School of Education - George Mason University

An internship program helps prepare aspiring teachers for their future in education. Students experience classroom teaching while working with experienced teachers who act as their mentors.

Students enrolled in initial teacher licensure or counseling programs participate in internship experiences in order to meet Virginia state licensure requirements.

Teacher candidates can apply for a traditional student teaching placement where they are placed with a mentor teacher in one of our partnering school divisions. Candidates who are working as a full-time teacher in their subject area at an accredited school may be approved for an on-the-job internship if all requirements are met.

View the Distance Placement Guidelines for Field Experience and Internships, for those to whom this is applicable.

Internship Application Deadlines
SpringSummer
(EDSE General Curriculum, Adapted Curriculum, and VI only)
Fall
Traditional Deadline: September 15

Application available online beginning August 1

Deadline: February 15

Application available online beginning December 15

Deadline: February 15

Application available online beginning December 15

On-the-job Deadline: November 1

Application available online beginning October 1

N/A Deadline: July 1

Application available online beginning May 1

Prior to the Application Deadline

Complete your Content Area Review (Formerly Endorsement Review): Please note ALL content area coursework must be completed, with all transcripts submitted and approved by the Pre-Education Advising Coordinator, prior to your intended internship application deadline for academic programs with content area course requirements. Since the internship application must be submitted in the semester prior to the actual internship, please make an appointment to meet with the Pre-Education Advising Coordinator and plan the completion of your endorsements accordingly. You are strongly advised to submit your request for an update and required documentation to the Pre-Education Advising Coordinator several weeks in advance of submitting your internship application because you are required to upload a copy of your completed content area review as part of your internship application. Please contact endorse@gmu.edu if you have questions regarding your review.

Submitting Your Internship Application

Submit your online internship application and supporting materials (Part 1 AND Part 2) by the posted deadline:

  1. Submit Part 1 of the online internship application at
    • Part 1: Click Here to begin Part 1.
      • After completing Part 1, you will need to use the link provided below to access part 2. You will not be automatically connected to the rest of the application.
  2. Submit Part 2 of the online internship application after reviewing the application requirements and documentation preparation tips included in this section.
    • Part 2: OTJ application opening October 1

Please note you must submit both Part 1 and Part 2 of the online internship application by the deadline. Failure to do so will result in the cancellation of your application. After submitting each part of the application, you will receive a confirmation email to your Mason account. If you do not receive a confirmation email within 1 hour of submitting each part, please check your junk mail/spam folder. If you are unable to locate your confirmation email, please contact internsh@gmu.edu right away to ensure your application was submitted correctly.

Required documents and supporting materials:

For Part 2 of your internship application, you should be prepared to submit the following documents:

For all Programs:

  • Goals Statement
    • Description of your educational experiences, why you want to participate in a practicum or internship and how you plan to apply the theories you have learned from your studies to the real-world classroom or counseling setting.
  • Traditional Applicants only: Signed Student Participation Agreement
  • Unofficial Mason Transcripts
  • Résumé
  • Evidence of hands-on CPR/AED/First Aid training
    • Training level should correspond to the grade level of your subject area.
    • CPR/AED/First Aid certificates must be sent to internsh@gmu.edu.
  • Content Area Review (formerly endorsement review), if applicable
  • Extension Request Form**
  • On-the-Job Applicants only: OTJ Position Review Form

Program Specific Forms:

** All prospective teacher candidates are required to submit passing test scores and evidence of content area review completion, if applicable, by the application deadline. Candidates who have an outstanding test or content course requirement due to extenuating circumstances may submit an internship deadline extension request form for review as long as they apply for internship and submit all other requirements by the specified deadline. In addition, the request must meet the guidelines outlined on the first page of the extension request form. Please note approval of any extension is not guaranteed. Candidates will be notified of decisions via their Mason email within 2-4 weeks of submission.

Preparing your documents for submission:

All required documents must meet the following requirements:

  • All files must be in PDF or Word format only.
  • The maximum file size accepted is 100MB.
  • When naming your files for uploading, please use Last_First_DocumentName as your naming format. For example, If John Smith is uploading his goals statement, the file should be called Smith_John_GoalsStatement.
  • If you have a multi-page page document to submit, you must ensure it is combined into one file. Pages cannot be uploaded separately.

You may not submit photos of documents. If you plan to take pictures of documents with your phone, you will need to ensure you have the ability to save them in PDF format. While we do not endorse the use of a particular scanner app, here are a few available options.

Arlington County Public Schools (APS) Internship Applications: If you are interested in being placed in Arlington County Public Schools as your first choice, you must submit the Arlington County Application packet in addition to the online Mason Internship Application. Arlington applications are due by the noted Mason application deadline above.

Please note that completion and submission of the Arlington County Application does not guarantee placement in Arlington County.

After submitting your complete internship application:

After successfully submitting each part of your internship application, you will receive an email confirmation. Please check your Mason inbox and junk mail folder for your confirmation, and if you do not see your confirmation within 1 hour of submission, please contact the Clinical Practice Coordinator at internsh@gmu.edu.

School Counseling and Traditional Student Teaching Candidate:
Monitor your Mason email, including your junk mail folder, for a notification from the Clinical Practice Coordinator (internsh@gmu.edu) regarding the next steps in the placement process, including fingerprinting and background checks. Please note internship application processing and notification of next steps can take up to 6 weeks after the deadline, so please be patient. For more information, please review the internship placement process in the next section.

Clinical Mental Health Counseling and Post-Masters’ LPC Candidates Only:
Please apply directly to community-based sites until you have secured a practicum/internship. CEHD does not place CMHC/Post-Masters LPC students into sites. If you have questions about locating your own practicum/internship site, please contact your faculty advisor.

