Integrated Secondary Education Program (ISEP)

Welcome to ISEP!

The ISEP homepage provides the information and web resources necessary for your ISEP course this semester.  To connect to your Desire2Learn course, click here.

Important Links

Click here for important websites for ISEP students.

Is ISEP right for you?

EIU students may prepare to teach grades 6-12 through the Regular Program or the Integrated Secondary Education Program (ISEP). To learn more about ISEP and how it meets your individual needs, students are invited to set up an appointment with Dr. Stephen Lucas, Department Chair.  E-mail Dr. Lucas at or call 217-581-8515 to learn more about ISEP.

What is ISEP?

ISEP stands for the Integrated Secondary Education Program and is one of two programs offered to earn secondary teacher certification at Eastern Illinois University. ISEP differs from the regular program in several ways, but the primary differences are that ISEP offers an interdisciplinary curriculum, is more independently-oriented and is more intensive than the regular program (requiring fewer hours to complete). In comparison to the regular program, ISEP students are more diverse in terms of age and experience including traditional age college students, post-baccalaureates and non-traditional students in most subject specialties.

About ISEP

The Integrated Secondary Education Program (formerly called ASEP) was designed in 1973 to provide an interdisciplinary, field-based sequence of courses culminating in a final semester of student teaching guided by a university supervisor and cooperating teacher. The program is based on a student-centered, constructivist model of learning. Students typically work independently on modules and are encouraged to work ahead at their own pace. Instructors in the program meet regularly with students on an individual basis to guide their progress. ISEP differs from the Regular Secondary Education Program in four key ways.

  • First, the curriculum is interdisciplinary. The four academic disciplines of educational foundations, educational psychology, secondary methods and special education are combined in a three-course sequence that typically begins in the sophomore year. In the Regular Program, four separate courses are usually taken in the junior and senior years.
  • Second, all ISEP courses are designed to be intensive. While in the regular program, the content necessary for secondary education teacher certification is covered in four separate courses, in ISEP it is covered in three intensive courses.
  • Third, the program is designated as technology-enhanced. The program was redesigned several years ago in order to meet new state standards in technology. All three ISEP courses have technology-enhanced delivery and some are offered on-line.
  • Finally, the University's Council on Academic Affairs has designated all ISEP courses as writing-intensive, and an assignment in each course can be submitted for the student's Electronic Writing Portfolio.

The mission of ISEP is to introduce teacher candidates to middle and high school students at the very beginning of their professional coursework, integrating theory and practice throughout the program. The program was designed to collaborate primarily with four local school districts where ISEP coordinators arrange for teacher candidates to carry out their field work in relation to their subject specialties.

Taking ISEP Courses

SED 3000 (Level I) To register for this course, you must come in to the Department of Secondary Education and Foundations Office once the registration for the next term has begun to sign up on the waitlist. Please consult Barbara Catron in 2147 Buzzard Building for assistance.

SED 3100 (Level II) To register for this course, you must come in to the Department of Secondary Education and Foundations Office once the registration for the next term has begun to sign up on the waitlist. Please consult Barbara Catron in 2147 Buzzard Building for assistance.

SED 4000 (Level III) You may register for this course on PAWS when registration opens. Spring and Fall student teachers must attend a Pre-Student Teaching Meeting with Dr. Stephen Lucas to receive course materials and instructions the semester before student teaching. Meetings are scheduled in the month of November for spring student teachers and April for fall students teachers

ISEP Frequently Asked Questions

Is ISEP an alternative certification program?
No. ISEP takes approximately four semesters to complete, including student teaching. However, EIU does have an alternavie certification program for people who already have a bachelor's degree and want to teach science, math, foreign languages, or career and technical education. In order to qualify for the program, a student must also have five years of documented experience in their field. For details, call Jim Kestner at 217-581-2620.

How are the regular program and integrated program (ISEP) alike?
The two programs lead to the same certificate and offer the same number of hours of field experience in secondary schools. ISEP is four semester hours shorter than the regular program.

How are the regular program and integrated program (ISEP) different?
ISEP's special features include an integrated curriculum, writing-intensive orientation, a multi-course practicum, and technology-enhanced delivery. ISEP integrates educational foundations, educational psychology, secondary methods and special education in an intensive three-course sequence that continues into the student teaching semester. All ISEP courses are designated writing-intensive by the CAA. Practicum experiences are infused into three courses, take place in a range of settings, and include 25 hours of work with culturally diverse students. All ISEP courses have a technology-enhanced delivery and some are offered online. Course websites on WebCT offer access to modules, discussion boards and quizzes.

What type of student does ISEP serve?
Over the past several years, students who completed ISEP showed the following patterns:

  • ISEP students ranged in age from 20 to about 50 years of age.  Nearly a third were age 24 or older.
  • Nearly 1/5 (18%) of ISEP students were post-baccalaureates.
    Post-baccalaureates were defined as students who had received a 4-year college degree and were returning to take courses to earn teacher certification and, in some cases, a Master's degree.
  • About 1/3 (33%) of ISEP students were transfer students.
    Transfer students were defined as any student that transferred in a full semester or more of coursework from another college or university.
  • About 1/2 (51%) of ISEP students were native students.
    Native students were defined as students who completed a majority of hours at EIU.
  • About 1/4 (23%) of ISEP students were non-traditional students.
    Non-traditional students were defined as students who stopped out of school for one or more years before seeking a degree and/or teacher certification. These students were post-baccalaureates, transfer students, and native students; however, more fell into the first two categories.

How do I enroll in ISEP if I am currently a student at Eastern?
During the semester before you wish to be enrolled in SED 3000, visit the Department of Secondary Education and Foundations Office, 2147 Buzzard Building, to fill out a waitlist form.  Interested students can learn about the program in their introductory secondary education course (SED 2000, CTE 2000, etc. ) or by contacting Dr. Stephen Lucas(217-581-8515) prior to registration.

If I already have a bachelor's degree or am a transfer student, where do I start?
If you already have a bachelor's degree, you should contact Ms. Bonnie Wilson at 217-581-2524 to find out what courses you will need. If you are planning on transferring to Eastern, contact the department chair for the subject you wish to teach.

If I would like more information about the Integrated Secondary Education Program, whom should I contact?
For advice regarding ISEP, contact Dr. Stephen Lucasin the Department of Secondary Education and Foundations at 217-581-8515.

ISEP Directory

Ms. Dawn Paulson - - Buzzard Hall 2140 - (217) 581-7398

Ms. Barbara Catron - - Buzzard Hall 2147 - (217) 581-5931

Dr. Brenda Page - - Buzzard Hall 2144 - (309) 824-0051

Dr. Stephen Lucas - - Buzzard Hall 2148 - (217) 581-8515