Field Experience

What is field experience?

Bachelor of Education students undertake 20 weeks of in-classroom practicum, or field experience, organized into four, cohort-based courses: EDUC 440, EDUC 465, EDUC 540, and EDUC 560.


The learning experience in field

All field experiences involve school learning experiences supported by an online classroom environment. During each field experience, student teachers participate in seminars, read and discuss assigned readings, complete individual and group assignments, and share final presentations based on their field experience learning.

Fields I, II, III, and IV

In Field Experience I, students are not placed with partner teachers, but instead visit multiple classrooms to find out about life in schools.

In Field Experience II, III & IV, student teachers are mentored by partner teachers, and gradually work toward assuming the full responsibilities of a classroom teacher.

Although Field Experience III and Field Experience IV are separate field courses, with individual course expectations, students will ideally be placed in the same school with the same partner teacher for both experiences.

Interested in becoming a partner teacher? Visit our partner teacher site


Books

EDUC 440: Field Experience I

  • 2 weeks in the Fall, first EDUC term
  • Students work in cohorts
  • Experience from K -12
  • Structured as ethnographic research inquiry into the culture of schools
  • Deeply integrated into two on-campus courses (EDUC 430 and EDUC 435)
  • Course description
Physics

EDUC 465: Field Experience II

  • Four weeks in the Winter, second EDUC term
  • One to two students are paired with a mentor teacher
  • Inquiry theme is individual learners and learning
  • Focus is on working with individuals and small groups
  • Assignments include planning and implementing a series of learning experiences for a small group of learners, and team-teaching with individuals and small groups of learners, with a mentor teacher's guidance
  • Course description
Art

EDUC 540: Field Experience III

  • Six weeks in the Fall, third EDUC term
  • Individually paired with mentor teacher
  • Focus is on complex dimensions of learning and teaching in context of whole program
  • Students will have a graduated process of assuming teaching responsibly up to 75% by the end of their field experience, with emphasis on diversity
  • Under partner teachers' mentorship, the student extends their understanding of planning, assessment, and self assessment
  • Course description
Pottery

EDUC 560: Field Experience IV

  • Eight weeks in the Winter, final EDUC term
  • Individually paired with a mentor teacher
  • Focus is on curriculum planning, implementation, and assessment
  • Although Field Experience III and Field Experience IV are separate field courses, with individual course expectations, students will ideally be placed in the same school with the same partner teacher for both experiences.
  • Course description

Police Information Checks

All students participating in field experience require a Police Information Check. Visit our detailed site for more details on obtaining your PIC.


Important Field Experience Information

Field Experience will take place in schools, in person for all students.

  1. EDUC 440: Field Experience I

     Dates

     October 12-22, 2021

     Seminars

     None

     

     Reminder: 

     Calgary & Area placement sites are informed by the EDUC 430 section you have enrolled in. Please refer to the Registration Guide - On-Campus for details. 

     Out of Area placement sites are informed by your Placement Request form submission. 

  2. EDUC 465: Field Experience II

     Dates

     March 14th - April 22nd, 2022+

     +Field II is four weeks. Start and end dates will depend on the timing and duration of the Spring holiday at each school. Ensure that you are available for the entirety of the six weeks stated.

     Mandatory Seminars

     Calgary-and-Area

     Seminar I: Wednesday, March 2, 2022; 9:00AM-12:00PM or 1:00PM-4:00PM

     Seminar II: Thursday, April 21, 2022; 9:00AM-12:00PM or 1:00PM-4:00PM*

     Out-of-Area

     Seminar I: Anticipated: Wednesday, March 2, 2022**

     Seminar II: Anticipated: Thursday, April 21, 2022**

     

     *Please ensure you are available for both times, as seminars will not be assigned until placements are finalized
     **Seminar dates and times will be confirmed by the instructor, as seminars will not be available until placements are finalized

  3. EDUC 540: Field Experience III

     Dates

     November 1st - December 10th, 2021

     

