• Welcome
  • Mission Statement
  • Purpose

Program Faculty


  • Admission Requirements
    • Regular (Traditional) Admission
    • Direct Admission
    • Special Consideration
  • Teacher Education Program (TEP) Application Deadlines
  • Application Procedures
  • Review of Applications and Admission Decisions

Financial Support

  • UI Office of Student Financial Aid
  • College of Education Scholarships and Awards
  • Financing Quicklinks

Academic Advising

  • Advising Appointments
  • Your Plan of Study
  • Academic Advising Staff

Program Requirements

  • Required Coursework
    • Foundation Courses
    • Methods Courses
  • Field Experience
    • Practicum/Pre-student Teaching Experiences
    • Student Teaching
  • Teacher Leader Certificate
  • ePortfolio
  • Program Completion Testing


Expectations and Responsibilities

  • Dress Code for Professional Experience
  • Professional Disposition

Academic Policies

  • Academic Honesty and Grade Appeals


This is the place for you to discover information for applying and successfully completing the requirements for certification in Elementary Education. We want you to be a Hawkeye teacher!

In our undergraduate and post-baccalaureate programs, you will become classroom teachers in K-8 classrooms. Elementary teachers are generalists so you will gain knowledge and confidence through coursework in literacy, math, science, and social studies. Every course, field experience, and practicum opportunity in Elementary Education will help you reach the goal of becoming a confident and capable elementary teacher.

We will invite you to many ongoing opportunities for working with children in a variety of school settings. You will experience a variety of teaching approaches that value reflection, cooperation, and lots of conversation. From the first semester you are in the program to the last semester, you will work with children in individual, small group, and large group settings in each discipline.

We also encourage a perspective of teaching that honors open mindedness, critical thinking, and social engagement. These are the values and aims of a democratic society that respects community, diversity, and social justice concerns. You will learn to accommodate every learner in your future classroom and truly realize the capabilities of every learner you teach.

We are happy for your interest in our program. Please feel free to contact any of us for more information.

Renita Schmidt, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Department of Teaching and Learning
Program Coordinator, Elementary Education

Teacher Education Program Mission Statement

The University of Iowa Educator Preparation Unit collaborates across four colleges, drawing on five schools and 33 academic departments of the university to provide accredited programs that prepare educators and school-based professionals for their chosen work in PK-12 schools, programs, and AEAs.

Within this unit, the Teacher Education Program aims to cultivate teachers who are professionals; intellectuals; and critical consumers and producers of educational policy, practice, and research. These competencies include a commitment to critical thinking and research-based pedagogy. Our program emphasizes learning as a human right – we strive to nurture creative, responsive, and reflective practitioners who challenge their students to become global citizens in a diverse, ever-changing world.

Elementary Education Program Purpose

The undergraduate program is designed to prepare undergraduate and post-baccalaureate students to be classroom teachers in K-8 classrooms.


Admission Requirements

There are three paths to admission to the Elementary Teacher Education Program: regular, direct, and special consideration.

Regular (Traditional) Admission

As a University of Iowa student, once you have completed the following requirements you can apply to the Teacher Education Program in the College of Education.

  • Completion of 30 semester hours of earned college credit.
  • UI cumulative and overall cumulative GPA of 3.00
  • Required test scores of Praxis I, Praxis Core, or G.R.E.
  • Completion of 10 hours of qualifying volunteer experience

Direct Admission

The College of Education also offers direct admission into the Elementary Teacher Education Program. This means you can start your program as a first-year student. First-year student who present an ACT composite score of 27 or higher and a high school GPA of 3.8 or higher are eligible for the direct admission track into the Elementary Teacher Education Program.

Special Consideration

Undergraduate applicants with UI cumulative and/or overall cumulative grade point averages below 3.00 who meet all other application minimum requirements may apply for admission under the Special Consideration Policy.

Teacher Education Program (TEP) Application Deadlines

  • March 1 for summer/fall admission
  • October 1 for spring admission

Application Procedures

The Office of Student Services is ready to answer your questions about the application process. Visit the Teacher Education Program (TEP) application page for step-by-step instructions.

Review of Applications and Admission Decisions

  • Applications are reviewed twice each year: following deadlines of March 1 for summer or fall admission and October 1 for spring admission.
  • Admission to Teacher Education programs is competitive. Meeting the minimum criteria does not ensure program admission.
  • Faculty of the Elementary Education Program review applicants to their program.
  • Selection is determined by academic achievement as reflected in grade-point averages and test scores, aptitude as reflected by recommendations and personal statements and the ability of the given program area to provide quality instruction and clinical and field experiences.
  • Applicants are notified of admission decisions by email approximately four weeks after the application deadline.

Financial Support

All students should contact the University of Iowa Office of Student Financial Aid for information regarding financial aid applications (FAFSA), disbursements, and student employment opportunities (work-study & part-time).

Each year, the College of Education awards over $115,000 in scholarships through their Scholarships and Awards program. More than 25 of these scholarships are open to students in the Elementary Education Program.

Financing Quicklinks

Academic Advising

The College of Education at the University of Iowa is committed to providing effective advising services to you as an essential component of your educational experience. Our goals as advisers is to offer individualized, course-specific and general academic assistance for all students. We strive to engage students through a holistic partnership focused on personalized educational and professional goals.