Updating Your Application Status from Traditional Student Teaching Placement to an On-the-Job Internship (OTJ):
If you apply to be placed for traditional student teaching in a desired internship semester and then you are hired for a qualifying position by local public-school division and you would like to update your application be considered for an on-the-job internship:

  • Your position and school must meet all of the requirements noted in the OTJ Position Review Form. Please note the OTJ option is not offered by all initial teacher programs. Please contact your advisor with questions.
  • You must contact the Clinical Practice Coordinator at internsh@gmu.edu at least 2 weeks prior to the OTJ application deadline for your intended internship semester.
    • You will be provided with the abridged OTJ “switch” application that must be completed by the OTJ deadline. As part of that process, you will be required to upload a fully completed OTJ Position Review Form.
    • Your “switch” application must be fully approved in order to update your application status to an OTJ internship.

Please note: You may not switch from a traditional internship to an on-the-job internship after beginning your traditional student teaching placement. Students in such situations must withdraw from the traditional internship (subject to applicable tuition penalties) and re-apply for the on-the-job internship in a subsequent semester.

The Internship Placement Process

After submitting a complete online internship application, all teacher candidates applying for traditional internship placement within a school division must complete the following steps, including required fingerprinting and background check.

Internship placements are made in conjunction with local school districts and are subject to university and school division policies, availability, and approval. Candidates are not permitted to contact a school, principal, or teacher directly in order to arrange their own internship placement. Failure to follow this policy can negatively affect a teacher candidate’s ability to be placed for internship.

  1. Once you have submitted your application, the Clinical Practice Coordinator will be in touch via your Mason email if any additional information is required. Please allow 2-6 weeks after the deadline for processing as it takes time to review submissions. Please monitor your Mason email.
  2. If your application has been approved, the Clinical Practice Coordinator will send you an email with the next steps, including how to complete the mandatory fingerprinting and background check process with one of our partnering school divisions.
  3. Complete the school division requirements for placement, including fingerprinting and background check.
    • You may be required to complete an additional online internship application specific to the school division in which you will be placed. The Clinical Practice Coordinator will provide instructions on how to complete this process as well as information regarding background processing.
    • All teacher candidates applying for traditional internship placement within a school division will be required to complete fingerprinting and a criminal background check through the school division’s human resources office (not through George Mason University) prior to beginning internship.
    • When completing background check paperwork, please include all incidents and events – even the most minor infractions that may appear on your record. Include everything, even if the incident occurred several years ago. Failure to do so, whether or not such incidents resulted in conviction, may result in the denial or termination of internship placement. Many placement denials are the result of failure to disclose issues that would otherwise not have blocked a student’s placement.
  4. Monitor your Mason email for placement updates – even your junk folder. The Clinical Practice Coordinator will only communicate with you via your Mason account.
    • The Clinical Practice Coordinator will notify teacher candidates of their internship placements via their Mason email account. Fall internship placements are typically sent in May/June and Spring Placements are typically sent in December.
    • All placement requirements, including the criminal background check, must be successfully completed before a teacher candidate is eligible to receive an internship placement.
  5. Register for your internship course(s) and plan to attend a mandatory orientation with your academic program prior to beginning internship.
    • If you have questions about registration, please contact your academic advisor.
    • Your academic program will provide orientation information, including the date, a few weeks before the internship start date.
  6. Please take careful note of internship dates and policies – your internship could begin earlier than the Mason semester
    • Fall candidates typically report to their school sites prior to the start of the semester so they can participate in orientation and professional development days.
    • Internships follow posted school division schedules, not the Mason academic calendar. For example, candidates will follow their placement school’s Spring Break schedule, not Mason’s schedule.
  7. While participating in internship, candidates are required to follow their mentor teacher’s daily schedule.
    • Internships are a full-time commitment. You should plan to arrive and end your day based on the school schedule. In some cases, you may be required to attend activities outside of typical school hours.
Internship Manuals

Prior to starting their internships, students should review the internship manual for their academic program. Manuals are updated in July and posted in anticipation of the new academic year.

Program and ContactManuals and Handbooks

Art

Justin Sutters (Art Education Program Coordinator)

Internship Handbook (Word) (PDF)

Counseling and Development

Jennifer Carney

Please refer to the Counseling & Development Blackboard organization site for practicum/internship handbook. For access, please contact counsel@gmu.edu.

Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE)

Early Childhood Education

Internship Manual (PDF)

Early Childhood Education (PK-3 Licensure)

Early Childhood Education

Internship Manual (PDF)

Elementary Education

Audra Parker

Elementary Internship Handbook (Word)

Secondary Education

Kristien Zenkov

Internship Manuals:

Special Education: General Curriculum, Adapted Curriculum, Visual Impairment

Jancy Templeton

Heather Aycock

General Curriculum (Word) (PDF)

Adapted Curriculum (Word) (PDF)

Special Education: Applied Behavior Analysis

Jancy Templeton

Heather Aycock

Handbook (PDF)

English As A Second Language (ESL)

Joan Shin

Manual (PDF)

Health and Physical Education

Luanne Norden

Access to the Manual is provided upon entry to PHED 415

Foreign Language

Marjorie Haley

Manual (Word) (PDF)

Music

Lisa Billingham
(Choral)

Charles Ciorba
(Instrumental)

Handbook (Website)

Theatre

Mary Lechter

Theatre Ed Graduate Student Teaching Manual
(PDF)

Theatre Ed Undergraduate Student Teaching Manual
(PDF)