Gordon College Recognized Among Nation’s Top for Academic Selectivity of Teacher Preparation Program

Gordon College’s undergraduate elementary teacher preparation program has been​ named among the top in the country for maintaining selective academic admissions requirements by the National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ), a nonpartisan, not-for-profit research and policy organization. 

Gordon College’s program is among only 28 percent of the 1,276 NCTQ evaluated across the country and among only nine programs in Massachusetts to earn the highest distinction for selective admissions requirements in a new NCTQ report, Teacher Prep Review: Program Diversity and Admissions (2021)​.

“Developing effective classroom-ready teachers is critical to decreasing the achievement gap and giving all students the skills to be successful in life,” says Dr. Janet Arndt, dean of the School of Education and professor of education. “The School of Education is delighted to contribute to this worthy goal.”

While academic aptitude is not the only quality of a successful teacher, it is a critical factor. According to NCTQ, 60 years of research and evidence from nations whose students academically outperform students in the United States have proven that there is strong correlation between the academic aptitude of a teacher and student achievement. 

“More rigorous admissions standards for aspiring teachers pays off, delivering the caliber of teachers every student deserves,” said NCTQ President Kate Walsh​. “We applaud programs like Gordon College​ that are doing the important work of preparing a world-class teacher workforce that our students deserve.”

Because no single indicator of academic aptitude is failsafe, the methodology employed by NCTQ to determine if programs set adequate admissions standards gives programs multiple paths to meet the bar, including applicants’ SAT/ACT performance, audition requirements, minimum GPA for each applicant or average GPA for each cohort of new teacher candidates.  

This latest NCTQ recognition is one of many for Gordon’s School of Education. The undergraduate elementary and secondary programs have earned spots on the Top Ranked lists in NCTQ’s Teacher Prep Review. And the undergraduate elementary teacher preparation program is one of only 15 in the U.S. to earn an A+ by the NCTQ for its strong commitment to evidence-based reading instruction—an approach used in all of Gordon’s undergraduate and graduate education programs.