Member InstitutionMember Institution Emporia State University: Inservice Teacher Programs

Emporia State University

Inservice Teacher Programs
Other Workshops
Initiatives to Improve Teacher Education

The following characterize more recent involvements of ESU with inservice teacher education or professional development.

Second-field Endorsement Program

The following concern expressed in the Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) too frequently characterizes physics teaching:  "At the high school level, too many of those who ...  teach physics and chemistry actually specialized [in another subject] in college." This fact is reiterated in numerous studies.  

To address that problem, the Departments of Physical Sciences participate in the Kansas State Department of Education "second-field endorsement program."  The second-field program enables a Kansas secondary teacher with a teaching credential in some field to obtain a license for one or more physical sciences fields (physics, etc.).  This may be done by taking courses offered on a rotational basis in summers; this is face-to-face content instruction.  The licensure requirements are met on an individually determined basis via a plan filed with the University.  The program includes the course work to meet the same licensure standards as those required for a preservice teacher aspirant.  

Between 1999 and 2005, 28 second-field physics teaching aspirants became provisionally endorsed toward full licensure, and 22 became fully licensed.  For ESU this has been a "significant" contribution to the physics teaching profession.

Graduate Program for Physical Sciences Teachers

The Physical Sciences have a Masters of Science (MS) degree option for inservice teachers.  This emphasis is designed to provide graduate-level work to enhance the content background of an inservice physics teacher.  Course work includes at least 12 hours in the physics teaching field, six (6) hours in a cognate science,  two courses involving pedagogy and curricular developments, a history of science course, and the balance is with thesis or research/research methodology course work.  This program is administered by the Departments of Physical Sciences, but the history of science and research methodology courses involve other Liberal Arts and Sciences and Teachers College departments.

Inservice teacher or post-baccalaureate MS candidates for this option are eligible for graduate assistantships during an academic year.  Recent increases of graduate assistantship stipends have sought to make these competitive, and a viable option for prospective candidates.

ESU as a Rural Regional Center for the AAPT

In November 2002 ESU became a designated Rural Regional Center for AAPT Physics Teaching Resource Agent (PTRA) program workshops; ESU was one of 11 designated RRCs at the time; see for information on this AAPT program. Hence, during the summers of 2003, 2004, and 2005 ESU was host to the workshops conducted collaboratively with AAPT workshop leaders.  Three cohorts of 20-24 teachers and their students benefited immensely from three summer and academic-year workshops and networking opportunities.