Middle Grades Education
Non-Degree Seeking, Certification Only Available at Douglas, Henry, and Macon Academic Centers
The goal of the Mercer University Tift College of Education is to prepare middle level educators who are Transforming Practitioners who move through self-transformation during the facilitation of learning, while enabling the transformation of middle level students, a group of unique and diverse individuals transitioning from childhood to adolescence. Candidates in the Middle Level Education program are prepared in general studies, professional and pedagogical studies, and content studies, which include two subject area concentrations. Completion of this program qualifies candidates for Middle Grades Certification in the two areas of concentration.
Upon completion of the Middle Level Education program, the candidate will demonstrate:
1. A knowledge base that blends knowledge of development of 10-14 year-olds with in-depth knowledge of content, pedagogy, and assessment in the two concentration areas. TO KNOW
2. Understanding of the middle school philosophy and concept and knowledge of the characteristics of an effective middle school. TO KNOW
3. Knowledge and understanding of middle school students and the uniqueness and diversity (age, ability, gender, special needs, etc.) exhibited by that group of students, and the ability and skills to meet the needs of the diversity exhibited in today's middle schools. TO KNOW
4. Knowledge and understanding of effective curricular models that meet the unique needs of middle level students. TO KNOW
5. Knowledge and understanding of "teaming" and the ability and skills to collaborate effectively in such a setting, which involves knowledge of content, pedagogy, and assessment across the four concentration areas and of integrated teaching and learning. TO KNOW, TO DO, TO BE
6. Knowledge of reading in the content areas and across the curriculum. TO KNOW
7. The ability and skills to effectively plan, organize, implement, and assess in a collaborative team setting and as an individual. TO DO
8. The ability and skills to provide an effective advisor-advisee component in the middle school curriculum. TO DO
9. The ability and skills to be an effective collaborator with families, community, and other partners. TO BE
10. The ability and skills to engage in meta-cognition and reflection for continued enhancement and effectiveness as a Transforming Practitioner. TO BE
To be highly qualified, the Middle Level Education teacher candidate must be prepared with the uniqueness of middle level schooling as a defining characteristic. In addition to strong preparation in the two content concentrations, the Middle Level Education curriculum includes an embedded emphasis on reading and a focus on integrated instruction. The reading emphasis (which does not result in a reading concentration or a reading endorsement) is a strand in five required courses and prepares teachers to address the literacy needs of middle level students. The focus on integration is highlighted in two integrated methods courses that address integrated, interdisciplinary planning, teaching, and assessment.