Jan 23, 2021  
2013-2014 Undergraduate Bulletin 
2013-2014 Undergraduate Bulletin [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

College of Education and Psychology

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Ann P. Blackwell, Dean
Diane J. Fisher, Associate Dean
Thomas Lipscomb, Associate Dean
730 East Beach Blvd.
Long Beach, MS 39560

Academic programs within the College of Education and Psychology on the Gulf Coast are fully accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). The college also holds membership in the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education and the Teacher Education Council of State Colleges and Universities.


The College of Education and Psychology prepares and develops educators, researchers, mental health professionals, and information specialists while generating and disseminating knowledge that connects and advances individuals, communities, and society.

Students develop knowledge and skills through exposure to exemplary teaching, research and professional service. The College contributes to the mission of the university through all aspects of scholarship that promote academic success; enhance the image of the College; foster community relationships and involvement; and create healthy minds, bodies and campuses.

Undergraduate Degree Programs on the Gulf Coast

  Child and Family Studies
    Child Development
    Family Relations
  Elementary Education
  Elementary Education/Special Education (Dual Licensure)
  Elementary Education (Teacher Assistant Program) - Fully Online
  Special Education - Fully Online

Admission Requirements for the College of Education and Psychology

Admission to the College of Education and Psychology does not constitute admission to a teacher education program or to a non-teaching major program. Program planning and proper advisement must be completed to gain admission to both teacher education programs and non-teaching programs. Regular status in the College of Education and Psychology is maintained by meeting the quality point requirements for hours completed as designated by the general university requirement and evaluated by the Office of Admissions.University Core for College of Education and Psychology (Gulf Coast) 

College of Education and Psychology Overload Hour Policy

For an undergraduate student to request a course overload, he/she must adhere to the following:

  1. The student must have a 3.25 GPA on all hours at Southern Miss (minimum of 24 hours).
  2. The student must provide a compelling reason for the overload.
  3. The overload request must be approved by both the student's adviser and chair before it will be considered in the dean's office.

Professional Education

The Professional Education Unit of The University of Southern Mississippi includes the College of Education and Psychology and other colleges, schools, and departments in the University offering professional education programs for the initial and advanced preparation of teachers and other school professionals. The Dean of the College of Education and Psychology, as the officially designated head of the Unit, has the responsibility and authority to provide direction and leadership to the Professional Education Unit.

NCATE Accreditation

Professional education programs are nationally accredited through NCATE and their appropriate specialized professional association accreditation bodies. All professional education programs within the university undergo periodic review to ensure appropriate national and state standards are being met and student outcomes are appropriate. Each professional education program adheres to a conceptual framework developed to ensure all educational leaders graduating from Southern Miss possess the knowledge, skills, dispositions and diversity outcomes developed by the faculty and community. These shared values provide a vision from which all university education programs can impact collaborative efforts with local school partners and the community as a whole.

Conceptual Framework

The Professional Education Unit's Conceptual Framework is consistent with the university's historical roots as a normal college, its mission and its future. The university, since our founding in 1910, has been committed to the outstanding preparation of teachers, counselors, administrators and other school personnel. In accordance with this history and the present vision and mission of the university, the mission of the unit is five-fold: a) educate the whole student; b) prepare high-quality teachers and leaders for the Mississippi classrooms; c) conduct innovative, relevant research; d) promote a healthier region and e) enhance cultural understanding.

The unit has embedded knowledge, skills and dispositions throughout its teacher education program to prepare students to become creative, bold and determined educational leaders who possess the power of knowledge to inform, to inspire, to transform lives and to empower a community of learners.

Teacher Education Programs and Requirements

The College of Education and Psychology offers programs leading to licensure at the K-6, K-12 or secondary level. Before applying for admission to a professional education program, the following requirements must be met: (1) an ACT composite score of 21 or higher, with no scale score below 18, or an SAT of 860 (verbal and quantitative) upon entrance into college or acceptable scores on the Praxis I subscales computerized PPST: Reading (170), Writing (172) and Mathematics (169), or on the Praxis I (CBT): *(2) a minimum grade point average on the 44-semester-hour general education core curriculum of 2.65; (3) a C or better in freshman English composition (ENG 101  and ENG 102 ); (4) successful completion of the Basic Technology Literacy Exam (BTLE) or IC3 certification; (5) good academic standing at Southern Miss. A student on probation, probation continued or suspension status will not be admitted to teacher education until such a time when the transcript reflects good academic standing; (6) clear background check via the system selected by the Southern Miss Professional Education Council.

