Elementary Education, B.A.

Learning Outcomes 

  1. Students who graduate with a B.A. in Elementary Education should be able to …​
  2. Know, understand, and use the major concepts, principles, theories, and research related to development of children and young adolescents to construct learning opportunities that support individual students’ development, acquisition of knowledge, and motivation.
  3. Demonstrate a high level of competence in use of English language arts and they know, understand, and use concepts from reading, language and child development, to teach reading, writing, speaking, viewing, listening, and thinking skills and to help students successfully apply their developing skills to many different situations, materials, and ideas.
  4. Know, understand, and use fundamental concepts of physical, life, and earth/space sciences. Candidates can design and implement age-appropriate inquiry lessons to teach science, to build student understanding for personal and social applications, and to convey the nature of science.
  5. Know, understand, and use the major concepts and procedures that define number and operations, algebra, geometry, measurement, and data analysis and probability. In doing so they consistently engage problem solving, reasoning and proof, communication, connections, and representation.
  6. Know, understand, and use the major concepts and modes of inquiry from the social studies-the integrated study of history, geography, the social sciences, and other related areas-to promote elementary students’ abilities to make informed decisions as citizens of a culturally diverse democratic society and interdependent world.
  7. Know, understand, and use-as appropriate to their own understanding and skills-the content, functions, and achievements of the performing arts (dance, music, theater) and the visual arts as primary media for communication, inquiry, and engagement among elementary students.
  8. Know, understand, and use the major concepts in the subject matter of health education to create opportunities for student development and practice of skills that contribute to good health.
  9. Know, understand, and use-as appropriate to their own understanding and skills-human movement and physical activity as central elements to foster active, healthy life styles and enhanced quality of life for elementary students.
  10. Plan and implement instruction based on knowledge of students, learning theory, connections across the curriculum, curricular goals, and community.
  11. Understand how elementary students differ in their development and approaches to learning, and create instructional opportunities that are adapted to diverse students.
  12. Understand and use a variety of teaching strategies that encourage elementary students’ development of critical thinking and problem solving.
  13. Use their knowledge and understanding of individual and group motivation and behavior among students at the K-6 level to foster active engagement in learning, self motivation, and positive social interaction and to create supportive learning environments.
  14. Use their knowledge and understanding of effective verbal, nonverbal, and media communication techniques to foster active inquiry, collaboration, and supportive interaction in the elementary classroom.
  15. Know, understand, and use formal and informal assessment strategies to plan, evaluate and strengthen instruction that will promote continuous intellectual, social, emotional, and physical development of each elementary student.
  16. Be aware of and reflect on their practice in light of research on teaching, professional ethics, and resources available for professional learning; they continually evaluate the effects of their professional decisions and actions on students, families and other professionals in the learning community and actively seek out opportunities to grow professionally.
  17. Know the importance of establishing and maintaining a positive collaborative relationship with families, school colleagues, and agencies in the larger community to promote the intellectual, social, emotional, physical growth and well-being of children.


Admission to the Professional Program

All University teacher education students must apply and be admitted to Professional Program/Internship at mid-point(s) in their programs prior to final internship (i.e.student teaching). Requirements for admission vary by program, but for undergraduate students include 60 credit hours with a minimum overall GPA of 2.75, successful completion of a state-approved basic skills examination, and courses as specified by program area.

Students should contact their program area or the College of Education Office of Student Affairs for specific requirements and application deadlines.

Degree Requirements (120 hours)

See College of Education for certification requirements and other academic opportunities.

Program of Study

Requirements Credit Hours
1. Carolina Core 31-43
2. College Requirements 0
3. Program Requirements 18-27
4. Major Requirements 62

Founding Documents Requirement

All undergraduate students must take a 3-credit course or its equivalent with a passing grade in the subject areas of History, Political Science, or African American Studies that covers the founding documents including the United State Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, the Emancipation Proclamation and one or more documents that are foundational to the African American Freedom struggle, and a minimum of five essays from the Federalist papers.  This course may count as a requirement in any part of the program of study including the Carolina Core, the major, minor or cognate, or as a general elective.  Courses that meet this requirement are listed here.

1. Carolina Core Requirements (31-43 hours)

CMW – Effective, Engaged, and Persuasive Communication: Written (6 hours)

must be passed with a grade of C or higher​

ARP – Analytical Reasoning and Problem Solving (6-8 hours) 

SCI – Scientific Literacy (7-8 hours)

Select from two different categories below.

