Washington Teacher Colleges and Degrees Online Guide

The information below is a guide for aspiring teachers looking to become certified to teach in Washington. All teachers must complete an approved teacher preparation program from an accredited school in order to become eligible for employment as a teacher in the state. This guide to teaching schools in Washington provides comprehensive information to help research the various options available. In order to help you find the best option to meet your teaching career goals, this page contains lists of top-rated teaching programs, a table of accredited, state-approved teacher preparation programs, and student reviews. Whether you are a first-time teacher or looking to further your already established career, this guide can serve as a great starting point for an exciting future as a teacher.

Table of Contents

Quick Facts

For not-for-profit schools with teacher degree programs.

Comparison of Washington Schools with Teacher Preparation Programs

We have designed the following table to help you compare teacher preparation programs in Washington according to various factors. All of the schools included are not-for-profit institutions approved by the Washington State Board of Education for the preparation of teachers. Completing a state-approved teacher preparation program is an important step towards earning licensure.

While accreditation from the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) is not a requirement for licensure, it is included in the following table as CAEP provides a highly-regarded accreditation that is accepted in many states.

You will also find data on teacher preparation program enrollment, completion, and licensing exam pass rates by institution, for both traditional and alternative programs, for the 2019-2020 academic year in this table. These data points are collected from annual US Department of Education reports under Title II (Teacher Quality) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), which holds institutions and state departments of education accountable for increasing academic achievement through improvements in teacher quality. Traditional teacher preparation programs are usually completed as part of a bachelor’s degree program. Alternative certification programs are typically designed for career changers looking to enter the field and lead to a postgraduate certificate or a master’s degree. Many schools in our table offer both traditional and alternative programs. Take a look at our Washington traditional and alternative certification guides for more information.

Finally, we have provided the net price per year for undergraduate tuition, based on the cost of attendance (tuition, books, room and board, and related expenses) for students who qualify for in-state tuition and fees, less the average financial aid award (including grants and scholarships).

State-Approved SchoolCAEP Accred.?5Trad. Teacher Program Enrollment6Trad. Teacher Prep Prog. Completers6Trad. Licensing Exams Pass Rate6Alt. Teacher Program Enrollment6Alt. Teacher Prep Prog. Completers6Alt. Licensing Exams Pass Rate6Net Price1
Antioch University-SeattleNo2713100%223N.Av.N.Av.
Central Washington UniversityNo1,34114396%408N.Av.$16,441
Centralia CollegeNo472281%$8,620
City University of SeattleNo1674497%3617597%N.Av.
Columbia Basin CollegeNo$10,356
Eastern Washington UniversityNo48819597%864693%$12,322
Evergreen State CollegeNo454580%$14,723
Gonzaga UniversityNo2195896%$36,880
Grays Harbor CollegeNo371757%$6,954
Heritage UniversityNo975468%823988%$7,356
Highline CollegeNo4413N.Av.$8,114
Lower Columbia CollegeNo$7,357
Northwest UniversityNo945898%125100%$21,825
Pacific Lutheran UniversityNo1878196%643496%$25,368
Pierce CollegeNo961081%$8,147
Saint Martin’s UniversityNo4822N.Av.2316N.Av.$23,824
Seattle Pacific UniversityNo8546100%747490%$28,367
Seattle UniversityNo9249100%2713N.Av.$36,843
University of Puget SoundNo3328100%$38,127
University of Washington-BothellNo595774%$8,841
University of Washington-SeattleNo36816498%8128N.Av.$9,661
University of Washington-TacomaNo4634N.Av.$10,113
Walla Walla UniversityNo1221579%$23,598
Washington State UniversityNo68327296%3211N.Av.$17,931
Wenatchee Valley CollegeNo$8,114
Western Governors University-WashingtonNo4,35777494%N.Av.
Western Washington UniversityNo94326399%4226100%$18,398
Whitworth UniversityNo41087100%$25,785
Yakima Valley CollegeNo722382%$7,265

  • — indicates none or not applicable.
  • N.Av. indicates data was not available or pass rates were omitted for confidentiality.