     Mandatory Seminars

    On-Campus

    Seminar I: Tuesday, October 19, 2021; 4:00PM - 5:00PM

    Seminar II: Friday, November 26, 2021; 9:00AM-12:00PM or 1:00PM-4:00PM*

    Out-of-Area

    Seminar dates and times will be as arranged by the instructor

    Seminar I: Anticipated: Tuesday, October 19, 2021**

    Seminar II: Anticipated: Friday, November 26, 2021** 

     

    *Please ensure you are available for both times, as seminars will not be assigned until placements are finalized
    **Seminar dates and times will be confirmed by the instructor, as seminars will not be available until placements are finalized

  4. EDUC 560: Field Experience IV

    Dates

    February 14th - April 22nd, 2022+

    +Field IV is eight weeks. Start and end dates will depend on the timing and duration of the relevant Teachers' Convention and Spring holiday at each school. Ensure that you are available for the entirety of the ten weeks stated.

     

    Mandatory Seminars

    On-Campus

    Seminar I: Tuesday, February 8, 2022; 8:00AM-9:00AM

    Seminar II: Friday, March 11, 2022; 9:00AM-12:00PM or 1:00PM-4:00PM*

    Seminar III: Friday, April 22, 2022; 9:00AM-12:00PM or 1:00PM-4:00PM*

    Out-of-Area

    Seminar dates and times will be as arranged by the instructor

    Seminar I: Anticipated: Tuesday, February 8, 2022**

    Seminar II: Anticipated: Friday, March 11, 2022**

    Seminar III: Anticipated: Friday, April 22, 2022**

     

    *Please ensure you are available for both times, as seminars will not be assigned until placements are finalized
    **Seminar dates and times will be confirmed by the instructor, as seminars will not be available until placements are finalized

Please be familiar with your roles and responsibilities as outlined in the Pre-Service Teacher Field Experience Handbook.

When submitting your field forms to help out team arrange your placements, you will be asked to define your 'territory' as follows: are you seeking a placement in Calgary-and-Area or Out-of-Area?

  1. Calgary and Area Placements

    This includes school divisions in and around the City of Calgary.

    Geographically, Calgary & Area includes: Airdrie, Beiseker, Black Diamond, Blakie, Bragg Creek, Calgary, Cayley, Chestermere, Cochrane, Crossfield, Heritage Heights, High River, Indus, Kathyrn, Langdon, Longview, Millarville, Okotoks, Red Deer Lake, Springbank, Strathmore, Turner Valley. 

    Looking for your Calgary-and-Area community and/or quadrant? Use our UPE Field Map.

    We have named our quadrants using a color, as well as a description - when you complete your Placement Request form, we will ask you to refer to quadrant color. This helps flag our quadrants are not the same as the City of Calgary quadrant divisions. 

    Note: If you are a Community-based student, and wish to complete your Field Experience in Calgary & Area, please email the UPE Field Experience team for additional information and forms. 

  2. Out of Area Placements

    Out of Area placements are field experience placements in rural and remote areas.

    These placements occur in school divisions that are not considered Calgary and area. 

    Field experience placements can be arranged across rural and remote areas of Alberta, the Northwest Territories, the Yukon, in rural and remote British Columbia, and Indigenous Schools. 

    Note: If you are an on-campus student, and wish to complete your Field Experience in a rural and remote area, please email the UPE Field Experience team for additional information and forms. 

Considerations for Field I in Calgary & Area

Calgary & Area placement sites are informed by the EDUC 430 section you have enrolled in. Please refer to the Registration Guide - On-Campus for details. Your placement request form helps us to confirm your location and additional considerations. 

Only Field I is informed by your EDUC 430 registration: future placements will be informed by the 'Field Experience Placement Request Form'. Your section will prioritize your Field Experience placement in a specific area or quadrant in Calgary and Area. Please know placement sites are limited and we appreciate your flexibility.  

Considerations for Field I in rural and remote locations "Out of Area":

Out of Area placement sites are informed by your Placement Request form submission. This submission allows the Directors of Field Experience to begin the out-of-area placement process as soon as is possible.

