The Elementary Education program will prepare you to be an outstanding K-6 teacher who will truly realize the capabilities of every learner in your future classroom.
Our program emphasizes learning as a human right and nurtures creative, responsive, and reflective teachers who challenge their students to become global citizens in a diverse, ever-changing world.
Throughout your time in the Elementary Education program you will learn how to be a confident, culturally-competent, and well-rounded elementary teacher, ready to help your students with their academic and emotional needs.
Your academic advisor will help guide you through the requirements for degree completion.
Students can pursue added endorsements that certify them to teach areas of specialization in grades K-8. School Administrators value these when looking for new hires.
For a complete listing of available endorsements, please visit Certificates and Endorsements.
- Language arts
- Physical education
- Social science (history or social science)
- Speech communication/theater
- Special education
K-12 Athletic Coach, PK-12 Talented and Gifted, 5-8 Middle School, and K-12 English as a Second Language are available as additional approval areas. Please contact your advisor for more information or visit Advising.
Our Teacher Education Program provides diverse experiences with supportive mentors to effectively prepare you for your future classroom.
To learn more about classroom experiences and the Teacher Education program, please:
Classroom Experience and Student Teaching
We believe you shouldn’t have to wait until your final semester of college to work with students and make sure teaching is right for you. In your program you will be given opportunities to work in real classrooms with students from the moment you are admitted to the program.
Teacher Leader Certificate
The certificate encourages strong classroom leadership skills, helps you better understand the context in which our schools operate, and enables you to better innovate, improve, develop and discover your identity as an emerging teacher leader. Prepare to support your students’ social-emotional-behavioral health needs and become a stand-out hire after graduation.
Meet Elizabeth Johnson, Hawkeye Teacher, and hear about the Social-Emotional-Behavioral Health certificate.
Faculty and Research
Elementary Education faculty are dedicated to helping you learn best practices to ensure the success of your learners. Many are active researchers who are advancing the practice of teaching and learning.
To see associated faculty, please visit: Faculty Listing.
“I felt so prepared as I took on my first year in my own classroom, and I can’t thank some of my closest professors enough for the experiences they gave me that led to my confidence while teaching” - Mandi Felan (BA ‘19)
Admissions and Application
- Admission to the University of Iowa and the College of Education
- Completion of EDTL:2111 Teaching Elementary Learners I
- Documented completion of 10‐hour Pre‐admission School Field Experience
- An essay (doc, docx, pdf) of no more than 500 words The topic is available in the Teacher Education Program application portal (Tk20).
- Enrolled in EDTL:2112 Teaching Elementary Learners II.
- A completed application to the Teacher Education Program (TEP). Completion of the application to the Teacher Education Program (TEP) will be guided as part of EDTL:2112 Teaching Elementary Learners II.
Admission and Application Requirements for those who HAVE NOT taken EDTL:2111 Teaching Elementary Learners I
- Admission to the University of Iowa
- Completion of a minimum of 30 semester hours of earned college credit before submitting your application
- Documented completion of 10‐hour Pre‐admission School Field Experience
- Transcripts from all colleges attended with evidence of courses taken and grades earned. Please upload UI grade report and transcripts from any other institutions if courses and grades do not show on UI grade report.
- Two recommendations. Ask recommendation writers to complete the recommendation form. One must be from a college or university instructor. Writers may return the completed forms to you for upload, or send them directly to the Office of Student Services (firstname.lastname@example.org) for attaching to your application
- An essay (doc, docx, pdf) of no more than 500 words The topic is available in the application portal (Tk20).
- A completed application to the Teacher Education Program (via TK20). See below for submission instructions.
How to submit your application
To submit your application, go to the TK20 application portal and follow the provided directions. We recommend using Google Chrome, so please check your current browser information.
Create your account:
- Click to open the “Admissions” tab at bottom. Then click on “Click here to create your account” at very bottom. DO NOT enter “username” and “password” if this is your first visit to the site.
- Provide the required information in “Create Applicant Account” using your UI email, then click “Submit.”
After you've created your account (or signed in):
- Click on “Applications” in the left side menu.
- From the drop-down menu at top of page, select the appropriate application for your program and click “Next”
- Complete the application
- If you need to stop before your application is complete, click “Save” at the bottom of the form and then click “Close.” DO NOT SUBMIT until your application is complete.
