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Teachers change lives. UWF's elementary education program will prepare you to become a skilled teacher with detailed coursework and supervised experiences in grade school classrooms. In addition, you will develop your awareness and understanding of diverse cultures and people.

Why Study Elementary Education at UWF?

This competitive major prepares you for the ever-changing world of elementary education. Graduates are eligible for professional certification from the State of Florida to teach kindergarten through sixth grade. 

Unlike many other elementary education degrees, our program includes endorsements in both reading and English speakers of other languages, known as ESOL.

We will prepare you to teach reading, writing, science, mathematics, social studies, critical-thinking skills and problem-solving to elementary school students.

We are accredited by the State of Florida and the Council for the Accreditation for Educator Preparation.

What You Will Learn

Our immersive curriculum will prepare you for real-world experiences.

The degree includes 64 semester hours of coursework in general and subject-specific methods and strategies with a focus on engaging elementary students in meaningful learning experiences.

Through engaging hands-on field experiences in local elementary schools, you will learn to work with children of varying needs and have a positive impact on their lives. You will learn to engage students in inquiry, facilitate learning, develop curriculum and collect, analyze and interpret data to inform your instruction.

We offer numerous scholarships and a limited number of yearlong paid internships for high-achieving students in high-need Escambia County schools. These internships fulfill the student teaching requirement.

Interested in our online program?

Teach and support gifted children and children with disabilities.

Visit Online Exceptional Student Education B.A.

Careers & Outcomes

Nearly all of our graduates secure a teaching position upon graduation. Most graduates are hired by one of three local districts: Escambia, Santa Rosa and Okaloosa.

Job Titles

  • Public School Teacher (K-6)
  • Private School Teacher (K-6)
  • International School Teacher (K-6)

The reason I love my major so much is because of the amazing professors that we have. Whether you’re taking classes in person or online, you’re going to get the best education possible. Our teachers are always there to provide assistance and mentorship and to make sure we understand the content that we’re learning.

Emily McCallum
Elementary and Exceptional Education, '20

CAEP accreditation, which is nationally recognized, really validates the quality and rigor of our programs. It illustrates a level of commitment to excellence on the part of our faculty, education partners and staff.

Dr. William "Bill" Evans
Chair, Department of Teacher Education and Educational Leadership

Program Details

The elementary education degree program includes two 100-hour field experiences in K-6 classrooms under the careful supervision of an experienced teacher.

Field experiences will allow you to observe effective teaching practices and deepen your knowledge base. You will develop planning and instructional skills as you tutor individual and small groups of K-6 students and provide whole-group instruction in reading, writing, mathematics, science and social studies.

Student teaching is the semester-long capstone experience. You will gradually assume full teaching responsibilities in a K-6 classroom with the guidance and support of a skilled teacher. You will learn to provide diverse K-6 students with rigorous, standards-based instruction and demonstrate that you are prepared for your first teaching position.

The elementary education program is accredited based on the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) Standards through Spring 2025. CAEP is the only CHEA-recognized national accreditor for educator preparation.

In order to be eligible for the Elementary Education program, students must do the following:

1. Meet with a CEPS academic advisor.

2. Complete an Application for Admission to TEEL (Submit the application through EXXAT).

3. Read the TEEL Field Experience and Student Teaching Guide.

4. Take and pass all areas (English Language Skills, Reading, Math and Essay) of the FTCE General Knowledge Test (GK). Study materials for the GK can be accessed through the University of West Florida Libraries. In addition, TEEL offers a free online Canvas course for the GK. Please contact your assigned academic advisor for more information.

5. Have a cumulative GPA of at least 2.50 in all previously attempted college coursework.

6. Complete online Teacher Education Orientation (see advisor).

7. Successfully complete the education course prerequisite: EDF1005 with a C- or higher.

8. Successfully complete an A.A. degree and/or all lower level coursework.

Per state statute, students will not be allowed to move forward in a certification track and take program courses if the prerequisite and all four sections of the GK exam are not passed. Additionally, students will not be permitted to take TEEL or UWF-Teach program courses without having a GPA of 2.50 or higher. Once admitted to an initial certification degree major, students must maintain a minimum GPA of 2.50. Students must also maintain a program GPA of 2.50 or higher to move forward with Field Experiences and Student Teaching. Careful monitoring will ensure that knowledge, skill and/or dispositional deficits of pre-service teacher candidates are identified in a timely manner so that students can be mentored successfully.

For additional information on the required exams, please visit the FTCE web page.

Featured Courses

A sample of featured courses you will take in the Elementary Education program.

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