PK-4 Certification
Graduate Studies

Transition to Teaching

If you have a bachelor’s degree and want to become an elementary school teacher, you can earn your PK-4 teaching certification through certification courses completely online or on campus.

This program offers you the flexibility you need. You can study part time, taking only one seven-week class at a time, and complete your certification in less than two years. This graduate-level program qualifies for federal financial aid.

Pennsylvania is facing a teacher shortage. You can help meet the need for elementary school teachers and earn a median salary of $66,860, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Program Availability

  • On-Campus
  • Online
  • Hybrid

Rethinking Work/Life Balance - Danielle Kerr's Story

After working long, unpredictable hours for 13 years as a litigation paralegal while caring for my three young daughters, I realized I needed to rethink my work/life balance.

I made the decision to resign from my position and take a job at our local elementary school as a paraprofessional, simply because the hours matched my children’s schedule.

It was there that I found that my real passion lay in education. At the age of 42, when my youngest child entered school, I made the difficult decision to return to college to pursue my degree in elementary education.

Although I looked into several different universities’ programs, I knew from the first contact that Immaculata University was the place for me. Everyone I spoke to, from the admissions office to Dr. Brennan in the Education Division, made me feel confident in my decision.

My Immaculata experience was more than I could have imagined. Besides receiving a high-quality education that allowed me to obtain a teaching position within two weeks of graduation, I made lifetime friends and connections.

5 Reasons to Become a Teacher

  1. The growing demand for teachers—For several years, the Pennsylvania Department of Education has been working to recruit more qualified teachers to address the shortage of applicants for some jobs. With your certification, you can stand out and be in demand.
  2. The family-friendly work schedule—You can work during the same hours your children are in school and have more time to spend with them at home.
  3. The satisfaction of contributing to your community—As an educator, you will influence young people and prepare them to be thoughtful citizens.
  4. The opportunity to profoundly impact the lives of children—Enjoy a rewarding job as a teacher who cares about your students and inspires them.
  5. An outlet for your creativity—Your job will never be boring as you seek creative ways to engage students and present lessons to them.


  • EDL 620 Curriculum Applications (3 credits)
  • EDL 629 Intro to Special Education (3 credits)
  • EDL 617 Foundations of Education and Learning (3 credits)
  • EDL 644 Language Arts Methods (3 credits)
  • GEN 501 Human Development (3 credits)
  • EDL 640 Instructional Accommodation (3 credits)
  • EDL 613 Testing and Assessment (3 credits)
  • EDL 614 Instructional Needs of ELL (3 credits)
  • EDL 592 Student Teaching (6 credits)
Total Credits 30

*Sample course sequence

During the semester you are student teaching, it is anticipated that you will be in the classroom for 12 weeks during the day. If you are currently teaching in a PK-4 setting, you may be able to stay in your classroom and work with a cooperating teacher to complete the student teaching requirements. Contact the program director for additional information.

If you want to continue your education, you can apply your certification credits toward a master’s degree and seamlessly transition to the Master of Arts in educational leadership. You need only 12 additional credits to complete the master’s degree.

Admission Requirements

Applicants into Immaculata University’s PK-4 certification program are generally professionals from another field making a career change. Admissions requirements include:

  • A bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university
  • A minimum GPA of 2.8 in your bachelor’s program

Applicants who fall just below the minimum GPA requirement may request a review of their application by the program director. However, acceptance of an application for review does not guarantee admission to the program.

Learn more or apply now.

After working in another field for almost 20 years, I decided to go back to school for education. Immaculata offers an accelerated program in which classes are seven weeks in duration. I was very excited about this, as I would be able to complete credits much quicker than a traditional semester. Immaculata has lived up to personal recommendations such as helpful professors, class quality and flexibility.

Eileen Wainwright

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