School of Education

Elementary Education

Ignite Critical Thinking in Young Minds

Benedictine University’s elementary education program is more than just a qualification; it’s an opportunity to make a profound impact on the lives of countless students. As a graduate of our program, you’ll be equipped to inspire, challenge, and empower future generations, shaping them into critical thinkers, innovators, and lifelong learners.

Take the first step towards a fulfilling career in elementary education. Join Benedictine University’s elementary education program and prepare to make a lasting difference in the lives of your students. Together, we can transform the future of education and inspire a generation of changemakers.

The BenU Difference

Craft Dynamic Learning Experiences

At Benedictine University, we believe in nurturing exceptional educators who possess the knowledge, skills, and dedication to shape the minds of future generations. Our elementary education program is designed to cultivate highly effective teachers who actively promote critical thinking, create innovative learning environments, and consistently monitor student progress to ensure optimal learning outcomes.

Our comprehensive curriculum emphasizes the development of critical thinking skills, empowering teacher candidates to instill these essential abilities in their elementary students. Through engaging discussions, collaborative projects, and real-world applications, teacher candidates learn to analyze information effectively, evaluate arguments logically, and form well-reasoned conclusions.

Take the first step towards a fulfilling career in elementary education. Join Benedictine University’s elementary education program and prepare to make a lasting difference in the lives of your students. Together, we can transform the future of education and inspire a generation of changemakers.

Preclinical Experiences and Student Teaching: Gaining Real-World Experience

Before embarking on full-time student teaching, elementary education candidates at Benedictine University participate in three preclinical experiences. These hands-on opportunities provide valuable exposure to diverse learning environments and allow students to apply their pedagogical knowledge and skills under the guidance of experienced educators. Preclinical placements are carefully selected within 30 miles of Benedictine’s Lisle campus, ensuring convenient access and immersion in some of Illinois’ highest-paying school districts.

Following the successful completion of preclinicals, students progress to a 16-week student teaching experience, the pinnacle of their preparation for a rewarding career in elementary education. Student teaching placements are tailored to align with each candidate’s professional goals and aspirations, ensuring they gain experience in settings that reflect their desired teaching environment. Whether seeking to work in public or private schools, our program provides opportunities for candidates to develop the skills and knowledge necessary to thrive in their chosen setting.

The elementary education program culminates with the successful completion of the edTPA, a nationally recognized performance assessment that measures teacher candidates’ ability to plan, instruct, and assess student learning effectively. This rigorous assessment ensures that graduates possess the necessary skills and strategies to foster meaningful student growth and contribute positively to the educational landscape.

Upon successful completion of the elementary education major and meeting all licensure test requirements, graduates earn a Professional Educator License (PEL), authorizing them to teach grades 1-6 in Illinois. Benedictine education students consistently demonstrate their excellence, maintaining a remarkable 100% first-time pass rate on state licensure exams. This outstanding achievement reflects the program’s commitment to preparing highly effective educators who are ready to make a lasting impact on the lives of their students.

Through a combination of preclinical experiences and student teaching, Benedictine University’s elementary education program ensures that graduates are equipped with the practical skills and real-world experience necessary to make a positive impact on the lives of their students.

Students in the Education programs will achieve the following student learning outcomes (SLO):

Student Learning Outcome 1: Teacher candidates in the Education Program will pass student teaching.

  • University SLO: 1; Disciplinary Competence and Skills

Student Learning Outcome 2: Teacher Candidates will pass the content area test in their major

  • University SLO: 9; Personal Development

Student Learning Outcome 3: Teacher Candidates will successfully demonstrate proficiency in all areas of the Professional Dispositions/Standards for Teachers

  • University SLO: 2; Critical and Creative Thinking Skills

With our Elementary Education degree, you’ll be well-prepared for a rewarding career

An elementary education minor with a Professional Educator License (PEL) opens doors to a variety of rewarding career opportunities in the field of education. Here are some of the potential career paths graduates can pursue:

  • Elementary School Teacher
  • Curriculum Specialist
  • Instructional Technology Specialist
  • Literacy Coach
  • Special Education Teacher
  • Paraprofessional
  • After-School Program Coordinator
  • Educational Researcher
  • Educational Policy Analyst
  • Educational Writer

What our alumni have done with this degree:

Graduates of Benedictine’s elementary education program teach in public and private elementary schools throughout Illinois, as well as serve as reading specialists, paraprofessionals, principals and school district administrators.

