Mission Statement and Conceptual Framework

The professional education unit of Otterbein University is committed to providing a coherent, developmentally-based teacher education program that prepares teachers to create and work within learning communities which maximize the potential of all learners. The program promotes collaborative learning and critical reflection as a way to develop a community of life-long learners who can respect diverse perspectives, make informed decisions, and be responsive to the changing needs of individuals in our society.

We Believe In

  • The Power of Knowledge

    Effective teachers are knowledgeable and see themselves and their students as life-long learners. Our graduates will be able to make informed decisions based on complex data.

  • The Interdependency of Pedagogy and Content

    Knowledge is not a series of discrete bits of information. Effective teachers help their students see relationships among different areas of study and their application to the real world. In our curriculum, liberal arts and professional courses are intentionally connected. In the same manner, pedagogy and content often are addressed together.

  • The Potential of All Children

    Every child deserves to be taught by quality teachers who believe that each child is capable of learning. The Otterbein teacher education program provides its candidates with the knowledge, skills and dispositions for creating learning environments that are developmentally responsive for each of the students they teach.

  • The Richness of Diversity

    Our program prepares teachers to accept, honor and enhance the diversity within the school environment. Diversity includes but is not limited to ethnicity, gender, social class, sexual orientation, and special needs.

  • The Possibilities of Technology

    As teaching and learning become more complex, the effective use of technology within the classroom becomes even more essential. During their teacher education program, Otterbein students will not only use technology as an integral part of their own professional preparation and see technology modeled for classroom productivity, but they will also learn how to use technology effectively in their classroom.

  • The Necessity of Reflection

    The transition from being a student to becoming a teacher requires a great deal of reflection and introspection on the part of teacher education candidates. In order to truly discover their teacher persona, teacher education candidates must take a critical look at what they believe about teaching and learning throughout their program and strive to incorporate those values in their own teaching.

  • The Merit of Experiential Learning

    Otterbein is committed to continuous and progressive field experiences. The program exposes teacher education candidates to a variety of educational settings.

  • The Importance of Accountability

    Our program is committed to the formative and summative assessment of the knowledge, dispositions, and skills of teacher education candidates in order to assure that graduates from the program are effective and qualified teachers. Furthermore, the unit will use the information obtained from these assessments to change, alter, and/or modify the program so that the quality is maintained.

Purposes and Goals of Teacher Education

The Teacher Education Program at Otterbein University is based on the philosophy that a liberal arts education is best for teachers. The broad aim of teacher education is to help licensure candidates acquire knowledge, develop skills, and exhibit dispositions which they will need to be successful teachers of children. 

The faculty of the Teacher Education Program have adopted standards and critical dispositions to inform ongoing program development and to guide the assessment of candidate progress throughout the program. These standards are aligned with external accrediting agencies such as NCATE/CAEP, the Ohio Department of Education, and the Ohio Department of Higher Education and are based on standards developed by InTASC. These standards are informed by the Mission Statement and Conceptual Framework of Otterbein’s Teacher Education Program and provide a strong basis for the preparation of teacher candidates who can positively impact the education of PreK-12 students. 

The Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (InTASC) is a consortium of state education agencies, higher education institutions, and national educational organizations dedicated to the reform of the education, licensing, and on-going professional development of teachers. Created in 1987, InTASC’s primary constituency is state education agencies responsible for teacher licensing and professional development. Its work is guided by one basic premise: An effective teacher must be able to integrate content knowledge with pedagogical understanding to assure that all students learn and perform at high levels. The InTASC model core standards for licensing teachers represent those principles which should be present in all teaching regardless of the subject or grade level taught and serve as a framework for the systemic reform of teacher preparation and professional development. 

InTASC Model Core Teaching Standards (2013)

  • Standard #1

    Learner Development The teacher understands how learners grow and develop, recognizing that patterns of learning and development vary individually within and across the cognitive, linguistic, social, emotional, and physical areas, and designs and implements developmentally appropriate and challenging learning experiences. 

