Program in Elementary Education

This program is undergoing curricular changes.  Please consult the department for the latest requirements and information.

The Elementary Education Program provides students with knowledge of philosophical and psychological elements of teaching and learning, general and specific methods of instruction, and clinical experiences of at least 100 hours in local schools prior to the full-day student teaching experience.

Program Outcomes:

Students completing the Elementary Education major will:

  1. have theoretical and practical knowledge of principles of curriculum development and design which reflect best practices in elementary schools
  2. have an understanding of and the skill with children- differentiate instruction of diverse backgrounds and abilities
  3. know how to plan, implement and integrate a variety of learning activities for student centered classrooms
  4. have attained specialized knowledge of content and instructional materials, as well as skills in using technology in elementary schools
  5. effectively apply classroom management techniques demonstrating an understanding of collaborative learning strategies and group processes
  6. have attained skills in designing instruments to assess student performance and in using assessment to improve teaching and learning
  7. be able to integrate learning activities in contexts which are interesting and meaningful to elementary school students
  8. be reflective educators who are committed to life-long professional development and growth.
  9. Students who complete this program qualify for elementary education licensure. Upon licensure, they are eligible to teach elementary school (grades K-6).

Important NOTE: 

Per ISBE requirements, all students admitted into the program before September 1, 2015 must complete their ELED or ELED/BLBC program by September 1, 2017 or be subjected to the requirements of the new program.  Students must also apply for licensure and be entitled by September 1, 2018.

If unable to complete the program by September 1, 2017, students will have to be re-admitted to the new program.  Transcripts will be evaluated, and additional coursework may be required.

It is in the student's best interest to complete the Elementary or Bilingual-Bicultural Education program within this timeline.  Advisors are always available for guidance through the professional sequence coursework.

General Education - Distributive Learning Requirements

General Education Distribution Area Cr. Hrs.
Fine Arts (FA)*
2 courses, from at least two of the following areas of study: Art, CMT (Mass Media or Theatre), Music (includes Dance).
Humanities (HU)*
3 courses, from at least two of the following areas of study: CMT (Communication), English, Linguistics. Philosophy, Women's and Gender Studies, World Languages and Cultures, (Note: No more than two foreign language courses may be used to fulfill this requirement.)

Behavioral/Social Sciences (SB)*

3 courses, from at least two of the following areas of study: African & African American Studies, Anthropology, Computer Science, Economics, Geography & Environmental Studies, History, Justice Studies, Latino & Latin American Studies, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology, Social Work


Natural Sciences (NS and NSL)**

3 courses, from at least two of the following areas of study; one course must have a laboratory component (NSL): Biology, Chemistry, Earth Science, Environmental Science, Physics (Note: If an FYE ANTH that counts as Natural Science is taken, only one Biology course may be used for Natural Science).


Math/Quantitative Reasoning (MA)

1 Math course, that has intermediate Algebra as prerequisite OR is a course listed on the General Education Distributive Learning List of Approved Courses. Any 3 hour college level math course, beyond Intermediate Algebra, meets this requirement.

At least 3

Majors in Fine Arts, Humanities or Social/Behavioral Sciences, may waive up to 6 credit hours of General Education requirements in the corresponding distribution area.


 Majors in Natural Sciences may waive up to 9 credit hours of General Education requirements in the Natural Sciences distribution area.


Students should also be aware of all other university requirements to obtain a degree - NEIU requirements

Degree and Program completion/Entitlement Requirements

In order to graduate from the program and be entitled to state licensure, students must complete a minimum of 120 hours of study which include the following requirements:

  • University General Education Program
  • Professional Education Coursework
  • Approved Minor or Area of Concentration
  • Additional Courses and Tests Required for State Licensure
  • Program Completion Criteria
  • To meet graduation requirement of 120 hrs.

