K-12 Teaching Programs

Undergraduate Programs

Policies & Faculty


Admission to Professional Education

All students working toward a 5-12 or K-12 teaching degree must be admitted to professional education prior to enrollment in Level 1 coursework. Application to professional education should be made when the following requirements have been met:

  1. a minimum of 32 earned semester credit hours
  2. a minimum 2.75 cumulative GPA
  3. Basic Skills exam 
  4. enrollment or completion of KSP 220
  5. “C” grade in ENG 101
  6. “C” grade in General Education Math

A multifaceted Professional Education application exists. Students are required to attend orientation and application session. Please consult the Office of Academic Advising (117 Armstrong Hall) for deadlines.

Admission is competitive. Achievement at the 2.75 level and completion of all prerequisite courses qualifies students for the applicant pool but does not guarantee admission to the K-12 and Secondary program.

Advising. Students are assigned an advisor in their content area (major). In addition the KSP department provides advising prior to registration each semester. For more information stop by 313 Armstrong Hall. Faculty in each level provide individual and group advising. Career counseling is integrated throughout all levels.

Academic Advising Office: 117 Armstrong Hall • 507-389-1215

Field Experiences. A major component of professional education coursework involves field experiences in various settings. These experiences are gradual in expectation, time commitment, and skills practice throughout all four levels. Multiple methods of assessment are used and evidence collected to provide a view of the teacher candidates’ knowledge, skills and dispositions. Successful completion of each field experience is necessary for progression into future levels and field activities (e.g., student teaching).

Many Level 3 and Level 4 field experiences will be long-term placements. Long-term placements are two consecutive placements during the last two semesters, in one setting. Priority will be given to teacher candidates requesting placement in a long-term placement for their Level 3 and student teaching placements. These placements will most likely take place in our Professional Development Schools.

Background Checks. All field placements are initiated by the Office of Field and International Experience. Students involved in any field experience need to undergo a national criminal background check prior to admittance to professional education. Students are responsible for the fees associated with the background checks. This information is provided to districts for their determination of suitability for placement. The Office of Field and International Experience coordinates the background check process.

Teacher Licensure. Please contact Marisel Riquelme, Licensure Coordinator, in 115F Armstrong Hall for questions in regard to the licensure process. The University recommends licensure to a state upon students’ completion of a licensure program. Licensure does not occur automatically through graduation and the awarding of a diploma. Students need to make application for a Minnesota teaching license at the close of the term in which they graduate. The College of Education, 115F Armstrong Hall, coordinates the licensure process. In addition to program requirements, students must successfully complete the Minnesota Teacher Licensure Examinations (MTLE) including the Basic Skills exam, the pedagogical exam, and the content specific exam(s) for licensure. Minnesota state law requires that all candidates applying for initial licensure in this state be fingerprinted for national background checks. A conduct review statement will also need to be completed and signed. There is a fee for the criminal background check. There is also a fee for the issuance of a State of Minnesota teaching license.

GPA Policy. Coursework in professional education requires a grade of “C” or better. A cumulative career GPA of 2.75 is required.

Admission to Major. Admission to major is granted by the academic department in which the student proposes to major. Earned grade of “C” or better in Goal Area 1 (ENG Comp) and Goal Area 4 (MATH).

P/N Grading Policy. Grades are required in all professional education coursework except courses that are offered on a P/N basis only.



Required for General Education

  • HLTH 240 Drug Education (3)

Required Professional Education (30 credits)


  • KSP 220W Human Relations in a Multicultural Society (3)
  • KSP 222 Introduction to the Learner and Learning (2)
  • Floating course (can be taken with Level 1 or 2)
  • KSP 202 Technology Integration in the Classroom (1)


  • KSP 330 Planning and Instruction in the Classroom (3)
  • KSP 334 :Assessment and Evaluation (3)


  • KSP 440 Creating Learning Environments to Engage Children, Families and Communities (3)
  • KSP 442 Reading, Literacy, and Differentiated Instruction in the Inclusive Classroom (3)

LEVEL 4 Student Teaching

  • KSP 464 Professional Seminar (1) 

For 5-12 majors

  • KSP 477 5-12 Student Teaching (11)

For K-12 majors

  • KSP 476 K-12 Student Teaching (11)

Note: Double licensure majors also enroll in KSP 482 (6)

Student Teaching. (119 Armstrong Hall)

Director of Office Field and International Experience: Elizabeth Finsness, Ph.D.

Student teaching at Minnesota State Mankato is a results-oriented, performance based 16-week program requiring the demonstration of an acceptable level of teaching performance in the areas of planning and preparation, enhancing the learning environment, teaching for student learning, and professionalism. Multiple methods of assessment are used and evidence collected to provide a view of the teacher candidate’s knowledge, skills and dispositions. These methods include direct observations of teaching activities by public school and university faculty, the use of videotaped lessons and activities for self-assessment, use of logs, participation in learning communities, and participation in activities reflective of the professional responsibilities of teachers (e.g., parent conferences). The Director of the Office of Field and International Experience requests placements for all teacher candidates in partner districts, especially our Professional Development Schools. Teacher candidates should not contact schools regarding their placement.

Admission to the student teaching experience is contingent upon completion of:

  1. Completion of all coursework in major and General Education requirements.
  2. A cumulative grade point average of 2.75, grades of a “C” or better for all professional education coursework.
  3. Admittance into Professional Education.
  4. Completion of all methods and professional education course work (except KSP 464).
  5. Completion and validation of formal application materials one year prior to student teaching semester.
  6. Attendance at all preliminary student teaching meeting(s).
  7. Recommendation of advisor.
  8. Approval of placement by school district administration, a mentor teacher, and Director of the Office of Field and International Experience, and completion of Minnesota State Police Background check materials.

Study Abroad experiences may be available during student teaching. Selection is based on personal interview, faculty recommendation, and grade point average. Students develop interpersonal communication skills and dispositions for living in a global society. Students participating in study abroad opportunities will be required to complete course requirements in a shorter timeframe, thus long-term placements for level 3 field experiences and student teaching will be highly recommended. Additional fees will be incurred with participation in student teaching abroad programs. Application material and specific deadline dates are available online at https://ed.mnsu.edu/centers-offices-college-of-education/field-international-experience/student-teaching-application/

Contact Information

313 Armstrong Hall

Main Office (507) 389-1965