  • Standard #2

    Learning Differences The teacher uses understanding of individual differences and diverse cultures and communities to ensure inclusive learning environments that enable each learner to meet high standards.

  • Standard #3

    Learning Environments The teacher works with others to create environments that support individual and collaborative learning, and that encourage positive social interaction, active engagement in learning, and self-motivation. 

  • Standard #4

    Content Knowledge The teacher understands the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structures of the discipline(s) he or she teaches and creates learning experiences that make these aspects of the discipline accessible and meaningful for learners to assure mastery of the content. 

  • Standard #5

    Application of Content The teacher understands how to connect concepts and use differing perspectives to engage learners in critical thinking, creativity, and collaborative problem solving related to authentic local and global issues.

  • Standard #6

    Assessment The teacher understands and uses multiple methods of assessment to engage learners in their own growth, to monitor learner progress, and to guide the teacher’s and learner’s decision making.

  • Standard #7

    Planning for Instruction The teacher plans instruction that supports every student in meeting rigorous learning goals by drawing upon knowledge of content areas, curriculum, cross-disciplinary skills, and pedagogy, as well as knowledge of learners and the community context.

  • Standard #8

    Instructional Strategies The teacher understands and uses a variety of instructional strategies to encourage learners to develop deep understanding of content areas and their connections, and to build skills to apply knowledge in meaningful ways.

  • Standard #9

    Professional Learning and Ethical Practice The teacher engages in ongoing professional learning and uses evidence to continually evaluate his/her practice, particularly the effects of his/her choices and actions on others (learners, families, other professionals, and the community), and adapts practice to meet the needs of each learner. 

  • Standard #10

    Leadership and Collaboration The teacher seeks appropriate leadership roles and opportunities to take responsibility for student learning, to collaborate with learners, families, colleagues, other school professionals, and community members to ensure learner growth, and to advance the profession.

Degrees Offered in Teacher Education

  1. The Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degrees are granted to candidates seeking Adolescence to Young Adult (AYA, grades 7-12). These candidates major in their teaching/subject area but also complete teacher licensure requirements.
  2. The Bachelor of Music Education degree is designed to lead to Multi-Age (PreK-12) licensure. Candidates major in Music Education.
  3. The Bachelor of Science in Education degree is designed for candidates seeking PreK-5 Primary Education, Dual PreK-5 Primary/Intervention Specialist, Middle Childhood (4-9), or Intervention Specialist (K-12) licensure. These candidates are Education majors.
  1. The Master of Arts in Teaching degree is designed for individuals who have earned a bachelor’s degree. The MAT provides a graduate route to teacher licensure in Middle Childhood Education for grades 4-9 or in Special Education for grades K-12. Mild/Moderate and Moderate/Intensive options are both available in the Special Education program.
  2. The Master of Arts in Education degree is designed to empower teachers to maximize learner potential through study, research, and reflection.

Post-Baccalaureate Licensure Programs

All licensure programs available for undergraduate candidates are also available for qualified candidates who already have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university. The Post-Baccalaureate is an undergraduate licensure program and does not lead to a degree. For further information, contact The Otterbein Education Department. Post-baccalaureate program requirements may differ from the undergraduate program requirements.

Teaching Licenses/Endorsements Offered

Teacher candidates successfully completing the program at Otterbein may apply for an Ohio four-year resident educator license in the areas listed below. See the Education Department for licensure test requirements.

PreK-5 Primary Education

Dual PreK-5/PreK-5 Intervention Specialist License

Middle Childhood (4-9) – two concentration/teaching areas required (choose from Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies)

Adolescence to Young Adult (AYA, 7-12) – one teaching area required

Multi-Age (PreK-12) – PreK-12 Music or K-12 Intervention Specialist

TESOL Endorsement (PreK-12) is added at the graduate level to another teaching license.

Reading Endorsement (PreK-12) is added at the graduate level to another licensure area only after the initial license has been granted.

Intervention Specialist (K-12) license in Mild/Moderate and/or Moderate/Intensive