Teacher Education Department

Student teaching abroad

Costa Rica informational video

If you are looking for a truly unique experience consider completing your student teaching requirement abroad in Costa Rica. You will complete a 75-day internship with a mentor teacher in one of our partner schools. Your housing will be arranged and scholarships and financial aid are available.

Our program

Our student teaching abroad experience is a 16-week long internship that fulfills our student teaching requirement for graduation and the Colorado teaching certification. This unique experience offers you an opportunity to broaden your perspectives on education, culture, and language. You will also develop cultural and global competencies and work with diverse learners. Throughout the internship, you will have the opportunity to travel and explore Costa Rica as well as neighboring countries.

Our partner schools

The internship can be completed at Pan American School or Blue Valley School. These schools are accredited in the United States and instruction is in English.

Timeline

Alyssa Montoya, Kelly McCabe and Sydney Sherman at the Pan-American School in Costa Rica
Alyssa Montoya, Kelly McCabe and Sydney Sherman
at the Pan-American School in Costa Rica

PHASE ONE - work to be completed two full semesters before the beginning of your student teaching semester (i.e., a full calendar year ahead):

  • Attend at least one TED study abroad informational session;
  • Submission of Student Teach Abroad Proposal will include grades/GPA, discussion of organizational skills, enumeration/understanding of costs);
  • End of third month of each semester (November/March): faculty response to student teach abroad application.
    (Approval, provisional approval with conditions, denial); 
  • Successful completion of Immersion I classes and field study assignments (for Early Childhood and Elementary Education majors); and
  • Registration for International Studies - GS 251.

PHASE TWO - upon TED approval to pursue placement abroad, this work is to be completed one full semester before the beginning of your student teaching semester:

  • Attend GS 251 seminar (visas, waivers, research, portfolio, etc.);
  • Successful completion of Immersion II classes and field study assignments (for Early Childhood and Elementary Education majors);
  • Student Teaching Application (This is separate from Student Teaching abroad application and will include letters of recommendation);
  • Coordination with Dr. Di Ryter: housing provisions, cultural and school information, etc.;
  • Field Experience Coordinator seeks confirmed placement at participating schools; and
  • Signed Student Teaching and Out-of-Area contract submitted to the Field Experience Coordinator.

PHASE THREE – Work to be completed prior to the start and during your Student Teaching Semester:

  • Contracted support of College Supervisor;
  • Contracted support of Cooperating Teacher;
  • Weekly communication with Teacher Education faculty and Field Experience Coordinator;
  • Completion of all work outlined in Student Teaching course syllabus;
  • Completion of minimum 75 days/600 hours of supervised practice teachin;
  • Completion of Professional Exhibition (via remote video, website and other media, if necessary);
  • Successful evaluations from Cooperating Teacher (3 narratives, 1 midterm);
  • Successful evaluations from College Supervisor (4-6 individual lesson, 1 cumulative final); and
  • Attend a follow-up meeting on lessons learned abroad.

Megan Butterman, Class of 2017"Student teaching in itself is a life-changing experience, but student teaching abroad added a whole new level of growth, maturity, language learning, mental health improvement, and so on, on top of my exponential growth as a teacher. The support from professors, my cooperating teacher, friends, and PAS made it so I could enjoy my time here traveling nearly every weekend along with lesson planning, grading, etc. My cooperating teacher is now my friend and my host mom will forever be my Tica mom who I just recently visited for día de los madres. I have officially been working right out of college as a 5th grade teacher at another private school here in Costa Rica for almost 9 weeks. My class of 20 amazing students is incredible, active, loud, engaged, and motivated. I love sharing art, music, literature, and other interests with my students. Without taking the risk to hop on the plane to a country where I spoke almost none of the language, I would not be living today as an ex-pat in Costa Rica, learning Spanish through immersion, have a second mother figure, believe so much in my own abilities, be an international educator during my first year, nor be nearly as happy with my life. If you are curious about stepping out of your comfort zone, I suggest to take the leap!”

–Megan Butterman, Class of 2017 


For more information contact:

Di Ryter, PhD
Assistant Professor of Education

Office: EBH 254
Email: daryter@fortlewis.edu
Phone: 970-247-7418

William A. Camp
Coordinator of Field Experience

Office: EBH 242
Email: camp_w@fortlewis.edu
Phone: 970-247-7281

Resources