Quick Facts

General Education Requirements
for the Professional Educators License
License with an Elementary Endorsement
(Grades 1 – 6): 49 – 51 hours
Professional Education Courses for
Elementary Education: 65 hours
Total: 123 – 127 hours

Middle Grades (5-8) and ESL/Bilingual Endorsements: 6 additional content hours
Full Program Requirements

Earn Your Bachelor of Arts Degree in Elementary Education

At Governors State University, we want our students to succeed in their educational and professional lives. GovState provides an exceptional and accessible education, preparing students with the confidence and skills needed to be successful. We prioritize inclusiveness and diversity and encourage personal, cultural, civic, and professional growth. Whether you’re just beginning your journey or have made a detour on your path, we’re proud you’ve chosen Governors State University for your Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education.

Our Mission

The Elementary Education program at Governors State University is committed to supporting and graduating elementary teachers (grades 1-6) who are prepared and invested in the learning and growth of students who vary in background knowledge/experience, home support, socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, cognitive predisposition, physical ability, neurological functioning, language, gender identity, sexual preference, and other forms of privilege or diversity. 

We in the Elementary Education program are committed to nurturing the development of the elementary educators that children need today as well as those they will need as our social, political, and physical worlds continue to evolve. 

We are committed to fostering elementary educators who make instructional, classroom management and interpersonal choices grounded in evidence-based best practices in cultural understanding, social-emotional learning, content knowledge, and pedagogy. 

We model these best practices, engage our candidates in metacognitive analyses of their own learning, forge relationships with a variety of regional schools for our candidates' clinical experiences, and create opportunities throughout the program for our candidates to practice instruction and interact with students, mentors, and peers. 

We uncompromisingly strive for excellence and continuous improvement in all we do. We are committed to growth-enhancing evaluation ensuring that our teaching, research, and service to our candidates and communities demonstrate the most effective and equitable contemporary professional practices. 

Our Vision

 We in the Elementary Education program are committed to transforming the education of children as we respond to the most urgent problems in the field. Our effective Elementary Education program focuses on both the success of each of our candidates as well as on the equitable achievement of all children across our diverse communities. We are guided by our deep commitment to community partnerships and our belief in the role of research in the shaping of instruction and practice. 

Our Goals

The Elementary Education faculty have adapted the standards of our national accrediting body, the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), as the goals for our program graduates. Our Elementary Education graduates will develop and apply these skills, abilities, and pedagogically sound practices:

  • Understanding and Addressing Each Child's Developmental and Learning Needs: Candidates will use their understanding of child growth and development, individual differences, and diverse families, cultures, and communities to plan and implement inclusive learning environments, providing each child with equitable access to high quality learning experiences that allow them to meet high standards. They will work collaboratively with families to gain a holistic perspective of children's strengths and needs and how to motivate their learning. 
  • Understanding and Applying Content and Curricular Knowledge for Teaching: Candidates will demonstrate and apply understandings of major concepts, skills, and evidence-based best practices as they interpret disciplinary curricular standards and related expectations within and across the content areas of literacy, mathematics, science, social studies, creative arts, health, and physical education. 
  • Assessing, Planning, and Designing Contexts for Learning: Candidates will assess students, plan instruction, and design classroom contexts for learning. Candidates will use formative and summative assessments to monitor students' learning and guide instruction and will plan learning activities to promote a full range of competencies for each student. They will differentiate instructional materials and activities to address all learners' diversities. Candidates will foster engagement in learning by establishing and maintaining social norms for classrooms and will build interpersonal relationships with students that generate motivation and promote social and emotional development. 
  • Supporting Each Child's Learning Using Effective Instruction: Candidates will make informed decisions about instruction guided by knowledge of children and assessment of children's learning that result in the use of a variety of effective instructional practices employing print and appropriate digital resources. Instruction will be delivered using a cohesive sequence of lessons and employing effective instructional practices, including explicit instruction, effective feedback, whole class activities as well as flexible grouping arrangements, and individual instruction to support effective instruction and improved learning for every child. 
  • Developing as a Professional: Candidates will promote the learning and development of every child through the candidates' participation in reflective self-study, opportunities for problem-focused professional learning, as well as more general involvement in the professional community. Candidates will work independently and collaboratively with families, communities, and other education professionals to help every learner succeed. Candidates will exhibit academic integrity and high ethical standards. 

Student Involvement

Chapters of the Student Education Association (SEA) and Kappa Delta Pi (KDP) honor society are highly active student organizations at Governors State. Each semester, students participate in community outreach efforts, such as support for literacy development, disaster relief, and workshops for educators.

Reach Your Career Goals

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, as of May 2023, the national median annual wage of elementary teachers was $63,680. Also, Salary.com reports that the median annual wage of elementary teachers was $68,314, higher than the national average. Despite limited employment growth, about 109,000 openings for kindergarten and elementary school teachers are projected each year, on average, over the next decade.

Contact Governors State University

When you come to Governors State University to continue your education, you are welcomed with open arms. Our goal is to help every student feel accepted, as well as to give them all the skills, knowledge, and confidence required to succeed in life. As an elementary education major, your role is an essential part of every community, and we’re excited to help you find that inner teacher in you. If you’re seeking a BA in elementary education, contact us at 708-534-4490 to talk about admissions or learn more about the program.

Request info   Apply now

Program Contact:

Glenna Lambert Howell, PhD, Psy.D.
Elementary Education Program Coordinator
Associate Professor


Eileen Lally

<b>Full Program Requirements</b>

Full Program Requirements

You can find the complete guide to graduation requirements for your degree in our catalog.

<b>Program Faculty</b>

Program Faculty

Our favorable faculty-student ratios ensure lots of individual attention from our dedicated faculty members.

<b>How to Apply</b>

How to Apply

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<b>Cost and Financial Aid</b>

Cost and Financial Aid

Our tuition estimator helps you calculate your cost of attendance. Our Financial Aid Office is dedicated to helping you find ways to fund your education.



At GovState, many scholarships are available and can make your education even more affordable!

<b>All Academic Programs</b>

All Academic Programs

We offer many options for undergraduate degrees and minors, and even several 5-year programs that lead to completion of a Masters degree as well!

<b>Student Life</b>

Student Life

Student Clubs and Organizations at Governors State University enrich your educational experience, allowing you to gain and hone skills applicable to the classroom and life beyond. Click here to explore additional student resources.

<b>On-Campus Residence</b>

On-Campus Residence

Prairie Place, our on-campus housing, provides many options to accommodate the needs of our diverse student population.

<b>Campus Location</b>

Campus Location

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