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Student Teaching: The Professional Semester

A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.
Henry Brooks Adams

Admission to the semester is by application only. As part of the application process, the student's advisor or another faculty member, usually selected from the student's major department, will need to complete the Academic Reference Form indicating the student's intellectual strengths and his or her mastery of the subject matter.

Applicants will be notified of their acceptance into the professional semester by the Education Studies Program Committee approximately two weeks after the application deadline.

In order to be assured of a positive recommendation for teacher licensure, students must complete EDST 0404 or EDST 0414 with a grade of at least a B and EDST 0405-0407 or EDST 0415-0417 with a PASS.

Prerequisites to the Professional Semester:

Note: In a few cases, students may elect to do their professional semester during the fall of their senior year. Such students will need to show progress towards meeting the prerequisites listed below and will not be recommended for teacher licensure until successful completion of all graduation requirements.

  • Successful completion of a first-year seminar, a College writing course, a major, and the college-wide distribution requirement;
  • Successful completion of all pre-practicum course requirements for the minor in secondary or elementary teacher education with recommendation for licensure;
  • Satisfactory performance of at least 60 hours of field placement work in local schools;
  • Assessment by the teacher education faculty of a student's communication skills in prerequisite courses;
  • Assessment by a liberal arts faculty, usually from the student's major;
  • An overall B or better average in courses taken before the professional semester;
  • An overall B or better average in the field of major studies before the professional semester;
  • A sincere interest in undertaking student teaching and becoming a teacher as reflected in the student's self-recommendation essay;
  • Review by the Education Studies Committee of the applicant's transcript, performance in Education Studies and related courses, self-recommendation essay, and Academic Reference form completed by a liberal arts faculty;
  • Successful completion and revision of required portfolio entries assigned in EDST 215; EDST 300 and Methods courses. 

Possession of such personal qualities as initiative, dependability, self-confidence, empathy, cooperativeness, and flexibility in adapting to new situations, as evaluated by the Education Studies Program faculty, by other faculty at the College, and, when appropriate, by classroom teachers involved in the student's field placements.

Grade of B or Better:

An overall B or better average in college courses taken before the professional semester is required of all students applying for the professional semester. Also, a B or better average in the field of major studies before the professional semester is also required.
The Education Studies Program Committee can make an exception to these regulations if there are mitigating circumstances or some indication of student's progress in meeting these grade point averages.

Professional Semester Placements:

Usually student teachers will be placed in Vermont schools within a short driving distance of Middlebury College. This generally limits placements to the ACSU (Addison Central Supervisory Union), ANESU (Addison Northeast Supervisory Union) and ANWSU (Addison Northwest Supervisory Union) schools.

Students will be expected to provide or arrange their own transportation. Student teachers placed in schools outside of Mary Hogan Elementary School, Middlebury Union Middle School, and Middlebury Union High School will be reimbursed for their travel expenses per the current College mileage rate. Students are expected to car pool with other Middlebury College students. Each semester reimbursement will be made only for car pooling expenses for one driver to such schools.

Student teaching is a full-time responsibility requiring (by state mandate) a minimum of twelve complete and consecutive weeks for the practicum. Student teaching takes place on the local public school calendar, not the College calendar. This means that we highly recommend beginning the fall semester on the day that local teachers begin, often at the end of August. For the spring semester, student teachers begin on the Monday immediately following the ending of J-term. Because of the extremely demanding time commitment for student teaching, paid employment during the professional semester is highly discouraged.


Ninth Semester

Students may elect to complete the Professional Semester in either their senior year or in a ninth semester with the degree awarded following completion of the Professional Semester. You are welcome to participate in your senior year class’s graduation ceremony and walk across the graduation stage with your senior classmates. However, you will not formally complete and receive your degree until after you have finished the professional, ninth semester.   Again, all EDST double majors have been granted approval by the Dean of Students and the Dean of Faculty to "walk" with their class. The Registrar’s office is aware of this arrangement. Tuition for the Ninth Semester Program is the same as the fee charged to Special Students for one course (see Special Students in the SFS Handbook). Students may apply to the Office of Financial Aid for need-based financial aid.

Licensure Exams:

While successful completion of the professional semester and licensure portfolio fulfills the education minor and leads to a recommendation to the Vermont Department of Education for teacher licensure, the student will still need to obtain passing scores on the Praxis I and II Exams to secure their teaching license. Students with a total score of 1100 or better on the SAT or GRE (minimum of 500 on both verbal and math) or with scores of 22 or better on both the verbal and math parts of the ACT do not have to take Praxis I Exam, but will need to supply proof of these scores when applying for Vermont Licensure.

Information on the Praxis I and II Exams can be obtained from the Director of Education Studies, from the Praxis entry on the sidebar to your left, or at

The proportion of teaching candidates passing state-required assessments (performance and Praxis Exams) is 100%, which places Middlebury College Teacher Education in the 1st Quartile ranking of Teacher Education Programs in Vermont.


Fingerprinting $25
Level I Vermont Licensure Fee $160
Praxis Exams range from ~$80-$140 each, please review their site carefully for fees and surcharges


Vermont Licensure:

Vermont portfolio requirements and explanations:

See the Licensure entry on the right for useful links and information about reciprocity (transferring your Vermont license to other states).


Program in Education Studies

Twilight Hall
50 Franklin Street
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT 05753

fax 802.443.6010