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Application for State Approval of

Teacher Preparation Specialty Programs

Revisions based on the MDE review panel recommendations are noted in yellow highlight - May 2005

Michigan Department of Education, Office of Professional Preparation Services

P.O. Box 30008, Lansing, Michigan 48909

Phone:  (517) 335-4610 *** Fax:  (517) 373-0542



  • For each new, amended, or experimental program, a separate application is required. 
  • Application and all documentation are to be submitted electronically. 
  • Fax or mail only the cover page that is signed by the unit head. 
  • All correspondence regarding this application should be addressed to the consultant/coordinator identified on Application Attachment 1. 


I.  Application Information


Lake Superior State University

MDE Endorsement Area and Code (from Application Attachment 2)


Economics (CA)

Date of this Application

February 4, 2005

Name and Title of Unit Head

Dr. David Myton, Chair, School of Education

Signature of Unit Head




II.  Contact Information for Questions Related to This Application

Contact Person’s Name and Title

Prof. Linda Schmitigal, Assoc. Prof. of English

Contact Person’s Phone Number

(906) 635-2195

Contact Person’s Fax Number

(906) 635-2821

Contact Person’s E-Mail Address



III.  Type of Request for Approval                                                                  (Indicate One)

New program for institution


U.S. Department of Education Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) Code, if vocational occupational area


Compliance with State Board of Education new or modified program criteria


Experimental program


Program amendment (See Section IX for guidelines)



IV.  Institutional Representatives                                                                 

Name/Title Specialty Mailing Address E-mail Address Phone Fax

Dr. John Erkkila

Economics Lake Superior State University  650 W. Easterday Avenue, Sault Saint Marie, MI  49783 jerkkila@lssu.edu (906) 635-2108 (906) 635-2821


<<PR/PE Index 

Quick Link Index:

Section 1. Summary of Course Requirements

Section 2. Program Summary

Section 3. Instructional faculty

Section 4. Candidate Preparation

Section 5. Collaborative Partnerships

Section 6. Professional Development and Support

Section 7. Standards Matrix

Section 8. Special Recognition

Section 9. Instructional Methods

Section 10. Course Descriptions

Section 11.  Course Syllabi


            Economics (CA) Specialty Program

            Lake Superior State University

            February 4, 2005






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Section 2. Program Summary

(Narrative below)




a. Describe the philosophy, rationale, and objectives of the specialty program and explain how the program is consistent with the philosophy, rationale, and conceptual framework of the unit.


The proposed minor in Teaching Economics will provide the secondary teacher with background and skill sets needed to effectively teach economics and personal finance.  The program provides not only history of U.S. economics, but the circumstances that led to the current economic system.  Courses in traditional economics (Microeconomics and Macroeconomics) provide the pre-service teacher with a strong background in many factors in economics, i.e. supply and demand, fiscal policy and monetary policy, and unemployment, and public policy implications to name a few.  This background matches the economics goals set forth not only by the Michigan State Board of Education but also by the National Council on Economic Education (ncee.net, Principles of Economics for Prospective teachers) which states that “New teachers are expected to develop economic understanding among their students.  In order to do that, they must acquire principled economic understanding themselves.”  Our courses in economics will do just that.  Evidence:  Our students consistently score at or above the national mean on the MFT—Business, a standardized test administered nationally.  The national mean is 43 and our students range from 42-46 with a 1.9 standard deviation. 


Additionally, courses in economic geography, United States history, and political science will provide the pre-service teacher with a solid knowledge base to prepare lessons and instruct students on the impact of economics decisions not only on the U.S. economy but also on the world economics as well.


Finally, Personal Finance provides pre-service teachers with a background in financial planning, investing, and insurance.  Again, according to the NCEE  “surveys show that nearly half of our young people don't understand how to save and invest for retirement, nor how to handle credit cards.  If we fail to act now to improve economic literacy in this country, our children will be at risk for crippling personal debt, costly decisions at work and at home, and lack competitive skills in a fast-past global economy”.  This class’ importance must therefore be acknowledged as well, as an important component of this minor.


