Education - Requirements

The Educational Studies and Teacher Preparation Department, located in the Graduate School of Education and Allied Professions (GSEAP), in close collaboration with the College of Arts and Sciences, offers a minor in Educational Studies open to all interested undergraduates, a Five-Year Integrated Bachelor's-Master's Degree & Teacher Certification Program, and an undergraduate teacher certification program in K-12 music education. Candidates are advised by the faculty advisors in their majors and by faculty in the Department of Educational Studies and Teacher Preparation.

Decisions for formal admission to the minor in educational studies and the undergraduate teacher programs are made asis between September and March 15.  Decisions for admission to the 5-Year Program are made by March 15 and October 15 for Level I and on February 1 for Level II,  Information sessions for the minor in educational studies and the teacher education program are offered each semester, and the faculty of the Educational Studies and Teacher Preparation Department are available for individual advising by appointment throughout the year.

Teacher Education

Candidates interested in pursuing certification to teach Elementary Education (1-6) or Secondary Education (7-12) can do so through one of two 5-year Bachelor’s- Master’s Programs in Teacher Education. The Teacher Education Programs prepare scholar-practitioners who have the knowledge, skills, and dispositions to enact meaningful connections between theory and practice, promote a developmental model of human growth and learning, exercise ethical professional judgment and leadership, and advocate for quality education for all learners . As members of an inclusive community of learners, we (university faculty, experienced and aspiring classroom teachers, and community members and leaders) work together to create and sustain exemplary learning environments that empower 1-12 students to become engaged, productive citizens in their communities. Across all programs, our foci for inquiry and action include the socio-cultural and political contexts of education and schooling, the complexities of teaching and learning, teacher work and professional cultures, culturally relevant understandings of human growth and development, and socially responsible uses of technology in schooling and society .

Descriptions of all the required education undergraduate and graduate courses are found in the GSEAP catalog . Descriptions of undergraduate courses are found under appropriate departmental course listings.

Five-Year Integrated Bachelors-Master's Degree Program Description

To be admitted to the Five-Year Integrated Bachelors-Master’s degree teacher education programs, student must first declare the minor in Educational Studies; successfully earn 45 credits; maintain a minimum GPA of 2.67 and 3.0 GPA in their certification major.

There are two phases of the admission process to the Five Year Program:  Level I and Level II,  Admission to Level I does not guarantee admission to Level II.

To be admitted to the undergraduate phase of the teacher education program (Level I), students must:

  1. Declare a minor in Educational Studies;
  2. Major in an appropriate discipline;
  3. Sucessfully earn 45 credits;
  4. Possess and maintain an overall minimum GPA of 2.67;
  5. Maintain a 3.0 GPA in their major;
  6. Pass or waive the Praxis I testing requirement;
  7. Complete Level I Application to the undergraduate phase of the Five-Year Program(available on GSEAP website).

    a.  Meet with the Director of the Five-Year Program and appropriate Educational Studies & Teacher Preparation Program faculty to discuss major and minor requirements;

    b.  Submit application as early as spring of sophomore year and no later than spring of junior year.

    c.  Application components:

         I.    Level I application

         II.   Essay

         III. Official transcript

     d.  Sumbmit complete application to ESTP Graduate Assistant in CNS 116A by posted deadline.  

To be admitted to the graduate phase of the Five-Year Program (Level II). Students  must do the following by February 1 of their senior year.

  1. Apply online via Fairfield University Graduate Admissions to the Five-Year Master’s Program, specifying which teacher education track they are pursuing.  The application can be found at:
  2. Application components include:

    a.  Application form & fee

    b.  Admission interview with program faculty

    c.  Proof of updated fingerprinting & background check

    d.  Two letters of recommendation

    e.  Resume

    f.  Record of Immunizations

    g. Essay

    h.  Official transcript (minimum cumulative GPA of 2.67 and 3.0 in major)

    i.  Evidence of passing or waiving the Praxis I exam(waiver information can be found at:  To waive the Praxis I requirement, a candidate must have a minimum SAT score of 1100 with verbal and math subscores of 450 or higher. 

Students seeking certification  must maintain at least a B (3.0) average in their major or the relevant content area courses in order to pursue the 5th year. In view of the teacher’s role in the school and community, candidates whose relevant academic productivity is marginal or inadequate, who do not embody a socially responsible professional disposition, or who demonstrate unsuitable personal qualities, will not be recommended for continuation in the teacher preparation program, student teaching placement, or state certification. In addition, all prospective and admitted candidates to an undergraduate teacher education program are expected to demonstrate the personal
and professional dispositions that are embodied in the Mission Statement of the Graduate School of Education and Allied Professions and outlined in the ethical codes of their chosen profession.

Background Check and Fingerprinting

In compliance with Connecticut state law effective July 1, 2010, applicants whose programs of study will require participation in school-based field experiences (i.e., observations, practica, student teaching, internships, etc.) must undergo state and national criminal history background checks before beginning their program of study and then again for admission to the 5th year. The regional educational service centers (RESCs) that are authorized to conduct fingerprinting services and provide the background check results to the Connecticut State Department of Education and local school districts are listed at University students who have a history of a federal or state conviction may be barred from participating in school-based fieldwork and may be exited from their degree program, depending on the nature of the conviction. Students must present the receipt documenting that they have undergone fingerprinting at a RESC to the GSEAP Dean’s office (Canisius 102) prior to course registration.

