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MSU Teacher Education Unit (TEU)

E. Standard 4.

The unit designs, implements, and evaluates curriculum and provides experiences for candidates to acquire and demonstrate the knowledge, skills, and professional dispositions necessary to help all students learn. Assessments indicate that candidates can demonstrate and apply proficiencies related to diversity. Experiences provided for candidates include working with diverse populations, including higher education and P-12 school faculty, candidates, and students in P-12 schools.

E.1. How does the unit prepare candidates to work effectively with all students?
All candidates in BSE programs are required to take coursework addressing diversity and teaching diverse learners. They are ED 470 - Teaching Diverse Learners, SS 283 - Ethnic and Cultural Diversity in America, and SPED 110 - Introduction to Exceptional Children. All three of these courses have been designated as diversity courses that help candidates meet the new diversity requirement for graduation. In the ED 470 course, candidates are introduced to teaching strategies such as differentiated instruction, 4-MAT, and peer tutoring; identification of student learning styles and how to teach to student learning strengths; and how to teach to students' multiple intelligences.

Coursework relating to diversity is required of candidates in all of the unit's advanced programs. The MAT: Science program requires its candidates to take Ed 519 - Diversity in a Global Perspective, a required core-course in the MEd program. Candidates in the MAT: Math program are required to take Math 511 - Current Trends in the Teaching of Mathematics. Math 511 encompasses a dual focus on diversity and on issues relating to the teaching of mathematics. The MS in Education of the Deaf, the MS in Communication Disorders, the MME, and the Education Specialist in School Psychology programs are nationally accredited. Each program's curriculum contains diversity components that satisfy the requirements of its respective accrediting organization. Candidates in the MS in Special Education and MS in Communication Disorder programs address diversity as it relates to students with exceptionalities. The MME uses Ed 519, the required diversity course for the MEd program, as an elective course.

Within the required courses candidates discuss their experiences working with diverse students in their school settings. They also address diversity issues relating to student learning, especially with regard to factors that include ethnicity, gender, language, socio-economic status, race, religion, and exceptionalities.

Ed 519 - Globalization and Diversity in Education provides all candidates in the MEd and the MAT: Science programs the opportunity to study global and multicultural education; to examine curriculum and pedagogy from the perspective that all students, regardless of the diversity of the groups to which they belong, should be ensured educational equity in school; and to gain experience with models for making appropriate choices in curriculum and instruction.

Math 511 - Trends in Mathematics Education is a required course for all candidates in the MAT: Mathematics program. Diversity issues are examined throughout the course, especially as they impact the teaching of mathematics to students who differ in gender, ethnicity, race, language, socio-economic status, and exceptionality.

Mus 530 - Elementary and Secondary General Music Programs is a required course for all candidates in the MME degree program. The course curriculum includes examination of diversity issues in the school setting.

Ed 535 - Models of Teaching and Learning: This is a core course in the MEd program and is required for all candidates in that program. The curriculum for Ed 535 specifically addresses the learning of science from a viewpoint of diversity.

Candidates enrolled in Ed 519 - Diversity in a Global Perspective are required to research a diversity topic and teach it to the class. Project requirements included reading current professional books on the topic, reading educational research articles related to the topic, finding web resources for classmates' use, finding information regarding characteristics and demographics, and exploring approaches in the classroom that are linked to the diversity topic. Candidates in this course also are required to write several lesson/unit plans that utilize or address aspects of global education. These lesson/unit plans are to include a description of the diversity of the students in the candidates' classrooms and a reflection that includes how they think the lesson/unit plan will work with their "real" students. The development of the lesson/unit plan is considered a "field experience" for candidates as the assignment requires them to use their current or most recent class of students as their "classroom" for planning using methods of Multicultural and Global Education, lessons using Differentiated Instruction and Learning Styles, and lessons that incorporated many other components of effective programs for diverse learners.

Candidates enrolled in Math 511 are required to develop and teach a lesson that includes multicultural elements and write a reflection paper about the experience. Included in the reflection are information about student response to the lesson, candidate views on the effectiveness of the lesson and its value, and candidate views concerning future implementation of the lesson. Candidates are also required to do a diversity practicum utilizing students in their classes. As part of the practicum candidates are required to submit a diversity profile of the students in their classes and in their schools. The second element of the practicum requires the candidates to identify specific methods or practices that they employ to meet the learning needs of the diverse students in their classes and write a reflection on their effectiveness. The third element of the practicum is to examine the effect of cultural diversity, or the lack of it, on the learning of their students. As part of this element of the assignment, candidates are required to have a conversation with a classmate who teaches in a school that has a significantly different student diversity profile than that of the school where they teach. The focus of the conversation is to identify how the practices or methods identified in element two of the assignment might need to be adapted in the other person's classes or school. Reflections written by candidates concerning the diversity practicum indicate increased awareness of student diversity in their classes. Candidates have also expressed their need to reexamine their teaching practices and alter them in accordance with what they have learned about meeting the learning needs of diverse students.

Candidates enrolled in Mus 530 read and discuss literature addressing diversity issues in the school setting, especially as it pertains to the music curriculum. Additionally candidates have the option of selecting a diversity issue as the topic for the final paper in that course.

All BSE candidates have at least one practicum experience and a clinical experience. The Director of Teacher Advisement and Field Placement arranges all placements. She ensures that all candidates have diverse placements for the two experiences, working to make sure that each candidate works with students who are diverse and in diverse settings, one rural and the other urban. With the recent boom in the oil industry in northwest North Dakota and an increase of 1100 personnel at Minot Air Force Base, the diversity of the area's population has increased, giving candidates a more diverse pool of students with whom they may work.

