The practicum for your program is considered a high stakes assessment. You are expected to complete your practicum assessment during the term in which you are approved by the WGU Field Placement office and have accepted the practicum assessment into your term, ideally the first date of a new term. If you wish to accelerate the practicum assessment into a current term, it will be important to work closely with your mentor to ensure that you have enough time to complete the practicum, which must be done by the end of the term.
When the WGU Field Placement office approves your practicum, they will enter the start date of the practicum to reflect the date of the approval and the end date of the practicum will align with the last day of your current term. Before you may begin your practicum, you must enroll and accept the practicum assessment into registration for the current term.
Your placement must be at the appropriate level in an accredited U.S. school that meets WGU and state licensure requirements. Different states and different WGU programs have specific placement requirements. Placements must be in a traditional, on ground setting (residential treatment facilities, prisons, home schools or virtual placements do not meet this requirement). WGU does not allow field placements to be waived or shortened regardless of an advanced program candidate’s previous experience.
You will have the opportunity to develop and refine your teaching skills in a supportive, real-world classroom environment. You also have the opportunity to demonstrate the following Five Core Propositions outlined by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) relating to what Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do:
Once you receive approval for your clinical supervisor (CS) and Student Application, you may begin your practicum in the classroom. The clinical supervisor and host teacher provide regular, detailed feedback regarding your teaching performance and mastery of the following WGU teaching competencies:
Finally, the observation and final evaluation align to the following Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) Initial Level Special Educator Preparation Standards: