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Closing the certification gap in family and consumer sciences

Andrea B Mosenson, University of Nebraska - Lincoln


As the demand for Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) teachers continues nationwide, preparing individuals to meet teacher certification requirements becomes more difficult. This study's objective was to identify the barriers individuals encounter in accessing the necessary coursework for teacher certification in FCS and identify the strategies used to help these individuals obtain and maintain state certification. A survey designed by the researcher was sent to FCS teacher educators at colleges and universities (n=164) and FCS state administrators who work at each state's education department (n=64). The survey asked participants to respond to factual, attitudinal, and demographic questions concerning the state certification process and FCS education programs that prepare individuals to become teachers. ^ The results indicate many barriers exist for individuals to obtain and maintain certification in FCS. A major barrier was not having enough postsecondary institutions across the country offering FCS education programs. Some FCS education programs are using strategies to help individuals reach their goal of becoming teachers and then maintaining teacher certification. Effective strategies used are offering online courses, offering courses at satellite locations closer to where individuals live and work, and offering an alternative route to certification. While using online courses as a strategy can be effective, 37% of postsecondary institutions are not offering online courses and are encountering barriers to starting a distance education program. These barriers mainly deal with faculty issues and how faculty members are supported by the institution in developing online courses. Until these barriers are dealt with at each institution, the increase of online courses in FCS will be minimal. ^ In order for FCS educators and state administrators to assist individuals in obtaining and maintaining teacher certification, they need to evaluate the barriers encountered and implement one or more strategies identified in this study. In fact, the main objective of the study was to generate and share a list of strategies with educators so more individuals can become certified FCS teachers. ^

Subject Area

Education, Home Economics|Education, Teacher Training|Education, Higher

Recommended Citation

Mosenson, Andrea B, "Closing the certification gap in family and consumer sciences" (2006). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3214781.