- When the application is complete, click the green “SUBMIT” button at the bottom of the form. You cannot make any changes to the application once you SUBMIT the application.
After you submit your application you will receive a notification from the Office of Student Services that either:
- Your application is complete and will be reviewed by the admissions committee, or
- Your application is incomplete. Please submit the following items.
Visit our Financing Your Degree page for information about the college’s undergraduate and graduate program scholarships, fellowships, financial aid, international student funding, veterans aid, tuition and fees and more.
College Scholarships Available to Elementary Education Students
The college awarded its top students with over $200,000 in scholarships last year based on academic achievement and potential for success in a specific education field, among other criteria. Application deadline is typically the end of November. One application puts you in the pool for each of the following scholarships:
Duane D. Anderson Memorial Scholarship
Awarded to a transfer student from an Iowa community college who is enrolled in a program in the College of Education and established through gifts given in memory of Dr. Anderson.
Jack Bagford Elementary Education Scholarship
Awarded to an undergraduate or graduate student in elementary education who will be student teaching during the academic year following the award. The recipient must be a resident of Iowa. It was established by W. Christine Rauscher (MA '72 / PhD '78) in honor of Dr. Bagford.
David and Connie Belin Honors Award
Awarded to graduating seniors who have completed all requirements for the Honors Opportunity Program and established through gifts given in honor of David and Connie Belin.
Dr. Bettye M. Caldwell and Dr. Fred T. Caldwell Scholarship
Awarded to undergraduate students interested in pursuing careers in early childhood development including the fields of education, sociology, psychology, and other related academic programs. This is a merit-based scholarship established by Dr. Bettye M. Caldwell (MA '46) and Dr. Fred T. Caldwell Jr., M.D.
Jake and Kimberly Chung Scholarship
Awarded to a teacher education student for their student teaching semester and established by Jhoon Jake Chung (BA ’96) and Kimberly Dierks Chung (BA ’98).
John Leonard Davies Scholarship
Awarded to a student who is a first or second semester senior in the Department of Teaching and Learning who is viewed as being creative and having outstanding potential for success in the field of K-12 education and established by Elva Davies (MA '72) in memory of her husband, Dr. Davies (MA '43/PhD '49).
Dean's Award of Excellence
Awarded to students who demonstrate strong academic performance; commitment to their program, department, and the College of Education; and a commitment to civic engagement.
Mary Agnella Gunn Memorial Scholarship
Awarded to worthy undergraduate or graduate students in education and established by the trust of Dr. Marion Anderson (BA '24/MA '26/PhD '34) in memory of her long-time friend, Dr. Gunn (BA '23/MA '27/PhD '33).
John H. Haefner Memorial Scholarship
Awarded to a student who will be student teaching in the area of social studies education. Established in the memory of Dr. Haefner (BA '23 / MA '39 / PhD '42).
Gladys and Margaret Harvey Education Scholarship
Awarded to students who show financial need and who are enrolled in the College of Education. Established through gifts made by Margaret K. Harvey in memory of her sister Gladys Harvey (BA '25).
Emma E. Holmes Education Scholarship
Awarded to an outstanding undergraduate or graduate student in any program in the College of Education. Based on merit and need, the recipient must be a U.S. citizen with first preference for a student in the top 20 percent of his/her class with second preference for a student with demonstrated need. Established by gifts from Dr. Holmes (PhD '61).
Howard R. Jones Achievement Award
Awarded to worthy undergraduate or graduate students. Established through gifts from colleagues and friends at the time of Dr. Jones's retirement.
Kyle C. and Eula B. Jones Scholarships
Awarded to undergraduate and graduate students planning careers in elementary and secondary education and administration. Established through the bequest of Michael D. Jones (MD '75) in honor of his parents, Kyle C. and Eula B. Jones.
Charlotte and Ruby Junge Scholarship
Awarded to undergraduate or graduate students in elementary or secondary education who will be student teaching for a full semester. Established by Dr. Charlotte Junge (MA '39/PhD '44) in memory of her sister, Dr. Ruby Junge (PhD '46).
