Skip to main content

College of Education and Allied Professions

Office of Field Experiences (OFE)

Welcome to the Office of Field Experiences! The Office of Field Experience is part of Suite 201 Student Support Center in the College of Education & Allied Professions. We work with our school partners to arrange placement opportunities for our WCU teacher education candidates to complete course assignments, field experiences, and internship in public schools. We seek to support our students through their application processes, administer criminal background check reporting, oversee time requirement documentation, and insure that all our of students have diverse experiences. Our office also provides supervision and mentoring to our candidates during their internship, and if needed we work with WCU and P-12 faculty and administrators to resolve placement issues.


Due Dates and Events

Block Applications Open  Monday, October 21st
Intern II PD Day #3—Culturally Responsive & Globally Minded Teachers; Career Prep; & Principal Panel Thursday, October 10th
Intern II Career Fair & Aimee Dean Presentation
  • Career Fair - 4:00-5:30 in HHS Conference Room
  • Aimee Dean - 6:30-8:30 in Blue Ridge 108
Thursday, November 7th
Block Applications Due Friday, November 15th
Outstanding Prospective Teachers Awards Ceremony - UC Grand Room
Friday, December 13th
5:00-6:30 p.m.

Contact Information

Amanda Chapman

Director of the Office of Field Experiences

 

Killian 201 K

 

abchapman@wcu.edu

Monica Miller

Lead Field Supervisor & Instructor

 

Killian 201 M

 

mbmiller@wcu.edu

Christy Baird

Early Field Experience Placement Coordinator & Intstructor

 

Killian 201 H

 

cbaird@wcu.edu

Deb Henry

Advisor, OFE Support 

 

Killian 201 N

 

dchenry@wcu.edu

Our Placement Region For Residential Programs

OFE Placement Districts

Background check policies

Student Population

Initial Background Check Requirement

Recheck Requirement

Payment for Background checks

Undergraduate Residential TEP

With Early Field Experience Application (EDCI 201, PSY 323, SPED 339)

With Internship Application

Self-pay

Birth-Kindergarten (All Tracks)

With Online Orientation

With Action Research/

Internship Application*

 

Self-pay

SPED Graduate Certification and MAT

With Online Orientation

With Practicum Application*

Self-pay

MAT (Social Sciences, English, Biology, & Art)

TEP Admission (required during first semester of enrollment)

With Internship Application*

Self-pay

* Students who are completing internship/action research requirement within the setting that they are currently employed are not required to complete the Background Recheck.  However, employer will be required to verify that the school/school system has a background check on file via the Site Supervisor form.

EARLY FIELD EXPERIENCES

Early Field Experiences generally involve focused observation, interviews and assisting the classroom teacher.  Courses requiring these experiences include EDCI 201, PSY 323, SPED 339, elementary and middle grades methods courses, and EDCI 607,609, & 616.  Methods courses may also require that candidates plan and implement lessons.  Candidates are required to document from 5 to 24 hours in the classroom depending on the course.

  • Applications for early field experiences open the first day of each semester.
  • EDCI 201, PSY 323 and SPED 339 require a specified number of field experience hours to be logged to meet course requirement.
  • Documentation of field experiences for other courses is at the discretion of the individual course instructor.

APPLICATION & EXPERIENCE OVERVIEWS

EDCI 201

PSY 323 & SPED 339 (and Methods Courses taken outside of Block or Internship I)

BIRTH-KINDERGARTEN

GRADUATE EARLY FIELD EXPERIENCES


 LOGGING EARLY FIELD EXPERIENCE HOURS

EFX BUTTON

 

Log your hours after EACH visit BEFORE leaving your host school.

EFX BUTTON 

 

 

OFE will update hours weekly after week 4 of the semester.

Block Practicum Experience

The "Block" Practicum Experience for students taking either ELMG 390 or EDMG 411 in the elementary, middle grades, and inclusive education programs and is generally completed the semester prior to Internship. This experience requires candidates to plan and implement several lessons and work in the classroom one day per week (or two half days) for 10 weeks.

  • Applications for the "Block" practicum experience open at course registration the semester prior.
  • Placement information is generally given to the students around the second week of the semester by the Block course instructor.