Top-Ranked Schools with Education Programs in Washington

Princeton Review’s Great Schools for Education Majors 2022

  • Gonzaga University

US News & World Report’s Best Graduate Education Programs 2023

  • University of Washington (#12 tie)

US News & World Report’s Best Online Master’s in Education Programs 2022

  • Eastern Washington University (#188 tie)
  • City University of Seattle (#242-321)
  • Gonzaga University (#242-321)

Select Washington Schools with Teacher Preparation Degrees

Northwest University

Northwest University (NU) is home to several programs for aspiring and current educators. The College of Education offers one undergraduate degree, a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Educational Studies, with several concentration options: Community Planning, Elementary Education, Instructional Design, and International Education. Students majoring in Educational Studies may also choose to complete a 5-year master’s degree: a Master of Education (M.Ed.), Masters of Arts in International Community Development (MAICD), or a Masters of Business Administration (MBA). Concentrations for the M.Ed. degree include Athletic Leadership, Teacher Leadership, Special Education, and English Language Learner (ELL). Many courses within the M.Ed. program are offered in a hybrid format and are geared towards students working full-time. Other graduate programs include a Master in Teaching (MIT), which can be completed in less than one year. In-service educators interested in professional development also may pursue a non-degree endorsements in Special Education or English Language Learner (ELL).

University of Washington

The University of Washington (UW) College of Education offers three undergraduate education degrees and a wide variety of graduate degrees. UW’s undergraduate offerings include a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Early Care and Education (offered online); Early Childhood & Family Studies; and Education, Communities & Organizations. For graduate students, UW offers several licensure and non-licensure degree programs. Licensure-track programs include a Master in Teaching (MIT) in Elementary or Secondary Education, as well as a Master of Education (M.Ed.) in Special Education. For graduate students not seeking licensure, but looking to grow professionally, the university offers programs including an M.Ed. or Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Culturally Sustaining Education; an M.Ed. or PhD in Education Policy, Organizations and Leadership; an M.Ed. in Instructional Leadership; and an M.Ed. or PhD in Leadership in Higher Education.

Washington State University

Washington State University (WSU) confers degrees at the undergraduate and graduate level. For undergraduates, there are two licensure-track teacher preparation programs: a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Elementary Education (K-8) and a Secondary Education program. Elementary Education majors must select an endorsement in Middle Level Math, Middle Level Science, English Language Learners (ELL), or Special Education, while Secondary Education students major in their teaching subject of choice and complete additional courses within the College of Education. Graduate programs include a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Cultural Studies and Social Thought in Education; a Master of Arts (MA) or Master of Education (M.Ed.) in Curriculum and Instruction; a Master in Teaching (MiT); an MA, M.Ed., PhD, or Doctor of Education (EdD) in Educational Leadership; and an MA, M.Ed., or PhD in Special Education. Graduate certificates are also available in English Language Learners (ELL); Education Technology Across the Curriculum; Applied Educational Research Methods; and Applied Measurement and Quantitative Methods.

Schools with Associate Degrees in Education

While a bachelor’s degree is the minimum educational level required to qualify for state certification, an associate’s degree can be the first step towards a career in education. It can qualify graduates for careers in non-licensed roles in early childhood education, after-school care, and related areas. The credits earned from an accredited associate degree program can also typically be transferred towards a bachelor’s degree. The following Alabama schools offer associate’s degrees in education.1 Schools with an asterisk (*) also offer four-year teaching programs and/or alternative route to certification programs.

