If you’re interested in teaching at an elementary level, we can help you earn the necessary certification, while also providing you with a liberal arts foundation that opens endless additional opportunities. Colgate offers a tuition-free 9th semester option to complete all teacher certification requirements.

About the Program

The elementary certification program is currently offered at the undergraduate level only. The program leads to certification in grades 1–6. It typically combines a major in an academic field with courses in educational theory and practice. 

Students should begin the certification program as early as possible and must formally apply to the program. Students who would like to complete all requirements in their four years at Colgate must reserve the fall term of their senior year for student teaching and evening coursework.

University catalog

  • EDUC 101, The American School
  • One course from EDUC 305, 308, 310, 311, 312, or 418 OR EQUIVALENT
  • EDUC 202, The Teaching of Reading
  • EDUC 204, Child and Adolescent Development
  • EDUC 207, Inclusive and Special Education 
  • EDUC 331, Teaching and Learning in the School

During student teaching required coursework includes:

  • EDUC 455, Student Teaching
  • EDUC 456, Dignity in Schools (.25 credit)

As well as pedagogical courses associated with the content area:

  • EDUC 451, Seminar on Teaching English and Social Studies
  • EDUC 453, Seminar on Teaching Science and Mathematics
  • Childhood Ed students will have to take both


Can be taken during your student teaching semester (TPP required course):

  • EDUC 454, Diagnosis and Remediation of Reading Problems


Prior to student teaching, liberal arts curriculum course requirements are (at minimum):

  • One laboratory science course in biology, chemistry, physics, geology, or astronomy or two non-lab science courses
  • Two history/political science courses
  • One mathematics course
  • One foreign language course
  • One English Language Arts (ELA) course (English, Writing and Rhetoric)
  • One class in the arts



Must be completed prior to student teaching:

  • Fieldwork — 100 hours
  • Child abuse workshop (two hours of training in the identification of suspected child abuse/maltreatment)
  • Violence intervention and prevention workshop
  • Fingerprinting

The Teacher Preparation Program at Colgate University is a member in good standing of the Association for Advancing Quality in Educator Preparation (AAQEP). The Teacher Preparation Program at Colgate University is  working toward accreditation of its educator preparation programs under the AAQEP standards with an anticipated Quality Assurance Review in Spring 2022.

AAQEP logo