Five departments, one goal: Provide high quality preparation programs for teaching, related services and leadership careers in education so that our graduates will be well equipped to enhance the lives of individuals, families, schools and communities.
The University of Nebraska-Lincoln educator preparation program prepares its graduates to serve all learners including those who face opportunity gaps (e.g., English language learners, students receiving special education services, or students from low-income families) in urban, suburban, or rural environments.
With an emphasis on collaboration among departments, the College of Education and Human Sciences (CEHS) offers certification and endorsement programs in early childhood, elementary, secondary, special education, school administration and for educational professionals in school psychology, school counseling, and speech-language pathology.
The following programs prepare qualified candidates to fill the needs of schools:
Educator Preparation Programs Leading to Initial Teacher Certification
- Inclusive early childhood education – Students earn a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) with a recommendation for a Nebraska teaching certificate in the endorsement (Birth to Grade 3).
- Elementary education – Students earn a B.S. in education or a Master of Arts with a recommendation for certification to teach in grades K-6.
- Secondary education – Students earn a B.S. in education or a Master of Arts with a recommendation for certification to teach in grades 7-12.
- Special education – Students have a choice of dual major in elementary education and special education (K-6) or a special education (7-12) degree. Both are B.S. degrees with a recommendation for certification.
|CAEP-Accredited Programs (Initial Certificate Program Only)||Undergrad||Post-bac||MA/MS/MEd|
|Early Childhood and Elementary (Birth - Grade 6)|
|Elementary Education (K - Grade 6)||x||x||x|
|Elementary & Special Education (K - Grade 6)||x|
|Elementary Education & Early Childhood (Age 3 – Grade 6)||x|
|Early Childhood Inclusive (Birth – Grade 3)||x|
|Early Childhood Special Education (Birth – Age 5)||x||x|
|Secondary Education (Grades 7 – 12)|
|Business, Marketing, Information Technology||x||x||x|
|Earth & Space Science 7-12||x||x||x|
|English Language Arts 7-12||x||x||x|
|Family & Consumer Sciences||x||x||x|
|Skilled & Technical Science||x||x|
|Secondary English 7-12||x||x||x|
|Social Science 7-12||x||x||x|
|World Language 7-12|
Chinese,French; German; Latin; Russian; Spanish
|Grades K – 12|
|Special Education (Grades K-12)||x||x|
|Speech Language Pathologist (Birth–Age 21)||x|
Advanced Level Educator Preparation Programs
|School Administrative Endorsements||Grade Levels|
|Special Education Supervisor||B-12|
|Bilingual Education||K-6, 7-12|
|Early Childhood Education||PK-3|
|Earth and Space Sciences||7-12|
|English as a Second Language||PK-6, 7-12|
|Family and Consumer Sciences Occupational||6-12|
|Instructional Technology Leadership||PK-12|
|Journalism and Media Education||7-12|
|School Counselor||PK-8, 7-12|
|Skilled and Technical Sciences Education||6-12|
|Skilled and Technical Sciences-Skilled Specific||9-12|
|Special Education (SPED)||K-6, 7-12|
|SPED-Deaf or Hard of Hearing||B-12|
|SPED-Early Intervention Specialist||B-PK|
|SPED-Orientation and Mobility||B-12|
|Speech Language Pathologist||B-12|
|Clinical Doctorate in Audiology (Au.D.)|
Five CEHS departments are engaged in preparing our future educators.
Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education (TLTE) – preparing undergraduate and graduate students for teaching careers in elementary and secondary education. Graduate students can earn master’s, Ph.D. and Ed.D. degrees. Additional endorsement programs leading to recommendation for licensure are also available.
Special Education and Communication Disorders (SECD) – preparing undergraduate and graduate students for careers in special education endorsement programs. Graduate students can earn master’s and Ph.D. degrees in special education. SECD also prepares students to become speech-language pathologists and audiologists with master’s and Au.D programs.
Child, Youth and Family Studies (CYAF) – preparing undergraduate students to serve children birth to grade 3 with a bachelor’s degree in inclusive early childhood education. CYAF also offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Family and Consumer Sciences Occupational. Both programs may lead to recommendation for teacher certification.
