breaking news is national recognition of Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s Spanish
Education K-12 program for the third review cycle in a row by its national
accrediting body—a first for any language education program in the country—the story behind the news is just as
of the IUP Spanish Education program have a 100 percent placement rate, with
districts eager for as many graduates as IUP can supply, according to Eileen Glisan, coordinator of the Spanish Education K-12 program and IUP
Distinguished University Professor.
the department’s program report submitted to the American Council on the
Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) and the national accrediting agency,
Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).
specialized professional association of CAEP (formerly NCATE, National Council
for Accreditation of Teacher Education), collaborates with CAEP to review
foreign language teacher preparation programs in NCATE institutions to
determine if programs meet rigorous standards developed by the foreign language
to receive national recognition, programs must prepare a program report that
provides evidence of having met all requirements of the “ACTFL/CAEP Program
Standards for the Preparation of Foreign Language Teachers.”
program recognition report commended IUP’s program for maintaining high
standards, particularly in the areas of requiring candidates to complete a
study abroad program and to demonstrate a high level of oral proficiency prior
to student teaching.
reviewers also cited as strengths the qualifications of faculty who teach in
the program, departmental faculty retreats, several faculty in the department
who are certified oral proficiency testers, a collaborative relationship with
IUP’s College of Education and Educational Technology, and data and rubrics
that are clearly aligned with the national standards.
to the program recognition report, “The program is a model for any program
applying for national recognition; there is little more that the program can do
our accrediting organization declare us a national model for teacher education
is a tremendous honor,” Sean McDaniel, chair of the Department of Foreign
Languages, said. “To have them do three times in row, well, that’s just
unprecedented. It is the product of tremendous work, diligence, and expertise
on behalf the entire department. I couldn’t be more proud.”
to Glisan, the 100 percent job placement for IUP graduates has been ongoing for
the last 12 to 15 years of the program.
students keep in touch with us so we see how successful they are. Our students
usually have multiple job offers, and extras—for example, one recently
graduate got a fully paid master’s program with the job offer. Many of our
students stay in Pennsylvania, and, in fact, one of our graduates was the
runner-up for Pennsylvania teacher of the year. Many stay in teacher roles, but
some go on to become principals. Our students tell us how much they appreciate
our program, and come back to talk with current students.”
are the students getting jobs, but the districts that hire them are so
satisfied with our graduates that they keep coming back to us, asking for more
graduates,” Glisan said. “We’re recently had school districts ask to come to
our annual methodology conference because they want to interview our students
while they are still in school. One of our students was actually interviewed
and hired on the spot.”
One of the
strengths and unique aspects of the IUP program is the collaboration between
the IUP Department of Foreign Languages and the College of Education and
students take preparation courses in the College of Education and Educational
Technology, but take specialized courses in pedagogy (classes about methods and
practices of teaching) in the Foreign Language Department by faculty who specialize both
in content and in teacher education.
means that our students learn from faculty who are experts both in the content
area (Spanish) and in the field of education. This ‘specialist model’
continually gets praise from external reviewers and from those who hire our
students,” Glisan said.
collaboration includes working closely with the College of Education and
Educational Technology’s student teaching program, suggesting the best matches
for student teacher placement, so students are placed in the most effective
environment, Glisan said.
collaborative model is unique, given that the majority of teacher preparation
programs nationwide are organized according to a generic preparation model.
College of Education and Educational Technology is pleased to provide
leadership and support to all educator preparation programs across IUP,” Lara Luetkehans, dean of the IUP College of Education and Educational
Education is among the educator preparation programs achieving National Recognition
through their Specialized Program Associations as we prepare for institutionwide accreditation through the Council for the Accreditation of Educator
noted that all of the educator preparation programs at IUP work together to
ensure that the future educators IUP prepares are ready to meet the needs of
all children and young adults in any of the variety of settings in which they
model offers our students a real advantage, because they benefit from the best
of what the two colleges have to offer,” Glisan said. “Every time we’ve gotten
national recognition, the reviewers have commented on IUP’s specialist model.
Most institutions have instruction coming only from the college of education.
IUP’s model offers students faculty who understand subject content and the pedagogy
of teaching a language along with teacher education experts. It’s a very big
difference, and the difference is reflected in our student—and program—success.”
McDaniel both stressed that achieving national recognition for a third review
cycle in a row, along with the 100 placement rate for graduates for more than a
decade, is a departmentwide achievement.
achievement is about the entire faculty, it takes everyone to make something
like this happen,” Glisan said. “The entire faculty agrees on the rubrics and
assessments that align with these national standards, and everyone works
together to make this consistent success happen.”