A prospective educator has many collegiate options to consider when deciding to pursue a Pennsylvania teacher license. The Pennsylvania teacher education system is one of the deepest in the nation, and two state universities are ranked in the top 25 nationally for best teaching schools by reputable publications. The educational requirements needed to earn a Pennsylvania teaching license are maintained by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. All prospective teachers must pass an approved teacher education program at the bachelor’s, post-baccalaureate, or master’s level at an accredited state college or university prior to certification.
The University of Pennsylvania (UPenn) was ranked 9th in the county for best education schools as of 2012 by U.S. News & World Report, tying the teaching programs at Northwestern University and the University of Wisconsin at Madison. The Graduate School of Education at UPenn offers 26 graduate programs, both at the master’s level and the doctoral level. UPenn also supports a Teach For America Urban Teacher certification program for those interested in working locally at Philadelphia city schools.
The University of Pittsburgh’s School of Education is another one of the teaching schools in Pennsylvania receiving national recognition for its teacher education program. The University of Pittsburgh was ranked 24th nationally in 2012 for best education schools by U.S. News & World Report, tying with Utah State University. The teaching school graduated 267 students during the 2010-2011 school year who went on to earn Pennsylvania teacher certification. The University of Pittsburgh offers an undergraduate degree program in education as well as 50 graduate programs leading towards certification in different areas of teaching.
Penn State University, formally known as Pennsylvania State University – University Park, is ranked 26th nationally by U.S. News & World Report for 2012’s best education schools. Penn State University’s College of Education catered to 1,119 students during the 2011-2012 school year, 533 of whom were enrolled full-time. The College of Education supports programs geared towards a more global study of education. For example, students can enroll in the school’s Comparative and International Education (CIED) program, which leads to a dual-title master’s or doctoral degree and requires students to travel internationally to discover global teaching initiatives.
Lehigh University is ranked 46th in the U.S. by U.S. News & World Report for its 2012 best education schools rankings. Lehigh’s College of Education employed 27 tenure-track professors and an additional 122 staff members to cater to the school’s 615 graduate students as of 2012. The College of Education has a strong school counselor program, having earned accreditations from the American Psychological Association and the National Association of School Psychologists. The school’s Multicultural Resource Center is another student resource designed to help graduate students learn about multicultural diversity in the classroom.