Please remember to enroll in the correct EDUC 430 section, based on your geographical area. Please refer to the Registration Guide - Community Based for details.

The location of your placement will be determined by two principles: attention to diversity of experience and attention to teachable subject area. Your residential location will be considered although it is secondary to those principles.

 

The Placement Request Form

You will be asked to submit your "Placement Request Form" through our online student field experience portal. When submitting your form, you will be asked a variety of questions that assists us facilitating your placement.

The Field Experience team uses the information collected through the form to determine your preferences, ineligible sites, potential conflicts of interest, residential address during Field Experience and access to a vehicle or public transportation.

We strongly encourage you to include your preferences, professional and educational background, and interests in this form as this information helps us and our educational partners choose the most appropriate placement and partner teacher for you.

 

Spring 2021 Update: The placement request form is now available!

Please email the UPE Field Experience team for more information about the the Placement Request form. This form is required and will ensure we have the correct information to secure your Field Experience placement. We have a Placement Request Form guide to assist you when completing the form - please review this document before submitting your form. 

You will not have access to the Field Experience Placement Request form until you have enrolled in your Field Experience course.

Please check your Fall and Winter registration and ensure that you are enrolled in your classes. The Field Team's communications rely on your registration in the appropriate Field Experience courses. Please register for your Field Experience courses through the UCalgary Student Centre.

We ask all pre-service teachers note these important considerations in advance of their Field Experience. Please contact the UPE Field Experience team if you have any questions. 

  1. Attendance policy

    Absences in field experience are allowed only under specific circumstances, and are monitored closely by the Field Team. Acceptable reasons for an absence in field are: illness, family emergency, professional development that is not undertaken with your partner teacher, or religious observance. 

    All absences after the first will require written documentation from a medical doctor or appropriate contact. Students are only permitted a certain number of days absent per field, as follows:

    - 3 days in EDUC 465 (Field II)

    - 4 days in EDUC 540 (Field III)

    - 4 days in EDUC 560 (Field IV)

     

    If you cannot attend your placement, please:

    1. Notify your partner teacher

    2. Notify your field instructor

    3. Notify the Field Team via upefield@ucalgary.ca, as soon as is possible

  2. Professional Development Leave of Absence Form

    All absences for professional development will require a completed Professional Development Leave of Absence Form. Please complete the Form if you will be attending a professional development activity that:

    1. Requires you to miss time in field, and;

    2. Is not also being attended by your partner teacher. 

    You are permitted one day for professional development in EDUC 465, and two days for professional development in EDUC 540 and 560. These days count in your total days allowed for absence in field. For example, if you are in EDUC 540 and you are ill for two days and undertake two days of professional development, you have used up your allotted days for absence.*

    *Please refer to the attendance policy information.

  3. Confidentiality forms

    Some school boards require student teachers to fill out a confidentiality form. If your placement is with one of these boards, the form will be provided by your Field Instructor or placement school.


FAQs

How is field scheduled?

Field experience placements are scheduled in a 'chunk', meaning that when you are in field, all of your other courses stop, and you will be at your partner school from Monday to Friday, for whatever that school's hours are (and then some!). Check out the date and deadlines information, above, to get an idea of what that scheduling looks like (dates are, of course, are subject to shifting from year to year!).

Can I arrange my own placement?

Under no circumstances shall student teachers contact a field site regarding their placements, until they have been confirmed and posted by the Field Team. It is the responsibility of the student to notify the faculty of any ineligible sites, where family or friends attend or work, and sites in which the student has volunteered or attended. Failure to comply with these conditions may jeopardize successfully completion of the field experience, and affect the validity of teacher certification.

Can I change my placement?

This is not normally possible, unless a mistake has been made in the placement process (for example, you have erroneously been placed in a school that you once attended as a student).

Why couldn't you place me closer to home?

Every effort is made to place student teachers within a reasonable traveling distance from their place of residence, however, based on available school sites, this cannot be guaranteed. As with any paid employment, you are not guaranteed to live next door to where you work, and this is the same for field. Our priority is to give you the best placement possible - not the most convenient one!