Educational Administration (EDAD) – offers master’s and doctoral degrees as well as specialist degrees and added endorsements in a variety of grade configurations within P-20 school educational administration.
Educational Psychology (EDPS) – prepares graduate students to be school psychologists through either an educational specialist degree or Ph.D. in a nationally certified program. EDPS also prepares graduate students to be school counselors through a master’s in counseling psychology.
Every CEHS program that leads to certification is accredited by a national accrediting agency. Accreditation helps separate UNL from other teacher preparation programs. More than 3,000 colleges and universities nationwide offer teacher preparation programs, but only 300 are accredited. It makes a difference.Why?
It helps assure quality in educator preparation through external peer review
Sets standards for what new teachers need to know and for clinical training, which allows teachers to enter the classroom ready to teach effectively
Promotes ongoing self-assessment of programs
Connects with national and state accountability systems
Elevates the profession
Educator Preparation Programs – Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) and Nebraska Department of Education.
School Psychology – The Ph.D. in school psychology is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of the American Psychological Association, and the Ph.D. and Ed.S. in school psychology are approved by the National Association of School Psychologists.
Speech Language Pathology – The M.S. in speech-language pathology and the Au.D. in audiology are accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA)
See our accreditation page for more information.
NDE Approval Documents
The EPP uses multiple measures to assess the instructional effectiveness of our program completers after the completion of their first year of employment as professional teachers. Two of these measures, the First Year Teacher and First Year Teacher Administrator Surveys, were constructed and are administered by the Nebraska Department of Education. Results from these two surveys (which provide EPP evidence to address CAEP standard 4.2) are reported back to each teacher preparation program accredited by the State of Nebraska.
In addition, in 2022-2023, the EPP has phased in a research plan to address CAEP standards 4.1 and 4.2. Research has been conducted by the EPP through a pilot study with two teachers - one secondary special education teacher located in an urban area, (Special Education 7-12 program completer) and one early childhood teacher in a rural area (Inclusive Early Childhood Education program completer). The primary data source planned is the case study (self-assessment) action research conducted by project participants. All EPP impact data sources are reviewed by the EPP faculty (yearly - fall semester) and the CEHS Professional Education Committee (yearly - spring semester).
Case Study of Education Program Completers
Program completers one year past graduation (during their second year of professional practice) generate a creative or scholarly product (i.e., a completer-conducted action research project) that demonstrates their impact on P-12 student learning. This project requirea program completers to integrate the knowledge of content and pedagogy acquired throughout the program in their classroom, develop assessment plans, collect and analyze student data, and synthesize, interpret, and reflect on students’ learning to further make improvements on their teaching practices. Program completers are asked to select one of three themes from the Nebraska Clinical Practice Evaluation Rubric (NCPER) specifically chosen because the rubric clearly delineates student learning as a direct outcome:
Assessment - Assesses for learning (NCPER Standard 6)1
Learner Development - Uses knowledge of students to meet needs (NCPER Standard 1)2
Learner Differences - Differentiates instruction to meet student needs (NCPER Standard 2)3
Program completers collect relevant evidence from their own work in the classroom over time (e.g., mid-year and end of year during their 2nd year of teaching) and use the evidence to interpret and synthesize what their students are learning and how they are making progress as a result of the completer’s instruction. Program completers are asked to create an online portfolio that includes the following components.
Part I: Program completers are asked to provide an introductory statement regarding content and pedagogical knowledge that includes the theme selected. Guiding questions are listed below. The statement, “What knowledge, skills and strategies should a teacher use to reach all learners?” serves as an anchor question to permit comparison across program completers regardless of which theme they select for their action research project.
|Themes||Example Questions to Consider|
Part II: Program completers are asked to provide at least three student work samples that represent student learning over time and write a reflective narrative that illustrates how their pedagogical knowledge, skills, and strategies influenced their teaching practices and enhanced student learning.
Part III: Program completers are asked to provide a summary statement concerning their impact on student learning and what steps they might undertake to enhance student learning in the future.