Here is an example of some courses you may take in the Elementary Education minor program:

  • Mathematics for Elementary Teachers I
  • Music Appreciation for Educators
  • Earth and Space Science
  • Language Arts in the Elementary School
  • Managing the Learning Environment

Elementary Education minor courses

Undergraduate course descriptions – Lisle

 

Professional Educator License (PEL)

The following requirements for the degree and Professional Educator License (PEL) in Elementary Education are for candidates who have been admitted to the Teacher Education Program (TEP) and who are completing their program after September 1, 2017, as set forth in 23 Ill. Adm. Code 20 (Standards for Endorsement in Elementary Education). Completers of this program will receive the Self-Contained General Education endorsement on the PEL for grades 1-6.

Students majoring in Elementary Education must complete the following requirements. These align with, but are not totally inclusive of, all of the University Basic Skills and Distribution Requirements for an undergraduate degree at Benedictine University. 1. The Basic Skills core with at least a “C” in each course. This core includes WRIT 1101 Writing Colloquium, WRIT 1102 Research Writing, COMM 1110 Speech Communication. 2. The Arts and Humanities distributions require 15 semester credit hours.

3. The Natural Sciences distribution requires 9 semester credit hours. One Life-Scientific (QLS) or Physical-Scientific (QPS) course must include a lab. A Computational Math course & Analytical (QCM) is needed. 4. The Social Sciences I and II distributions require 6 semester credit hours.

The cognate requirements for the major in the Elementary Education program for degree and license requirements are:

Course List

Code              Title                                                                    Hours

MATH 1110      College Algebra                                                   3

MATH 1112      Mathematics for Elementary Teachers I        3

MATH 1150      Introduction to Statistics                                  3

MATH 2222    Mathematics for Elementary Teachers II       3

HIST 1111         American History to 1865                                  3
or HIST 1112  American History since 1865

INTB 1101        The Global Economy                                           3

MUSI 1107       Music Appreciation for Educators                    3

PHYS 1107        Earth and Space Science                                    4

PLSC 1102         American Government                                      3

Total Hours                                                                                      28

The professional education requirements for the Elementary Education program for degree and license requirements are:

Course List

Code                     Title                                                                      Hours

EDUC 2200    Preclinical Experience Level 1 with Seminar       1

EDUC 2205    Educational Foundations                                         3

EDUC 2207    Introduction to Education Seminar                       1

EDUC 3209    Language Arts in the Elementary School             3

EDUC 2210    Educational Psychology                                            3

EDUC 2215    Technology for Teachers                                           3

EDUC 3234     Preclinical Experience Level 2 with Seminar      1

EDUC 4236    Preclinical Experience Level 3 with Seminar        1

EDUC 3240    Teaching Reading/Writing in the Elementary School 3

EDUC 2260    Educating Students with Exceptionalities             3

EDUC 4308    Creating An Inclusive Learning Environment      3

EDUC 3310     Assessment in Action                                                 3

EDUC 3312     Methods of Teaching Social Studies – Elementary 3

EDUC 3315     Methods of Teaching Mathematics – Elementary 3

EDUC 3318     Methods of Teaching Science – Elementary           3

EDUC 4320    Reading/Writing Diagnostics for All Learners      3

EDUC 4355    Managing the Learning Environment                     3

EDUC 4370    Student Teaching                                                        12

EDUC 2100    Physical Development and Health for Educators  2

Total Hours 57 Included in these requirements are three preclinical experiences (EDUC 2200 Preclinical Experience Level 1 with Seminar, EDUC 3234 Preclinical Experience Level 2 with Seminar and EDUC 4236 Preclinical Experience Level 3 with Seminar) and student teaching (EDUC 4370 Student Teaching).

All coursework for licensure must be completed with grades of “C” or better. Grades of C minus (C-) are considered to be below a “C”. “C-“ grades for equivalent courses received from another institution will need to be retaken at Benedictine and passed with a grade of “C” or better. Students need a 2.75 GPA Overall and a 3.0 in the Major to be eligible for licensure.

