This program is a two-year consecutive teacher education program. Graduates of the program will earn a Bachelor of Education (BEd) degree and will be qualified to teach the Ontario curriculum within the Primary/Junior division (Kindergarten to grade 6) or the Junior/Intermediate division (grades 4 to 10).
The program is designed to meet all Ontario legislated requirements and incorporates the Standards of Practice and Ethical Standards for the Teaching Profession of the Ontario College of Teachers. Laurier recommends graduates to the Ontario College of Teachers for certification to practice in the Ontario education system.
Our program values the amount of time you will dedicate to practical experiences in schools developing teaching skills. Laurier’s Teacher Candidates have the opportunity to spend one Practicum Day per week in schools throughout the program, in addition to five block practicum placements.
Our program has strong partnerships with eight area school boards. Teacher Candidates will spend one Practicum Day each week in a school placement over two years, in addition to completing five block practicum placements. You will continually integrate the theory you will learn in your university classes to the teaching experiences of your placements. Practical experiences are both in-person and virtual as available in our partner schools.
The professional development school model has been recognized as a key strength of our program and differentiates us among faculties of education within Ontario. In the first year of the program, you’ll experience all* of your practicum days and practicum placements in one school, and in the second year of the program, you will be placed in a different school. In this model, you can experience two schools that serve different student populations through extensive, in-depth, and sustained teaching experiences where you will broaden your knowledge of the Ontario context in which elementary or secondary schools operate.
(*Note: In some circumstances, a Teacher Candidate may be assigned to two schools in one year depending on needs).
A block practicum is a continuous placement that is at least two weeks in length. There are five block practicum placements, of varying lengths, that are distributed throughout your two years at Laurier. In your first year, you’ll have two block placements in the fall term and another three-week practicum block after March Break.
Within your first year, you must also complete an Alternate Placement that requires between 60 and 90 hours of time. For your alternative placement, you work in a volunteer capacity in an educational context outside of the K-12 Ontario public education system (e.g. First Nations schools, private schools, community centres, museums, outdoor education centres, etc.), or take advantage of an international teaching opportunity if it is available in the future.
In your second year, you’ll have two practicum placements in the fall term (a two-week block and a three-week block). You’ll finish your course work in early February and then engage in a a final 10-week block placement (Practicum 5). This final placement will support your transition from student-teacher to practicing professional, as you work collaboratively with an Associate Teacher.
Laurier has partnered with the Avon Maitland, Bluewater, Brant Haldimand Norfolk Catholic, Bruce Grey Catholic, Grand Erie, Halton, Halton Catholic, Hamilton-Wentworth, Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic, Huron-Perth Catholic, Upper Grand, Waterloo Catholic, Waterloo Region and Wellington Catholic district school boards to provide you with extensive, in-depth and sustained practical experiences. All of your practicum placements must occur within these school boards, because we have deep partnerships with them and meet regularly to align priorities. The schools in these boards who host our Teacher Candidates understand our program’s conceptual framework and are committed to providing you with excellent teaching and learning opportunities.
There may be opportunities for practicum placements within Private Schools that utilize the Ontario Curriculum.
The Faculty of Education is committed to Indigenous education. We strive to:
Working to accomplish these goals, we have a specific course dedicated to Indigenous topics and Truth and Reconciliation calls to action. We integrate Indigenous worldviews and cultures within the majority of our courses as well as host guest speakers and regular sessions devoted to developing a greater understanding of contemporary Indigenous topics and incorporating ways of knowing into planning and teaching.
In addition, Laurier’s Indigenous Student Centres offer resources to both Indigenous and non-Indigenous learners who are studying at Laurier.
Laurier offers a variety of practical teaching experiences both locally and globally. In 2023, it is anticipated that there will be international teaching experiences as part of the Alternative Placements. In the past, Laurier Faculty of Education has planned trips to schools in Haiti, Nepal, Egypt, China, Italy and Finland.
A Global Perspective
Laurier offers more practical teaching experience in the classroom than any other education program. But did you realize you could be in classrooms around the world to gain this experience? Laurier graduate Sarah Fischer travelled with Assistant Professor Steve Sider on a service-learning trip to Haiti. “It would be fitting to say that this trip has changed my life in an abundance of ways — mostly the way I see the education system and the way I see developing nations,” says Sarah. “Taking the time to see all aspects of the culture in Haiti, including the different school systems and the malnourishment center, gave me the chance to reflect on the bigger picture.”
Laurier offers more practical teaching experience in the classroom than any other education program. But did you realize you could be in classrooms around the world to gain this experience? Laurier graduate Sarah Fischer travelled with Assistant Professor Steve Sider on a service-learning trip to Haiti.
“It would be fitting to say that this trip has changed my life in an abundance of ways — mostly the way I see the education system and the way I see developing nations,” says Sarah. “Taking the time to see all aspects of the culture in Haiti, including the different school systems and the malnourishment center, gave me the chance to reflect on the bigger picture.”