Program Requirements

Our Elementary Education program assists undergraduate and post-baccalaureate students reach their respective goals as elementary classroom teachers, teacher leaders, researchers, and teacher educators. Our program links research and theory to classroom practice. As you study and learn to become a generalist in the field of elementary education, you increase your content-based knowledge while you work with children in the field.

The Program Guide for Elementary Education is a tool to guide you through the requirements for completing the Elementary Education program. Although your advisor guides your progress toward program completion, the final responsibility for meeting all academic program requirements rests with you.

PDF iconelementary-education-general-requirements.pdf
Complete list of College of Education program guides

Required Coursework

Foundation Courses

Our foundation courses will help you increase your knowledge about the history of education, realize the importance of inclusion of all students in classroom settings, and develop the foundation of knowledge you need to be a great teacher.

  • EDTL:3190 Orientation to Elementary Education (2)
  • EDTL:3002 Technology in the Classroom (2)
  • EPLS:3000 Foundations of Education (3)
  • PSQF:1075 Educational Psychology and Measurement (3)
  • EDTL:4900 Foundations of Special Education (3)
  • EDTL:3103 Assessment Instructional Planning and Practice (3)
  • EPLS:4180 Human Relations for the Classroom Teacher (3)
  • EDTL:3123 Reading and Responding to Children’s Literature (3)
  • EDTL:3122 (7E:122) Creativity, Imagination, Play and Human Development in Art (3)

Methods Courses

The Elementary Education methods courses will help you fine tune your unique pedagogical skills while studying research-based ways of teaching. Each content area methods class includes unique field experience opportunities that allow you to practice what you are learning and develop your skills.

  • EDTL:3120 Methods and Materials: Music for the Classroom Teacher (2)
  • EDTL:3127 Methods and Materials: Physical Education and Health (2)
  • EDTL:3160 Literacy Learning and Teaching I (4)
  • EDTL:3164 Literacy Learning and Teaching II (4)
  • EDTL:4171 Literacy Learning and Teaching III (3)
  • EDTL:3161 Social Studies for Elementary Teachers (3)
  • EDTL:3165 Elementary Science Methods I
  • EDTL:3166 Elementary Science Methods II

Field Experience

Field experience (broadly defined) is supervised practice in K-12 classroom settings where you apply your knowledge in working with students. At the College of Education, these experiences fall into two main categories.

Practicum/pre-student teaching experiences

  • 80-100+ hours (10 hours before admission)
  • Specific requirement vary by program
  • Multiple experiences in a wide range of subject areas
  • Most experiences associated with required courses
  • Must be completely prior to student teaching

Student Teaching

  • All day, full semester placement in a school setting (minimum 15 weeks)
  • Completed during final fall or spring semester of your TEP program

The Office of Student Field Experience works with students, advisors, and faculty to support hundreds of placements every year for future Hawkeye Teachers.

Questions regarding practicums, student teaching, or other volunteer opportunities are supported by the Office of Student Field Experiences (N310 LC, 335-5361).

Teacher Leader Certificate

The Teacher Leader Certificate is a professional development program required of all teacher education students prior to student teaching. You’ll complete six workshops (in-person or online) in technology, assessment, and school community/diversity issues. The certificate also includes a community-based volunteer experience. The certificate’s goal is to train teachers that schools need: technology savvy sincere collaborators, with a vested interest in student achievement.


The Iowa ePortfolio™ Model is a web-based system designed to meet mandated standards and performance assessment requirements. It combines the integration of technologies, academic coursework, field experience, and a skills-based hiring tool for professional advancement.

As you move through your program, you will add performances and artifacts to your ePortfolio™ in each course, and by the end of their program, you will have electronically collected multiple instances of your work, all tied directly to state and national standards. Faculty use the framework to help you document performance through advanced web and multimedia technologies. The project has fostered and enhanced dialogue among faculty members, administrators, and students.

Technical support for your ePortfolio is available in the Education Technology Center (ETC) Consultation Lab (N158A LC, 319-335-5225).

ePortfolio Resources (login required)

Program Completion Testing

Praxis II is a required exam that all students completing initial teacher preparation programs (elementary, secondary, K-12, and special education) must take to complete the program and be eligible to be recommended for licensure. The exam includes two tests, one in pedagogy and one in content.

Visit Program Completion Testing: Praxis II for details on tests, required scores, and preparation (provided by the Office of Student Services).


On completion of teacher education and other PK-12 licensure programs, students apply for Iowa licensure through the Office of Student Services (N310 LC). Applications materials and instructions are available on the Teacher Licensure Procedure page. Contact the Office of Student Services with any licensure-related questions

Expectations and Responsibilities

Dress Code for Professional Experience

Dress Code For Professional Experiences: When you work within the schools you represent yourself and the University of Iowa College of Education. Consequently, you are expected to dress and behave professionally. Your clinical experiences will prepare you to become a professional member of the educational community and you will want to dress appropriately. We suggest that you dress as though you will eventually be a candidate for a position within that setting who wants to establish a reputation as a serious professional. Your University professors and supervisors will help you determine what is appropriate for each of your placements.

Professional Disposition

Elementary education majors are expected to exhibit Professional Dispositions which include caring, communication, creative and critical thinking, and professionalism. Descriptions of these dispositions and the components of each are available in the Elementary Student Teaching Handbook.

Academic Policies

Academic Honesty and Grade Appeals

Elementary education majors are expected to exhibit honesty and integrity at all times. The College of Education has delineated expectations related to academic honesty and how to appropriately appeal a grade. Policies and Regulations Affecting College of Education Students.