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Online Elementary Education Degree Programs Resource

An elementary education degree prepares teachers for education jobs with children in kindergarten through the sixth grade. Elementary education programs, many of which are available online from accredited universities, provide the necessary training for persons with a passion for imparting knowledge to children, usually from kindergarten to sixth or eighth grade, depending on the prevailing education system. For some people, an online degree program can be a convenient option for those seeking some flexibility in their studies. A bachelor’s in elementary education program is designed to prepare elementary school teachers with theoretic and practical skills needed to provide quality education to children in a classroom setting. The curriculum provides a practical understanding of child development and psychology balanced with teacher education. Prospective elementary school teachers are also educated about the need to work with parents and other child caregivers in providing the necessary academic, social, physical and emotional support needed for child development and growth. An elementary school teacher must be caring, with a genuine passion for educating children.

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How to Become an Elementary School Teacher

Elementary school teacher requirements depend on the state or region, but generally a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in education is needed from an approved teacher preparation program. If you already have a bachelor’s degree then look for a master’s degree program that leads to an initial teacher certification. Elementary education programs include coursework in child psychology, education psychology, child development, curriculum development and teaching methods. In most states, certification is required to be able to practice as an elementary school teacher. Criteria for certification varies from state to state, but in general, three things are required – a bachelor’s degree in elementary education, supervised practice teaching experience, and a passing grade in a state teaching exam. Students can decide on an elementary education program that is most convenient – either online distance learning or on-site programs in accredited colleges.

Typical Elementary Teaching Degree Courses

Some examples of common classes in the curriculum of an elementary teaching degree program include:

  • Introduction to Elementary Education
  • Child Development and Early Childhood
  • Foundations of Literacy Development
  • Literature for Children
  • Mathematics for Elementary School Teachers
  • Communication in Cross-Cultural Classrooms
  • Art in the Elementary School Classroom
  • Music in the Elementary School Classroom
  • Health and Physical Education in the Elementary Classroom
  • Teaching Elementary Social Studies
  • Teaching Elementary School Science
  • Assessment of Learning
  • Managing an Effective Classroom
  • Teaching Practicum

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“Of the approximately 1.3 million elementary school teachers in the United States, the average annual salary is $56,320. Employment of elementary teachers is expected to grow 12% from 2012-2022.”

Salary and Outlook for Elementary Education Graduates

Elementary teacher salary levels vary depending on such things as location and experience. Of the approximately 1.3 million elementary school teachers in the United States, the average annual salary is $56,320.1 Employment of elementary teachers is expected to grow 12% from 2012-2022.2 Job opportunities for elementary school teachers who have earned their degrees and licenses vary by state and availability. A person with excellent communication skills and a degree in elementary education has a strong chance of success in becoming an elementary teacher. Jobs for certified educators include: elementary teacher, kindergarten teacher, middle school teacher, child special education teacher, supervising teacher, preschool teacher. Early childhood jobs such as childcare workers in daycare centers, non-profit organizations and community child care programs are also available to graduates of elementary education programs.

An associate degree in elementary education can lead to a multitude of careers including work as a teacher, counselor or childcare worker. An associate degree will give students the educational foundation to pursue their desired work and offer a path to more advanced study. In most states, an associate degree is not adequate to become a teacher and students usually pursue a bachelor’s degree after graduating. Graduates who receive their associate’s degree can expect to find work as a teacher’s aide or substitute teacher.

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A master’s degree in elementary education qualifies a graduate to teach children in elementary schools, kindergartens, preschools or daycare centers. To excel in this field, people need excellent communication skills and the ability to instill confidence and motivate students of various ages. They must also be able to recognize the needs of each student to help with their academic success.

Elementary Teacher Interviews

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See our list of top 50 elementary teacher blogs by current teachers who share their experiences and tips for effective teaching in an elementary school classroom.

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Online Elementary Education Degree Programs

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  • B.S. in Education / Elementary Education
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  • Early Childhood Education (Certification Only)
  • Master of Education in Early Childhood Education


  • Early Childhood Education - Master of Education
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  • M.Ed. Teaching and Learning - Elementary Education
  • MA in Teaching - Elementary Education
  • M.Ed. - Program Specialist in Early Childhood Specialist
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  • Bachelor of Science: Early Childhood Development
  • Associate of Applied Science: Early Childhood Development
  • Master of Arts: Teaching
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Locations: Hagerstown

Elementary Education Program Student Reviews

Student Review: “The University of Phoenix was a blessing for me when it came to pursing my college degree. As a single mother of three children under 7 years old, I needed an option to go back to school that was flexible. At the University of Phoenix I am able to schedule my own hours and have plenty of resources to help me achieve my educational and career goals. I was not only able to make out my own schedule, but I am able to obtain a degree in something I have dreamed about for years. Life gave me some hills that I thought I would not be able to climb and with Phoenix I have access to my facilitators, constant contact with my Admissions and Financial Counselor, helpful resources like live math tutors and live math sessions. UOP even offers student life such as groups the students can join online where similar interests are found. I wanted desperately to provide for my children and UOP has given me that opportunity without the pressure of getting up and going to class 5 days a week like a traditional school.” -Katrina S., student at University of Phoenix
Student Review: “I attended the graduate school of George Mason University and earned a teaching license in Elementary Education. As an adult and stay-at-home mom returning to college, I found George Mason to be the perfect place for me. It was affordable, the night classes fit my schedule, and my cohort included students of all ages and backgrounds. I always felt safe on campus at night and it was easy to get around. I didn’t realize the full benefits of my college experience until I graduated and was in the classroom. My license, portfolio, field experience, and internship helped me to get my first job and remain employed ever since. I found that I was well-prepared for this challenging position which enables me to stay inspired and motivate my students. George Mason University was ahead of the times with their emphasis on technology and their language arts program. Participating in a summer space camp with the faculty and colleagues was also a plus! I think GMU is a great place for the nontraditional student as well as an ideal learning environment that I have encouraged my college-bound children to consider.” – Susan D., Elementary Education student at George Mason University
Student Review: “The School of Education at Southern New Hampshire University is more than just a place to earn a teaching degree. The professors are former administrators, and experts in their respective content areas. Simply visiting the campus, you become a part of the family. Teachers that you have never had will know you by name, and stop to ask you how you’re doing. Each program in the School of Education contains the most recent pedagogical theory, ensuring that you’ll be ready for the classroom after graduation. Similarly, the importance of being in a classroom is felt from day one at Southern New Hampshire University. Field experience begins with your very first education course, and many of the courses are held in local schools, allowing you to see the theory in action as you are learning. Choosing to earn my education degree at Southern New Hampshire University was one of the best decisions I have ever made.” -Jessica O., student at Southern New Hampshire University

1. Bureau of Labor Statistics: http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes252021.htm
2. Bureau of Labor Statistics: http://www.bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/kindergarten-and-elementary-school-teachers.htm