Videotaping Permission Form for Early Field Experiences & Block - please distribute and collect these from students within the first two weeks in Block placement.

Internship

Internship is a two-semester experience. Candidates gradually assume the responsibilities of the classroom teacher for planning, implementing and assessing lessons, managing student behavior and carrying out non-instructional duties. The goal is for candidates to develop the knowledge, skills and professional dispositions necessary for successful teaching.

  • Internship I varies by program in terms of number of days per week that the student is required to attend the host school.
    • Most programs require 2 full days a week for Intern I.
    • Exceptions to this are:
      • Some music, art, and science education majors who may only complete 1 day or 2 half days if taking 1-2 hour internship course.
      • HPE majors complete three half days.
      • SPED – MAT General Curriculum/Mild Moderate complete their Intern I over 3 courses consisting of three 15 hour field experience requirements.
  • Internship II is 40 hours per week following the host school calendar and continuing through the end of the WCU semester.
    • For undergraduates, no additional classes can be taken during the final semester without prior approval.  Internship applications open the first day of the preceding semester and close on the prescribed due date set by the Office of Field Experiences.  An online Clinical Practice Handbook is available with detailed expectations and is updated each summer for the following academic year.

Internship Application Overviews & Materials

UNDERGRADUATE & GRADUATE - RESIDENTIAL PROGRAMS

GRADUATE - DISTANCE PROGRAMS (SPED)

BIRTH-KINDERGARTEN - INTERNSHIP & ACTION RESEARCH

Health Examination Certificate

Résumé Template


Professional Liability Insurance

Statement on Professional Liability of Interns and Student Teachers

School personnel are responsible for ensuring the safety and protection of students at all times. Teacher education candidates completing field experiences and clinical practice are legally viewed as school employees and may be personally charged with negligence if accident or injury occurs to a student in their care. Neither the State of North Carolina nor Western Carolina University will be responsible for providing legal defense for any professional education candidate or for paying for any judgment which may be entered against the accused; therefore, beginning in the Fall 2018, the College of Education and Allied Professions will require that all professional education candidates purchase professional liability insurance prior to beginning their internship. 

Many professional organizations offer professional liability coverage as a benefit of membership at greatly discounted rates for students. Examples of such organizations include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Student Chapter North Carolina Association of Educators (SNCAE) http://www.ncae.org/
  • Professional Educators of North Carolina (PENC)
  • Association of American Educators (AAE)
  • National Education Association (NEA)
  • Kappa Delta Pi (KDP)
  • Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) - Select WCU - Chapter # 0575 

Information on obtaining private liability insurance can be obtained from the North Carolina Association of Insurance Agents.

Note: Some districts require all teacher candidates to have liability insurance for any field experience placement in the district.


 

Diversity Requirement

The College of Education and Allied Professions at Western Carolina University subscribes to a definition of diversity inclusive of the following attributes: age, disability, ethnicity, family structure, gender, geographic region, giftedness, language, race, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, and school performance. WCU candidates should experience a range of school settings and interact with a variety of students. Candidates who have not been placed in a diverse setting prior to the Internship experience will be placed in a diverse setting for Internship (as allowable).

If a diverse placement in a public-school setting cannot be arranged, candidates will be allowed to complete an experience of at least 10 hours (across a full semester) with an after-school or community program that provides academic services in a structured environment for diverse students.

Residential Undergraduate and Graduate Programs

Every student must have diverse placements that meet diversity requirements 1 and 2

Requirement 1: Low performing school (use schools who score D or F on state report card) (per requirements in SB 599, § 115C-269.25)

Requirement 2: at least 1 of the following 5 characteristics:

  • 5% English language learners (use percent of test takers who are labeled Limited English Proficient in each school from accountability reporting)
  • 60% low SES (use % low income students from the Title I report)
  • 20% or more students of color (use DPI Statistical profile->Pupil information report)
  • Urban or suburban setting (use EDDIE classification)
  • Alternative class type (school is early college or charter OR classroom is AIG or other alternative; use EDDIE classification types)
 

This can be met by two placements with one meeting requirement 1 and one meeting requirement 2 OR by a single placement that meets both requirements.