Required Professional Education Courses

EDFN-305Philosophical And Historical Foundations Of Public Education3
Attend mandatory clinical information meeting and apply for Clinical Field Experiences
ELED-302Writing Intensive Program: Foundation Of Teaching The English Language Arts3
ELED-304Methods Of Teaching Inquiry-Based Social Studies3
EDFN-306Education And Individual Differences3
BLBC-338Bilingualism And Education3
ELED-305Methods Of Teaching Science In Elementary And Middle Schools3
ELED-306AMethods Of Teaching Reading-Elementary School With Clinical Experience3
ELED-328BClinical Experience In Elementary Education3
ELED-310Elementary And Middle School Math Methods3
BLBC-340Teaching English Learners In Diverse Classrooms3
ELED-342Classroom Assessment3
ELED-329Student Teaching In Elementary Education, K-99
EDFN-308Teaching And Learning1.5
ELED-300Instructional Design In The 21st Century Classroom1.5
ELED 328A (curricular approval pending) 2 credit hours
EDFN-343Using Technology In Classrooms2
ELED-303Children's And Young Adult Literature1.5
ELED-309Reading & Writing In The Content Areas1.5
ELED-320Classroom Management1.5
SPED-317Inclusive Teaching Strategies1.5
Total hours52

Declaration of Major/Admission to Program

In order to register for ELED 300, students must have declared their majors and be admitted to the College of Education. Students should meet with program advisors to plan their programs prior to taking EDFN-306. Students should complete the necessary procedures to declare their majors while they are enrolled in EDFN-306. Only students who have declared their majors, or have an ACT plus writing score (22 or better) and a minimum 19 combined English/writing, or SAT 1030 composite score (critical reading & mathematics) and a minimum 450 in writing, and are admitted to the College of Education will be permitted to register for Elementary Education Courses. An NEIU GPA of 2.5 is required to declare a major.

Areas of Concentration


Students may select and declare a minor or an area of concentration. Students who declare a minor must meet the requirements of the department in which the minor is housed, completing at least 18 credit hours, 9 of which must be at the 300-level. Students who choose to complete an area of concentration must complete a total of 18 credit hours in the area, 9 of which must be at the 300-level.

The above requirements apply to undergraduate transfer students and graduates of accredited universities (Second B.A. or TLP Programs). All students must consult with a Program Advisor in the Elementary Education Program.


Each level must be completed to move forward.

  • A 2.75 GPA must be maintained in professional sequence coursework.
  • A 2.5 GPA must be maintained overall. (If GPA levels are not maintained, student will not be allowed to proceed through the program).


Complete EDFN-305 and EDFN-306 with a combined grade of 2.75 or better. Complete application to be admitted to College of Education


Enroll in ELED 300 and ELED-302 with cumulative GPA of 2.5 and declared major and COE Admission.

  • For approval to enroll in ELED-306A and ELED 328, a disposition form, with a rating of Satisfactory must be obtained from student’s instructor in ELED 300. A 2nd disposition form, also with a Satisfactory rating must be obtained from the student’s instructor of ELED-304ELED-305 OR ELED-310. See Program Advisor for more information.
  • Students will not be allowed to register in ELED 300 and ELED-302 with an “I” in EDFN-305 and/or EDFN-306.
  • Attend mandatory clinical information meeting and apply for Clinical Field Experiences: clinical-experiences-and-student-teaching
  • ELED 300 and ELED-302 must be completed with a "B" or better


Complete the following: ELED-304ELED-305ELED-310
Attend mandatory Student Teaching Information meeting and apply for Student Teaching field placement: cestdept


Complete ELED-306A and ELED 328 with grade of “B” or better in ELED 328.
Complete remaining methods course: ELED-304ELED-305, or ELED-310, if not previously taken
Pass the ILTS Content Area Examination, #110 Elementary
All of the above requirements must be met before proceeding into student teaching.
Attend mandatory CEST orientation meeting.


Complete student teaching - ELED-329.
Completion of edTPA in ELED 329 Student Teaching.

In order for students to be entitled by NEIU for the Illinois Professional Educator License (elementary/middle grades), they must receive a “B” or better in student teaching and have passed the ILTS Elementary/Middle Grades Content Area Test #110. In order for students to be licensed by the Illinois State Board of Education, candidates must pass the Teacher Performance Assessment (edTPA) for program completion/entitlement.

Prior to student teaching, all Elementary Education majors must complete a minimum of 100 clock hours of clinical experience to be eligible for licensure in the State of Illinois. This clinical experience (completed concurrently withELED-306A) requires placement in a public or private elementary school with a state licensed teacher. To request placement for clinical experience, students must register in the Office of Clinical Experiences and Student Teaching (Please see the section, Clinical Experiences and Student Teaching in this catalog).

