Take on an enriching and fulfilling career by studying a BS in Education

The Marian University Bachelor of Science in Elementary-Middle Education program helps those looking to make a lasting positive impact on children in grades 1-8. Gain the knowledge and extensive field experience, starting your freshman year, needed to become an effective teacher.

Graduating with an Elementary-Middle Education degree, you will have earned the Middle Childhood-Early Adolescence Education certification and licensure needed to become an elementary and middle school teacher in the state of Wisconsin. As a certified teacher, you will guide your students as they progress from early childhood through adolescence. Having learned how to design differentiated coursework and assessments you will graduate knowing how to encourage critical thinking, collaboration, problem-solving, and communication skills for all students.

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    As a freshman and sophomore, your introductory field experiences will expose you to our Whole Child Education philosophy. You will be actively engaged in the learning process as we cover teaching strategies, classroom management practices, and student development.


    As a sophomore and junior, you will be actively engaged in the learning process through a study of theoretical models and best practices in the elementary of middle school settings. You will also broaden your worldview of diversity and culturally responsive practices.


    In your final year, you will have the opportunity and responsibility to demonstrate your understanding of the planning-teaching-assessment cycle. Throughout your pre-clinical and clinical practices, our experienced faculty will provide scaffolding and ongoing feedback on your knowledge, skills, and teaching dispositions. You will be well prepared to meet Wisconsin licensure requirements.

    Working Toward the Classroom

    The Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary-Middle Education offers:

    • An advisor who will guide you in planning out your schedule and progression to licensure
    • First-semester field experience in our partner schools, as well as in each methods course
    • The chance to experience private and public classroom settings in various grade levels
    • One-on-one attention from experienced faculty and differentiated learning experiences
    • An extensive network of reputable school districts and experienced teachers for assistance with job placement following graduation
    • Access to professional development and networking resources, such as the Marian Student Education Association and Kappa Delta Pi
    • A full school year of experience utilizing the same clinical site for pre-clinical and clinical practice

    Job Outlook For Teachers

    Source: BLS 8/1/2020

    Welcome to the Teacher Education Program

    Listen to Phil Johnson, Education Instructor, as he tells you how to become a teacher at Marian University. All instructors have real world, K-12 experience, and bring you their expertise in both public and private education. Marian's program is unique in that starting in your freshman year, you get real classroom interaction and observation. Small class sizes and courses that match up with field experiences are additional benefits. Many of our students have jobs prior to graduation.

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    The Program

    The Elementary-Middle Education program prepares you to teach grades 1-8. Through a holistic approach, you will engage in a challenging curriculum that will help you understand child and early adolescent development, assess learning, and engage in an applied teaching approach through age-appropriate curriculum and teaching methodology. The program will prepare you for certification and licensure in the state of Wisconsin and leads to a Bachelor of Science degree.

    Licensure: Middle Childhood-Early Adolescence Education, Ages 6-12 or 13 (Grades 1-8)

    General Education Courses

    As a bachelor’s level student, you are required to take about 30 credits of general education courses as part of the 120 credits required for a bachelor’s degree.  Gen eds are required regardless of your major.

    All students take 10.5 to 17 credits in these areas:

    • Mathematical Reasoning
    • Argumentative and Research Writing
    • Introduction to Christian Theology
    • Interpersonal Communication
    • Introduction to Ethical Reasoning
    • First Year Studies

    Elementary-Middle Education majors will take courses covering topics such as:

    • Language arts curriculum and methods
    • Math for elementary school teachers
    • Art foundations for educators
    • Children’s literature
    • Primary mathematics curriculum and methods

    For more details regarding this program, view Marian’s Academic Bulletin.

    Sample Course Plan:
    Download Sample Course Plan

    125 Credits Required for Graduation

    46-49 Liberal Arts Core Curriculum University Requirements as required:

    A basic course developing an art foundation for educators. The art experiences will address necessary objectives for the development of cogent teaching practice including sensory and perceptual awareness, recognition and use of fundamental art concepts, implementation of the creative process, formation or enrichment of art techniques and skills and encouragement for a more profound respect and recognition of the visual arts. This is a required art course for all early childhood–elementary and elementary–middle education majors, and a recommended art core course for other education majors with the exception of art education.

    Students will investigate sets, logic and problem solving.


    MAT 150 Math for Elementary School Teachers I, with a grade of C or higher

    A course designed to examine and develop the conceptual foundation upon which elementary mathematics is built. Quantitative thinking skills are developed through applications and problem solving situations. Topics include probability, statistics adn geometry. (This is a required course for Education majors)

    An introductory course which studies the nature and purpose of national, state, and local government, the Constitution, and the institutions and pressures of American society.

    This introductory philosophy course builds on the critical reading and thinking outcomes students will have achieved in the First Year Seminar, and prepares students for their future studies and for life by leading them to develop their abilities in three outcome areas: Interpretive Reasoning, Critical Reasoning, and Global Citizenship. Through engagement with historical, multicultural, and contemporary texts students will learn how to interpret texts, move from evidence to conclusions, and use their interpretations and conclusions to live a more examined life.

    A survey of the changes which occur during the entire lifespan as people develop: physical, motor, cognitive, moral, and social-emotional. Developmental theory and research data are critically considered. Application of existing knowledge about the variables which affect the course of development is emphasized.


