Besides the final assessment, teachers can gather evidence of student learning by building regular formative assessments into their lessons or units. Formative assessments can include short quizzes, peer evaluations, discussions, one-on-one student-teacher interviews and student self-reflections. The intention of these progress assessments should be to gauge abilities like critical thinking, inquiry, problem-solving and foundational knowledge as it pertains to the course content.
Interested in more professional development opportunities for teachers? Explore education courses and certificates at the University of San Diego’s Division of Professional and Continuing Education.
Backward design in education is a lesson planning strategy that starts with the final assessment, then asks teachers to build their lessons toward that goal. This differs from transitional lesson design, in which teachers identify content they need to cover, build relevant lessons, then create the final assessment. Backward lesson design encourages teachers to be more intentional about their lesson plans and ensures that they make the best use of class time.
Most teachers who earn master’s degrees are asked to write a philosophy statement as part of their program. Whether or not you have a master’s degree in education, you may be asked to provide some form of a teaching philosophy statement when applying for certain academic or administrative positions. You may also want to craft a version of this statement as the introduction to your teaching portfolio, as your LinkedIn bio, your resume objective statement or your bio for any accreditations (such as for contributions to a publication, awards, volunteer work, etc.).
You will likely never be asked to recite your teaching philosophy, and a lack of a formal written philosophy should not bar you from consideration for teaching jobs. That said, when sitting for interviews, teaching applicants should demonstrate a clear teaching philosophy through their answers.
Teachers use all sorts of scaffolding tools to help students along the path to comprehension. Show and tell, visual aids, flashcards and making real-world connections are all ways that teachers can transfer ownership of core concepts to students.
While these are two approaches to classroom instruction, they are not interchangeable, although they can be combined. Scaffolding is the process of breaking lessons into manageable units, with the teacher providing decreasing levels of support as students grasp new concepts and master new skills. Differentiation is the act of giving certain students different types of assignments or learning engagements based on the way they receive and retain information, so as to help them succeed alongside their peers.
Data varies, but the states in which public school teachers consistently make the most money include New York, Massachusetts, Maryland, Rhode Island, California and Connecticut. In the wake of the COVID-19 public health crisis, some states have passed legislation raising teacher salaries.
While a master’s degree is not necessarily an indicator of teaching skill, teaching candidates with master’s degrees are consistently given preference over those with bachelor’s degrees only. Regardless, the more time and dedication given to improving your teaching ability, the more likely you will be considered for higher-level (i.e. higher paid) positions.
A teaching salary is highly dependent on geographical location, even down to the part of town you teach in. The Bureau of Labor Statistics finds that, as of May 2021, the annual mean wage for elementary and high school teachers tops out at roughly $87,000 and $94,000, respectively. Salaries typically increase for academic specializations.
You can enroll through our website, or you may call during business hours of 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM (PST), M-F, at (619) 260-4585 or toll free at (888) 321-6658.
For additional information regarding any of our courses or programs please complete the Contact Us Form or you may call our office during business hours of 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM (PST), M-F, at (619) 260-4585 or toll free at (888) 321-6658.
Search for your course name or number using Search Courses* fill out as much information about your course as you know and click search. If you cannot find the course you are looking for, please Contact Us
Because our courses are not degree-seeking, we are unable to offer financial aid or assist with loan deferments.
No, all professional and continuing education courses are open enrollment. An application to USD is not required. You can search for the course you want on the Find a Course page and click through to the course description to enroll.
Click here for complete details regarding our refund, drop and transfer policies.
Independent Study Self-Paced courses – USD allows 9 months from the date of registration to complete an independent study formatted course and submit all completed course work for evaluation.
Online Self-Paced courses – USD allows 6 months from the date of registration to complete an online self-paced formatted course and submit all assignments for evaluation within this period.
If you need additional time and would like to make an extension request, contact us prior to your upcoming deadline at firstname.lastname@example.org or call between 8:30AM – 5:00PM (PST), M-F, at (619) 260-4585 or toll free at (888) 321-6658 for a one-time extension. If an extension is granted, it is final.
Classroom, Online Fixed-Date, and Credit Validation formatted courses do not allow for any additional time to complete assignments.
Most of our courses do not count toward a degree, unless otherwise stated on the course website page. While credit earned for our courses may be accepted by some universities as applicable towards a degree it is ultimately the decision of the institution you plan to transfer the credit to. It is highly recommended and the responsibility of the student to confirm the transferability with the other institution
The credit earned is considered Graduate Level Extension Credit, in semester hours (1 semester hour = 15 contact hours). The credit earned is usually used for salary advancement, credential renewing and/or recertification. Graduate Level Extension credit is not usually transferrable towards a degree. Prior district approval is highly recommended and the responsibility of the student if using the units towards salary advancement, credential renewing and/or recertification.
