Program Overview

Get ready to step out of your role as a student and into the role of teacher. Our bachelor's of Elementary Education with Certification puts you in the field in creative ways, offering diverse experiences that build your confidence and get you career-ready. A flexible curriculum enables you to expand your horizons and increase your job market value by pursuing a double major, minor, or concentration. You will graduate with a Maine teacher certification in hand and the real-world experience to make a difference in your students’ lives.

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Since my first semester, I have been in classrooms working with is great preparation for my profession before I am actually in my very own classroom.

Elementary Education

Why UNE for Elementary Education with Certification

A flexible curriculum allows for double majors, minors, concentrations, and study abroad — all of which help make you a well-rounded person and a highly desirable teacher. Early and regular field experiences provide an array of opportunities that prepare you for your career while helping you get a foot in the door with potential employers.

  • Flexible curricular pathways
  • Strong collaboration with local schools
  • Field experiences every semester
  • Exceptional post-graduation employment rate

Meet Kaylee, Education ’22

With the support of her family and professors at UNE, Kaylee has made it her mission to prove that teaching can be possible for individuals of all abilities.

Find your career

Your bachelor's in Education prepares you to be at the head of the class. Equipped with knowledge, critical thinking skills, and a wide range of student teaching experiences, you will be prepared, confident, and credentialed as you step off the graduation podium and into the rewarding career of teaching.

Our graduates enjoy many benefits, including:

  • Employability in a steadily-growing field
  • The option to work in public or private schools
  • The flexibility of working in any geographical area (coursework reciprocity in 47 states)
  • The benefit of our reputation for  excellence among local schools

Career Advising

Whether you have a specific career goal in mind or a vague idea of the field that interests you, Career Advising is here to help you plan your next step.

Student Success by the Numbers


2017 and 2018 graduates employed in education or in grad school within one year of graduation


in Maine for getting a job

(Zippia, 2021)


There are many ways you can navigate this major. You can even complete a concentration in Physical Education (PE) to become a PE teacher.

Examples of Available Courses

The following are just some examples of the exciting courses that the Elementary-Middle Education major offers:

  • Supporting 21st Century Learning Through Technology
  • Diversity Issues in Schools
  • Inclusive Methods and Data-Based Decision Making
  • Exceptionalities in the Classroom

K-6 Teaching Certification

Successful completion of the degree program meets all requirements of the Maine State K-6 Teacher Certification Program.


CAS Core Curriculum Credits
Total 42–46
Professional Core Courses Credits
EDU 105 – Exploring Teaching 3
EDU 110 – Supporting 21st Century Learning Through Technology 3
EDU 202 – Curriculum & Assessment 3
EDU 206 – Foundations of Literacy 3
SPE 220 – Exceptionalities in the Classroom 3
EDU 261 – Teaching Social Studies: K-8 3
EDU 267 – Teaching Science: K-8 3
EDU 373 – Teaching Mathematics: K-8 3
EDU 386 – Literacy Methods: K-8 Reading 3
EDU 387 – Literacy Methods K-8 Writing 3
EDU 385 – Diversity Issues in Schools 3
SPE 405 – Inclusive Methods and Data-Based Decision Making 3
EDU 485 – Elementary Practicum 3
EDU 491 – Student Teaching Internship and Seminar 12
Total Professional Core Credits 51
Electives or Physical Education Concentration* 6–23
Electives to get to 120 credits* Variable
Minimum Required Total Credits 120–122

*You must take a minimum of 6 credits of ENG, MAT, HIS/POL, and SCI in order to teach and receive state certification. These courses can be a part of the CORE or taken as an elective. Consult with your academic advisor when choosing electives.

*Students pursuing the Physical Education Concentration should see the Concentration Tab below for the course list.

Field Experience

The faculty in the Education programs are committed to ongoing and frequent observation and involvement in schools. The teacher education programs at UNE have a specific competency-based focus to meet the Maine standards for teacher certification. All students engaged in teacher preparation will spend time in a field setting in each of the semesters for which they are registered for professional education courses. Involvement in the schools will be connected to specific, course-related tasks (e.g., observation, teaching lessons, conducting experiments, administering assessments, etc.). Transportation to and from schools is the responsibility of the student.