The School of Education Vision Statement states that we are a community of learners bound by the shared values that exemplify excellence in the professional education of teachers.  The School of Education Mission Statement affirms that we are committed to provide opportunities for research, reflection and response in the education of teachers.  We achieve these opportunities through situated and contextual learning experiences, and in the foundations for the development of content knowledge, pedagogical knowledge, and professional dispositions.  We value a commitment to learning communities, and are dedicated to meeting the diverse needs of learners. 


In keeping with the logo of Lake Superior State University, the School of Education summarizes its mission in the motto: EDUCATING TEACHERS FOR TOMORROW’S SCHOOLS

With respect and understanding for individual differences and shared heritages

For whom learning is an ongoing lifelong process, and

With high academic and professional standards


We believe that the act of teaching and learning involves a framework of research, reflection, and response.  We see these elements as an evolving cyclical process, a pathway that learners and leaders of learning must employ to create powerful knowledge bases, develop as participatory members of a democratic society, and establish and maintain environments conducive to learning. The process of research, reflection, and response is focused upon four areas that we believe are the essential elements of expert teaching.  These areas include: content knowledge, pedagogical knowledge, professional dispositions, and learning communities.  At the center of the process of acquiring and applying the skills and knowledge of professional practice we place the learner. 

We see the learner as inclusive of all stakeholders in schooling and education. 


What is

Research:  Expert teachers understand the need to maintain a current perspective on the numerous facets of education.  A professional educator strives to engage in the study of pedagogy, examination of the literature related to teaching and explore avenues for the transformation of theory to practice. The act of research is often precipitated by observed events in the classroom and school.  When dilemmas arise, expert teachers ask questions and then seek answers through research.


Reflection:  John Dewey stated “The active, persistent, careful consideration of any belief or supposed form of knowledge in light of the grounds that support it is reflective thought” (1933, p.9).  Expert teacher are continuously reflecting upon their practice.  Engaging in critique, they look at the elements of teaching as well as their whole practice within the contexts in which pedagogy is engaged.  The act of reflection requires the teacher to question their behavior, their beliefs as determinants of practice, and carefully consider the responsibility of being a leader of learning.


Response: The act of engaging in pedagogy should be responsive.  To implement change or modifications in one’s practice to better facilitate learning is a key element in the repertoire of an expert teacher.  Response however is not change for the sake of change.  Response is the act of planned change given careful research and reflection.  The professional educator employs change in relationship to perceived need, then after review of literature and active research within the classroom, supported by careful reflection, the teacher implements the change.  The expert teacher then monitors the response, actively engaging in continued research and reflection to better their pedagogical practice.


Content Knowledge: Teachers need to be broadly educated in the liberal arts and sciences, and be able to knowledgeable of the interdependence of the disciplines. They must be able to analyze and synthesize ideas, information, and data and make applications of knowledge in inquiry, problem-solving, and critical thinking. The professional educator must be an effective communicator, possessing the skills and abilities of listening, speaking, writing, and reading.


Pedagogical Knowledge: Professional educators must have the knowledge to effectively engage individuals in the learning process.  In order to engage in teaching excellence they must posses a strong understanding of cognition, the multidimensional dimensions of learners and learning, and demonstrate the skills of research, reflection, and responsive pedagogy.   Via an understanding of human growth and development, a variety of instructional techniques, assessments, materials and technologies, and an abundance of practical experience in classrooms, teacher candidates should be able to mature as exemplar professional educators.


Professional Dispositions: Teachers are stewards of society.  They are the models and guides of future generations. In light of their influence in classrooms and schools, all teachers and teacher candidates must model the ethics, values and dispositions of professional educators. They should be able to engage in active reflection, self-critique and accept constructive criticism from others.  The developing professional educator should invite and respect others' points of view and incorporate reasonable suggestions from peers and experts.  Teachers and teacher candidates should be committed to life-long learning and the belief that all candidates can learn.  