A sub-committee of our CAEP leadership committee serve as the lead in refining and enacting this plan. Analyses of data herein are shared with members of the Professional Education Committee (PEC). The PEC is comprised by representative EPP faculty and relevant stakeholders (as defined in our Quality Assurance System).
1Target rating of “Proficient” states “Uses student performance data and knowledge of students to identify interventions that support and/or advance students to positively impact learning.
2Target rating of “Proficient” states “Uses data about students and their development to adjust teaching” (resulting in student learning.
3Target rating of “Proficient” states “Identifies students’ needs for differentiation and responds with individualized instruction, flexible grouping, and varied learning experiences.
2022 First-Year Teacher Survey on Perceived Effectiveness in Applying Professional Knowledge, Skills, and Dispositions
First-year teacher satisfaction was assessed on a 4-point scale (i.e., 1=below standard/unacceptable, 2=developing, 3=proficient, 4=advanced). Our EPP completers reported that, on average, 98% of them perceived to meet standards toward the end of their first year of teaching (range = 92 to 100%, N=119).
|NDE Standards (1-10)||Descriptions||Advanced (4)||Proficient (3)||Developing (2)||Below Standard (1)||N||Mean||Mode|
|Standard 1 Learner Development||Uses knowledge of students to meet needs||21||17.60||80||67.20||16||13.40||2||1.70||119||3.01||3.0|
|Builds on student strengths to facilitate learning||15||12.60||86||72.30||17||14.30||1||0.80||119||2.97||3.0|
|Standard 2 Learner Differences||Identifies differentiation in student needs||20||16.80||71||59.70||27||22.70||1||0.80||119||2.92||3.0|
|Differentiates instruction to meet student needs||15||12.60||72||60.50||30||25.20||2||1.70||119||2.84||3.0|
|Brings multiple perspectives and cultural resources to content and discussions||20||16.80||69||58.00||28||23.50||2||1.70||119||2.90||3.0|
|Standard 3 Learning Environments||Promotes a positive classroom environments through clear expectations||55||46.20||55||46.20||8||6.70||1||0.80||119||3.38||3.5|
|Uses and communicates clear task and behavioral expectations to support an environment of learning||32||26.90||71||59.70||13||10.90||3||2.50||119||3.11||3.0|
|Standard 4 Content Knowledge||Uses and communicates content knowledge||27||22.70||83||69.70||8||6.70||1||0.80||119||3.14||3.0|
|Uses academic vocabulary and grammar||33||27.70||77||64.70||7||5.90||2||1.70||119||3.18||3.0|
|Provides opportunities for students to demonstrate their content knowledge||12||17.60||86||72.30||12||10.10||0||0.00||119||3.08||3.0|
|Standard 5 Application of Content||Helps students link concepts and enagage in critical thinking||21||17.60||71||59.70||25||21.00||2||1.70||119||2.93||3.0|
|Engages students in the development of literacy and communication skills||15||12.60||80||67.20||24||20.20||0||0.00||119||2.92||3.0|
|Standard 6 Assessment||Matches instructions and assessments to learning objectives||25||21.00||77||64.70||17||14.30||0||0.00||119||3.97||3.0|
|Uses formative and summative classroom assessments that facilitate learning||23||19.30||80||67.30||15||12.60||1||0.80||119||3.05||3.0|
|Amends instructional strategies and adapts interventions as needed||15||12.60||75||63.00||27||22.70||2||1.70||119||2.87||3.0|
|Provides differentiated instruction and assessments that positively impacts learning||16||13.40||79||66.40||21||17.60||3||2.50||119||2.91||3.0|
|Standard 7 Planning for Instruction||Plans sequenced learning experiences and performance tasks linked to learning objectives||18||15.10||86||72.30||14||11.80||1||0.80||119||3.02||3.0|
|Plans and implements multiple ways for students to demonstrate their knowledge and skills||20||16.80||80||67.20||18||15.10||1||0.80||119||3.00||3.0|
|Standard 8 Instructional Strategies||Incorporates digital tools and technologies into instruction||29||24.40||70||58.80||20||16.80||0||0.00||119||3.08||3.0|
|Uses evidence-based strategies to support critical thinking and content learning||17||14.30||84||70.60||16||13.40||2||1.70||119||2.97||3.0|
|Organizes and manages the learning environment to maximize student engagement||21||17.60||74||62.20||21||17.60||3||2.50||119||2.95||3.0|
|Standard 9 Professional Learning and Ethical Practice||Invites constructive feedback and responds positively||33||27.70||77||64.70||7||5.90||2||1.70||119||3.18||3.0|
|Sets and implements goals to improve practice||29||24.40||74||62.20||14||11.80||2||1.70||119||3.09||3.0|
|Standard 10 Leadership and Collaboration||Communicates professionally - oral, written, and electronic||49||41.20||60||50.40||8||6.70||2||1.70||119||3.31||3.0|
|Responds to people, problems, and crises effectively||39||32.80||63||52.90||15||12.60||2||1.70||119||3.17||3.0|
2022 Principal Survey Data on First-Year Teachers
Employer satisfaction was assessed on a 4-point scale (i.e., 1=below standard/unacceptable, 2=developing, 3=proficient, 4=advanced). Employers of our EPP completers reported that, on average, close to 100% of our EPP completers were meeting standards toward the end of their first year of teaching (mean = 98%, range = 92 to 100%, N=119).
