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Elementary Teaching Degree in NC with Course and School Info

There are more than 40 colleges and universities within North Carolina that have elementary education degree programs. Read an overview of the 10 largest schools' programs, requirements, and tuition info and find out which school is the right one for you.

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Essential Information

A number of North Carolina colleges and universities offer elementary education degree programs that lead to elementary teacher licensure. Most of the programs in this article are at the bachelor's and master's levels, but related doctoral programs also exist. Some students may have flexible study options as well as the ability to learn online. Students of elementary teaching programs might choose various areas of concentration. The programs could include internships and student teaching experiences.

Career Requirements

Individuals seeking the Standard Professional 1 (SP1) Professional Educator's license need to complete a state-approved teacher education program. Additionally, individuals must pass the PRAXIS I Elementary Education: Instructional Practice and Applications exam before becoming licensed elementary teachers.

Both bachelor's and master's degree programs in elementary education fulfill academic requirements for licensure. Individuals who currently hold a valid elementary teaching license and wish to further their credentials can enroll in a Master of Education degree program. Master of Arts in Teaching programs are often designed for individuals without a valid teaching license. Below, are the profiles of the ten largest schools with elementary education teaching programs. Also included is a table that compares tuition rates.


Appalachian State University

Located in Boone, this university offers a bachelor's degree program and a master's degree program in elementary education. Students in the bachelor's degree program complete general education courses, as well as the elementary education core curriculum. The bachelor's degree program leads to licensure as an elementary teacher in North Carolina. Conversely, the master's degree program is designed for students who hold a valid elementary teaching license - it builds upon skills learned in an undergraduate teaching program.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education,
    Master of Arts in Elementary Education
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): Undergraduate: $6,059 in-state; $18,107 out-of-state
    Graduate: $6,557 in-state; $18,369 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; town

East Carolina University

Greenville-based East Carolina University provides a bachelor's degree and master's degree program in elementary education. The bachelor's degree program leads to elementary teaching licensure. Undergraduates must pass the PRAXIS I exam before entering upper-division coursework. The master's degree program is offered to individuals who hold a valid elementary teaching license and may be completed part-time, full-time, or online. Furthermore, individuals who possess a degree from an accredited 4-year university may enroll in the elementary education licensure-only program.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education,
    Master of Arts in Elementary Education,
    Elementary Education Licensure
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): Undergraduate: $5,869 in-state; $19,683 out-of-state
    Graduate: $6,120 in-state; $17,951 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; small city

North Carolina A&T State University

Greensboro's North Carolina A&T State University administers several bachelor's and master's degree programs. In addition to offering a traditional bachelor's degree program, the university provides a 2+2 program, which allows students from various community colleges in North Carolina to transfer into the bachelor's degree program. Both the traditional bachelor's degree program and the 2+2 program satisfy state licensure requirements. Students transferring into the 2+2 program must pass the PRAXIS I exam before enrolling in the program. Students who currently hold a valid elementary teaching license may enroll in the Master of Arts in Education program with a concentration in elementary education, while the Master of Arts in Teaching in Elementary Education accepts individuals who don't have a teaching license and haven't taken undergraduate coursework in education.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education,
    Master of Arts in Education: Elementary Education,
    Master of Arts in Teaching in Elementary Education
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): Undergraduate: $5,059 in-state; $15,657 out-of-state
    Graduate: $5,794 in-state; $17,227 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; mid-size city

North Carolina Central University

Durham is home to North Carolina Central University, and the university offers a bachelor's degree program that leads to licensure in elementary education. Admission to this program requires a passing score on the PRAXIS I exam or its equivalent. Students choose coursework in a concentration area, such as liberal arts, mathematics, or science, along with the elementary education curriculum. The master's degree program accepts students who currently hold a valid teaching license and have at least two years of full-time classroom teaching experience.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education,
    Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction: Elementary Education
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): Undergraduate: $5,200 in-state; $15,773 out-of-state
    Graduate: $5,954 in-state; $17,603 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; mid-size city

