State’s physical education teacher education major receives NASPE accreditation

South Dakota State University’s physical education teacher education major recently received accreditation for 10 years by the National Association for Sport and Physical Education/National Certificate in Adult Education and Training. SDSU’s physical education teacher education major is the only one accredited by NASPE in South Dakota.

“This honor is something we’ve been working toward for a long time,” said Tracy Nelson, the program director. “We knew we were doing things right but having someone confirm it means more. We knew that because our graduates are presenting at state and national professional conferences and are being recognized for their work.”

The major had been working toward individual accreditation since 2012. During that time, the major made curriculum adjustments.

“While it’s the same number of credit hours, we revised how we teach certain concepts,” Nelson said. “There used to be a class on technology, a class on adaptations and modifications, and a class on assessment. We took those classes apart and paired things differently. For example, when we teach about team sports, we now think about how do I incorporate technology, how do I adapt, modify and assess team sports in that class.”

“Dr. Nelson and her colleagues have much to be proud of in the great work they’ve done revising the PETE curriculum and garnering NASPE accreditation,” said Jill Thorngren, dean of SDSU’s College of Education and Human Sciences. “This is a very rigorous review and speaks to the high quality and innovative nature of the program. Tracy and her peers have worked hard to be responsive to the needs of our students and the standards of the profession. Physical education helps address many of today’s health issues through a focus on healthy movement and activity. Our future physical education teachers are well prepared and play a critical role in the education system.”


About South Dakota State University
Founded in 1881, South Dakota State University is the state’s Morrill Act land-grant institution as well as its largest, most comprehensive school of higher education. SDSU confers degrees from six different colleges representing more than 200 majors, minors and specializations. The institution also offers 36 master’s degree programs, 15 Ph.D. and two professional programs.

The work of the university is carried out on a residential campus in Brookings, at sites in Sioux Falls, Pierre and Rapid City, and through Extension offices and Agricultural Experiment Station research sites across the state.