education Teacher Education program?
A. Yes. Professional attire is required when completing all service-learning experiences (on campus teaching, visiting schools). You are a reflection of Manchester University and are expected to be professional at all times. Professional dress includes a black collared shirt and tan shorts or pants. You are not required to wear professional attire to classes.
Q. What are service-learning experiences?
A. Most education courses plan for you to visit area schools to complete different assignments. Your professors will assign you to public and private schools near the University. Schools are designated as partner schools and teachers are referred to as cooperating teachers. Before finishing the program, you must have diverse experiences (different grade levels, cultures, ethnic groups, etc.).
Q. What is student teaching?
A. During the last semester of your program, you will spend 15 weeks teaching in a classroom/gymnasium setting under the supervision of an experienced, qualified teacher. During the semester, you will get the opportunity to practice teach in two different levels (elementary, secondary). In addition to your cooperating teacher, a supervising professor will observe your teaching every other week to provide guidance and assistance when needed.
Q. Do I get to choose where I want to student teach?
A. You are allowed to choose the area where you will student teach, but not the school. The Director of Teacher Education will place you within 35 miles of the University. You are not allowed to student teach in the school corporation where you graduated from.