Learning Communities: Schools and classrooms are microcosms of society, and as such are the venues for candidates to learn and grow as participatory members of the community.  The themes of caring, responsibil°ity, democracy, and stewardship are woven into the fabric of curriculum as teachers and teacher candidates take on the role of facilitators of environments conducive to learning while modeling tolerance, dignity, participation and shared decision making.


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b. Describe the sequence of courses and/or experiences to develop an understanding of the structures, skills, core concepts, ideas, values, facts, methods of inquiry, and uses of technology.


Students enrolling in the Teaching Economics minor will take courses according to the following sequence:


(Courses with Pre-requisites                

Math competency required)                 (No prerequisite)

FN242 Personal Finance                      GG302 Economic Geography

EC202 Prin of Macroeconomics           HS132 United States History II

EC201 Prin of Microeconomics            PS110 Intro to American Government


(EC202 Prerequisite requiredand Junior standing:)

BA403 Business, Government and Society


(TE150, TE250, TE301 Prerequisite required)

TE490 Economics Methods


Students will take FN242, EC202, and EC201 when they have obtained Math competency which can be obtained b completing MA086 Introductory Algebra III or equivalent/satisfactory score on ACT or Placement exam.  The bolded text indicates prerequites for the courses.


Formal admission to the School of Education teacher certification program also requires (in addition to university general education requirements of one year English, one semester of speech, one year of social sciences, on year of humanities and a course in student diversity), the following items:

CS101 Introduction to Computer Science – addressing basic competencies in technology

MA207 Statistics

Michigan Test for Teacher Certification Basic Skills Test

Formal Interview

Impromptu timed essay – assessing written communication skills

2.70 minimum overall GPA with no grade below C in major/minor, and

B- minimum grade in professional education sequence courses.


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c.  Describe how candidates are prepared to utilize a variety of instructional approaches to address the various learning styles of candidates.


Student learning styles are a significant topic addressed in the professional education core sequence, especially in TE250 Student Diversity and Schools and TE301 Learning Theory and Teaching Practice.  In TE301 candidates analyze various approaches to teaching and learning and the decisions which teachers make in applying theory to diverse classroom situations.  TE490 Economics Methods extends these topics to the science classroom and provide a discipline specific context for continuing these discussions while candidate’s field placements are focused on instructional practice in their science specialty.


d.  Describe any differences that may exist between elementary or secondary preparation to teach in each major or minor area (e.g., instructional resources, field placements, instructional techniques), if applicable.


            Not applicable.  We are applying for certification in secondary economics minor only.  Preservice students will complete TE430, General Methods for Secondary Teachers, TE431 The Secondary Learner, TE440 Reading in the Content Area, thus preparing them for secondary teaching.


e.  Describe how the program incorporates gender equity, multi-cultural, and global perspectives into the teaching of the subject area.


Economics by its very nature discusses many of these issues including global economics and gender equity (economic status).   For example, EC201 Principles of Macroeconomics discusses the Differences in Unemployment between Men and Women and the Differences in Participations Rates in the Labor Forces between Men and Women and the economic impact of this change.  In FN242 Personal Finance, the concept of inclusion is discussed, i.e. the importance of every person establishing both credit histories and investment strategies.  Women, just as men, need to become financially savvy.  Additionally, the courses in geography, government, labor history and business/government/society cover global perspectives and multi-cultural issues.


f.  Describes how the program prepares candidates to use multiple methods of assessment appropriate to this specialty area.

Assessment, in addition to experiences gained through the content courses. These assessments include student scores on the MFT (Major Field Test as described above), student scores on the MTTC test (as described above), and preparedness to teach economic content in TE490 Economics methods course.  In addition, preservice students spend a minimum of 30 hours in observation at the secondary level in an Economics class. 




