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Full Handbook for Minor


I. Overview
II. Core Courses
III. Elective Courses
IV. Policies Related to Minor Courses
V. Capstone
VI. Teacher Preparation at Ithaca College
VII. Applying for and Completing the Minor

I. Overview

The Education Minor is approved in all Colleges at Cornell.
Students must apply for formal admission to any minor, including this one. Applications must
be received no later than the first day of classes in the senior year.

Students completing the Education Minor take 3 core courses and at least 6 elective credits. They
also complete a small capstone project.
Students who want to commit to K-12 teaching and wish to take advantage of Cornell’s
agreement with the teacher preparation program at Ithaca College should complete the version
of the Education Minor described in section VI.

II. Core Courses

The three courses in the core provide a foundation of vocabulary, analytic tools, and practical
experience for all Education Minors.

A. Students must complete EDUC 2410: Art of Teaching. This course surveys major issues and
perspectives in education that are explored in greater depth in the courses below. We
recommend that students take this course as early as possible.

B. Students must complete one course from each category below (2 courses total):

Category 1: Education history, policy, philosophy
Choose from:
EDUC 2710: Social & Political Context of U.S. Ed.
EDUC 3405: Multicultural Issues
Category 2: Direct experience with learners
Choose from:
EDUC 3110: Educational Psych
EDUC 4402: Anthropology of Ed.
EDUC 4040: Engaging Youth
EDUC 4720: Philosophy of Ed.
EDUC 4050: College Teaching

III. Elective Courses

Electives are an opportunity for students to go deep on a specific interest or stay broad. Minors must complete at least 6 elective credits, using at least two different courses.  

Any course from this list of EDUC courses can count as an elective. There also are some approved non-EDUC electives. They are ASRC 1825, ENTOM 3350, PLHRT 3270, and PAM 2550. If you have an education-focused course not on this list that you wish to count as an elective, please email the director.

At most 4 of the elective credits can be unstructured. Unstructured credits are internships, independent studies, and TAships (EDUC 4960, 4970, & 4980). TAing for a non-EDUC course may qualify as an approved elective if it requires significant planning and teaching, not just grading. Contact the director of the education minor to see if a non-EDUC TA experience might count.  

Minors who want to stay in Ithaca after graduating and enroll in Ithaca College’s 13-month Master of Arts in Teaching program should see section VI below for guidance on which electives to take.

IV. Policies Related to Minor Courses

A. Grading: All courses that students wish to count for the minor must be taken Graded. Only courses with a grade of C or higher will count.

B. Credit: Imagine taking an EDUC course to fulfill a requirement of your major--not your College distribution requirements, but your major. Students may count no more than two such major-fulfilling courses towards the education minor. Counting any more than that would mean earning an Education Minor without investing significant additional effort beyond your major.

C. Course substitutions:
Requests to allow non-Cornell course substitutions (e.g., courses taken elsewhere over the summer or before a student transferred to Cornell) will be considered case by case. The Director of the Minor will consult with the Cornell faculty member teaching the course. Ideally, students will request permission to substitute before taking the non-Cornell course; however, we will consider after-the-fact requests.

Between core and elective courses, students may request at most one course substitution.

V. Capstone

In both the core and elective courses, students have a significant amount of choice. To ensure that this freedom fosters deep engagement in learning, all Education Minors reflect on the insights that they have developed via their coursework and related experiences. Minors express these insights by participating in one of two opportunities once they have completed all other minor requirements or are finishing one final course.

Option 1 (Conversations): During a one-hour event held each December and May, Education Minors participate in a 20-minute conversation with adults from the community (e.g., local teachers and parents). Minors will spend 5-7 minutes summarizing their new perspectives and insights on education and how they developed across coursework and related experiences. Q&A follows.
Option 2 (Publications): Education Minors may submit a product that explains their insights on education and how they came to be. Past products have included short stories, podcasts, videos, and more conventional papers. All reflections in a given academic year will be compiled each summer and published on the Education Minor website.

VI. Teacher Preparation at Ithaca College

VII. Applying for and Completing the Minor
1. From your Cornell email, send a blank email, with the word "join" in the Subject line, to (Note: That’s a lower-case L after edminor-.)
2. Complete the online application.
3. Email the director of the Education Minor to arrange a brief advising meeting.
4. Complete the courses, making sure you keep the requirements in mind.