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Elementary / Middle Level Education

Become an Elementary/Middle Level Teacher

Becoming an educator is one of the most rewarding career paths you can take. As a elementary/middle level teacher, you’ll have the chance to shape and impact the lives of your students, help them explore their curiosity, teach them healthy ways to interact with the world around them, and inspire them to be life-long learners. In Pennsylvania, the elementary/middle level certification encompasses grades 4-8, which allows for more flexibility in teaching at a wide grade and age range of elementary/middle school systems.

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What Can I Do With a Degree in Elementary/Middle Level Education?

In Pennsylvania, the elementary/middle level certification encompasses grades 4-8, which allows for more flexibility in teaching at a wide grade and age range of elementary/middle school systems. The elementary/middle level age bracket can be tricky to navigate, as so much changes for students academically, emotionally, mentally and physically in those years. Teachers who find the most success at the elementary/middle level are those who are passionate about their content area, have a desire to impress the power of education on students, have the ability to think quickly and plan spontaneously, and can tailor challenging concepts to younger learners.


students in classroom

Inspired Educators

Students interested in certification in elementary/middle level education must select an emphasis in one of four academic content areas and be a generalist in each of the other three academic content areas. The academic emphasis requires completion of a minimum of 30 credit hours in one of the following four content areas, with 12 credit hours in the remaining three:

  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • English/Language Arts
  • Social Studies
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A Specialized Focus

By specializing in one content area, you are better equipped to answer topical content questions from your students as they begin to more deeply explore advanced concepts in academics. With a background in the other subject areas, you’ll also be prepared to assist students who might be struggling to understand concepts in other core academic areas.

education students and teacher

Becoming a Well-Rounded Educator

In addition to the academic emphasis, students will complete a variety of courses in child development, family and community partnerships, cognition and learning, pedagogy and assessment. Content requirements are based on national standards for elementary/middle level education, as well as Pennsylvania's curriculum standards.

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Post Baccalaureate Opportunities

Etown offers an M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction as well as an M.Ed. in Special Education. Etown also offers certificates such as, an ESL Program Specialist K-12 Certificate, a Graduate Certificate in Curriculum & Instruction, a Graduate Certificate in Integrative Science, Technology, Engineering Mathematics (STEM) Education Endorsement, a Graduate Certificate in Interdisciplinary Autism Support and a Graduate Certificate in Trauma Informed Practice.

Student Organizations

Education Organization (Ed Org)

Ed Org's mission is to provide an atmosphere in which future educators feel safe, accepted and motivated to become successful teachers. The club participates in many social and service activities throughout the year, many times in conjunction with other clubs on campus. These events include literacy nights at the local library, volunteering for the Ronald McDonald House, after-school tutoring, participating in  Into the Streets and more. Ed Org also hosts an annual benefit for A-T (ataxia telangiectasia), a progressive, degenerative disease affecting children.

Kappa Delta Pi (KDP)

Kappa Delta Pi is the International Honor Society in Education, founded in 1911 at the University of Illinois by William Bagley, Truman Kelly and Thomas Edgar Musselman. The mission of KDP is to sustain an honored community of diverse educators by promoting excellence and advancing scholarship, leadership and service. The founders chose the name from the Greek words knowledge, duty, and power. Kappa Delta Pi grew from the local chapter to the international organization it is today.

The Elizabethtown College chapter, Tau Iota, participates in many service activities throughout the year, such as Math night, Social Studies night, Literacy Alive! to name a few. To qualify for membership, candidates must have completed 60 hours or more of credits, be a full-time student, have a cumulative GPA of 3.5 and achieve department recommendation.

National Science Teachers Association (NSTA)

This is the largest organization in the world committed to promoting excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning for all.

Council for Exceptional Children (CEC)

The Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) is an international community of professionals and network of student chapters that work to improve, through excellence and advocacy, the education and quality of life for children and youth with exceptionalities and to enhance engagement of their families. The Etown student chapter of CEC connects college students across areas of study with individuals with disabilities and their families through service and development activities.


Elizabethtown College