North Carolina State University - Raleigh

North Carolina State University - Raleigh administers a bachelor's degree program and three master's degree programs in elementary education. Undergraduate students are required to complete 27 credits in technology, science, mathematics, and engineering. The Master of Science and Master of Education degree programs offered by the university are designed for individuals who hold a valid teaching license. Conversely, students enrolling in the Master of Arts in Teaching degree program do not need to have a valid teaching license. North Carolina State University - Raleigh does not accept transfer students into the bachelor's degree program.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education,
    Master of Education in Elementary Education,
    Master of Science in Elementary Education,
    Master of Arts in Teaching in Elementary Education
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): Undergraduate: $7,788 in-state; $20,953 out-of-state
    Graduate: $8,943 in-state; $20,982 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; large city

University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill

Based in Chapel Hill, this university provides undergraduate and graduate degree programs that lead to licensure. The Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education program consists of student teaching and traditional classroom coursework. Students apply to the undergraduate degree program during their sophomore year; concentrations in the arts, language and literature, mathematics and science, or social studies are available.

University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill's Master of Arts in Teaching program allows students to specialize in foreign language instruction at the K-12 levels; languages include French, German, Japanese, and Spanish. The part-time master's program for experienced teachers has concentrations in K-6 mathematics and K-6 science. Additionally, the university offers an add-on licensure program in elementary mathematics for licensed teachers.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Arts in Education: Elementary Education,
    Master of Arts in Teaching,
    Master of Education for Experienced Teachers,
    Elementary Mathematics Add-On Licensure
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): Undergraduate: $7,693 in-state; $28,445 out-of-state
    Graduate: $9,689 in-state; $25,779 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; suburban

University of North Carolina - Charlotte

Charlotte's University of North Carolina offers a bachelor's degree program and doctoral degree program, as well as master's degree programs in elementary education. The bachelor's degree program fulfills elementary education licensure requirements, and students may choose one of six different concentrations: English and communications, foreign languages, mathematics, social studies, science, and visual and performing arts. The university provides master's degree programs which lead to initial teaching licensure, as well as programs designed for individuals who already hold an elementary teaching license. In the doctoral degree program, students complete 15 credits in urban education and education research, as well as 21 credits in a concentration area - such as elementary education - and a 9-credit dissertation.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education,
    Master of Arts in Teaching,
    Master of Education in Elementary Education,
    Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction: Elementary Education
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): Undergraduate: $5,873 in-state; $18,402 out-of-state
    Graduate: $6,349 in-state; $18,636 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; large city

University of North Carolina - Greensboro

At the University of North Carolina - Greensboro, students may earn a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education in order to fulfill academic licensure requirements. Students participate in internships throughout the curriculum, and the program culminates in a semester of student teaching. Furthermore, students must earn at least 51 credits at this university before applying to the teacher education program. Students are also required to pass a Pre-Professional Skills Test and have a cumulative 2.75 undergraduate GPA.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): Undergraduate: $6,136 in-state; $19,934 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; mid-size city

University of North Carolina - Wilmington (UNCW)

Located in Wilmington, this university offers bachelor's and master's degree programs that lead to elementary education licensure. Students pursuing a bachelor's degree in elementary education can specialize in English as a second language, fine arts, social studies, early childhood, and other fields. An elementary education bachelor's program is also offered at UNCW's Coastal Carolina Community College campus extension site in Jacksonville. Applicants to the extension-site program must have at least 62 credits, an associate's degree, or a bachelor's degree.

