Skip to content Skip to Live Chat

Master of Arts

Teaching –Elementary Education Master's

Leads to Teacher Licensure


This Master's Degree in Elementary Education Will Help You Make a Difference


Are you ready to follow your passion for education and pursue a meaningful career as a teacher? An elementary education degree can help you impact on all kinds of students, changing their lives, and fueling their dreams. If you already hold a bachelor's degree in a non-teaching field, this master's in elementary education can help you change careers, pursue your passion for education, and start making a difference for diverse students and communities. This elementary education master's degree will help you learn the content knowledge and teaching skills you need to run your own classroom, giving you the ability to connect with every kind of learner, increasing their understanding and growth. This master's degree prepares students for teaching certification in all 50 states, so you can become a teacher wherever you live. Learn more about teacher licensure in your state.

Students will take eight professional core courses that will prepare them to handle unique educational situations and become better teachers. These courses focus on a variety of important topics including social and emotional learning, and technology and diversity inclusion in the classroom. Plus, students will get to use augmented reality experiences to give them the opportunity to practice their work before entering the classroom. These eight professional core courses are also coupled with preclinical experience to help ensure teachers are ready for their classroom.

83% of students finish within 

24 Months*

Put your experience and education to use. WGU lets you move more quickly through material you already know and advance as soon as you're ready. The result: You may finish faster.

*WGU Internal Data

Tuition per six-month term is


Tuition charged per term—rather than per credit—helps students control the ultimate cost of their degrees. Do the math and you'll be thrilled! You can finish faster, and pay less!

Graduates who would recommend


The vast majority of alumni say WGU delivered on its promises. In fact, over 50% of students found WGU thanks to a friend's recommendation.

Ready to Start Your WGU Journey?

Next Start Date: March 1

Start Dates the 1st of Every Month


Elementary Education Courses

Curriculum that ensures you’ve mastered the things employers want you to know.

This teaching degree in elementary education adds theoretical depth and practical experience to your curriculum planning and classroom management skills. WGU’s Master of Arts in Teaching, Elementary Education program is nationally recognized by the Association for Childhood Education International (ACEI).

The WGU master’s in teaching degree program was designed with input from the experts on our Education Program Council. These experts know exactly what it takes for a graduate to qualify for a teacher’s license and be successful in a career teaching elementary school students.

The M.A. Teaching, Elementary Education program is a mostly online program that you will complete by studying and working independently with instruction and support from WGU faculty. You will be expected to complete at least 8-9 competency units each 6-month term. (One course is typically 2 units.)

This program comprises the following courses. You will typically complete them one at a time as you make your way through your program, working with your Program Mentor each term to build your personalized Degree Plan. You’ll work through each course as quickly as you can study and learn the material. As soon as you’re ready, you’ll pass the assessment, complete the course, and move on. This means that you can finish as many courses as you're able in a term at no additional cost.

Washington students, please note that you will be required to complete one additional course that is not listed below: Survey of Pacific Northwest History for Educators. View the Washington program guide.

Elementary Education Methods
Mathematics Content
Professional Core
Pre-Clinical Experiences
Demonstration Teaching

26 Courses

Program consists of 26 courses

At WGU, we design our curriculum to be timely, relevant, and practical—all to help you show that you know your stuff.

Professional Portfolio

Special requirements for this program

You will complete a professional portfolio, which will include your resume and Philosophy of Teaching Statement and serve as a way to showcase the skills you have acquired throughout your degree program and Demonstration Teaching. 

“One of the teachers at a school where I frequently substituted told me about WGU. I was skeptical. Could an online school satisfy all the rigorous requirements of Oregon's licensing agency? How could I even pay for it? I called WGU and was offered a scholarship, counseled about additional financial aid, and teamed up with a wonderful mentor who helped me navigate in the online learning environment. In 18 months, I received my master's degree in elementary education and became licensed as an educator in the state of Oregon!”

—Sarah Barten
M.A. Teaching, Elementary Education

Why WGU?

