COVID-19 Information for COE Programs

This page provides information and answers to frequently asked questions about the teacher education programs and graduate education programs at Grand Valley State University during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Please also see GVSU's Main COVID-19 Information page for all university-wide information.


Keep calm and wash your hands.
Keep calm and wash your hands.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

All College of Education advising appointments now meet virtually. This can be through phone or an online/remote learning platform, as arranged with your advisor.

To schedule an appointment, please contact the Student Information and Services Center by emailing or calling (616) 331-6650.

The College of Education is in daily talks with school districts, the Michigan Department of Education, and university leadership to discuss options for Field Placements in Fall 2020. As events develop around COVID-19, GVSU will abide by all health guidelines. This includes optimal conditions for social distancing, sanitation and health check protocols. We will provide information to students enrolled in field placements as soon as we are able.

  • All events and meetings that are scheduled should be hosted virtually or rescheduled, until further notice.
  • Please check GVSU's Main COVID-19 Information page for updates on the university's plan for on-campus and virtual events and classes.
  • If an event or meeting needs to be converted to a virtual event or rescheduled, the College of Education will communicate via email with all involved as soon as we are able.

Health & Safety FAQs

The latest information is available on the  GVSU COVID-19 Information Website.

Also visit the  GVSU Counseling and Psychological Services Website for information about counseling services that are available for students.

Follow CDC Guidelines . If you are a student and you suspect you may have COVID-19, please contact your healthcare provider or GVSU Campus Health Center (616-252-6030) to consult with someone about your symptoms and determine next steps for your care. Follow your placement school’s protocol regarding absences due to illness (specifically COVID-19) and connect with your College of Education (COE) University Field Director or graduate practicum supervisor to let them know and discuss any concerns that you have. You can also schedule a meeting with a GVSU CARE Advisor  to help navigate your illness and academics.

As a GVSU teacher candidate, you have the responsibility for the health and safety of the students that you serve in your field placement classroom, school, or practicum setting.  If you have been exposed to COVID-19, do NOT attend your field placement or practicum setting.  Contact your healthcare provider and alert your university field or graduate practicum supervisor.

Clinical Field Placement FAQs - Teacher Assisting, Student Teaching, Graduate Practicum

If you are completing your teacher assisting, student teaching, or graduate practicum experience in the fall you are expected to adhere to the class/school schedule and structure of your assigned cooperating teacher/PK-12 school, or practicum, setting.  You will be expected to follow the health and safety guidelines required by your PK-12 school setting.  You will be expected to complete all requirements of the teacher assisting, student teaching, or graduate practicum experience outlined in your field course syllabi.

Additional Information for Undergraduate and Graduate Teacher Certification Candidates

If you haven’t already done so, you should contact your assigned cooperating teacher prior to the start of the fall semester to learn what the school’s return to learning plan is for fall and what the cooperating teacher/your schedule will be.

As we learn more from our partner schools about their return to learning plans, the COE will communicate this information to you.  It is likely that you may be placed in a school that is utilizing a hybrid format where students are receiving both face-to-face and online instruction or a staggered schedule where different students attend school face-to-face at alternating times of the day, on alternating days, or alternating weeks.

If you are an undergraduate student, please contact your University Field Director to discuss.  Should a shift need to be made, your UFD will coordinate with your Field Placement Specialist.  If you are a graduate student, please contact your Graduate Practicum Supervisor or Graduate Program Director.  

  • EDI 330 Teacher Assisting: Elementary- Sheryl Vlietstra,
  • EDI 430 Student Teaching: Elementary- Liz Storey,
  • Elementary Field Placement Specialist- Lisa René Norris,
  • EDI 331 Teacher Assisting: Secondary- CJ Mehall,
  • EDI 431/432 Student Teaching: Secondary- Dr. Raul Ysasi,
  • Secondary Field Placement Specialist- Kym Pawelka,
  • EDS 332 Methods and Strategies of Special Education Teaching- Dr. Barb Lubic,
  • Special Education Field Placement Specialist- Denise McConnell-Brown,
  • EDI 685 Graduate Teacher Certification Program (GTC) Practicum/Graduate Field Placement- Dr. Rosemary Cleveland,
  • Other graduate 685 program students, please contact your Graduate Program Director.

Teacher assistant, student teachers, and graduate practicum students are expected to complete the required clinical field experiences to earn academic credit toward the mandatory Michigan Department of Education (MDE) teacher, administrator, or school counselor certification requirements.  Students who have been notified of a cancellation of their clinical field placement, should contact the appropriate Field Placement Specialist or Graduate Program Director immediately.

All candidates being recommended for teacher, administrator, or school counselor licensure in the state of Michigan must complete the MDE required amount of clinical field experience hours.  In addition, the field experience is necessary for candidates to demonstrate proficiency across the professional standards, so students are required to complete their clinical field experiences.  Should the state of MI, GVSU, or your placement school determine the need to shift completely to remote instruction, the COE relies on guidance from the MDE about how candidates can complete the clinical field requirements.  In such a case, we will do our best to ensure minimal disruption to your field clinical experience and that you have the opportunity to demonstrate the professional standards for your area of licensure.

Academic FAQs

Faculty carefully planned for the fall semester.  In many instances, seminars and professional development will be offered online synchronously (everyone online/in class at same time), or in a hybrid format.  Please refer to the Banner schedule to determine specifically how your seminars, professional development and other associated education courses will be formatted for Fall 2020. Regardless of format, all students will be expected to fulfill the requirements that are indicated on the course syllabus.  Any concerns related to the ability to meet specified deadlines should be addressed with your seminar instructor, your University Field Coordinator, or course instructor. 

Should you have a concern related to the use of technology for coursework or technology use required in your placement setting, please refer to the following resources. You may also contact your University Field Director or Graduate Program Director.

Technology Requirements for Online/hybrid Courses

Tips for Online Learning

Webinar resources for delivering PK-12 instruction online

It depends on your individual circumstance. The GVSU Incomplete Grade Policy must be followed. All clinical field requirements must be satisfactorily completed to earn course credit and ensure that the earned grade is posted to the Banner system, prior to recommendation to the state for teacher, administrator, or school counselor certification and graduation.

Please contact the Office of Financial Aid .  Please review the academic calendar to determine the deadlines associated with course payment.

Special Circumstance and Financial Hardship Requests

Study Abroad FAQs

Please contact your study abroad director and your University Field Director. 

Padnos International Center has suspended all Fall 2020 study abroad experiences.

Online Resources