Saturday, July 20, 2024

NSU named one of the top teacher preparation programs in the country

by BIZ. Staff

NATCHITOCHES – Northwestern State University of Louisiana’s undergraduate elementary teacher preparation program has been named one of the top in the country by the National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ), a nonpartisan, not-for-profit research and policy organization.

This month, as part of a new book Start Here to Become a Teacher NCTQ named 120 undergraduate programs that excel in preparing teacher candidates to meet the demands of their future classrooms. Using nearly two decades of extensive research in teacher preparation, NCTQ assessed programs on critical, evidence-based measures, including:

  • Rigorous admissions process;
  • Emphasis on research-based approaches to teaching reading and math for elementary candidates;
  • Content knowledge for secondary candidates;
  • Training in classroom management strategies that work for all students; and
  • Quality student teaching experiences.

Of the 872 undergraduate programs reviewed, NSU’s School of Education was recognized as a leader in the field.

“Northwestern State University has been preparing quality teachers for over 130 years. It is very gratifying to know that an organization with such stringent standards as the National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) has recognized our preparation program,” said Dr. Katrina Jordan, director of the School of Education. “Being named one the nation’s top teacher prep programs is such an honor. My hope is that this recognition, along with the accreditation that we have received from many national organizations year after year, brings attention to the high quality we strive to achieve on a daily basis.”

“The universities named in Start Here are exemplary in their dedication to training the next generation of great teachers,” says Kate Walsh, NCTQ President and book author. “We commend these institutions for the thoughtful manner in which they’ve grounded their approach to teacher preparation in what research shows to actually be effective.”

“Start Here to Become a Teacher” is intended to serve as a guidebook for aspiring teachers. In addition to naming top undergraduate teacher prep programs, the book calls out common myths about teaching and what successful teachers love most about their jobs, features an affordability index describing the places where renting an apartment on a teacher’s salary is more or less feasible, gives advice on the best courses to take, and provides information on making sure a student teaching experience pays off and on how to land a first job. Learn more at

The National Council on Teacher Quality is a nonpartisan research and policy group committed to modernizing the teaching profession and based on the belief that all children deserve effective teachers. We recognize that it is not teachers who bear responsibility for their profession’s many challenges, but the institutions with the greatest authority and influence over teachers. More information about NCTQ can be found at

Information on NSU School of Education is available at

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