Each Southern Miss student who applies for admission to a teacher education program must undergo a background check when applying for the Gold Card.* Students who pass the background checking process will be issued a background check badge and considered eligible for admission to teacher education pending satisfaction of other admission requirements. Teacher candidates issued Gold Cards prior to fall 2009 and currently enrolled in Southern Miss teacher education programs, as well as Southern Miss students enrolled in teacher education field or clinical experiences that do not require a Gold Card, must also undergo a background check as part of the university policy.

After admission to a professional education program, the following requirements must be met to continue in the program: (1) All candidates must subscribe to the Tk20 Assessment System. Tk20 provides an electronic portfolio and storage system for students as well as tracks, stores, retrieves and analyzes data for accreditation purposes. (2) A grade of C or better in all content courses in the academic major as well as all professional education courses with an overall grade point average of 2.5; (3) fulfillment of major requirements in subject area; (4) completion of professional education courses required by the major; (5) take Praxis II content and PLT tests and have scores reported to Southern Miss (code #1479) prior to graduation.

A minimum of 30 clock hours of clinical experience is required prior to teacher candidacy (15 hours of observation and 15 hours of practicum). Specific programs may require more practicum hours.

Requirements for professional education programs are subject to modification. For current program information, students should contact the University's Educator Licensure office, 121-B Owings-McQuagge Hall; 601.266.5522.

Mississippi Department of Education licensure requirements supersede the program requirements listed in the Bulletin. Mandated changes in program requirements will be communicated through the candidate's department.

Department of Curriculum, Instruction and Special Education

David Daves, Chair
Beth A. Richmond, Associate Chair for Accreditation
118 College Drive, Box 5057
Hattiesburg, MS 39406-0001

J. Beedle, J. Bishop, J. Boyce, M. Crowe, D. Daves, B. Davis, M. B. Evans, H. Filce, D. Fisher, T. Hanna, T. Hartsell, J. Hines, R. Jones, S. Karagoz, F. Karnes, M. Larmon, P. Lowery, S. Manning, L. McDowell, H. Morgan, T. Morse, R. Mullican, J. Osborne, E. Ramp, S. Reeves, B. Richmond, S. Rouse, L. Sanders-Bustle, K. Stricklin, A. Sylvest, D. Thames, B. Tingle, A. Trest, D. Walker, K. Walker, Kevin Walker, S. Wang, M. Willis

The Department of Curriculum, Instruction and Special Education serving as the coordinating agency within the university for the preparation and development of elementary and special education teachers and provides undergraduate course work for preservice teachers. A description of the undergraduate programs in elementary education and special education follows. For secondary education, consult the college and department of the teaching major. The university also prepares individuals to teach in several areas in special education. The bachelor's degree will lead toward mild-moderate disability licensure in the state of Mississippi. Additionally, students may select to double major in special education and elementary education.

Students desiring entry into the teacher education program must successfully complete the admissions requirements according to guidelines established by the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning. See the Teacher Education Programs and Requirements section in this Bulletin for a complete description of the teacher education admissions requirements. Please consult the Graduate Bulletin for the description of programs leading to master's, specialist's and doctoral degrees.

Students wishing to major in teacher education should follow the program references below.

Admission to Elementary Education, Special Education or Dual-Licensure Teacher Education Programs

Students desiring to major in elementary education (K-6) or special education (K-12) must meet the following requirements before being admitted to the program.

  1. Attain a C or better grade for the required six hours of English composition, world literature and college algebra.
  2. Complete the College of Education and Psychology's Department of CISE's General Education Core requirements (44 hours of specified courses).
  3. Demonstrate basic technology literacy by passing the Basic Technology Literacy Examination (BTLE) or attaining IC3 certification.
  4. Attain a minimum grade point average of 2.65 based on the 44 hours of general education identified on page 60. File application for formal admission to the teacher education program.
  5. Attain the minimum scores set by the Mississippi Department of Education on one of the following: the ACT (composite 21 with no subscore below 18, prior to enrollment in higher education), SAT (860, verbal plus quantitative, prior to enrollment in higher education), Praxis I subscales or computerized PPST: Reading (170), Writing (172) and Mathematics (169).
  6. Meet with a departmental adviser and complete a program plan.
  7. Meet with the certification officers to obtain Gold Card.

Students cannot be admitted to the elementary or special education programs while on probation, probation continued or while suspended. For a more detailed explanation of the above requirements, see the Teacher Education Programs and Requirements section in this Bulletin. Students should also see their assigned adviser, the coordinator or the undergraduate academic adviser for the CISE department (Ms. Patti Papania, Gulf Coast.)

