Education students tackle the blocks
College relaxes grading system
By Andrea Martinez
Bridge contributing writer
Published Monday, April 20, 2020
TAMIU’s College of Education holds one of the highest graduation rates in the University. However, the College does not allow students who do not pass the teacher certification exams to move on to Blocks II and III of the program.
Up to three blocks exist for education students in order to graduate, yet some students are finding a difficult time graduating due to incomplete blocks.
“We want to demonstrate to the school districts that these students showed that they are knowledgeable in the subject they teach,” Associate Dean Alfredo Ramirez Jr. said.
The intent of this process is to help students prepare for Block III, as this is the final block necessary to graduate. It is also known as clinical teaching; students acquire field-based experience, which is required by the state. At Texas A&M International University, students who do not pass the certification exam cannot go out and gain this experience.
“It is a very stressful thing,” Ec-6 bilingual emphasis major Elia Diaz said, “since I spent three years of my life dedicated to this major for me to get stuck and not be able to move on.”
Difficulties can increase for students since they need to pass not one but four exams for their teacher certification.
Something that helped relieve students included the return of the grading system to normal.
Ramirez said that it was brought back because “Our students now are performing at a higher rate on the state certification exams,” Ramirez said regarding the change in the grading system.
This lifted some weight off some students’ shoulders.
“It was a relief having a normal grading system [again],” Diaz said. “There were some A’s that I missed because of the grading system.”