You Aren't On Your Own

WGU has Program Mentors who work with you from the day you start, all the way through graduation. They help you set up your Demonstration Teaching, learn about teaching certification in your state, and more. You're not alone when you choose an online degree at WGU.

On Your Schedule

Students choose WGU for their online teaching degree program because of its flexibility. Whether you already have a full-time job, have responsibilities as a parent, or just have a busy schedule, WGU can work for you.

Licensure In Any State

WGU's online elementary education degree prepares you for a teaching license in any state in the United States. It's valuable to learn the other requirements in your state to know the full process for gaining licensure.

Accredited, Respected,

One important measure of a degree’s value is the reputation of the university where it was earned. When employers, industry leaders, and academic experts hold your alma mater in high esteem, you reap the benefits of that respect. WGU is a pioneer in reinventing higher education for the 21st century, and our quality has been recognized.


When We Say Affordable We Mean It

By charging per six-month term rather than per credit—and empowering students to accelerate through material they know well or learn quickly—WGU helps students control the ultimate cost of their degrees. The faster you complete your program, the less you pay for your degree.

Tuition Calculator
Pay less by completing your program faster

A Master's Degree Is Within Reach

There is help available to make paying for school possible for you:

The average student loan debt of WGU graduates in 2022 (among those who borrowed) was less than half* the national average.

*WGU undergraduate students have approximately half the debt at graduation compared to the national average, according to the Institute for College Access and Success (2022).

Most WGU students qualify for financial aid, and WGU is approved for federal financial aid and U.S. veterans benefits. 

Many scholarship opportunities are available. Find out what you might be eligible for.


A Different Way to Learn: Degree Programs Designed to Fit Your Life—and All the Demands on Your Time

Professional responsibilities. Family obligations. Personal commitments. At WGU, we understand schedules are tight and often unpredictable for adult students. That’s why we offer a flexible, personalized approach to how education should be. No rigid class schedules. Just a solid, career-focused teaching program that meshes with your current lifestyle. You'll be challenged. You'll work hard. But if you commit yourself and put in the hours needed, WGU makes it possible for you to earn a highly respected degree as a busy working adult.

"I have completed my Bachelor of Arts in Educational Studies and my Master of Arts in Teaching degrees at WGU. I feel that WGU strives to set you up for success. The program mentors are very helpful at keeping you on track, and they help you find the tools you need to be successful. Course instructors are very knowledgeable and there is always someone available to help you.”

—Esther P.
M.A. Teaching, Elementary Education


A Master's in Elementary Education Opens Doors to Your Own Classroom and Beyond

Between 2019 and 2029, over 56,000 new kindergarten and elementary school teaching positions will be created nationwide. Once you have completed your Master of Arts in Teaching Elementary Education degree program, you’ll be in demand. You’ll have the knowledge, skills, and in-classroom experience to take your teaching career in a rewarding direction.

Shape the course of the future for yourself and your students—your goal to become a meaningful teacher is within your reach. Change careers and make a difference one student at a time. Earn your master's in elementary education—a program focused on helping you connect with students, improving their outcomes and understanding. Make a difference for individual students, your classroom, and your entire community. 

Return on Your Investment


The number of elementary school teaching positions in the United States will increase by 4% from 2019 to 2029.

—U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

WGU Has Alumni Teaching in Schools Across the Country

Graduates of WGU's online Teachers College have found meaningful, rewarding teaching careers in classrooms at:

  • Inclusionary K–12 classrooms
  • Middle/junior high schools
  • High schools
  • Private and charter schools

Impressive Class of Graduates

Graduates of the WGU Teachers College include recipients of many professional honors, including:

  • Gates Millennium Scholars
  • Intel Grant for Mathematics and Technology
  • Claes Nobel Educator of Distinction Award
  • Milken Family Foundation National Educator Award
  • Association of Public Charter Schools Educator of the Year Award

Focused on Equity and Accessibility

The WGU Teachers College is in the top 1% for granting degrees for Black and Hispanic/Latinx educators at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. It is second in the nation for combined graduate and undergraduate degrees and credentials for students of color, according to the federal Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS).