The majority of the licensure requirements are mandated by the Illinois State Board of Education. Any changes in licensure requirements must be met at the time they go into effect. This could change program requirements. Students must successfully pass any state test or evaluation before student teaching. If a student has not completed all license requirements at the time the degree is awarded, the transcript will show that the degree/program was completed “Without License.”

Completion of the Elementary Education major with licensure test requirements entitles the candidate to the Professional Educator License (PEL) with the endorsement for Elementary Education/Self Contained General Education for grades 1-6.

The following requirements for the degree without licensure:

Students majoring in Elementary Education must complete the following requirements. These align with, but are not totally inclusive of, all of the University Basic Skills and Distribution Requirements for an undergraduate degree at Benedictine University.

1. The Basic Skills core with at least a “C” in each course. This core includes WRIT 1101 Writing Colloquium, WRIT 1102 Research Writing, COMM 1110 Speech Communication and MATH 1110 College Algebra.

2. The Arts and Humanities require 15 semester credit hours, as per University distribution requirements.

3. The Natural Sciences requires 9 semester credit hours as per University distribution requirements. One Life-Scientific (QLS), One Physical-Scientific (QPS),( one QLS or QPS must include a lab). and One Computational Analytic (QCM)

4. The Social Sciences I and II requires 6 semester credit hours as per University distribution requirements.

The cognate requirements for the major in the Elementary Education program for degree:

Code – Title – Hours

MATH 1110 College Algebra 3

MATH 1112 Mathematics for Elementary Teachers I 3

MATH 1150

or PSYC 2250

Introduction to Statistics Basic and Applied Stats 3

MATH 2222 Mathematics for Elementary Teachers II 3

Code – Title – Hours

HIST 1111 American History to 1865 3

or HIST 1112 American History since 1865

INTB 1101 The Global Economy 3

MUSI 1107 Music Appreciation for Educators 3

PHYS 1107 Earth and Space Science 4

PLSC 1102 American Government 3

Total Hours 28

Course List

The professional education requirements for the Elementary Education program for degree are:

Code – Title – Hours

EDUC 2200 Preclinical Experience Level 1 with Seminar 1

EDUC 2205 Educational Foundations 3

EDUC 2207 Introduction to Education Seminar 1

EDUC 3209 Language Arts in the Elementary School 3

EDUC 2210 Educational Psychology 3

EDUC 2215 Technology for Teachers 3

EDUC 3234 Preclinical Experience Level 2 with Seminar 1

EDUC 4236 Preclinical Experience Level 3 with Seminar 1

EDUC 3240 Teaching Reading/Writing in the Elementary School 3

EDUC 2260 Educating Students with Exceptionalities 3

EDUC 4308 Creating An Inclusive Learning Environment 3

EDUC 3257 Characteristics of Learners with Low Incidence Disabilities 3

EDUC 3265 Characteristics of Learners with High Incidence Disabilities 3

EDUC 3310 Assessment in Action 3

EDUC 3312 Methods of Teaching Social Studies – Elementary 3

EDUC 3315 Methods of Teaching Mathematics – Elementary 3

EDUC 3318 Methods of Teaching Science – Elementary 3

EDUC 3357 Methods of teaching Learners with Low Incidence Disabilities 3

EDUC 3358 Methods of teaching Learners with High Incidence Disabilities 3

EDUC 4320 Reading/Writing Diagnostics for All Learners 3

EDUC 4355 Managing the Learning Environment 3

EDUC 2100 Physical Development and Health for Educators 2

Total Hours 57

Course List Included in these requirements are three preclinical experiences (EDUC 2200 Preclinical Experience Level 1 with Seminar, EDUC 3234 Preclinical Experience Level 2 with Seminar and EDUC 4236 Preclinical Experience Level 3 with Seminar)

All major coursework must be completed with a 3.0 GPA or better.

Programs

9

Elementary Education, BA

Location

9

Lisle

Education Teacher Performance Assessment (edTPA)

Students must pass the education Teacher Performance Assessment (edTPA) at the end of their program. Upon
successful completion of the elementary education major with licensure test requirements, students earn a Professional Educator License (PEL) for teaching grades 1-6 in Illinois. Benedictine education students have a 100% first-time pass rate on state licensure exams.

Discover your future at BenU