IntroductionCriterion 1Criterion 2Criterion 3Criterion 4Criterion 5ConclusionAppendicesExhibits




The College of Education (COE), with a rich heritage of educator preparation, is committed to the preparation of high quality teachers, administrators, counselors, education scholars, and other school and community professionals.  This commitment to excellence has been recognized in a variety of ways including the recent 2008 AACTE Award for Research on Teacher Education Quality and Accountability, the 2007 AASCU Christa McAuliffe Award for Excellence in Teacher Education, and the 2000 NCATE review, where all standards were met with no areas for improvement.  

The mission of the College is to prepare transformative professional educators; educators who are prepared to facilitate the transformation of learners into life-long learners, critical and creative thinkers and effective citizens in a democratic society.  Within the College of Education, there are eight departments / centers and eight support offices as illustrated in the COE organizational chart.  

Departments / Centers

Support Offices

Faculty, Staff, and Candidates

The professional education "unit" for St. Cloud State University includes two administrators (dean, associate dean), 116 faculty, 19 professional staff, and 24 clinical supervisors involved in the preparation of teacher candidates, school administrators, library media specialists, and school counselors. Unit faculty members include individuals from the College of Education, College of Social Sciences, College of Fine Arts and Humanities, and College of Science and Engineering.   An overview of the academic rank of the tenured and non-tenured faculty provides a snapshot of the depth of the education and experience within the unit. Enrollment in programs within the unit includes 741 undergraduate and 469 graduate candidates.


The College of Education provides over 65 programs at the bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels including certificates and licensures at the initial and advanced levels.  An overview of the programs included in the NCATE and BOT reviews is provided in a matrix titled Unit Programs. As illustrated in the exhibit, the majority of programs have been approved by the Minnesota Board of Teaching.  

St. Cloud State University offers two off-campus programs: (1) Anoka Ramsey Community College (ARCC) Portal Project, and (2) Teacher / Administrator Preparation Program at North Branch School District.  The Portal Project, a partnership between the College of Education at St. Cloud State University (SCSU) and Anoka Ramsey Community College (ARCC), currently offers a baccalaureate degree in special education and licensure in emotional/behavioral disorders.  The program is designed to enable candidates to easily attain licensure in other high-need special education areas, namely developmental disabilities and learning disabilities.  Although the project was designed originally for undergraduates, graduate candidates are able to take evening courses that lead to special education licensure.  Planning and recruiting efforts began in 2004 and initial program offerings began on the ARRC campus fall semester 2006. A primary appeal of the project is that it fosters a SCSU presence in the suburban Twin Cities and potentially cultivates the ability to recruit candidates of color into special education teaching programs.  This project is also particularly appealing to special education paraprofessionals who are pursuing both a baccalaureate degree and special education licensure.

In 1998, the North Branch Partnership agreement was formalized between North Branch Schools, Cambridge Community College, and the College of Education at SCSU.  The North Branch School District at that time projected a shortage of well-qualified teachers and was facing a large number of potential retirements.  The district’s professional staff was also interested in being more directly involved in the preparation of teachers.  A collaboration that would utilize the staff and expertise of the nearby Cambridge Campus of Anoka Ramsey Community College, the faculty of St. Cloud State University, and the faculty and staff of North Branch schools was formalized.

The North Branch Partnership jointly supports cohort undergraduate elementary education degree programs, special education licensure cohorts, and special education masters degree programs in the North Branch/Cambridge area.  In fall 2003, a master’s in Curriculum and Instruction was added and a second cohort began during summer 2006.  A Sixth Year Educational Administration licensure cohort program was also initiated during summer 2006. The partnership has now expanded into a strong collaborative project that provides undergraduate courses, education core courses, practica, advanced professional development, supervised student teaching experiences, and/or post-graduate programs on the North Branch Public School campus.  

The unit does not offer any programs via distance learning technologies; however, a limited number of classes within programs are offered online.  Finally, no alternative route programs are offered.

Substantive Changes / Events Since 2000

Two noteworthy events occurred when the College of Education received the 2007 American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) Christa McAuliffe Award for Excellence in Teacher Education and the 2008 AACTE Award for Research on Teacher Education Quality and Accountability. These two national awards were given for the exemplary work and research conducted over the past three years on co-teaching during clinical experiences and the impact on student learning.

Substantive changes that have taken place since the last visit include the following:

  • St. Cloud State University was recently reaccredited by the Higher Learning Commission of North Central Accreditation (December 2007).
  • Earl H. Potter III was appointed President of St. Cloud State University (July 2007).
  • Kate Steffens was appointed Dean of the College of Education (July 2006).
  • The College of Education received a $5,000,000 Teacher Quality Enhancement Grant in 2003 focused on building partnerships related to co-teaching, professional development, and mentoring.
  • A Reading Licensure Program was added in 2007.
  • A Teacher Leader Certificate Program was added in 2007.
  • An Autism Certificate Program was added in 2007.
  • The Health Education Program was suspended in fall 2007.
  • Graduate Program Coordinators in the College of Education are now receiving 25 percent reassignment to focus on assessment, data collection, follow-up studies, and recruitment and retention activities.
  • The Praxis Center was developed to support teacher candidates in successfully passing the Praxis exams.  The Center is directed by the Assessment Director and is staffed by three full-time graduate assistants.
  • The Curriculum and Technology Center was recently renovated due to a generous gift from a donor.
  • The Office of Clinical Experiences is developing an extensive database to track field and clinical placements of teacher candidates throughout their program of study.
  • The Minnesota Board of Teaching approved 34/36 teacher education programs submitted February 2007. One program (Health Education) was suspended; two programs (ESL / Middle School) are in review.
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