|NDE Standards (1-10)||Assessment Rubric Description||Advanced (4)||Proficient (3)||Developing (2)||Below Standard (1)||N||Mean||Mode|
|Standard 1 Learner Development||Uses knowledge of students to meet needs||20||16.80||72||60.50||26||21.80||1||0.80||119||2.93||3.0|
|Builds on student strengths to facilitate learning||23||19.30||71||59.70||23||19.30||2||1.70||119||2.97||3.0|
|Standard 2 Learner Differences||Identifies differentiation in student needs||27||22.70||68||57.10||23||19.30||1||0.80||119||3.02||3.0|
|Differentiates instruction to meet student needs||26||21.80||57||47.90||34||28.60||2||1.70||119||2.90||3.0|
|Brings multiple perspectives and cultural resources to content and discussions||23||19.30||71||59.70||23||19.30||2||1.70||119||2.97||3.0|
|Standard 3 Learning Environments||Promotes a positive classroom environments through clear expectations||43||36.10||56||47.10||19||16.00||1||0.80||119||3.18||3.0|
|Uses and communicates clear task and behavioral expectations to support an environment of learning||37||31.10||51||42.90||28||23.50||3||2.50||119||3.03||3.0|
|Standard 4 Content Knowledge||Uses and communicates content knowledge||30||25.20||80||67.20||7||5.90||2||1.70||119||3.16||3.0|
|Uses academic vocabulary and grammar||28||23.50||84||70.60||6||5.00||1||0.80||119||3.17||3.0|
|Provides opportunities for students to demonstrate their content knowledge||30||25.20||73||61.30||15||12.60||1||0.80||119||3.11||3.0|
|Standard 5 Application of Content||Helps students link concepts and enagage in critical thinking||16||13.40||73||61.30||29||24.40||1||0.80||119||2.87||3.0|
|Engages students in the development of literacy and communication skills||20||16.80||77||64.70||21||17.60||1||0.80||119||2.97||3.0|
|Standard 6 Assessment||Matches instructions and assessments to learning objectives||24||20.20||79||66.40||15||12.60||1||0.80||119||3.06||3.0|
|Uses formative and summative classroom assessments that facilitate learning||21||17.60||81||68.10||16||13.40||1||0.80||119||3.03||3.0|
|Amends instructional strategies and adapts interventions as needed||23||19.30||74||62.20||19||16.00||3||2.50||119||2.98||3.0|
|Provides differentiated instruction and assessments that positively impacts learning||18||15.10||72||60.50||27||22.70||2||1.70||119||2.89||3.0|
|Standard 7 Planning for Instruction||Plans sequenced learning experiences and performance tasks linked to learning objectives||24||20.20||84||70.60||10||8.40||1||0.80||119||3.10||3.0|
|Plans and implements multiple ways for students to demonstrate their knowledge and skills||21||17.60||80||67.20||17||14.30||1||0.80||119||3.02||3.0|
|Standard 8 Instructional Strategies||Incorporates digital tools and technologies into instruction||26||21.80||79||66.40||13||10.90||1||0.80||119||3.09||3.0|
|Uses evidence-based strategies to support critical thinking and content learning||14||11.80||80||67.20||24||20.20||1||0.80||119||2.90||3.0|
|Organizes and manages the learning environment to maximize student engagement||24||20.20||67||56.30||25||21.00||3||2.50||119||2.94||3.0|
|Standard 9 Professional Learning and Ethical Practice||Invites constructive feedback and responds positively||34||28.60||70||58.80||13||10.90||2||1.70||119||3.14||3.0|
