School of Education - George Mason University

All Elementary Education students complete an internship (aka student teaching) as part of their program.

The internship takes place under the guidance of a mentor teacher within a school that is a part of our Professional Development School (PDS) Network. In a PDS partnership, the elementary school and the teacher preparation program take joint responsibility for:

  • Teacher preparation
  • Faculty development
  • Enhanced student learning
  • Inquiry directed at the improvement of practice

A "traditional" model of teacher preparation is like a one-way street where the intern is the focus of learning—the only person constructing knowledge — and where the school and university are separate entities. The PDS model is more collaborative, where PK-6 student learning is everyone’s ultimate goal.

BSEd students complete the internship courses during their senior year (fall and spring). MEd students, depending upon their cohort, will complete either a semester-long (SL) or year-long (YL) internship during their final year.

Prior to enrolling in the internship course, all students must complete the internship application and meet all requirements. Information about the process, including deadlines and an internship handbook, can be found on the CEHD Student Internship website.

Students do not arrange their own internship placement but instead are placed by CEHD in accordance with university and program policies. The internship follows the school district calendar, and students are required to be at the school site Monday through Friday and maintain the same hours as their mentor teacher with the exception of days in which they may need to leave early for a class at Mason. A mandatory internship orientation prior to the internship semester will provide students with details about their role and responsibilities.