Create a Globally Oriented General Education Program

Teacher educators must share in the vital role of instructing future educators to teach the next generation about global issues.  There is obviously a special role for education faculty in this process, but faculty in other disciplines are also essential to developing the international knowledge, skills, and attitudes of teacher candidates. At most institutions, general education courses represent an estimated 50% to 75% of a teacher candidate’s coursework. In the Handbook of Research on Teacher Education: Enduring Questions in Changing Contexts, A. Lin Goodwin and Celia Oyler note, “[H]istorically, general education requirements or ‘academic’ courses consume the majority of credits (as much as 75%) required for elementary or secondary teacher certification, and reform in university-based teacher preparation curricula over the past 50 years has consistently resulted in more academic courses and fewer education courses … and these academic courses are offered by Arts and Sciences faculty, not those in teacher education."

A report from American Council on Education's Center for Internationalization and Global Engagement - which includes data from over 1,000 colleges and universities - indicates that half of American institutions’ mission statements refer to international/global education or other aspects of internationalization, and just over half identified internationalization among its top five priorities in their current strategic plans.  Further, 26% had campus-wide internationalization plans.  Despite the articulated institutional commitment, the report notes that “the data indicate that this reality is complex, with advancements in some areas, a notable lack of progress in others, and substantial variation by institutional sector” (p. 6).  These findings suggest that colleges of education cannot take a siloed approach to internationalizing.  It must be approached at the departmental, college, and campus level.  

References

Faculty and Campus Strategies: 
Member Organizations: 
Professional Education Coursework: