ASCC expands Teacher Education Resource Center
Teacher Education majors at the American Samoa Community College (ASCC) now have access to an expanded Teacher Education Resource Center (TERC) located on the second floor of the ASCC Library. “The ERC mainly serves the needs of those students who are Teacher Education majors both in the AA and B.Ed. Program,” said Teacher Education Department (TED) Director Dr. Lina Galea’i-Scanlan.
“As a new B.Ed Program, we need to ensure that we have the resources available to help our students do research for their courses, particularly at the 300-400 level.”
The TERC currently contains 5000 printed items, which include reference books and books that can be borrowed, periodicals, and journals. It also has computers available to serve the educational needs of teachers and students, and enough chairs and tables to accommodate between 30-40 people. Additional construction to the room, currently in the works, will create space for approximately 3000 more printed materials currently in storage awaiting the arrival of additional shelves.
Dr. Galea’i-Scanlan explained that the TERC has been in development for several years, and has grown along with the TED program. She initially worked with former head librarian Dr. Steven Lin on the collection. Lin would send book catalogues and books for different content areas would be ordered.
The course content of the TED classes often incorporates resources found at the ERC. “It’s been a part of our class requirements that students use the ERC for research,” she said.
TED faculty also use the TERC for research assignments for their classes. With the opening of the TERC, Teacher Education majors now have a total of four computer labs available for their use, as well as the Student Learning Assistance Center and all other learning resources available to ASCC students.
Elvis Zodiacal, a former Social Science instructor who now serves as an Assistant to the Library Director, has observed the use of the TERC since the beginning of the current semester, and says that it is growing in popularity among TED and non-TED majors, as well as instructors at the College. “We have a few students majoring in other subjects utilizing the TERC resources,” he said, “but priority is always given, if need be, to our Education Department instructors and students. So far, both TED and non-TED instructors have made reservations for their classes to visit the TERC and learn about what it has to offer.” The TED subsidized construction of the TERC room, while both the TED and the College funded the educational materials.
The opening of the TERC represents just one of many strides ASCC has made towards the establishment of a four-year Bachelor in Education degree. The College has worked in collaboration with the Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities (ACSCU), a division of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) towards accreditation of the four-year Teacher Education program, which has been in development for many years. The TED has progressed to “Candidacy for Accreditation” status with the ACSCU, the last step in the process before full accreditation, with the next ACSCU site visit currently scheduled for March.
While the TED program awaits full accreditation, five ASCC students have already received their B.Ed. degrees in spring and fall 2012 under an existing arrangement with WASC. With the end of the degree’s long development and accreditation process now in sight, Dr. Galea’i-Scanlan said her department’s next goal is to make more of American Samoa’s young people aware of the TED and its programs. “We take pride in having established a homegrown four-year degree program developed specifically with American Samoa’s own educational situation and needs in mind,” she said. “We sincerely hope the community will consider what we now have to offer and will support our long-term goal of providing quality training for our Territory’s future educators.”
Anyone interested in more information on the ASCC B.Ed. program can contact 699-9155.