Section 3 Faculty

Instructional Faculty 




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Section 4 Candidate Preparation

Submit available data specific to the program area being reviewed






Reported in this section are the student results from the MTTC.  During the school year 2003-04, one student from LSSU completed the Teaching Economics minor and took the MTTC.  This student scored a 258 (220 is passing and the state mean is 243).  During October, 2004 a second student took the Economics test and passed with a 252.  Both scores are well above the statewide average.  The data set is small for this minor.  If approved, the School would like to see more students pursuing this minor as a part of their teacher preparation minor and thus increase the data set and be able to report larger number and more significant evidence.



Test Code

Test Date



Scaled Mean Score

# Pass

% Pass

# Not Pass

% Not Pass





















Statewide Economics










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Section 5 Collaborative Partnership

  • Describe how candidates for majors and minors in specific specialty programs participate in early field experiences in K-12 schools. 
  • Describe aspects of the student teaching experience for certification candidates that enhance the applicants’ abilities to teach in this specific specialty area.  Are candidates in your institution assigned to K-12 classrooms as student teachers in both their major and minor (if applicable)? 










Field placements are integrated throughout the professional education sequence beginning with TE250 Student Diversity and Schools where the focus is on tutoring experiences.  In subsequent courses, after admission to the School of Education, candidates have diverse and varied experiences of increasing responsibility and duration.  These early field experiences require a minimum of 15 hours per semester per course in focused experiences coupled with reflective journaling and fulfillment of additional course outcomes focused on the experiences.  Field experiences are required in each of the professional education core courses (TE250, TE301, TE430, TE431, TE440 and TE443) prior to entering the student teaching internship.  During the internship candidates work for approximately 22 weeks under the direct supervision of a classroom teacher and the periodic oversight of a university supervisor.  Candidates meet regularly with a university instructor for a seminar course, and are also concurrently enrolled in a graduate course each of the two semesters of the internship.  During the fall semester, candidates complete TE602 Reflection and Inquiry in Teaching Practice I examining qualitative and quantitative research methods and developing their own research based question addressing student learning.  During the spring semester students complete a second graduate level course on curriculum planning and implementation, TE605.


Student teaching internship placements extend across two university semesters, beginning generally with the start of the academic year in August/September and continuing through mid-April.  Candidates are strongly advised to use the transition at mid-year to change their placement venue to gain experience at a second level or subject area in the spring.  Such changes in placement do require the consent and concurrence of the building principals and teachers, and in some cases teachers wish to continue with a single student the entire time.  Wherever possible candidates are placed in situations where they can teach in both their major and minor fields, either through split morning/afternoon assignments with different teachers, or placements in different schools for each semester.


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Section 6 Professional Development and Support

Postponed until 2005-20012



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Section 8 Special Recognition





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Section 9 Instructional Methods

Describe how candidates are prepared to teach in this specific specialty area. 

Describe how this program will utilize technological resources.







In both Economics classes, students are directed to web sites containing current economic data to be used in class discussion and economic data analysis—refer to EC201 Principles of Microeconomics.  Other courses such as BA403 require students to produce reports on Word utilizing web site and periodical research containing current information on economic policy, ethical environment, and legal consideration.  These critical thinking papers reflect current trends and policies in important economics decisions.  Additionally, TE490, a subset of TE446 Business Methods, covers material on integrating technology into economic classroom.  Students will be required to create a lesson which integrates a technology component, i.e. visit the Federal Reserve Web site for a research paper or use a financial calculator at moneycentral.msn to calculate compounding interest on investments.