The university has a Native American club for students. This organization sponsors an annual pow wow and celebration on campus each spring to honor MSU graduates. The Multicultural Center is designed to provide a safe and comfortable location for supportive services to all diverse student populations and international students. The Multicultural Center also exists to provide a campus location for the appreciation of diverse populations and cultures. Throughout the year, the center hosts a number of events that celebrate ethnic and cultural diversity.

The Curricular Diversity and Campus Climate Committee (CDCCC) is a standing committee of the Faculty Senate. It oversees the process of approving courses for the diversity designation and is designing assessments to determine the effect of diversity coursework on student attitudes and beliefs concerning diversity. A separate institutional Diversity Committee also exists. Membership consists of interested faculty, staff, and student representatives. The Diversity Committee seeks membership from all colleges, as well as from all areas of staff and student life. Membership also includes the current NDUS Diversity Council representative. The mission of the Minot State University Diversity Committee is to advance the vitality of community and culture through recognition, promotion, and celebration of the value of all types of diversity and equal opportunity. The Diversity Committee is involved in a wide array of activities, such as policy review and revision, reviewing & addressing issues of discrimination brought to our attention, initiating and/or assisting in the development of new programs, sponsoring diversity-related lectures & workshops, investigating issues of recruitment & retention, developing diversity plans and goals and encouraging community-wide diversity cooperation.

E.2. Please respond to E.2a if this is the standard on which the unit is moving to the Target Level. If it is not the standard on which you are moving to the target level, respond to E.2b.

A diversity requirement for graduation was put in effect in 2008 for all first year, returning, and transfer students. Each student is required to take six semester hours of designated diversity coursework. Three credits are to be selected from general education courses that have been designated as diversity courses. The remaining three credits are selected beyond general education and may come from designated diversity coursework in the student's major or another program or from the general education diversity courses. Three courses totaling 8 credits that are required in all BSE programs have been designated as diversity courses. They are ED 470 - Teaching Diverse Learners (2 credits), SS 283 - Ethnic and Cultural Diversity in America (3 credits), and SPED 110 - Introduction to Exceptional Children (3 credits).

The Curricular Diversity and Campus Climate Committee (CDCCC) is a standing committee of the Faculty Senate. This committee has defined diversity for the institution as follows: "Minot State University embraces a broad concept of diversity, which can be seen as variances in ethnicity, age, race, socioeconomic status, gender, exceptionalities, language, religion, sexual orientation, and geographic area. MSU also believes that diversity is an evolving concept that engages viewpoints, perspectives, values, religious beliefs, and backgrounds of the global community. The MSU community values a spirit of inclusivity." One of the roles of the CDCCC is to oversee the process of approving courses to receive the diversity designation. The CDCCC is currently working on establishing an assessment plan to determine effects of diversity coursework on student attitudes and beliefs about diversity. The following area for improvement was cited as a result of last NCATE review: Candidates have limited opportunities to work with diverse faculty. Since that review, candidates have had increased opportunity to work with diverse faculty. The unit continues to seek diverse faculty and has been successful in getting new hires with diverse ethnicities. The Department of Teacher Education and Human Performance hired an assistant professor who is of Chinese descent and who has a doctorate and teaching experience. She taught courses in the professional sequence for the BSE programs and will begin teaching courses in the M. Ed. program in the near future. Two new hires, both with doctorates and some teaching experience, are joining the Department of Mathematics & Computer Science. One of them was hired a year ago and has been teaching required mathematics courses in the BSE Mathematics program and coursework in the MAT: Mathematics program. He is originally from Ghana and of African descent, but is a citizen of Canada. The second hire will join the department in the fall of 2010. He is from Nepal and will be teaching mathematics coursework required in the BSE Mathematics program and is interested in teaching some sections of the required mathematics courses for elementary education majors. He will eventually teach courses in the MAT: Mathematics program and/or the M.Ed. Elementary/Middle School Mathematics Concentration.

The downturn of the economy in the United States a few years ago has made it easier for Minot State University to attract and retain diverse faculty. Since the economy of North Dakota did not experience the dramatic decline felt by most of the country, with the state having a large budget surplus, support for the state's universities has not been cut. Rather state support has increased. This has allowed Minot State University to meet one of its Vision 2010 goals, to bring faculty salaries to a level nearing the regional averages for all ranks. There have been more qualified candidates for each position than in previous years. The university is requiring all new hires to have a terminal degree and has been more successful in finding candidates who meet this qualification and are willing to come to Minot State University.

The institution has entered into memorandums of understanding with many of the state's tribal colleges including Turtle Mountain Community College in Belcourt, Fort Berthold Community College in New Town, and United Tribes Technical College in Bismarck. It also has established partnerships with several foreign universities including China, Sweden, Norway, Turkey, Denmark, and South Korea. Several more are under consideration including Vietnam and Ghana.

Nine Ghanaian students are enrolled in the Master of Education program. Their presence has enhanced the program and the experiences of the candidates in the program.

A Multicultural Center has been established in the Student Union. Activities based on other cultures are held there on a regular basis. The Multicultural Center is designed to provide a safe and comfortable location for supportive services to all diverse student populations and international students. The Multicultural Center also exists to provide a campus location for the appreciation of diverse populations and cultures. Throughout the year, the center hosts a number of events that celebrate ethnic and cultural diversity. Events include ethnic food sampling, speakers, films, and other cultural presentations.

A new organization - The International Faculty Association has been established also. It has provided faculty from foreign countries with additional support and opportunities to get to know other faculty better.

E.3. Exhibit Links