The field experience and student teaching components of the teacher education program typically occur through a fall-spring sequence across an academic year via our Liaison School Model. Liaison schools are Western New York preK-12 schools with whom we have relationships to work collaboratively to provide intensive, mentored field experience and student teaching opportunities for our students preparing to become intellectually-curious, critically-reflective, and practically-informed educators for the profession of teaching. For additional information about our approach to field experience and student teaching, please refer to our Guide to Field Experience and Student Teaching.
Our current liaison schools include the following:
Early Childhood (birth-grade 2) and Childhood (grades 1-6)
Adolescence (grades 7-12)
In addition to our liaison schools, we work with a range of other schools throughout the Western New York area for additional student teaching placements. The below map highlights several districts located in Erie and Niagara counties.
The Teacher Education Associates (TEAs) work directly with our students for the full academic year in field experience and student teaching. Each year, collectively they spend thousands of hours in schools fostering a community of learners and challenging our students to develop their knowledge and skills, as well as their care and commitment for the processes of teaching and learning. Rather than retire, they have refocused their careers as educators in preK-12 schools and they have continued to be active participants in the education profession through their contributions to the teacher education program. They are the bedrock of our program that connects UB with our preK-12 school partners.
The Reflective Inquiry Project (RIP) is a focal point of the initial teacher certification program. During the field experience course, with guidance from their Teacher Education Associate (TEA), students develop a researchable question about school practice that they are interested in exploring in depth. Through a review of the scholarly literature and analysis of data gathered through fieldwork, students construct a paper that responds to their question. Toward the conclusion of student teaching, students revisit their RIP from the lens of their student teaching experience, and they write an essay that 'reflects' and 'reflects on' what they have learned throughout the academic year.
The Next Generation Scholarship has been established to support students working with the Teacher Education Institute during the student teaching semester. Up to one scholarship is to be awarded per year to a student enrolled in the initial or initial/professional track of the teacher education program for adolescence (grades 7-12) education. Preference will be given to first generation college students who also demonstrate a strong academic record and financial need. The amount of the award is $7,500.00.
This scholarship has been made available by Professor Emeritus Catherine Cornbleth, a former director of the teacher education program at the University at Buffalo, who had been a teacher of social studies prior to her work in teacher education. This scholarship is given in memory of Florence, Jack and Carol Kornblith.
Field experience and student teaching are offered in concert with pedagogical coursework primarily through the Department of Learning and Instruction, with additional courses offered through the Departments of Counseling, School, and Educational Psychology and Educational Leadership and Policy. Through coursework, students are provided an opportunity to learn about planning, instruction, and assessment, as well as the foundations of education.