Since its founding in 1875 as the Indiana Normal School, IUP has been widely recognized for its excellent programs in teacher education.

Teacher education at IUP was the first mission of the university in 1875. The Normal School, together with its Model School, was founded to further the acquisition of knowledge and excellence in teaching as mutually supportive goals. In twelve decades of growth and change, IUP has maintained a commitment to the linked goals of excellence in learning and excellence in teaching. Although the university has greatly expanded, the College of Education and Communications continues the tradition of preparing outstanding teachers to serve all students.

Teacher Education programs at IUP include a total of twenty-two initial teacher preparation and eleven advanced preparation programs. A total of fifteen of the initial preparation programs are offered by departments from the five other colleges across campus.

The college is well known for its opportunities to practice “hands-on” learning. More than five hundred candidates participate in early field experiences each semester. In addition, the college places about five hundred candidates each year in public schools for a full semester of supervised teaching experience. Candidates are encouraged to take advantage of a full range of activities offered in culturally and economically diverse urban and rural settings.

Teacher education programs at IUP focus on candidates who are taught and guided by a faculty committed to the preparation of outstanding teachers. Candidates preparing to become educators must exhibit compassion and adaptability, demonstrate and foster critical thinking skills, and model best professional practices. These qualities are developed through coursework and field experiences that emphasize the liberal studies in concert with appropriate professional pedagogy and content. Collaboration is modeled as university faculty, public school personnel, and candidates work together to accomplish the goals of the IUP teacher education programs.