2013-14 Catalogs

Concentration in Secondary Education Earth Sciences

This concentration is for students who want to become certified to teach 7-12 earth sciences in Maine. Interested students should talk with their advisors as early in their time at USM as possible. The curriculum for this concentration is designed to provide prospective 7-12 teachers a strong academic foundation in earth sciences along with a continuous focus on both the theory and practice of teaching through a sequence of pre-internship education courses and field experiences. It has four components: USM Core curriculum, Geosciences major, professional education courses, and electives totaling 120 credit hours for the degree.

USM Core Curriculum (including pre-internship education courses):

  • EYE 108 Culture, Identity, and Education (recommended), (3 cr.)
  • EDU 100 Exploring Teaching (recommended), (3 cr.)
  • College Writing- ENG 100 (3 cr.)
  • Cultural Interpretation (3 cr.)
  • Quantitative- (covered by Geosciences degree req.), (3 or 4 cr.)
  • Creative Expression (3 cr.)
  • Socio-Cultural Analysis- HRD 200 Multicultural Human Growth & Development (3 cr.)
  • Science Exploration (covered by Geosciences degree req.), (4 cr.)
  • Ethics- EDU 310 Purpose of Schooling in a Democracy (3 cr.)
  • Cluster- EDU 305 Foundations of Cultural and Linguistic Diversity, SED 335 Students with Exceptionalities in General Education, and SED 420 Multi-Tiered Systems of Educational Support (9 cr.)

Special Major Requirements:

Geosciences B.A. or B.S. major (see major degree requirements)

Professional Education Internship Year Requirements:

  • EDU 501 Secondary Science Methods (3 cr.)
  • STEM Seminar in Teaching and Learning I (3 cr.)
  • STEM Seminar in Teaching and Learning II (3 cr.)
  • Internship in Secondary Education (9 cr.)


Students must complete elective credit to complete the 120 credit hour degree. For those students interested in teaching at the middle level (grades 7 or 8), it is recommended that they complete coursework in a second content area (e.g. English, social studies, math, life or physical science) to become highly qualified to teach an additional content area. Those students interested in teaching high school may want to use their elective credits to bolster their content knowledge by taking additional courses in their major discipline and related fields. Finally, students should consider taking education courses that will support them to become better teachers including, but not limited to, topics such as literacy, technology, understanding and collaborating with families.

Other Requirements:

All students must formally declare their entry into a teacher certification program or pathway by completing the declaration procedures found on the Office of Educator Preparation (OEP) website at http://usm.maine.edu/educatorpreparation. Passing Praxis I scores, subscription to Tk20, and two letters of recommendation are necessary to complete the declaration process.

All undergraduate and graduate students who matriculate into an educator preparation program or pathway in USM summer 2013 or later are required to subscribe to the Tk20 online data management system. The $103 subscription allows students to use the system for assessment, advisement, field-experience, and career portfolio management. For loan purposes, it will be eligible for consideration as part of the costs. The subscription is a one-time payment and must be made by each student during the first semester of program or pathway matriculation (check with individual programs and pathways for specific subscription timelines). Subscription instructions are posted on the OEP website.

The Office of Educator Preparation at USM will consider, on a limited basis, individual requests for financial support to assist in payment of this fee for students who have challenging and extenuating financial circumstances (e.g. unexpected medical expenses; a sudden unforeseen life event that causes a dire financial burden). To apply for a subsidy, complete the application form on the OEP website under Tk20 and submit to Colleen Pleau in the OEP office (8 Bailey Hall) or via e-mail (cpleau@usm.maine.edu). Applications for this subsidy must be received by Kim Warren (kwarren@usm.maine.edu), School of Education and Human Development Director of Student Affairs, no later than four weeks following the start of a student's matriculation semester.

Students must maintain a high level of academic achievement. Minimum academic requirements are as follows:

  • A grade of C or better in all University Core and major coursework.
  • A grade of B or better in all professional education coursework.
  • An overall GPA of 3.00 or better.

Prior to admission to the professional internship year, students must pass the Praxis II exam and demonstrate satisfactory progress toward the State of Maine Core Teaching Standards.

As required by partner school districts and prior to the professional internship, students must be fingerprinted through the State of Maine Department of Education.