Pre-service teachers complete three (3) fieldwork experiences prior to the student teaching semester. The fieldwork courses address cross categorical settings (SPECED 385), specialized fieldwork settings (SPECED 485), and general education environments (SPECED 410). These experiences provide pre-service teachers the opportunity to apply skills addressed in university classes to 1-12 teaching settings.
This field experience provides all students with the opportunity to actively participate in classrooms for children at-risk and with cross-categorical educational needs. Activities during this placement include, teaching an intervention, collecting data to monitor progress, and reporting student gains to administration and parents. Instructors provide the cooperative teachers with all assessment material.
This field experience provides all students with the opportunity to complete a 150 hour assignment in a general education classroom where inclusionary practices for individuals with special needs are applied. The field experience provides opportunities to become familiar with the range of students' abilities; curricular focus; achievement expectations; enhancements, adaptations, and modifications of instruction; and collaborative practices of general and special educators. Instructors provide the cooperative teachers with all assessment material.
This field experience provides all students with the opportunity to observe and participate in classrooms for children/youth within the specialization areas of cognitive delays, emotional/behavior disabilities and learning disabilities. This course is a pre-clinical experience designed to prepare the student for the student teaching experience. The course involves an initial seminar and 96 hours in specialized field placement. Instructors provide the cooperative teachers with all assessment material.
Internship experiences in the field are directed experiences in 1-12 public school settings that occur prior to the capstone experience, which, at the University of Wisconsin - Whitewater is a portfolio presentation. Student teaching/internship/practicum clinical experiences are sustained, prescribed periods of rigorous field-based experiences performed under the supervision of a certified teacher and an institutional program supervisor in grades 1-12 settings prior to being issued a teaching certificate. The Department of Special Education at UW-Whitewater offers cross-categorical certification in Learning Disabilities/Emotional Behavioral Disorders and Cognitive Disabilities at the undergraduate and graduate (masters) levels. Candidates for directed teaching, internship, practicum, and inservice practicum have to pass the Praxis II and WIFOR prior to these experiences.
These are full-day one semester experiences (approximately 18 weeks). Students enrolled as student teachers or interns follow the school district's calendar instead of the university calendar. The student teacher is placed with a fully licensed teacher in the licensure emphasis area sought. The cooperating teacher is required to have a minimum of three years of teaching experience and must complete a supervision course offered free by the university. A university supervisor is assigned to the teacher candidate. The university supervisor has to complete four visits for the semester.