|Sets and implements goals to improve practice||24||20.20||79||66.40||13||10.90||3||2.50||119||3.04||3.0|
|Standard 10 Leadership and Collaboration||Communicates professionally - oral, written, and electronic||26||21.80||77||64.70||13||10.90||3||2.50||119||3.06||3.0|
|Responds to people, problems, and crises effectively||23||19.30||80||67.20||13||10.90||3||2.50||119||3.03||3.0|
2022 Candidate Competency at Completion
EPP completers' teaching effectiveness was assessed on a 4-point scale (i.e., 1=unacceptable, 2=developing, 3=proficient, 4=advanced). The expected levels of performance are 3 (proficient) or 4 (advanced), and data revealed that, on average, 98% of our EPP completers are at or above the 'proficient' level on all competencies (range = 95% to 99%, N=244).
|NDE Standards (1-10)||Assessment Rubric Description||Advanced (4)||Proficient (3)||(3)+(4)||Developing (2)||Unacceptable (1)||N||Mean||Mode|
|1. Learner Development||Uses knowledge of students to meet needs||108||44.40||135||55.60||100.00||0||0.00||0||0.00||243||3.44||3.0|
|2. Learner Differences||Differentiates instruction to meet student needs||74||30.60||161||66.50||97.10||7||2.90||0||0.00||242||3.28||3.0|
|3. Learning Environments||Promotes a positive classroom environments through clear expectations||107||43.90||129||52.90||96.80||8||3.30||0||0.00||244||3.41||3.0|
|4. Content Knowledge||Uses accurate content and academic vocabulary||124||50.80||118||48.40||99.20||2||0.80||0||0.00||244||3.50||4.0|
|5. Application of Content||Engages students in critical thinking and collaborative problem solving||87||36.10||149||61.80||97.90||5||2.10||0||0.00||241||3.34||3.0|
|Develops literacy and communication skills through content||85||36.80||140||60.60||97.40||6||2.60||0||0.00||231||3.34||3.0|
|6. Assessment||Uses classroom assessment||88||36.20||150||61.70||97.90||5||2.10||0||0.00||243||3.34||3.0|
|Assesses for learning||69||28.90||157||65.70||94.60||13||5.40||0||0.00||239||3.23||3.0|
|7. Planning for Instruction||Plans for instruction||114||47.30||126||52.30||99.60||1||0.40||0||0.00||241||3.47||3.0|
|8. Instructional Strategies||Incorporates digital tools into instruction||127||53.10||109||45.60||98.70||3||1.30||0||0.00||239||3.52||4.0|
|Uses research-based instructional strategies||69||28.60||163||67.60||96.20||9||3.70||0||0.00||241||3.24||3.0|
|Uses engagement to enhance learning||105||43.40||129||53.30||96.70||8||3.30||0||0.00||242||3.40||3.0|
|9. Professional Learning and Ethical Practice Dispositions||Accepts critique and input regarding performance||178||73.60||60||24.80||98.40||4||1.70||0||0.00||242||3.72||4.0|
|10. Leadership and Collaboration||Conveys professional demeanor||132||55.00||101||42.10||97.10||5||2.10||2||0.80||240||3.51||4.0|
|Uses professional communication||123||50.80||112||46.30||97.10||5||2.10||2||0.80||242||3.47||4.0|
Each year, we have approximately 1-2% of candidates who fail to meet licensing requirements and graduate without certification. That means that 98-99% complete our EPP program and successfully meet licensing requirements. In addition, 98% of our EPP 2021-2022 completers received a passing score on Praxis.