Bates Technical College*
1101 S Yakima Ave
Tacoma, WA 98405
(253) 680-7000

Bellevue College
3000 Landerholm Cir SE
Bellevue, WA 98007
(425) 564-1000

Bellingham Technical College
3028 Lindbergh Ave
Bellingham, WA 98225
(360) 752-7000

Big Bend Community College
7662 Chanute St NE
Moses Lake, WA 98837
(509) 793-2222

Centralia College*
600 Centralia College Blvd
Centralia, WA 98531
(360) 736-9391

Clark College
1933 Fort Vancouver Way
Vancouver, WA 98663
(360) 699-6398

Clover Park Technical College
4500 Steilacoom Blvd SW
Lakewood, WA 98499
(253) 589-5800

Columbia Basin College
2600 N 20th Ave
Pasco, WA 99301
(509) 547-0511

Edmonds College
20000 68th Ave W
Lynnwood, WA 98036
(425) 640-1459

Everett Community College
2000 Tower St
Everett, WA 98201
(425) 388-9100

Grays Harbor College*
1620 Edward P Smith Dr
Aberdeen, WA 98520
(360) 532-9020

Green River College*
12401 SE 320th St
Auburn, WA 98092
(253) 833-9111

Heritage University*
3240 Fort Rd
Toppenish, WA 98948
(509) 865-8500

Highline College*
2400 S 240th St
Des Moines, WA 98198
(206) 878-3710

Lake Washington Institute of Technology*
11605 132nd Ave NE
Kirkland, WA 98034
(425) 739-8100

Lower Columbia College*
1600 Maple St
Longview, WA 98632
(360) 442-2311

North Seattle College*
9600 College Way N
Seattle, WA 98103
(206) 934-3600

Northwest Indian College
2522 Kwina Rd
Bellingham, WA 98226
(360) 676-2772

Olympic College*
1600 Chester Ave
Bremerton, WA 98337
(360) 792-6050

Pierce College District*
9401 Farwest Dr SW
Lakewood, WA 98498
(253) 964-6500

Renton Technical College
3000 NE 4th St
Renton, WA 98056
(425) 235-2352

Seattle Central College
1701 Broadway
Seattle, WA 98122
(206) 934-3800

Shoreline Community College
16101 Greenwood Ave N
Shoreline, WA 98133
(206) 546-4101

Skagit Valley College
2405 E College Way
Mount Vernon, WA 98273
(360) 416-7600

South Puget Sound Community College
2011 Mottman Rd SW
Olympia, WA 98512
(360) 596-5200

South Seattle College*
6000 16th Avenue SW
Seattle, WA 98106
(206) 934-5300

Spokane Community College
1810 N Greene St
Spokane, WA 99217
(509) 533-7000

Spokane Falls Community College
3410 W Whistalks Way
Spokane, WA 99224
(509) 533-3500

Tacoma Community College
6501 S 19th St
Tacoma, WA 98466
(253) 566-5000

Walla Walla Community College
500 Tausick Way
Walla Walla, WA 99362
(509) 522-2500

Wenatchee Valley College*
1300 Fifth St
Wenatchee, WA 98801
(509) 682-6800

Walla Walla Community College
500 Tausick Way
Walla Walla, WA 99362-9267
(509) 522-2500

Whatcom Community College
237 W Kellogg Rd
Bellingham, WA 98226
(360) 383-3000

Yakima Valley College*
W Nob Hill Blvd &, S 16th Ave
Yakima, WA 98902
(509) 574-4600

Student Reviews

Note: Student Reviews are based on the experiences of a few individuals and it is unlikely that you will have similar results. Please review the “Data, Student Reviews and Other Information” section in our Terms of Use and Disclaimers.

Central Washington University
400 E University Way
Ellensburg, WA 98926
(509) 963-1111

Student Review: “The education program at Central Washington University was essential in preparing me for teaching in the real world. The small student body allowed for smaller class sizes and more one on one instruction with professors. All of my professors knew me by name and would go above and beyond in making themselves available for additional attention. The flexible class schedules allowed for pursuing other interests outside the classroom. While on my teaching internship I would call my professors with any questions I might have and they would provide guidance and words of encouragement. Overall the teaching program at CWU was a fantastic experience and I would highly recommend the program to aspiring students.” -Jacob S., student at Central Washington University
Student Review: “First, let me say that I loved Central Washington University. The actual teaching program, well, parts of it I enjoyed, other parts, not so much. As a Business Education major I had to take classes in the business/technology area as well as the general education courses that all teachers take. I found the classes within my specialty to be great. I enjoyed most of the professors, found them knowledgeable and felt like these classes actually prepared me for teaching. The general education classes, however, were miserable. I distinctly remember Reading in the Content Area, which was a class where you learn how to teach reading. In this class I sat next to a couple of future high school P.E. teachers and we constantly complained about how irrelevant this was to what we were actually going to be doing. I also remember Ed Law being the most boring class on common sense ever imagined.” -Jeff B., student at Central Washington University

