Graduates from the Ave Maria University Department of Education will be individuals of integrity and good moral character, knowledgeable in the areas of western philosophical tradition, articulate in learning theory and educational philosophy, and skilled in the use of effective instructional pedagogy. They will be able to function well within both public and private educational settings.
The Education major seeks to further teaching, inquiry and scholarship in the field of education with a special focus on Catholic and classical education. While examining the field of education using methodologies and practices proper to the discipline, the program will maintain a deliberate and explicit foundation in the philosophical and theological insights of the Catholic tradition, especially its understandings related to the nature and dignity of the human person, the nature of Truth, and the unity of all knowledge as ultimately rooted in the order of God and creation. Students who graduate from the University with a major in Education will possess extensive knowledge of the Catholic, classical, and public school educational paradigms and will be able to effectively fulfill the role of a professional educator within them.
Founded on the belief that the human person seeks happiness and is naturally oriented toward objective truth, we believe that education is a powerful tool to help others flourish. We believe that the role of an educator is to be a role model: to be a living, coherent, and sincere witness to a love for life, knowledge and others. A deep concern about others, about their welfare, dignity and freedom, is at the core of the student-teacher relationship. The degree to which our teacher candidates hold a love for reality, a passion for the subject under consideration, and a love for others, is the degree to which they will be successful educators. All of the state of the art pedagogical skills and professional practices our teacher candidates master during their time in our program will build on this foundation. While the program’s belief that knowledge is attained and demonstrated when the human intellect, informed by the senses, judges things rightly, reflects strong essentialist and perennialist tendencies. Holding that education is more than simply preparing the students in their charge for college and career readiness, our teacher candidates will also attend to human liberation and orient their students to transcendental realities related to truth, beauty and goodness. Toward this end our program provides a strong undergraduate preparation in the liberal arts, a robust series of professional education courses, and significant real-world educational experiences in ongoing field practicums.