GFL – Global Citizenship and Multicultural Understanding: Foreign Language  (0-6 hours)

Complete the Carolina Core approved courses in Foreign Language (GFL) or by achieving a score of 2 or better on a USC foreign language placement test.

GHS – ​Global Citizenship and Multicultural Understanding: Historical Thinking (3 hours) 

GSS – Global Citizenship and Multicultural Understanding: Social Sciences (3 hours) 

AIU – Aesthetic and Interpretive Understanding (3 hours)

CMS – Effective, Engaged, and Persuasive Communication: Spoken Component1 (0-3 hours)

INF – Information Literacy1 (0-3 hours)

VSR – Values, Ethics, and Social Responsibility1 (0-3 hours)

any overlay or stand-alone CC-VSR course


Carolina Core Stand Alone or Overlay Eligible Requirements — Overlay-approved courses offer students the option of meeting two Carolina Core components in a single course. A maximum of two overlays is allowed. The total Carolina Core credit hours must add up to a minimum of 31 hours. Some programs may have a higher number of minimum Carolina Core hours due to specified requirements.

2. College Requirements (0 hours)

No college-required courses for this program.

3. Program Requirements (18-27 hours)

Supporting Courses (18 hours)

Course Title Credits
Select one of the following:3
Geographies of Global Change
Peoples, Places, and Environments
Contemporary Issues in Geography Education
The following courses must be passed with a grade of C or higher:
Select one of the following:3
Children’s Literature
Children’s Literature
Picture Books
EDTE 500Mathematics Knowledge for Teaching I: PK-8 3
or MATH 221 Basic Concepts of Elementary Mathematics I
EDTE 501Mathematics Knowledge for Teaching II: PK-83
or MATH 222 Basic Concepts of Elementary Mathematics II
PEDU 575Physical Education for the Classroom Teacher3
Select one of the following:3
Art for Elementary Schools
Art of Children
Integrating Music into PreK & Elementary Classrooms
Total Credit Hours18

Minor (0-18 hours) optional

A student may choose to complete a minor consisting of 18 credit hours of prescribed courses. The minor is intended to develop a coherent basic preparation in a second area of study. Courses applied toward general education requirements cannot be counted toward the minor. No course may satisfy both major and minor requirements. All minor courses must be passed with a grade of C or better.

Electives (0-9 hours)

The number of elective hours required depends upon the number of hours used to fulfill other degree requirements.  Minimum degree requirements must equal 120 hours.

4. Major Requirements (62 hours)

Achieve a GPA of 3.00 or higher in all education course work; a minimum grade of C is required in all major courses.

Education Core (14 hours)

Course Title Credits
EDEX 523Introduction to Exceptional Children3
EDFI 300Schools in Communities3
EDPY 401Learners and the Diversity of Learning3
EDRM 423Introduction to Classroom Assessment2
EDTE 201Issues and Trends in Teaching and Learning3
Total Credit Hours14

Elementary Core and Clinical Experience (27 hours)

Course Title Credits
EDEL 305Nature and Management of Elementary Classrooms3
EDEL 306Culturally Sustaining Pedagogy for the Elementary Classrooms3
EDEL 440Elementary Mathematics Instruction3
EDEL 450Elementary Science Instruction3
EDEL 460Elementary Social Studies Instruction3
EDEL 491Seminar on Teaching3
EDRD 430Elementary Literacy Instruction I6
EDRD 431Reading Assessment3
Total Credit Hours27

Practicum and Internship Experience (21 hours)

Course Title Credits
EDEL 441Introductory Elementary Internship3
EDEL 471Internship in Environments, Planning, and Motivation for Teaching and Learning6
EDEL 490Internship in Elementary Education12
Total Credit Hours21

Note: For admission to EDEL 490, a GPA of 3.00 or higher is required in EDEL 440, EDEL 450, EDEL 460, and EDEL 471 .

Major Map

A major map is a layout of required courses in a given program of study, including critical courses and suggested course sequences to ensure a clear path to graduation.

Major maps are only a suggested or recommended sequence of courses required in a program of study. Please contact your academic advisor for assistance in the application of specific coursework to a program of study and course selection and planning for upcoming semesters.

Elementary Education, B.A.