CWU first in state to offer computer science teaching endorsemen - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

CWU first in state to offer computer science teaching endorsement

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ELLENSBURG, WA - Starting in the fall, Central Washington University will become the first university in Washington State offering its students a computer science teaching endorsement.

The new endorsement is part of CWU’s new STEM Teaching Program, which allows undergraduate students to earn both their STEM degree and teaching certification at the same time. This degree structure gives students career choice and flexibility.

“We hope this will begin to meet the need for more highly trained computer science teachers and more computer science education options in Washington schools,” said Jennifer Dechaine, CWU biology and science education professor. “We are excited to partner with Washington P-12 schools on this new program.”

The teaching endorsement program proposal was approved by the Professional Educator Standards Board on March 15, 2018.

“The first iteration of the program will be part of our STEM Teaching Program for undergraduate students seeking teaching certification and endorsement in science or mathematics fields,” Dechaine said. “This program will be co-delivered by CWU’s College of the Sciences and the School of Education in the College of Education and Professional Studies.”

In 2016, CWU received a $2.19 million grant to develop and implement an innovative STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) teacher preparation program. The program, based on University of Texas-Austin’s UTeach model, was customized for Washington State to meet the state’s teacher preparation requirements.

Students began entering the STEM Teaching Program in fall 2017. Dechaine, and Ian Loverro, professor of Curriculum, Supervision, and Educational Leadership, are co-principal investigators of the grant.

“We are looking forward to partnering with Washington P-12 schools on this new program” Loverro said. “And we’re excited to partner across disciplines within CWU to make this a successful program.”

For more information about the program, contact Rachel George at teachstem@cwu.edu or go to www.cwu.edu/teachstem.

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