If students are not able to meet Requirement 1 by their Internship placement, they may be exempt from this requirement if they have met one additional characteristic from the Requirement 2 section.

If the student does not meet these requirements by their Intern I experience, they will be required to complete an experience of at least 10 hours with a school, after-school, or community program that provides academic services in a structured environment and meets diversity requirements not previously met. An after-school or community program would be considered an “alternative class type.”

  • A placement can qualify on the school data or individual classroom data.

Distance Undergraduate and Graduate Programs

If the student is currently employed in a school setting, and this school does not meet both requirement 1 and 2, they will be required to complete an experience of at least 10 hours (across a full semester) with a school, after-school, or community program that provides academic services in a structured environment and meets the diversity requirements. An after-school or community program would be considered an “alternative class type.”

Students who are in a distance program and not employed in a school setting will self-report diversity data for any non-public school sites. OFE will, to the extent practicable, arrange for a placement to meet the diversity requirements.

Fall 2019

HOST TEACHERS & CLINICAL EDUCATORS

Host Teachers for Block/Practicum Experience

For Elementary, Middle Grades, & Inclusive Education students.

For our “Block” placement, students are required to be with their host teacher one day per week (or 8 hours if their class schedule requires that they split between 2 days) over 10 weeks for observation.  During their time with the host teacher they will be conducting observations, assisting the teacher, and teaching several mini-lessons.

More detailed explanation of requirements and expectations are provided by the course instructor(s).


Clinical Educators for Internship

Requirements for Becoming a Clinical Educator

  1. Approved by the administrative officials of the school system, program coordinator, and the Director of Field Experiences.
  2. Professionally licensed in the field of licensure sought by the student.
  3. Experienced, with a minimum of three years in a teaching role.
  4. Committed to the education of pre-service teachers.
  5. Rated through formal evaluations, at a minimum, at the “accomplished” level under the North Carolina Teacher Evaluation System.
 

Please visit the Host Teacher & Clinical Educator Handbook for more detailed information and list of requirements and responsibilities.

Forms & Information:

Specific Program Information - See Program Specific Requirements under Internship.

FIELD Supervisors

Field Supervisor – (FS) (formerly university supervisor) acts as the liaison between the classroom teacher and Western Carolina University. He or she has the important responsibility of ensuring a comprehensive, rewarding classroom experience for interns/student teachers.

Job Responsibilities:

  • Serve as a good role model for prospective teachers.
  • Exhibit professionalism, courtesy, and be approachable.
  • Must attend an informational meeting/orientation at the beginning of the semester.
  • Contact the intern(s) and clinical educator(s) within the first two weeks of the WCU semester.
  • Provide all forms and documents (or directed interns to forms and documents) that are needed throughout the semester to the intern and Clinical Educator.
  • Facilitate formal and informal discussions about intern progress and areas of needed growth.
  • Communicates internship requirements & expectations to the intern and the clinical educator throughout the semester.
  • Communicate in a timely manner through phone calls and/or emails.
  • Supports the development of the intern by providing constructive, relevant, useful, and written feedback after observed lessons.
  • Collaborate and coordinates with the clinical educator and academic supervisor to schedule mid-term and final evaluation conferences, and monitor student progress.
  • Visit intern(s) a minimum of 4-5 times during Internship I and 5-6 times during Internship II. When considered necessary, additional visits may be pre-approved by the Director of Field Experiences.
  • Complete internship requirements within Tk20.

Requirements for Becoming a Field Supervisor

Minimum qualifications for serving as a Field Supervisor:

  1. Doctoral or master’s degree from an accredited institution in the teaching field.
  2. Strong classroom experience within K-12.
  3. Strong reputation as an educator and/or classroom teacher.
  4. Active NC licensure (or eligibility) in applicable area.
  5. Ability to use technology in the performance of responsibilities.
  6. Must be willing to travel to regional schools within a 100-mile round trip.
  7. Have a valid driver’s license and mode of reliable transportation.
  8. Ability to adapt to new and changing processes and technologies.
 

If you are interested in becoming a Field Supervisor, please apply here.  You will need:

  • Résumé or Curriculum Vitae
  • Transcripts
  • Teaching License
  • Reference List
Office of Web Services