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Elementary Education - Option Grades 1–6, BSE

Elementary Education Teaching Degree

Today’s elementary classrooms include a wide range of settings, challenges and, most importantly, opportunities — chances for you to foster excellence in all young students regardless of their backgrounds. In the University of Central Missouri’s College of Education, we empower you to develop into a caring, motivational educator as you earn your Elementary Education BSE for grades 1 through 6. 

Innovative elementary teaching degrees built on a tradition of excellence

In 1871, UCM was founded as a university for teachers, and we’ve been preparing them to make a difference on the next generation ever since. In our supportive community learning environment, you’ll have the instruction, resources and support to help you learn innovative classroom techniques, develop your personal teaching philosophy and approach and succeed as an elementary teacher.

Elementary education online opportunities

To meet the needs of undergraduate students and their busy lives, we do offer some online courses. For instance, some courses outside your blocks are offered online during the summer. You may also be able to complete your senior block of student teaching in St. Louis or Springfield, which makes it possible for many of our students to move back home for a semester.

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99% hiring rate after graduation

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Distinctive co-teaching model

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Online classes available

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2021 Best Value in Education

CAEP Accreditation

CAEP-accredited Education program

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DESE-accredited bachelor’s in Education

What you will study

Our instructors bring a wealth of knowledge to the program, as they help you prepare for your elementary teaching career. They have served in a variety of educational roles, including elementary teachers, instructional coaches and school administrators. Our instructors and professors will use their own experiences to help guide you through the Elementary Education degree program, and they will be with you every step of the way in your field placements. Explore some of the undergraduate courses you’ll take while earning your Bachelor of Science in Education for grades 1 through 6.

  • Curriculum Design and Assessment: Learn how to use formal and informal assessment strategies to evaluate student learning and design units of instruction that meet individual learning needs of children.
  • Classroom Management and Interactions: Build classroom management knowledge and strategies that enhance and enrich teaching and learning.
    School, Family and Community Connections: Complete community service hours and gain invaluable experience while connecting with families, students and community members.
  • Practicum Experience: Become involved with students and certified elementary teachers in the public school setting. The practicum experience provides you the opportunity to take what you’ve learned in the coursework and apply it in the classroom with instructor supervision.
  • School, Family and Community Connections: Complete community service hours and gain invaluable experience while connecting with families, students and community members

After receiving your bachelor’s in Elementary Education degree from UCM and successful completion of the MOCA subtests, you will be certified to teach in Missouri for grades 1–6. 


Excellence in Elementary Education

  • UCM’s bachelor’s in Elementary Education degree program is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) and the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE).
  • In recent years, UCM graduates with Elementary Education degrees have experienced a 99% job placement rate.


Unique learning opportunities in the Elementary Education degree program

As an Elementary Education major, you’ll learn by doing through hands-on teaching opportunities, engaging coursework and more. 

  • Field placements in elementary classrooms: Our coursework in the junior and senior blocks provides field-embedded lessons and assessments to give you real-world, applicable experiences with teaching. This will allow you to develop skills and unique approaches to meet the needs of your future students.
  • Professional organizations: UCM offers many ways for you to get involved as you earn one of our Elementary Education degrees and prepare for your future in the classroom. For example, join the Student Missouri State Teachers Association, open to all UCM Education majors. By becoming a member, you will get chances to engage with the UCM teacher community, sign up for volunteer opportunities and hear from professional guest speakers. 
  • Student activities: Join undergraduate students throughout the College of Education in student-led clubs and organizations. These include Early Childhood Young Professionals, Student Council for the Exceptional Child, Central Missouri Mathematics Educators, PE Club, Kappa Delta Pi, and Student Missouri State Teachers Association.


What can you do with an Elementary Education degree from UCM?

By pursuing a bachelor’s in Elementary Education degree at the University of Central Missouri, you will gain skills to help you stand out to future employers. Our teaching degree is designed to foster knowledge, putting you on a path to become a UCM educator — a competent, caring, reflective practitioner committed to the premise that all can learn. 

Today, many UCM graduates with Elementary Education degrees choose to stay in Missouri to teach. Nearly 80% of College of Education alumni are teaching in Missouri schools, representing UCM in over three out of four of the state’s school districts.

Why UCM Elementary Education majors get hired

With a 99% job placement rate, we know that soon after you earn your teaching degree, you will get the opportunity to enrich students who will one day change our world. School principals have cited the following abilities they appreciate in our graduates who become elementary teachers:

  • Curriculum and lesson development
  • Instructional decision-making based on student needs and achievement 
  • Understanding the importance of being dedicated to the profession of educating students
  • Eagerness to learn and have a strong foundation in key teaching initiatives




Financial assistance options for your Elementary Education degree

The University of Central Missouri offers a high-quality education at an affordable cost. Along with our competitive tuition rates, we understand financial assistance can be vital to helping you achieve your dreams. We offer a variety of resources to help you finance your college education. Beyond university-wide financial aid and scholarships, opportunities such as the following are available specifically for Elementary Education majors:

  • Department of Elementary & Early Childhood Education Scholarship
  • Mary E., Clara, and Mabel Falke Memorial Scholarship  
  • E. L. Crayton and Margaret B. Crayton Memorial Scholarship


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Take your degree further.

The College of Education offers a variety of related master’s degrees to help you enhance your teaching degree and advance your elementary teacher career.

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Make yourself more marketable.

Gain additional teaching skills and training at UCM by adding one of these undergraduate minors to your Elementary Education degree:

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Explore programs related to elementary education.

Undergraduate programs that you may also be interested in include:

Early Field Experience

You will be placed in an elementary classroom for the first time in your second or third semester at UCM. You will complete a six-hour block of foundations courses and spend 30 hours in an elementary classroom. This will allow you to see teaching from a teacher’s perspective and help you know for sure you are on the right path.

Junior Year Blocks

During your junior year, you will complete two blocks. A block is a combination of courses and an extensive placement in an elementary classroom. All of your courses will be about teaching and learning. You will be placed in an elementary classroom and primarily work with small groups of children – you will build relationships with them, teach and assess them by applying your learning from the junior bock coursework.

Senior Year Blocks

During this year, you really start assuming the work of the teacher. You’ll plan with your cooperating teacher and teach the whole class. You’ll attend professional development and meetings along with your teacher. The second semester is student teaching and you will be placed with one of the teachers you worked with first semester. This means the transition to student teaching is smooth!

Student Teaching and Certification

The Clinical Services and Certification Office is located in Lovinger 2170. This office monitors your progress from admission to teacher education through student teaching and finalizes your certification with the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. The staff of Clinical Services Office will oversee your field experiences, including your student teaching placement.



UCM is the longest continuously CAEP accredited public institution in Missouri


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