500X330_Edu_IntroThe undergraduate education programs are designed to develop classroom teachers who demonstrate the ability to be effective with today’s student population in a variety of field settings, both private and public.

Undergraduate teacher preparation programs are available in General and Bilingual Education with certification levels of Early Childhood through grade 6 (with concentrations in Bilingual Generalist, Generalist, or English as a Second Language Generalist); grades 4 through 8 (with concentrations in English Language Arts & Reading, Mathematics, Science, or Social Studies); grades 6 through 12 in Physical Science; grades 7 through 12 (in a variety of teaching fields), Early Childhood through grade 12 certification in Art, French, Music, Spanish, and Theatre Arts, as well as supplemental certification in Special Education.

Certification requirements vary for each level and field of concentration. Students should select courses for certification programs only after consultation with assigned advisors in the School of Education and Human Services. Students must file a degree plan in the School of Education and Human Services no later than the end of the sophomore year.

The University of St. Thomas Service-Learning Program’s mission is to assist the University in serving others, specifically offering resources to meet the needs of the Greater Houston metropolitan area. Acting to fulfill the University’s vision of responding creatively to challenges posed by poverty, globalization, limited economic resources and changing demographics, as well as to the mission of Catholic universities delineated in Ex Corde Ecclesia, students are able to connect classroom theory with practical experience in the community. To quote the Campus Compact, “Service-learning is meant to expand opportunities for public and community service in higher education, and to advocate the importance of civic responsibility in students’ learning.”

A January 2000 study by the Higher Education Research Institute at the University of California, Los Angeles, “How Service-Learning Affects Students,” includes the following findings, “Service participation shows significant positive effects on all 11 outcome measures: academic performance (GPA, writing skills, critical thinking skills), values (commitment to activism and promoting racial understanding), self-efficacy, leadership (leadership activities, self-rated leadership ability, interpersonal skills), choice of a service career and plans to participate in service after college.”

Programs and Projects

Service-Learning provides students with experiences in which they can apply their theoretical and classroom learning to the real world of educational practice.

School of Education examples of service-learning projects include:

  • Building gardens for local elementary schools and creating dynamic projects for local school in literature, math, reading and science. Such programs include:
  • Children’s Literature Night
  • Super Science Saturday
  • Lemonade Day
  • A November Night with Numbers

Steps to Service-Learning Program Participation

  • See your academic advisor.
  • Register for a class.
  • When class meets, learn about options for service placement.
  • Agree to criteria set by the professor (e.g., a reflective paper).
  • Complete contract to perform service hours in community.
  • Be supervised and evaluated by the nonprofit agency.
  • Fulfill hours and other criteria to receive grade and course credit.

Training Teachers as Dual Language Educators

“I chose to study in the Dual Language Program at the University of St. Thomas because I believe it is important for children to develop two languages if the opportunity is available, instead of just focusing on one and losing the other. Being bilingual myself, it only made sense that I use my two languages to help children maintain and develop both of theirs. After graduation I plan to teach Dual Language in an elementary school. Dual Language teachers are in high demand, and my classes at St. Thomas have prepared me for a successful and fulfilling career.”

 -Daisy Figueroa, Class of 2011

The University of St. Thomas Dual Language Program trains teachers to use their dual language skills in K-12 classrooms to teach linguistically diverse populations. This approach enables students to progress academically in English and another language and gain an appreciation of both cultures. Houston is a diverse city where Dual Language Program students have many opportunities after graduation. Many foreign dual language job opportunities are available for students who want to teach abroad after college.

The UST Dual Language Program integrates:

Why Study Dual Language at UST?

  • Small class sizes
  • Prestigious high-need program
  • Innovative dual language methodology
  • Attractive campus

Field Experiences

Many excellent and diverse field experiences in both public and private settings are available to students majoring in Dual Language. Through various field placements, students experience dual language instruction in multiple language settings including Spanish-English, Chinese and Vietnamese dual immersion programs and traditional bilingual settings.

Contact Us

Dr. Higinia Torres-Rimbau, Director
Bilingual/Dual Language Education

EDUC3313 – Digital Instructional Strategies is a new course offered in the School of Education and Human Services that will address technology integration in the classroom. This course will explore various technology tools (hardware, software, apps, and tools) that help facilitate teaching and learning. The course will not concentrate on specific platforms in order to broaden the ability of pre-service teachers to experiencing technology and exploring ways to use it with students. In addition to the exploration of technology tools, the course will use the state of Texas Technology Standards and the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) Standards for Educators as basic frameworks underlying the course.

Learn More Pre-Service Technology Training

Dual Certification Program: EC – 6 Generalist and Supplemental Special Education

In an effort to better meet the needs of school districts in Houston and throughout the State as well as make our graduates more marketable, the University of St. Thomas now offers a dual major in EC – 6 general education and special education. Students who have dual preparation backgrounds will be better prepared to meet the needs of students with disabilities in the general education classroom as well as collaborate with both general education and special education teachers and other professionals.

School of Education and Human Services students have the opportunity to explore international education practices first-hand by studying abroad.

Each year, UST spends more than 150 students to credited study abroad programs during the winter break and summer sessions. These international study opportunities provide knowledge of diverse cultures and a broad global perspective. School of Education and Human Services study abroad opportunities provided in recent years include travel to Italy, France, England, Jamaica, Greece, Germany and Switzerland. 

Read more about UST's Study Abroad programs  for general University study abroad information.

State Board of Educator Certification (SBEC)

500X330_Edu_SBEC​To enter into the teaching profession, students must take the related Texas Examinations for Educator Standards (TExES) required by the State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC). Students seeking certification in French and/or Spanish must take the appropriate Languages Other than English (LOTE) exam. Students seeking bilingual certification must take the Bilingual Target Language Proficiency Test (BTLPT) in addition to other tests required for certification. The Certification Officer of the School of Education and Human Services approves all applications for TExES leading to initial certification.

Recommendation for Certification

The University of St. Thomas Certification Officer recommends certification only after a student has met all certification requirements, including a) completion of a bachelor’s degree; b) completion of Early Childhood through grade 6 (EC–grade 6), Grades 4 through 8, Grades 6 through 12, Grades 7 through 12, Early childhood through grade 12 programs; and c) passing scores on all required TExES and/or the BTLPT.

In accordance with Article 6252–12c, Texas Civil Statutes, the Commissioner of Education may refuse to issue a teaching certificate for persons convicted of a felony or misdemeanor crimes that directly relate to the duties and responsibilities of the teaching profession. Applicants for Texas Certificates will be screened for a record of felony or misdemeanor convictions through the Texas Department of Public Safety. Potential applicants may wish to contact the Certification Officer regarding concerns about this Texas requirement.