Without specific permission from the Education Chair, courses may not be taken during the internship semester, so all required coursework must be completed the semester prior to the internship. Admission to the internship is not guaranteed and students must have reached Advanced Standing to apply.

In addition, the student should have:

  • Sufficient knowledge regarding the components of effective instruction.
  • Sufficient knowledge of appropriate grade-level content and teaching methods.
  • Sufficient knowledge of the developmental needs of students.
  • Sufficient knowledge of how to establish and maintain effective cooperative relationships with school personnel, students, and parents.
  • Understanding of and empathy for working with students.

The selection of individual internship sites will be made by the Certification and Placement Officer. Geographical location relative to UNE is a consideration. UNE has a collaborative relationship with many districts and selects both schools and teachers based on their interest in and ability to assist interns in demonstrating mastery of the Maine Common Core Teaching Standards. Placement in an internship is not guaranteed. The Education programs, through its Certification and Placement Officer, will make a good faith effort to negotiate an appropriate placement. Schools have the right to refuse placement requests. The 15-week student teaching internship experience must be done in a local Maine Public School that is in an established internship protocol with the University of New England.

Professional Educator Review Board (PERB)

All students enrolled in the internship must demonstrate their teaching competence with respect to Maine Common Core Teaching Standards before the Professional Educator Review Board (PERB). The Board is comprised of professional educators from area schools as well as UNE faculty. Students are required to develop a presentation reflecting their proficiency in meeting these state standards and present and defend the presentation in front of the Board. Passing PERB is a requirement for completion of the certification program and subsequently is recommended to the Maine State Department of Education for teacher licensure.

Advanced Standing

All students in education certification programs must apply for admission to advanced standing when they have completed approximately 60 credit hours. To apply for advanced standing, students must develop a portfolio demonstrating how they have met proficiency in the following areas: a) teaching skills, knowledge, and disposition aligned with the Maine Common Core Teaching Standards; b) basic academic skills and c) professional skills. This portfolio is evaluated by a committee of education faculty and a pass/fail determination is made based on a holistic rubric.

Students not meeting these criteria do not remain enrolled in a certification program; however, students do have the option of changing their major to a non-certification major such as Educational Studies. Students can reapply for advanced standing upon completion of each additional semester up until their second to last semester (i.e., students graduating in Spring must meet advanced standing by the beginning of the previous Fall semester.

To learn more about the program see the Academic Catalog.

Meet our faculty and professional staff

Experiential Learning

Imagine yourself assisting with early literacy screenings, serving as an educational technician, or creating a Family Education Night. Beginning in your first semester, you’ll be out of the pupil’s chair and in the teacher’s seat.

Field Work in the Schools

  • Support a classroom teacher
  • Participate in Response to Intervention (RTI)
  • Assist in educational evaluations
  • Help to run an after school program
  • Engage family and community in educational activities


Your hands-on learning culminates with a 15-week student teaching internship.

  • Refine skills acquired through coursework and fieldwork
  • Become comfortable and confident in your teaching abilities
  • Form close working relationships with students and school personnel
  • Network and make connections that will increase your employability

For more information contact Cynthia Simon in the College of Arts and Sciences Internship Office ​​​​​​at (207) 602-2540 or

Global Education

In addition to opportunities to spend a semester abroad, you may choose to enroll in our education-related or another short-term travel course


EDU 242: Comparative Education in a Global Context

Dr. Lane Clarke

This course investigates comparative education theories and philosophy to examine education in different contexts and includes spending eight days in Ireland in mid-May following final exams. You extend your knowledge of society and how this is enacted through the institution of its schools. In Ireland, you visit schools and learn about Irish culture and history by touring castles, the famous Cliffs of Moher, and the Aran Islands. Other highlights may include exploring the Ring of Kerry and spending time in Galway, Cork, Kinsale, and Killarney.

To enroll in these courses and learn more, visit the Global Education Program website.