The Master of Education in Elementary Education is only available to individuals who hold a valid elementary teaching license. Individuals who do not possess a teaching credential, but hold a bachelor's degree, may enroll in the Master of Arts in Teaching in Elementary Education degree program, which can prepare them for initial licensure. Teachers who have a valid license may complete coursework leading to licensure in elementary mathematics.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education,
    Master of Education in Elementary Education,
    Master of Arts in Teaching in Elementary Education,
    Elementary Education Mathematics Add-On Licensure
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): Undergraduate: $6,199 in-state; $18,302 out-of-state
    Graduate: $6,336 in-state; $18,237 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; small city

Western Carolina University

Cullowhee's Western Carolina University offers a bachelor's and master's degree program in elementary education. Undergraduate degree students complete a year-long internship, in addition to general education and elementary education courses. The master's degree program offered by the university is for students currently licensed as elementary teachers. Individuals without a valid teaching license who hold a bachelor's degree may complete a second bachelor's program in elementary education, which consists of 27 credits of elementary education coursework and 41 credits of concentration coursework.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Science in Education: Elementary Education,
    Master of Arts in Education: Elementary Education
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): Undergraduate: $5,925 in-state; $15,522 out-of-state
    Graduate: $6,322 in-state; $15,907 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, public; rural

School Comparison: At a Glance

School Name School Type & Setting Elementary Education Programs Offered Tuition & Fees (2012-2013)
Appalachian State University 4-year, public; town Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education,
Master of Arts in Elementary Education
Undergraduate: $6,059 in-state; $18,107 out-of-state
Graduate: $6,557 in-state; $18,369 out-of-state*
East Carolina State University 4-year, public; small city Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education,
Master of Arts in Elementary Education,
Elementary Education Licensure
Undergraduate: $5,869 in-state; $19,683 out-of-state
Graduate: $6,120 in-state; $17,951 out-of-state*
North Carolina A & T State University 4-year, public; mid-size city Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education,
Master of Arts in Education: Elementary Education,
Master of Arts in Teaching in Elementary Education
Undergraduate: $5,059 in-state; $15,657 out-of-state
Graduate: $5,794 in-state; $17,227 out-of-state*
North Carolina Central University 4-year, public; mid-size city Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education,
Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction: Elementary Education
Undergraduate: $5,200 in-state; $15,773 out-of-state
Graduate: $5,954 in-state; $17,603 out-of-state*
North Carolina State University - Raleigh 4-year, public; large city Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education,
Master of Education in Elementary Education,
Master of Science in Elementary Education,
Master of Arts in Teaching in Elementary Education
Undergraduate: $7,788 in-state; $20,953 out-of-state
Graduate: $8,943 in-state; $20,982 out-of-state*
University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill 4-year, public; suburban Bachelor of Arts in Education: Elementary Education,
Master of Arts in Teaching,
Master of Education for Experienced Teachers,
Elementary Mathematics Add-On Licensure
Undergraduate: $7,693 in-state; $28,445 out-of-state
Graduate: $9,689 in-state; $25,779 out-of-state*
University of North Carolina - Charlotte 4-year, public; large city Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education,
Master of Arts in Teaching,
Master of Education in Elementary Education,
Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction: Elementary Education
Undergraduate: $5,873 in-state; $18,402 out-of-state
Graduate: $6,349 in-state; $18,636 out-of-state*
University of North Carolina - Greensboro 4-year, public; mid-size city Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education Undergraduate: $6,136 in-state; $19,934 out-of-state*
University of North Carolina - Wilmington 4-year, public; small city Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education,
Master of Education in Elementary Education,
Master of Arts in Teaching in Elementary Education,
Elementary Education Mathematics Add-On Licensure
Undergraduate: $6,199 in-state; $18,302 out-of-state
Graduate: $6,336 in-state; $18,237 out-of-state*
Western Carolina University 4-year, public; rural Bachelor of Science in Education: Elementary Education,
Master of Arts in Education: Elementary Education
Undergraduate: $5,925 in-state; $15,522 out-of-state
Graduate: $6,322 in-state; $15,907 out-of-state*

Source: *NCES College Navigator.

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