Fieldwork & Student Teaching

Field Experience

“Do you want a surgeon that has observed 100 hours of surgery, or practiced 100 hours of surgery?”

Prof. Joseph Erickson is known to ask this question whenever the topic of conversation turns to field experience. We could provide an avalanche of data to establish what you intuitively understand, people learn best by doing. In answer to Joe’s question, you would choose a surgeon who has practiced surgery!

The state of Minnesota requires that students entering the education profession have spent time in K-12 classrooms in conjunction with licensure coursework and prior to student teaching. Every teacher preparation program in the state has such requirements.

Prospective students should be interested in discovering two things: 1) What is the program’s philosophy for field experience, and 2) How does the program administer field experience?

Field Experience: Philosophy

Fieldwork is intentionally connected to specific courses in order to focus attention on key learning objectives, and is action-oriented. The sum of these experiences serve as preparation for successful student teaching experiences.

Field Experience: Administration

Not already in a classroom? Don’t worry! We have done the hard work for you. Augsburg provides information about classrooms/schools in which teacher candidates can complete field experience. Or, students can secure placements on their own as long as the setting meets field experience requirements, and is overseen by a licensed teacher. Most students find that with thoughtful planning, fieldwork hours can be completed with little to no time off of work being needed.

Already in a classroom? As long as your work setting is covered by your license (e.g. elementary for elementary license), you can complete field experience at your place of employment.

In general, courses with field experience require 20 hours; however, hours may be more or less depending on license. For complete details, please contact Education Department.

Student Teaching

Students are required to complete student teaching for initial and additional licenses (unless otherwise indicated). Student teaching lasts 12-14 weeks, depending on licensure scope. During that time, teacher candidates work full-time as student teachers, supervised by an Augsburg faculty member. Most placements are in the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area and Rochester.

However, students do have the opportunity to teach abroad, where students complete a 10-week student teaching experience in the metro area and then complete an additional experience abroad. Opportunities are available around the world, and it is a wonderful way to develop a global perspective in education. Additional information is available through the Education Department.