Dual Credit Teachers
The standard of qualifications for high school teachers to teach dual credit courses is the same as for other individuals wishing to teach for WKU on a part-time basis. According to criteria set by the university and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), part-time instructors must have a master's degree in any area and at least 18 hours of coursework in the respective field. The field is defined as the language being taught, and may include up to six hours of methods or second language acquisition courses related to teaching world languages. In addition, the Department of Modern Languages expects teachers to implement best practices that lead to proficiency development:
- Speak at least 90% in the target language.
- Have a student-centered focus, i.e. students are active and communicating.
- Create meaningful (real-context) communicative situations in the target language.
- Teach lessons that are proficiency-driven, rather than grammar-driven.
- Avoid the use of translation. Convey meaning through context and images.
- State and post clear objectives of the lesson.
- Use simple and clear instructions in the target language.
- Use smooth and efficient transitions throughout the class period.
Feedback Tools such as those developed by the TELL Project describe best practices in greater detail for teachers and administrators: http://www.tellproject.org.
- Submit current CV/resume and transcripts to Dewayne Neeley in the Dual Credit office.
- Dewayne Neeley forwards applications for Spanish to Kelly Conroy, and for all other languages to Laura McGee for evaluation.
- Evaluation for hire as a dual credit instructor will include transcript evaluation, evaluation of the teacher’s target language skills, examination of learning outcomes in the applicant’s courses, and may also include classroom observation of best practices.
Exceptions: Should a prospective instructor be short three (or fewer) graduate hours in the content area, the application may be accepted on the condition that the remaining hours be successfully completed within the first academic year of teaching dual credit courses. This exception is to be approved in conjunction with review of the supporting application materials and other credentialing processes. As a reminder, dual credit instructors are eligible for tuition benefits. Teachers who do not meet the above criteria and who have substantial professional experience may contact the coordinators named in 2 above directly.
Benefits to teachers:
- Mentoring by a WKU faculty member (liaison)
- Confidence that their students are college-ready in World Languages
- Opportunity to administer STAMP or AAPPL assessments
- Participation in professional development offered by the department
- KWLA registration and one night’s hotel stay at the conference
- WKU tuition benefits
Sharon Mattingly, Department Chair and Spanish Teacher at Barren County High School in Glasgow, KY, says this about being a Dual Credit instructor for the Department of Modern Languages at WKU
“Becoming a dual credit instructor has been a wonderful experience that has benefited me, my students, my school, and I think, WKU as well. My students come to WKU with enough credit earned to make the remainder of the journey to a minor or a major seem achievable and not overwhelming. I also enjoy the camaraderie with the other department members when we get a chance to get together. I have been treated with respect as a professional with ideas worth sharing. As a part of the department, I have access to information that is vital to my students as they move from secondary to postsecondary study. In addition, I feel that I have grown professionally from the professional development opportunities that have been made available to me through the department of Modern Languages. Finally, it has been very exciting to be in on the ground floor of change as we piloted both the STAMP and AAPPL proficiency exams with our students.”