Elementary Education

Browse Majors & Minors

Student with backpack




Elementary Education at Alma College:

Considering a career in teaching elementary or middle school?

An Elementary Education certificate permits teaching in grades K-5 all subjects and K-8 self-contained classroom, and, if desired, grades 6-8 in a content area major or minor.

Experiential Learning
  • Field experiences are a key part of your development as a professional educator. As an elementary teacher candidate, you will have at least three (3) extended classroom experiences prior to student teaching. These build sequentially, based on program levels, allowing you to develop and refine your professional knowledge, skills, and dispositions as you progress through the program and prepare for student teaching. You will have an introductory field experience in your first year.  Learn more about Field Placements.
  • The student teaching term is 14 weeks long. You can choose to student teach up to 90 minutes from campus in urban, rural, or suburban settings. You also have the option of student teaching in Chicago. More information about Student Teaching.  
  • Service Learning opportunities include facilitating literacy activities with elementary children during your first year Children’s Literature class and working with students during your second year class, Mathematical Thinking.
  • You will have opportunities for International Teaching Experiences through Spring Terms and P-Global and Venture Grants.

Get Involved

Education Club

Travel Spring Terms

Kappa Delta Pi (International Education Honorary Society)

Current Student Resources

Student Teaching

Field Placement

Tk20 by Watermark

Teacher Education Program Application Information

Forms (Link to Almapedia)

Information Regarding Certification

Transportation Options

Travel Spring Terms

Dual Enrollment

Test Prep Resources

Graduate Success

“I teach a class of fifth graders at Ithaca North Elementary. I feel that Alma College certainly opened up doors for me to be successful! Throughout the Education Program at Alma College, we were given the opportunity to work with a variety of different teachers at different grade levels. This allowed me to be able to pull ideas and strategies from all of these teachers and put their practices into play in my own room, while still being my own teacher! The field experience opportunities that Alma College provides to its students is exceptional!

~Kapre Fillhart, 5th Grade Teacher, Ithaca Public Schools

Alma prepared me well for the teaching world by teaching me time management, flexibility, and to always put student relationships first. My technology background from my Alma tech classes also helped me be prepared to take on my website and social media duties for the school. My Spanish preparation alone has significantly helped me with my job as my language development and experiences with early childhood materials in the language landed me the dream job that I have now! My varied classroom placements prepared me well to be able to teach 6 different grades/ages my first two years. I had a placement in every single grade except 4th grade so teaching the wide range of ages during my placements made teaching all the grades daily much more manageable. 

 ~Ashley Dentler, Las Huellas Spanish Immersion


Our elementary teacher candidates are well-prepared and knowledgeable as they graduate Alma College. Those completing their programs and becoming eligible for certification in 2017-18 had overall GPAs averaging 3.54, and 100% are now certified to teach.

Our graduates are teaching across Michigan, the U.S. and internationally. For example, recent graduates found teaching jobs in Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, North and South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and overseas in Rwanda and South Korea.

Since 2015, 9 elementary candidates have earned Honors in Education based on high GPA, exemplary student teaching, and an honors thesis and presentation.

Those students admitted to our Teacher Education Program (TEP) successfully complete their program and become certified in high numbers, should they choose to do so. For example: of those admitted to TEP in 2014-15, 72% were certified by 2018 (82% eligible for certification); of those admitted to TEP in 2013-14, 83.3% were certified by 2017. Some students choose to pursue Educational Studies or other opportunities.

Elementary teacher candidates are advised and supported in ways that help them complete their program in a timely fashion. For example: of those incoming first-year (non-transfer) students who graduated from our current elementary certification program from 2014-2018, approximately 60% graduated in 4 years or less; about 18% graduated in 4 years plus a student teaching semester; and all graduated within 6 years.  

Higher Learning Commission Annual Report 


The Alma College teacher education program accredited by the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC). This accreditation certifies that our education program has provided evidence that the program adheres to TEAC’s quality principles.

Mission Statement 

The Education department at Alma College is committed to the preparation of knowledgeable, competent, and caring education professionals who reflect critically, serve ethically, and lead intentionally in a diverse world.