Sheila E. McFarland Memorial Scholarship
Awarded to a student who will be student teaching for a full semester in the area of elementary education. Preference will be given to an Iowa resident. Established by Joseph (BA '52) and Rosalie (BA '52) McFarland in memory of their daughter, Sheila Eileen McFarland (BA '73).
Minority Student Award
Awarded to an outstanding undergraduate or graduate student of color in the College of Education who is active in working with equity issues in the College and has contributed in a positive manner to the life of the College. Established through the estate of Professor Emeritus Ursula Delworth.
Margaret P. Park Scholarship Fund
Awarded to deserving students in the College of Education with preference given to students from St. Louis County, Minnesota; or Rock Island County, Illinois. If no candidates from the above mentioned locations qualify, then the preference will be given to a student from Iowa. Established through the estate of Margaret P. Park (BA '45) and Frank A. Park.
Guy and Gladys Peterson Scholarship
Awarded to students admitted to the teacher education program at the University of Iowa that have completed at least 12 hours of education coursework. Established by Jessica Ann Vogel (BA '58) in memory of her parents, Guy and Gladys Peterson.
Betty Piercy Scholarship
Awarded to a deserving student in the field of reading.
Lorraine Gutz Ragan Scholarship
Awarded to undergraduate or graduate students from Iowa who are enrolled in the teacher education program and established Rex B. Ragan in honor of his sister-in-law, Lorraine Gutz Ragan (BA '55).
Ann Ramsey and Richard E. Posey Scholarship
Awarded to a student who is a junior pursuing a career in teaching or education. Renewable for student’s senior year as long as student maintains the required GPA. Established by Ann Ramsey Posey (BA '69).
Judith Young Saunders Scholarship
Awarded to an undergraduate or graduate student who is pursuing a degree in teacher education. When possible, preference should be given to students with severe visual impairments. Established by James H. Burke (BA '49) in memory of his niece, Judith Saunders (BA '68).
Margaret A. Sloan Scholarship
Awarded to undergraduate or graduate students in the College of Education. Preference to be given to Iowa students enrolled in elementary education from Iowa in elementary education. Established by Margaret A. Sloan (BA '55/MA '61).
Lloyd Smith Scholarship
Awarded to an outstanding student in the area of elementary social studies. Established through gifts in memory of Dr. Smith (MA '54/PhD '56).
Grace Phelps Stucker Scholarship
Awarded to an undergraduate or graduate teacher education student. Established by Carolyn Stucker (BA ’73/MA ’80) in memory of her mother, Grace Phelps Stucker (BA ’72).
Edgar M. and Evelyn Benzler Tanruther Scholarship
Awarded to undergraduate and/or graduate students in the field of elementary education. Established through the estate of Edgar Tanruther (MA '29/PhD '37).
University High School Innovative Developments in Education Award (IDEA)
Awarded to students doing their student teaching experience. Established through gifts from U-High alumni and faculty.
Erwin and Louise Wasta International Scholarship
Awarded to an international student in the College of Education. Established by Stephanie Wasta (MA '89/PhD '93) in honor of her grandparents.
English as a Second Language Scholarship
Awarded to graduate and undergraduate students in the College of Education.
Thelma Grandia Scholarship
Awarded to undergraduate or graduate teacher education students who show financial need and established by Murl J. Grandia in memory of his sister, Thelma R. Grandia (BA ’57).
Judy Skalsky Memorial Scholarship
Awarded to an undergraduate or graduate student majoring in Art Education. Established by Rose E. Skalsky in memory of her daughter, Judy Skalsky (BA ’65).
Maureen Medberry Snell Education Award
Awarded to outstanding students in the College of Education and established through the estate of Maureen Medberry Snell (BA ‘44).
Student Teaching Abroad Scholarship
Awarded to undergraduate students who are doing their student teaching in a foreign country and established by Linda R. Baker (BA ‘68) and was supported by Nicholas Colangelo.
Mike and Arline Walter Scholarship
Awarded to graduate students in science education and established by Dr. Cloy (Mike) Walter (BA ’58/MS ’60/PhD ’66) and Arline Walter (BA ’63/MS ’64).
Lack of representation inspires Smith to pursue career as teacher
For graduating College of Education senior Makayla Smith, the path to success wasn’t easy, or guaranteed – her success and achievement were earned through a long journey with experiencing self-doubt and struggles.
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