In order to be considered for Clinical Experiences, students must be admitted to the College of Education and accepted into the Elementary Education Program. In addition, students must have completed:

EDFN-305Philosophical And Historical Foundations Of Public Education3
EDFN-306Education And Individual Differences3
ELED-301Curriculum Of The Elementary School3
ELED-302Writing Intensive Program: Foundation Of Teaching The English Language Arts3
Select two other methods courses

To qualify for Student Teaching, students must maintain a minimum grade point average of 2.75 in the Professional Sequence and a 2.5 cumulative grade point average and have passed the ICTS Content Area Test. No required professional education course may be taken more than twice to achieve an acceptable grade. To be entitled for licensure by the State of Illinois, a student must earn a grade of “B” or better in Student Teaching.


  • Successful completion of all NEIU General Education Requirements.
  • Minimum credit hours for degree:  120 credit hours.
  • Maintain cumulative GPA of 2.5.
  • Maintain professional sequence GPA of 2.75.
  • Evidence of passing ILTS Content Area Test #110
  • B Grade or Better in Student Teaching


  • Successful completion of Levels one to five with evidence of passing score on the Teacher Performance Assessment (edTPA)
  • Note: Currently, the ISBE requires licensure candidates to pass the APT exam. This regulation is in the process of being changed.  Please check with your advisor or the department chair about the status of the APT exam.


In addition to the successful completion of the Elementary Education major and one of the approved minors or areas of concentration, students must complete the general education requirements for the College of Education. These requirements are:

Requirements which are a part of Northeastern’s General Education:

General Education Requirements
Fine Arts6
Select 6 credit hours from the General Education Program List
Literatures And Literacies
6 credit hours to be selected
Behavioral and Social Science12
United States History 1607-1877
United States History 1877-Present
American National Government
World Geography
Geography And Map Skills For Teachers
Select one of the following Non-Western or Third-World Cultures courses:
World History: East Asia
World History: Latin America
World History: Africa
World History: Islam
Introduction To Cultural Anthropology
Biological & Physical Sciences10
Introduction To Biology For Educators
Introduction To Earth Science
Chemical Concepts
Physics In Everyday Life
Total hours37

General Education Requirements which are not on the Gen Ed List

ENGL-101Writing I 13
ENGL-102Writing II 13
CMTC-101Public Speaking 13
or CMTC-202 Voice and Diction
Math For Elementary Teachers I
and Math For Elementary Teachers II With Problem Solving
HLED-107Health For Effective Living2
Select one Physical Education Activity Course1
Total Hours21

 Must receive a grade of "C'' or higher.

It is recommended to consult with your advisor at least once each semester.

This sample curricular map is provided to guide you in the planning of your progression for this major.  This guide should not replace regular consultations with your program advisor. For specific recommendations of courses not identified, please consult your program advisor.

First Year
Term 1Hours
ENGL-101Writing I3
Fine Arts course3
Humanities course3
Non-Western/Third World course3
 Term Hours12
Term 2
MATH-149Math For Elementary Teachers I4
ENGL-102Writing II3
HIST-214 or 215United States History 1607-18773
CMTC-101Public Speaking3
 Term Hours13
Term 3
Humanities course3
Area of concentration course3
 Term Hours6
Second Year
Term 1
MATH-150Math For Elementary Teachers II With Problem Solving5
EDFN-305Philosophical And Historical Foundations Of Public Education3
ENGL-205Literatures And Literacies3
GES-104World Geography3
 Term Hours14
Term 2
ESCI-121Introduction To Earth Science3
PSCI-216American National Government3
EDFN-306Education And Individual Differences3
CHEM-110 or PHYS 110Chemical Concepts3
Area of concentration course3
 Term Hours15
Term 3
Fine Arts3
 Term Hours3
Third Year
Term 1
Instructional Design In The 21st Century Classroom3
BIOS-110Introduction To Biology For Educators4
ELED-302Writing Intensive Program: Foundation Of Teaching The English Language Arts3
ELED-310Elementary And Middle School Math Methods3
 Term Hours13
Term 2
BLBC-339 (or ELED 328A)Culturally Responsive Teaching in Diverse Classrooms3
Children's And Young Adult Literature3
ELED-305Methods Of Teaching Science In Elementary And Middle Schools3
EDFN-343Using Technology In Classrooms2
ELED-304Methods Of Teaching Inquiry-Based Social Studies3
 Term Hours14
Term 3
PEMT 235 or equivalent3
 Term Hours3
Fourth Year
Term 1
Methods Of Literacy Instruction6
Classroom Management4.5
PEMT 235 or equivalent3
 Term Hours13.5
Term 2
Student Teaching In Elementary Education, K-910.5
 Term Hours10.5
 Total Hours: 117