Work-based Learning

What is Work-based Learning?

Work-based Learning (WBL) is a teaching strategy that combines authentic work experience with school-based instruction. The teacher and the training sponsor plan and supervise instruction together so the school instruction and the work experience are directly linked.

Why do I need to know the details of Work-based Learning?

Texas teacher assignment rules require school districts to ensure teachers assigned to career preparation or practicum courses receive appropriate training in work-based learning and safety. Also, Section 5.7 of the Student Attendance Accounting Handbook outlines very specific rules for career preparation and practicum courses that must be followed. It is important that both CTE administrators and teachers know the rules.

Which courses are taught using Work-based Learning instructional methods?

Who is eligible to teach courses involving Work-based Learning?

  • First, there is no “Work-based Learning” teaching certificate in Texas. Rather, there are multiple certificates that fall under the category of CTE classroom teaching certificates. Click here to learn more about CTE teaching certificates.
  • Career Preparation I and IIcan be taught by anyone holding a valid vocational or CTE classroom teaching certificate as long as he/she has completed appropriate work-based learning and safety training.
  • Practicum courses – teacher assignment rules are specific to the Career Cluster and course.

Where can I find the teacher assignment rules for career preparation and practicum courses?

Texas teacher assignment rules are established by the State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) and can be found in the Texas Administrative Code (TAC). Click the links below to find the teacher assignment rules for career preparation and practicum courses:

Is a teacher who is eligible to teach a CTE course automatically eligible to teach career preparation or practicum courses?

No, a teacher can be eligible to teach a specific CTE course but NOT be eligible to teach a career preparation or practicum course. For example, an teacher with an art certificate could teach Principles and Elements of Floral Design, which is a CTE course.  However, the teacher would NOT be eligible to teach a career preparation or practicum course unless he/she also holds an appropriate CTE classroom teaching certificate listed in the teacher assignment rules.

Example scenario:

Where can I find Work-based Learning training?

  • CTE Work-Based Learning Online Course
    CTE Work-Based Learning is a free, online, training program developed by the Texas Education Agency to provide essential information and resources needed to teach career preparation and practicum courses. This online, self-study program allows an individual to work at his/her own pace. Upon successful completion, learners will receive a certificate for 8 CPEs.
  • Education Service Centers
    Each Texas regional Education Service Center has a CTE specialist who can assist you with obtaining additional information on work-based learning and WBL training opportunities. Several of the ESCs offer face-to-face workshops and training on work-based learning and safety. Contact your local ESC CTE specialist for additional information.
  • CTE Professional Associations
    CTE professional associations provide members with a variety of professional development opportunities including workshops and conferences. Several associations offer work-based learning training. Contact the CTE professional associations that serve your Career Cluster or occupations for additional information.

Where can I find additional guidance or resources for Work-based Learning?