Master of Teaching, Elementary Education Admission Requirements

To be considered eligible for enrollment into this M.A. in Teaching Elementary Education degree program, you must provide official transcripts that demonstrate you have earned a bachelor’s degree from a recognized, institutionally accredited (also known as regionally accredited) university and earned a GPA of at least 2.5 (or higher, depending upon your state), or the competency-based equivalent, in that program. Applicants with a GPA lower than a 2.5 but a 2.0 or above may seek admission by submitting passing scores from the WGU program required basic skills test (e.g. Praxis CORE). 

Students who are seeking initial teacher licensure in a bachelor’s, post-baccalaureate, or master’s program must also pass a state-specific basic skills test for the state in which they live as a prerequisite to Demonstration Teaching (student teaching). (Registering and paying for the test is the student’s responsibility.) This requirement can be met either prior to admission or before beginning the Foundations of Teaching subject area once you are in your WGU program.

WGU’s teacher licensure programs also include Demonstration Teaching (student teaching). You must be at least 18 years of age before you may begin the application process or participate in Preclinical Experiences and Demonstration Teaching. You must also submit to a criminal background check prior to entering the classroom for this component of your program.

Get Your Enrollment Checklist

Download your step-by-step guide to enrollment.

Get Your Questions Answered

Talk to an WGU Enrollment Counselor.


Becoming a Licensed Teacher


State-specific licensure requirements: Each state in the U.S. has specific testing requirements that must be met or completed in addition to completing your teaching degree program at WGU. Teacher licensure requirements vary depending on state laws and may include a number of factors, such as:

  • Completion of a bachelor’s degree program
  • Submission of transcripts
  • Completion and clearance of a background check
  • Passing of required entrance exams and basic skills tests

Preclinical Experiences    

As part of this program, you'll participate in a wide range of in-classroom teaching experiences through at least 75 hours of in-classroom observation.

Demonstration Teaching

To help you prepare to work in classrooms, this program includes a student teaching component (we call it Demonstration Teaching, or DT). DT is a full-time, supervised, in-classroom experience of a minimum of 12–20 weeks during which you will be hosted by an experienced teacher and observed by a Clinical Supervisor. Your host teacher will evaluate your performance based on accepted professional standards. Learn more.

More About the M.A. in Teaching, Elementary Education

A master's degree in elementary education will allow you to become a licensed teacher in a K-6 classroom.

A master's degree in elementary education is an ideal choice for current or aspiring teachers who want to be in a K-6 classroom. If you already have a bachelor's degree, a master's degree program can allow you to further your education while enabling you to get an elementary education teaching license. For those who want to teach young students, this degree is essential.

Typically a master's degree in elementary education will take 2 years to complete. However, online, accelerated programs like those offered at WGU can allow you to finish faster. WGU students are typically able to finish their master's degree in elementary education in just 18 months.

It depends on your state and which Teachers College program you complete, so it is best to ask your Enrollment Counselor. Typically, teachers with an elementary education license can teach anywhere from kindergarten through 8th grade, and secondary teachers in math, English, or science can teach anywhere from 5th to 12th grades. K–12 special education licenses typically enable teachers to work with students from kindergarten through 12th grade.

It depends on your state and your program, but for most Teachers College programs, Demonstration Teaching is typically about the length of one full traditional school semester. DT is a minimum of 12–16 weeks, but it can be longer in other programs.

WGU has a team that works with you to connect you with schools in your area, and with host teachers that will support you through your Demonstration Teaching.

Your Enrollment Counselor can provide more details about your specific situation. While you can provide recommendations of a school you want to be placed in, generally, our Field Placement Office will be selecting and setting up the placement in the end.

Your Enrollment Counselor has access to an up-to-date database that tracks requirements and eligibility for all WGU programs and all US states and territories, so a conversation with your Enrollment Counselor can quickly verify this for you based on where you live and your desired program.

Ready to Start Your WGU Journey?