The departments of Biology, Chemistry, and Physics offer the Teaching Option for science majors interested in becoming secondary school teachers. This state-accredited program combines coursework, classroom observation, and teaching experience and leads to an initial teaching certificate for grades 7-12.

A hallmark of our program is the individual attention we provide our students. At Ithaca, students do not just learn a lab skill in class, they also have the opportunity to teach that skill. Although students in the teaching option must meet many requirements, through careful, ongoing advising, we also accommodate students' special interests including sports, music, or a semester abroad. Student teaching placements match students with cooperating teachers to take into account each student's strengths and weaknesses or to support a student's specific career goals.

The Teaching Option in the Sciences provides students with a variety of classroom experiences in different settings. Students have 100 hours of classroom observation and 14 weeks of student teaching in both middle school and high school settings. In addition, students may serve as teaching assistants in undergraduate lecture courses and lab sections. One of the highlights of our program is the opportunity to participate in our highly successful science collaboration with our partner school, Frederick Douglass Academy in New York City. IC students prepare lessons and run lab activities, such as DNA electrophoresis, for FDA students that address state learning standards. In return, IC students gain experience in teaching in an urban setting.

For more information about becoming a teacher of biology, chemistry, or physics, visit the science education site or contact Dr. Edward Cluett.

Direct Experience in the Classroom
Students get Hands-on Experience

Previously Professor Ed Cluett and MAT students ran the annual frog dissection activity as part of IC's partnership with the Frederick Douglass Academy in New York City.

These students supervised dissections in 12 classes over two days, seeing 220 students in grade nine and in seventh grade special education classes.

Frogs were generously provided by the Biology Department at IC; Mr. Tim Hearn, science coordinator at FDA, provided valuable logistical support; and the IC/FDA partnership provided financial support.