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Elementary, Middle School and Secondary Education

Your Future in Elementary, Middle school and Secondary Education

Do you enjoy working with children? Are you bilingual? Do you have strong math or science skills? Then you should consider becoming a certified teacher in elementary, middle school or secondary education.

As a teacher, you'll be vital to a child's development, affecting his or her emotional, social and academic growth. Teachers work:

  • With students from diverse backgrounds, sometimes in classrooms where several languages are spoken
  • With special needs students
  • In settings where stringent accountability measures are in place

The University of North Texas has a long tradition of developing highly qualified teachers. UNT was founded as a teachers training institute and continues to supply excellent teachers for public and private schools throughout Texas, especially in bilingual education, English as a second language, special education, math and science.

What we offer

The Department of Teacher Education and Administration grooms teachers through high standards and a rigorous curriculum. We provide avenues for teacher certification in:

  • All levels of art, music or kinesiology
  • Early childhood through sixth grade
  • Fourth through eighth grades (middle school)
  • Secondary education

Our programs emphasize effective instruction, curriculum development and evaluation. Courses are taught by experienced professors who are leaders in their field.

We also prepare teachers in technology integration, ESL and special education strategies, infusion of the arts into the curriculum, and how to address the needs of all learners.

Our Professional Development School is a two-semester program that helps elementary and middle school teaching candidates to be more prepared and confident than many second and third-year teachers. During one semester, you'll complete course work two days a week and work in the field another two days a week. In the second semester, you'll work directly with mentor teachers and their students the entire day in a 15-week student teaching internship through an area school district.

Early childhood through sixth grade teaching candidates can also receive real-world experience working in our Child Development Laboratory.

The College of Education is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (2010 Massachusetts Ave. NW, Suite 500; Washington, D.C. 20036; telephone 202-223-0077). This distinction means the college meets or exceeds strict academic standards for excellence in education. The college is also one of the top producers of teachers, administrators, counselors and other school professionals in Texas.

What to expect

You'll need to be admitted to the teacher education program after obtaining junior status with a 2.75 GPA. The necessary degree requirements vary depending on your certification interest.

For elementary or middle school certification, you'll fulfill the degree requirements for the Bachelor of Science degree in Interdisciplinary Studies.

To achieve secondary education or all-level certification, you'll fulfill bachelor's degree requirements in a content area (English, math, biology, etc.) and then complete required education courses. Students are advised primarily by their college and major department.

The education courses focus on the art of teaching as well as:

  • Assessment tools
  • Collaborative skills for working with teaching teams
  • How children learn
  • Instructional strategies
  • Strategies for effective teaching and learning
  • Techniques of classroom organization and management

After completing all program requirements, we'll approve you to sit for state certification exams. We recommend you for certification after you achieve passing scores on all required state tests and meet all program requirements. More information about testing is available on our website.

The Career Center, Learning Center and professional academic advisors are among the many valuable resources available to you at UNT. The Career Center can provide advice about internships, future employment opportunities and getting hands-on experience in your major. The Learning Center offers workshops on speed reading, study skills and time management. Academic advisors will help you plan your class schedule each semester.

The College of Education Student Advising Office also has advising teams to assist with degree plans, certification and the transfer of credits.

How to enroll at UNT

High school students

We encourage you to fulfill the graduation requirements for the distinguished level of achievement under the Texas Foundation, Recommended or Distinguished Achievement high school program or the equivalent.

In your junior year, take the SAT or ACT and have your scores sent to UNT.

In your senior year, apply for admission at ApplyTexas.org by March 1 and request that your high school transcript be sent to the UNT admissions office.

Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate courses can count toward college credit at UNT.

Transfer students

If you're attending a Texas community college, you should consult our online transfer guides, the UNT Undergraduate Catalog and an academic counselor or advisor to review your degree plan. Proper planning will allow you to receive the maximum amount of transfer credits.

Our Transfer Center will help you make a successful transition to college life at UNT by connecting you with a peer mentor and other campus resources. Each year, 3,900 students transfer to UNT.