See also Early Childhood Education (ECED) for information on a related program.
The Education Paraprofessional (EDUC) degree prepares students to work under the supervision and alongside a certified/licensed staff member to support and assist in providing instructional and other services to children, youth and their families. Possible positions this degree prepares a student for are ESL/bilingual/migrant paraeducator, ECEAP family support specialist, education assistant, guidance specialist, instructional aide, interpreter, transition specialist paraeducator, playground assistant, special education assistant, teacher aide, and tutor.
Program Learning Outcomes
Graduates of the Education Paraprofessional program will be able to:
- Practice ethical and professional standards of conduct and comply with laws and workplace policies and procedures in relation to confidentiality, reporting of abuse, discipline, chain of command and delegation and supervision.
- Be knowledgeable in the use of reinforcement, motivation and data collection to facilitate positive behavioral support and assist in instruction and learning.
- Exemplify the philosophy that all individuals/participants can learn and contribute within a multicultural, inclusive context of children, families and colleagues.
- Develop, design and implement creative, innovative, developmentally and culturally appropriate educational practices that positively impact the development, creativity and self-esteem of young children.
- Plan group activities and effectively manage a classroom environment.
- Perform basic assessments and measurements of a child’s progress in an educational setting.
- Work appropriately with exceptional children and those with special needs.
- Employ a variety of instructional strategies and methods that address individual learners and learning styles in order to develop collaborative critical thinking and creative problem solving skills in a variety of student populations.
- Be able to draw from a variety of perspectives on human development and learning in order to design learning experiences to support the cognitive, psychological and social differences and needs of cross-cultural and generational learners.
- Understand what it means to be a competent, ethical and professional teacher in a democratic, diverse and technological society in order to develop commitment to professional growth and to the legal and ethical responsibilities of American public school teachers.
Entry into the Program
Students may enter the program at the beginning of any quarter. For specific information contact Enrollment Services or the Department Chair.
According to Washington State law RCW 43.43.830, any person with a positive criminal history for “crimes” against persons is not allowed to work with children. Background checks of criminal history are required of all students who work with children in any setting. Participants in this program will be required to provide a disclosure statement which will be submitted to the Washington State Patrol in order to complete a criminal history background check.
All EDUC courses require extensive reading and writing. Students should expect to participate in both individual and group assignments. Written assignments in EDUC classes are required to be typewritten or computer generated.
Students will integrate classroom learning with work-based learning experience in EDUC 223: Practicum and Seminar at a supervised school or education site. Department Chair approval is required. Credits and grades are based on job-hours worked, work performance, and completion of the learning objectives specified in the practicum. Attendance at a weekly seminar focusing on application of education coursework in the K-12 setting is required. A minimum of two quarters of EDUC 223 (5 credits each quarter) is required for completion of the Education Paraprofessional ATA degree. (EDUC 299 may be used in the transfer degree and explores education career options).
Associate in Technical Arts Degree
Students may pursue an Associate in Technical Arts (ATA) Degree, a one-year certificate or earn electives to an AA-DTA degree. The ATA degree covers the Washington State Core Competencies and Skill Standards for Paraeducators and meets the federal paraeducator requirements in the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 2001. Many of the courses in the Education Paraprofessional program transfer directly to Western Washington University or other four-year institutions. Check with the transfer counselor for the most current transfer information. Students seeking transfer to the bachelor’s program are urged to consider the AAS-T in Education or the Associate in Education degree.
Individual Technical Certificate
An Individual Technical Certificate may be developed in conjunction with other programs to meet marketable objectives and goals with Department Chair approval.