Courses in the 500-599, 700-799, and 800-899 series are professional, graduate level (post-baccalaureate) extension credit courses in the field of education. Courses are specifically designed to meet the needs of beginning, veteran and prospective educators (K-12, and sometimes applicable toward the college/university level) in both public and private school systems. Areas of emphasis include pedagogy, curriculum design, teaching methods and development of materials. Course credit fulfills requirements for professional growth, in-service and salary-step hurdle requirements, and may be applied toward an academic degree or teacher credentialing program subject to the prior approval of the institution in question. Course credit is recorded on an official university transcript and becomes part of the student’s permanent record at USD.
Online Self-Paced and Independent Study Self-Paced Courses: Self-Paced formatted courses allow one to take courses without sitting in a classroom. You will use course textbooks, manuals, assignments and exams to learn and earn credit. Depending on the course and format, you will also use streaming audio and video, CD-ROM, and download embedded materials through the Internet. Communication with your instructor will take place by email, within the online learning platform, phone or fax. Your instructor will provide feedback via written responses on your assignments and exams. Grades are based on completed projects, assignments and exams. You can register at any time and you will have six or nine months to complete your course, depending on the format of the course.
Is Self-Paced right for me?
Self-Paced courses offer flexibility and the ability to complete a course quicker than a traditional live course. Our courses deliver the same high-quality content and expert instruction as traditional, “face-to-face” courses. You can register at any time and you will have six or nine months to complete your course, depending on the format of the course. These courses work well for:
Online Fixed-Date courses offer a convenient, yet rigorous style of learning that allows you to structure your education to suit your schedule while keeping you on pace toward achieving your educational goals. Online Fixed-Date courses have fixed start and finish dates similar to classroom courses, but as an online student, you will have access to your classroom at any time and can view your assignments, syllabus, and course resources from any computer with Internet capability.
Online Fix-Date courses offer the same high-quality content and expert instruction as the courses held on-ground at the University of San Diego. Instructors facilitate courses through engaging multimedia presentations and provide prompt feedback to questions within a 24-48 hour time frame. This online format allows students to interact with classmates worldwide and replicate in-classroom interactions through weekly discussion forums, chats and email communication.
Online Self-Paced courses are a perfect blend of accessibility, convenience and flexibility for you to control your learning pace. You will use course textbooks, manuals, assignments and exams to learn and earn credit. Depending on the course, you may also use streaming audio and video, CD-ROM, and download embedded materials through the Internet. Communication with your instructor will take place online through your course site. Your instructor will provide feedback via written responses on your assignments and exams. Grades are based on completed projects, assignments and exams. You can register at any time and you will have six months from the time of registration to complete your course.
Classroom courses are offered in a traditional classroom where you can connect with your instructor and classmates in a live setting. This learning environment facilitates a communication on a given subject in real time, enables immediate feedback, and fosters interaction with the instructor and like-minded classmates. To see if a course is being offered in a location near you please click on Search Courses on the website’s top navigation in Programs: then Filter by SUBJECT AREA/PROGRAM and LOCATION. Classroom courses have a scheduled start and end date in which you are expected to attend the courses at that location for all course sessions.
The address for classroom courses are provided at the section level detail on the course page. Once you know the address, we recommend you use Google Maps. Otherwise please contact the ESS during business hours of 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM (PST), M-F, at (619) 260-4585 or toll free at (888) 321-6658.
USD’s Open Campus initiative provides an administrative mechanism through which members of the broader San Diego community might enroll in and attend USD campus courses on a space-available basis after receiving the signed permission of the course instructor and a department, school or college administrator.
The application process for Open Campus does not require University admission. Open Campus offers course enrollment on a space-available basis only. Please note that Open Campus students are not guaranteed access to courses. Instructors must provide permission before Open Campus students may attend a course. Participation in Open Campus does not grant admission to degree programs at the University of San Diego. For information about joining degree programs please contact Admissions.
For more information regarding Open Campus please go to www.sandiego.edu/opencampus.
Transcripts can be ordered online via your student account. Transcripts are $15 each ($25 for International Business Transcripts). For more detailed information, please visit the Student Transcript Request Page
No. Parking fees are not included in the course fee. Parking is enforced 7AM-7PM M-F. For information on metered or permit purchase, please refer to Parking information for PCE students and guests
USD Professional and Continuing Education allows for a maximum of 18 units to be completed during any one semester: FALL (September – December); SPRING (January – April); and SUMMER (May – August).
A payment confirmation is automatically sent via email once you have registered and paid for a course through the website, please save these receipts for tax purposes. In addition, you can access receipts in your Student Account, Account History.
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Yes, on the course page, click on Request Information and you will be notified by email when enrollment is open for the course or you can complete the Course Inquiry form