The Evergreen State College
2700 Evergreen Pkwy NW
Olympia, WA 98505
(360) 867-6000

Student Review: “The first introduction and ending programs were taught by an amazing professor who was an elementary mixed-classroom teacher in a diverse and high-risk school. She was fantastic at not only teaching us the issues of special education but also gave us significant time to hone our teaching skills, including lectures and hands-on activities. The middle classes of the program were taught by a teacher, though, that I felt was rude and inconsiderate of us as students. She was herself an elementary school special education teacher and it was saddening to see her treat us as college students so bad. But, I enjoyed having the student teaching and practicum experiences through Evergreen, as they had great support for me and my practicum teacher.” -Rachel B., student at Evergreen State College
Student Review: “The Masters in Teaching Program at Evergreen was a pretty good experience overall. I do not doubt that there are better programs out there. The best part about my time in the MiT program was the excellent support from the faculty. I have heard from friends who completed the program in other years, however, not all faculty are as great as mine was. The small class size and “cohort” concept really worked well for me, but I think that it might be better in terms of preparation for working as a teacher to be exposed to more of a variety of learning environments and colleagues. I feel like what I got the most out of was my time observing and teaching in the local schools, which does address some of the need for variety. My biggest complaint is that I couldn’t get approval for a placement in an alternative school setting, which is frustrating because I really wanted that experience.” -Student at Evergreen State College

University of Washington-Seattle Campus
1400 NE Campus Pkwy
Seattle, WA 98195
(206) 543-2100

Student Review: “The University of Washington in Seattle is a high quality public school that provides instruction in a variety of practices and disciplines. The campus is set in the shadow of beautiful Mt. Rainier and features a fusion of metropolitan lifestyles as well as a consciousness for environmental health. Within the campus, there are a bevy of different landscapes that can accommodate those who enjoy the Seattle lifestyle as well as those who prefer a more academic environment. “The Ave” is a nearby street that features food and entertainment that most college students can enjoy. In addition, University Village also provides high-class shopping experiences to those that fancy that type of lifestyle.” -Bob W., student at University of Washington

Washington State University
Pullman, WA
(509) 335-3564

Student Review: “When I first enrolled at WSU I was determined to begin my journey as a teacher. From what I had heard the WSU teaching program was one of the best in the area and would suit me very well. But after my first few months during the semester I was starting to question my decision. The class sizes for the courses I was in were extremely large and made you feel extremely insignificant. It was a challenge to get any individual question answered during a lecture and there was almost no luck of being able to meet with the professors outside of the class. The courses that were provided did teach me a lot about the field I was now entering but I didn’t feel that I was being ‘taught’ the information well enough. Rather it seemed like I was being fed the dry information and was expected to be able to process and remember it. It wasn’t long into my second semester of my freshman year that I decided to change majors from teaching to fine arts. I disliked the WSU teaching program so much that I actually decided to change my major.” -Connor F.

1. National Center for Education Statistics College Navigator: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. The Princeton Review. The Best 385 Colleges, 2022 Edition. The Princeton Review, 2021.
3. US News & World Report Best Graduate Education Schools 2023: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-education-schools/edu-rankings
4. US News & World Report Best Online Graduate Education Schools 2022: https://www.usnews.com/education/online-education/education/rankings
5. Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP): http://caepnet.org/provider-search
6. US Department of Education 2021 Title II Report: https://title2.ed.gov/Public/Home.aspx