College of Education

FAQ's for Prospective Students

Below you will find some common questions from prospective students and parents. 

What is the difference between a teaching license and a degree? ~ Show Answer

It is important to understand that a degree from a university is different from a teaching license that is issued by a state department of education.  When choosing a college, students want to make sure to choose an accredited, highly respected teacher education program that will provide the foundational knowledge needed to apply for a teaching license in the state where they choose to live.

Each state will have its own set of testing and other requirements, but the essential piece is graduating from a strong program in the area that you wish to teach.

At Butler, there are 2 primary degree programs in the College of Education, but many licensure areas.  One degree program is in Elementary Education. It prepares students to be a generalist (teach all subject areas) in K-6 settings.  This degree program also has an embedded special education minor (Mild Intervention).

The second degree program is Middle Secondary Education and it prepares students to be a content specialist (foreign language, math, English, social studies and the sciences) in grades 5-12.  In addition, in this degree program also offers the option of a K-12 Physical Education/5-12 Health Education license.

Finally, the Butler College of Education also offers additional minors that can lead to licensure in Special Education and English as a New Language.

Is Butler an accredited teacher education program? ~ Show Answer

YES! Butler's College of Education is fully accredited by NCATE (National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education), and all 13 of our licensure programs have received a level of National Recognition through SPA (Specialized Professional Associations).

Field Experiences - how early, how often, and where are they held? ~ Show Answer

Our undergraduate students currently spend between 800-1,500 hours in K-12 classrooms before graduation.  These hours are spent in carefully selected site-based field experiences, often in the same school where the student is being taught a Butler class related to the classroom experience. Classroom experiences begin in the freshman year and gradually increase in intensity and expectations throughout the four year degree program.

All field experiences and courses in the College of Education allow students to put theory into practice by working alongside exceptional faculty every step of the way.  Teaching assistants or graduate assistants have never been part our instructional model.

Finally, all school based experiences take place in and around the Indianapolis area.  We are fortunate to have an outstanding partnership with many nearby school districts.  One of these partnerships includes a unique role with Indianapolis Public Schools.   Not only do we collaborate in the University's partnership with IPS at Shortridge Magnet High School for Law and Public Policy, but we also have a dynamic model in our Lab School.  The IPS/Butler Laboratory School is fully staffed by Butler alumni who bring specific training in the principles of Reggio Emilia to the learning environment.

What is Student Teaching like at Butler? ~ Show Answer

One of the most defining experiences of your teacher preparation program is the time you will spend student teaching.  So, it is essential that you examine carefully what kind of experience you will encounter at this critical period.

At Butler, student teaching in the Elementary Degree Program is for one full year - every day, all day.  The year is divided into two placements - one at a primary level, one at an intermediate level.  For students in the Middle Secondary Degree Program, student teaching is one full semester - every day, all day.  The semester is divided into two distinct phases that allows for experiences at both a middle school and high school level.  In both degree programs, students are carefully supervised in schools near the Indianapolis area and attend class one night per week on campus.

What if I am unsure about wanting to become a teacher? ~ Show Answer

Being open to exploring your professional options when you come to college is an ideal mindset to have!

We all have perceptions of what it is like to be a teacher because we have been students for so many years, but is it vital that you test these perceptions by exploring the entire scope of the teaching profession before making a decision.

At Butler, we specifically design curriculum that asks you to explore, reflect and evaluate your decision to become a teacher.  This is done beginning in the FIRST semester that you are on campus.  Time is spent by students in all licensure areas in classrooms at all developmental levels.  This allows you to truly make a decision that is right for your future professional life.  This early experience in education classes and field experiences combined with an academic advisor who is a faculty member in the College will help you to feel confident about your undergraduate plan.  We also know that sometimes you change your mind, but the small size of Butler allows us to quickly connect you to resources and exploratory classes in other majors if needed.

Are there jobs for teachers outside of traditional classroom positions? ~ Show Answer

Classroom teaching continues to be at the heart of what we do, but we also realize that we must assist students in discovering their optimal work environments.  Alumni from our college also serve in educator positions for museums, hospitals, and other businesses.

What are my options for studying abroad? ~ Show Answer

We are part of a global community and are committed to making sure that our candidates have that lens as they enter into their professional lives. In addition to study abroad options offered by Butler, the college also hosts a two-week educational leadership course abroad each May.  Also, many of our students apply to be considered for an overseas student teaching placement for one of their experiences. 

What is the job placement rate for Butler's College of Education? ~ Show Answer

For over 12 years, we have had nearly 100 percent placement of graduates who were licensed and looking for a position in the field in every licensure area that college offers

If you have questions beyond those addressed on this page as a prospective student, please feel free to contact Assistant Dean Angela Lupton at