Additional 400-level and graduate teacher education course listings are available in the GSEAP catalog. If a student has completed all requirements for an undergraduate degree, while an undergraduate, on a space available basis, the student with the permission of the chair of Educational Studies and Teacher Preparation may complete up to two graduate courses for graduate credit.

The Minor in Educational Studies

The minor in educational studies provides an expanded opportunity for Fairfield University undergraduates to incorporate the study of education into their undergraduate living and learning experiences, whether as prospective teachers or as prospective citizens, or to enhance their preparation as policy makers, practicing professionals or scholars in other fields.


Eligibility for the minor requires completion of 30 credits and background/fingerprinting check at a CT approved site (

The minor in educational studies, open to any interested undergraduate student, has the following requirements:

  1. Apply for and be admitted to the minor
  2. Complete *15 credits as follows:

a. ED 200 Explorations in Education: Teaching, Learning and Schooling (USD)
b. ED 241 Educational Psychology
c. ED 329 Philosophy of Education: An Introduction
d. Choose one course from these recommended diversity courses

EC 114 Economics of Race, Class & Gender in the American Workplace (USD)
EN 172 Literacy and Language (USD)
EN 114/FR 295 Caribbean Literature: History, Culture and Identity (WD)
NS 112 Healthcare Delivery Systems (USD)
MU 101 The History of Jazz (USD)
MU 112 The Music of Black Americans (USD)
MU 122 World Music History and Ensemble (WD)
SO 162 Race, Gender and Ethnic Relations (USD)
SP 359 Culture, Civilization & Literature in the Spanish-American Caribbean Region (WD)

e. Relevant cognate area course: Choose one course from recommended list below (must differ from your diversity course choice)

BI 18 Human Biology: Form and Function
BI 70 Science, Technology, and Society
BI 75 Ecology and Society
CH 007 Introduction to Forensic Science
CH 11 General Inorganic Chemistry I
CH 33 Chemistry of Nutrition
CH 85 Chemistry, Energy, and the Environment
CH 86 Chemistry and Art
CO 101 Argument and Advocacy (Wills' sections)
CO 130 Mass Media and Society (Service Learning section only)
EC 114 Economics of Race, Class & Gender in the American Workplace
EN 172 Literacy and Language
EN 373 Literature for Young Adults
ENW 311 Advanced Composition for Teachers
EN 114/FR 295 Caribbean Literature: History, Culture and Identity
LAC 300 Justice and the Developing World
MU 101 The History of Jazz
MU 112 The Music of Black Americans
MU 122 World Music History and Ensemble
NS 112 Healthcare Delivery Systems
PJ 298 Internship in Advocacy and Community Organizing
PO 115 Introduction to the Study of Peace and Justice
PS 71 Physics of Light and Color
PS 76 Physics of Sound and Music
PS 77 The Science and Technology of War and Peace - The Way Things Work
PS 89 Physics of Sports
PS 93 Energy and Environment
PY 212 Developmental Psychology for Majors with Lab
RS 252 Contemporary Moral Problems
SO 162 Race, Gender and Ethnic Relations
SO 165 Race, Cities and Poverty
SO 185 Introduction to International Migration
SP 359 Culture, Civilization & Literature in the Spanish-American Caribbean Region

Note: Biology majors and minors may use any upper-division 200 and 300 level Biology lab course to satisfy the cognate course for the minor in educational studies.

*Certain courses taken to fulfill the minor in educational studies may be used to fulfill requirements for the undergraduate core and US or World diversity requirements. Some may also be used to fulfill requirements for a major.

Academic Advisement Note

Teacher education candidates should seek academic advisement from the advisor for education certification in their major and an educator advisor to insure that planned program requirements are fulfilled for their major and core requirements, educational studies minor, and their teacher education program.

Teacher Internship Program

The Graduate School of Education and Allied Professions offers teaching internships for both certified and non-certified teachers studying for a Master’s Degree or Certificate of Advanced Study at Fairfield.

The internship gives you a full-time, hands on experience in a public school setting and up to $15,000 towards your studies, while offering local schools additional competent staff members and potential future employees.

For more information or an application, contact  Specify whether you are interested in the internship for certified or non-certified teachers.

All applications for the internship program are reviewed on a rolling basis.  You must be formally admitted to the Master’s Degree Program to be eligible.

Minority Teacher Incentive Grants

The Minority Teacher Incentive Grant Program provides up to $5,000 a year for two years of full time study in a teacher preparation program - usually junior or senior year, as long as you are an admitted education minor and complete all the requirements.

As an added bonus, you may receive up to $2,500 a year, for up to four years, to help pay off college loans if you teach in a Connecticut public elementary or secondary school.

To qualify, you must be a full-time college junior or senior of African-American, Hispanic/Latino, Asian-American, or Native American heritage, and be nominated by the chair of the Educational Studies and Teacher Preparation Department. To apply, obtain a nomination form from