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Student teaching

What is student teaching?

Student teaching will be your last field experience component of the teacher certification requirements. Student teachers spend 16 weeks in the classroom. The goal is to assume all responsibilities of the classroom teacher for a minimum of 15 consecutive days.

Letter of Intent

Prior to applying for student teaching, students must submit a Letter of Intent. Students should meet with their advisor to determine approximately when they will student teach. The Letter of Intent is not a binding contract. Rather, it is a way for the Education Department to plan ahead for the number of student teachers each semester. Students should submit the Letter of Intent to Dropbox folder in CougarTeach.* Submit the letter by December 1 for the following fall student teaching; May 1 for the following spring student teaching).

*All Teacher Certification students must upload required documents into the appropriate Dropbox folders in CougarTeach (in D2L).

Student teaching application

Student teaching application packets must be submitted no later than September 15 for a spring semester placement the following spring. Submit packets by January 15 for a fall semester placement the following fall.

Students who plan to student teach in Spring 2021 semester would submit their Letter of Intent by May 1, 2020. Those students would submit student teaching application packets by September 15, 2020. Their student teaching placement would be arranged to begin January 2021.

Failure to meet the deadline could result in not securing the desired placement location or postponing student teaching until a later semester.

Students should review the student teaching application guidelines on the Student Teaching Checklist before moving on to the application items. Items from the checklist that will need to be uploaded into CougarTeach include:

  • Student teaching application form
  • Resume — see the resume guidelines and sample resume 
  • Student Profile — see the student profile guidelines
  • Coursework Completion Plan - Informal list of your remaining courses (education, content area, or degree) and when you plan to complete them. 
  • Background check (fingerprinting): Go to the DESE website for fingerprinting procedures Use Registration Number "2301" There are certain criminal activities that can prevent you from being certified in the State of Missouri. If you have concerns, contact the Education Department chair for a confidential meeting.
  • Substitute teaching certificate — apply through the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) web application site.
  • Missouri Content Assessment (MoCA) — The MoCA must be at least attempted by the Student Teaching Packet Submission deadline It must be passed by April 30 for fall student teaching or November 30 for spring student teaching. If you aren't sure which MoCA you need, refer to this list [PDF].

Application packets will be reviewed by the student teacher coordinator, and students will be notified when they have been cleared for student teaching.

"House Rule 5"

5 CSR 20-400.330 - Clinical Experience Requirements for Candidates in Professional Education Programs, also known as "House Rule 5"

"Purpose: This rule establishes clinical experience requirements for candidates in professional education programs approved by the State Board of Education in all baccalaureate degree-granting four-year colleges and universities in Missouri."

View the ruling

Students must meet with the field and clinical director to determine if they qualify for this alternative student teaching experience.

Student teaching scholarship

The teach Scholarship is available to students who will be student teaching in the next academic year (Fall 2019 or Spring 2020). Completed applications should be submitted directly to Dr. Teresa VanDover or Dr. Sandra Hamar.


Apply now