teacher standing in front of classroom where children are raising their hands

EDUC&191 Practicum Course

Students pursuing Pierce College’s Paraeducation and Elementary Education pathways are encouraged to take EDUC&191: Field Experience 1 – Cooperative Work Experience to support their understanding of the education field. In a pre-K-12 setting while working alongside a teacher or paraeducator, students will do the following:

  • Assist in providing instruction that meets the needs of diverse learners.
  • Demonstrate practice reflective of district policy, state laws, and professional code of ethics.
  • Foster and support culturally responsive and inclusive learning environments for all students.
  • Demonstrate effective communication skills with students, families and staff.

This course is typically offered each fall quarter; however, typical course offerings are subject to change.

EDUC&191 requires volunteer hours in a K-12 classroom or educational setting. This course is variable credit, meaning the number of credits you choose for this course will dictate the number of total volunteer hours you are required to complete in your placement.

  • Taking the course as a 3-credit class requires 30 total volunteer hours.
  • Taking the course as a 4-credit class requires 45 total volunteer hours.
  • Taking the course as a 5-credit class requires 60 total volunteer hours.

If you are unsure of the appropriate number of course credits you should take for your degree plan, please contact your assigned advisor.

EDUC&191 practicum students must demonstrate the following before they are approved for enrollment and placement by Pierce College staff:

Pierce College Practicum Application

All prospective students must complete an EDUC&191 practicum application to be able to enroll and be placed. The application, administered through SurveyMonkey, provides the Education department with contact information, placement preferences and considerations, the required release forms to participate in practicums, and the opportunity to upload other practicum requirements. Contact for application information.

Washington State Patrol Background Check

Pierce College's Education Program conducts background checks on volunteers who will be or who may have unsupervised access to children less than sixteen years of age, developmentally disabled persons, or vulnerable adults. Students interested in enrolling in EDUC&191 will have a background check inquiry made on their behalf (at the time of requested enrollment only) to the Washington State Patrol pursuant to RCW 43.43.832/43.43.834. Responses are limited to Washington State records only, and are furnished solely on the basis of name(s) and/or description similarity to the requested information:

  • Full legal name
  • Date of birth
  • Gender
  • Aliases/maiden name/other names used

Students are also required to disclose whether they (1) have been convicted of a crime, and/or (2) have had findings made against them in any civil adjudicative proceeding as defined in RCW 43.43.830. Disclosures and background check results may not immediately result in denial to enroll in EDUC&191. Prospective students will be notified of the Washington State Patrol's response within ten days of receipt by Pierce College.

Student Intern Insurance

For your own protection, practicum students are required to show proof of professional liability coverage ($1,000,000 minimum) before beginning any practicum experience in K-12 classrooms/programs. There are two options to fulfill this requirement:

  • Provide proof of your own coverage from your local insurance provider. The policy must specifically address professional liability insurance.
  • Purchase an internship liability insurance policy through Pierce College for $6.75. You can submit payment to the Cashiering Office:
    • In-person during business hours on the Fort Steilacoom or Puyallup campuses

Please Note: Students completing practicum hours at their place of employment do not need to purchase insurance; it is assumed that these students are covered under their employer's professional liability insurance.

Once your application is complete, Education department staff will contact you with registration information and work on your behalf to seek placement in an appropriate school setting. Incomplete applications will not be put forth for placement. For guaranteed placement, students must complete ALL above enrollment requirements by August 15.