Elementary Education

Students pursuing an undergraduate degree with a major in elementary education can attain an elementary teacher's license (certification for grades kindergarten through six) and an endorsement in one content area and a supplemental reading endorsement. Areas of endorsement include 21 hours in one of the following areas:

Social Studies
Foreign Language

For specifics concerning these endorsements, students should consult their faculty adviser or the department's academic adviser on the Gulf Coast campus: Patti Papania.

Elementary Education and Special Education Licensure (Dual-Licensure)

Students pursuing an undergraduate degree with a major in elementary education can attain an elementary teacher's license (kindergarten through grade six) and a special education teacher's license (mild-moderate disabilities K-6). This program focuses on preparing teachers for meeting the needs of exceptional students in the general education curriculum and classroom.

K-6 Endorsements for Elementary Majors

K-6 elementary education majors are required to complete a minimum of one highly qualified area beyond the required course work. These courses are called endorsement courses. K-6 elementary education majors requiring one highly qualified area beyond the required course work are encouraged to carefully consider options, discussing them with an adviser. A supplemental reading endorsement is built into the program.

Please note that the university awards your degree while the Mississippi Department of Education awards your licenses and endorsements. To be eligible for licenses and endorsements, you must complete the applicable course work and, often, be recommended by the university for the license or endorsement. Licenses are most often granted by completing an "approved program" such as elementary education, special education, etc. Supplemental endorsements may only be added to licenses; that is, you must have an original license and then add this onto it.

Special Education

The University of Southern Mississippi prepares individuals to teach in several areas of exceptionality. At the undergraduate level, the degree program leads to licensure in mild/moderate disabilities (K-12) in the state of Mississippi. The special education undergraduate program requires preparation in mild/moderate disabilities. Special education majors are strongly encouraged to select electives that lead to supplemental endorsements in areas which will enable them to meet Mississippi's requirements for highly qualified teachers. All special education majors should seek advice from a special education adviser in order to select electives which will help them meet their teaching goals. Other programmatic information can be obtained from departmental academic advisers: Ms. Patti Papania, Gulf Coast.

Educational Field Experiences (EFE)

Anne Sylvest, Co-Director (K-6 and Special Education)
Marsha W Walters, Co-Director (Secondary and K -12)
118 College Drive, Box 5028
Hattiesburg, MS 39406-0001
601.266.4571/ 601.266.4572


The Educational Field Experiences (EFE) office has been directed by the Professional Education Council of The University of Southern Mississippi to act as the central clearinghouse for the teacher candidacy and teacher internship (formerly known as student teaching) placements. Although specific requirements vary from department to department, education students are required to complete a minimum of 15 clock hours of observation and 15 clock hours of practicum prior to teacher internship.

Teacher internship serves as the capstone semester of the teacher education program. This semester provides all teacher education students the opportunity to apply best professional practices in two separate and diverse experiences in state-accredited P-12 schools or designated international and national sites of diverse placement.

All field experiences are completed in accredited, off-campus host schools designated by EFE directors. Guidance and evaluation are provided by cooperating host school mentors and supervisory faculty members from Southern Miss.

THE TEACHER INTERNSHIP SEMESTER: Registration for the final semester of field work is restricted to 12 semester hours of teacher internship. I It is a Southern Miss policy that no other course work be taken during the teacher internship and that all course work be completed before the final semester of field work.

Requirements for Teacher Internship

All teacher interns:

  1. Must have been admitted to the teacher education program and completed the teacher education curriculum.
  2. Must have at least 2.5 degree program GPA at the time that the teacher internship semester begins.
  3. Must have completed all course work: the core subject, education courses, major and minor areas, concentrations of study, labs and field work. Any exceptions to this policy must be approved by submitting a Policy Exception Form to the student's major department, then through the Educational Field Experience office to the associate dean of the College of Education and Psychology. Policy Exception Forms must be generated from the Educator Licensure office.
  4. Must expect to spend a full semester in off-campus schools designated by the director of Educational Field Experiences. NOTE: Transportation and child care issues are the responsibility of the candidate and should be handled as if the individual has accepted a position with the schools.
  5. Must attend a preliminary instructional meeting provided by EFE prior to registering for internship on Tk20. All internship registration forms are submitted to Educational Field Experiences at the beginning of the semester prior to the teacher internship for timely placement in area schools. Registration deadlines on Tk20 are October 15, for spring internship and February 15, for the following fall semester, respectively.

Degree Plans and Semester-by-Semester Guides

Department of Child and Family Studies

Department of Curriculum, Instruction and Special Education

Department of Psychology


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