Lake Superior State University teacher candidates are prepared in instructional methods through both the professional education sequence (TE150-TE446) and through courses in their economics curriculum.  In the professional education sequence, the secondary candidate completes TE430 General Methods for Secondary Teachers (a study of strategies and methodologies to facilitate learning...), TE440 Reading in the Content Area (a study of reading methods...) and TE490, a subset of TE446 Business Methods (curriculum, objectives, content, materials, organization methods and assessment).  Each of these courses has a required fieldwork component where the candidate applies the concepts and theories through modeling and practice lessons in secondary classrooms as appropriate to their certification. 


Technology is integrated throughout the professional education sequence, in fulfillment of the 7th standard of the Entry Level Standards for Michigan Teachers (ELSMT).  The School of Education uses extensive resources available for Michigan teachers to enhance their preparedness for the effective use of technology, including, for example, the Preparing Teachers for Tomorrow project through Merit (http://ptft.merit.edu) and Intel's Teach to the Future project into our professional education sequence.  This integration is reflected in many of our internal documents which are archived on the School of Education website, including the PTFT alignment matrix and the PTFT assessments per module summary.


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Section 10 Course Descriptions

Provide descriptions of all courses contained on Application Attachment 3.  Descriptions must provide enough information to show that standards could logically be met in these courses. 





Course descriptions for each course are published in the university calendar (catalog), and reproduced here for reference.  Catalog course descriptions broadly describe course objectives, credit earned and prerequisites.  The course syllabi, provided in Section 11, are the more complete record of course content, objectives, assessment, and alignment to the content standards.

    FN242 Personal Finance
    (3,0) 3
    An introduction to the principles of personal
    financial planning. Topics include the financial
    planning process, credit and borrowing
    fundamentals, analysis of savings, investments
    and taxes, individual insurance, retirement and
    estate planning. Prerequisite: MA086 or
    equivalent/satisfactory score on ACT or
    Placement Exam.
    EC201 Principles of Macroeconomics
    (3,0) 3
    Nature and scope of economics; national income
    accounting; problems of unemployment and
    price instability; public revenues and expenditures;
    money and banking; fiscal and monetary
    policies to promote stability and economic
    growth. Prerequisite: MA086 or equivalent/
    satisfactory score on ACT or Placement Exam.
    EC202 Principles of Microeconomics
    (3,0) 3
    Principles of economic reasoning; supply and
    demand analysis; theories of production; price
    and output determination under each of the four
    market structures; factor returns and income
    distribution theories; public policy implications.
    Prerequisite: MA086 or equivalent/satisfactory
    score on ACT or Placement Exam.
    HS132 United States History II
    (4,0) Spring 4
    A study of United States history from the end of
    the Civil War to the present.
    GG302 Economic Geography
    (4,0) alternate years 4
    A study of the internal and external interrelationships
    of the various economic groupings of the
    world; i.e. North America, Europe and the
    emerging third world.
    PS110 Introduction to American
    Government and Politics
    (4,0) 4
    An introductory survey of American national
    government and politics.
    BA403 Business, Government and
    (3,0) 3
    This course examines the relationships of the
    business firm to government and to society. The
    course focuses on the economic, legal, political,
    social and ethical environment of business firms.
    Topics include consumer protection, environmental
    regulation, antitrust, constitutional and
    administrative law, alternative dispute resolution,
    and other topics of current concern. The
    business firm is examined in the context of
    market capitalism and the global economy. The
    course is structured to meet communication intensive
    requirement of general education.
    Prerequisites: EC202 and junior standing.
    TE446 Business Education Methods
    for Secondary Teachers
    (3,0) 3
    A study of strategies and methodologies to
    facilitate effective business course instruction.
    Students learn to plan and present office cluster,
    accounting, marketing and computer software
    lessons and units using contemporary methods.
    Students use national and state standards and
    benchmarks in planning instruction and
    assessment. Integrated technology component.
    Field work required. Prerequisites: TE150,
    TE250, TE301 and admission to the teacher
    education program.



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Section 11 Syllabi


Provide a representative syllabus for each required course (those listed on Application Attachment 3 and referenced in the standards matrix).






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