    ENG 001 Basic Writing, Appropriate English placement test score or ENG 001.

    A course designed to enhance students’ composition and critical thinking skills, by providing experiences with a range of writing strategies. This course will focus primarily on the writing of clear and thoughtful expository prose, as well as the identification and use of the rhetorical modes of development: narration, description, definition, division, classification, process analysis, comparison/contrast, cause/effect, and evaluation/analysis. Further, this class requires students to demonstrate their understanding of these rhetorical modes and their skill in employing them. Students develop their awareness of the resources of language and of the stages in the writing process. The course aims to make students competent in standard edited English and to prepare them for the writing they will do in college and in their careers.


    ENG 105 Expository Writing, or appropriate English placement test score

    A course introducing students to the principles of college research, with emphasis on analytical reading of research material, focused use of sources, and the methodology of citation and documentation. This course will focus primarily on the translation of critical reading and critical thinking into critical writing by reinforcing and expanding upon the rhetorical modes, the foundational mechanics, and the composition skills taught in the Expository Writing Course as well as the critical-thinking, critical-reading and library skills introduced in the First-Year Seminar. In this class, students refine their awareness of the resources of language and of the stages in the writing process. The course aims to make students proficient in standard edited English and to prepare them further for the writing they will do in college and in their careers.

    An introduction to Christian theology understood as the critical and reflective study of God’s revelation through the person, life, and teaching of Jesus Christ and of the implications of this revelation. Proceeding from the Catholic intellectual tradition and incorporating perspectives of other Christian traditions, this study aims to present theology as a striving for the harmony of faith and reason. Through critical study and reflection, students are introduced to specific concepts, terminology, and methodologies needed to participate well in on-going theological dialogue. Students have the opportunity to apply and reflect on their knowledge in written work, presentations, service-learning, community service, and/or retreat experiences.

    THE Elective, 3 cr.

    An introductory biology course for non-majors. The relationship between structure and function is emphasized at the cellular and organismic levels. A survey of taxonomy and classification, cell biology, plant biology, human physiology and ecology is provided. (May be taken as “lecture only” or concurrently with BIO 150.)

    Topics correspond to lecture material, including taxonomy, cell biology, plant biology, human physiology and ecology. Dissection of a fetal pig is required. (Laboratory experiences strongly enhance and support material in BIO 100 and concurrent registration is recommended.)


    A study of the organization of ecosystems and human use of natural resources, including problems and opportunities generated by human interaction with the environment. Basic ecological principles are applied to current environmental issues and topics. Environmental case studies and current environmental literature are employed. Laboratory activities include field trips, simulations and other activities designed to enhance lecture topics.


    This course is a service-learning intensive biology course where students learn about environment stewardship through participation in the maintenance and restoration of local ecosystems, for example, stream monitoring and invasive species removal. Through the hands-on projects and selections of readings, the student will develop an understanding and appreciation for environmental stewardship. The course fulfills the one-credit laboratory requirement under general education. The course will be a hybrid course where much of the content will be delivered in an on-line format with one-day-a-week meetings to participate in field trips and stewardship projects. Due to the service learning and environmental aspects of the course, students must be able and willing to perform light labor (on the level of gardening) and a moderate amount of hiking. Students will be required to provide their own transportation to nearby locations, car pooling and cost sharing will be encouraged under Marian University’s policy on approved drivers for field trips.

    One course from:

    An introduction to the fundamental principles of Chemistry including modern concepts of atomic and molecular theory, physical states of matter, stoichiometry, chemical bonding, gas laws, equilibria and reactions of inorganic compounds.


    CHE 001 Preparatory Chemistry, or high school chemistry; MAT 001 Basic Algebra, or appropriate math placement test score

    An introductory course for non-science majors. This course provides a basic knowledge of chemistry and its application to everyday life with special focus to biological and medical applications. With laboratory.

    A general introduction to the basic principles of chemistry and physics and their application in contemporary society. The course, for non-science and non-nursing majors, includes a laboratory experience with experiments designed to assist the student in understanding the concepts discussed in lecture.

    An introduction to the physical nature and processes of the earth, along with the chemical bases for them. Dynamic processes of landscape formation and change as shaped by the forces of plate tectonics, weather, and ground and surface water will be studied. Planetary geology will be introduced. The laboratories will complement lectures with both indoor study and field trips to study local examples.

    A course in the basics of meteorology in which students study the atmosphere and its physical processes including large scale climatological and local weather phenomena, their impact on society and on other aspects of ecological systems. Measurement of physical characteristics such as temperature, atmospheric pressure, humidity, and wind along with data collection and analysis are included in laboratory exercises. Mathematical problem-solving skills will be emphasized. Professional meteorology and climatology are examined. Unusual and dangerous weather conditions, their causes and effects are studied and students are introduced to microclimatology.


    MAT 201 Calculus I, or Corequisite

    This is a lecture and laboratory course which stresses the fundamental principles of mechanics, momentum, work and energy, rotational motion and fluid statics and mechanics. The course will use calculus in derivation of the laws of physics as well as in problem-solving.


    MAT 112 Pre-Calculus Mathematics, MAT 114 Algebra and Trigonometry, with a grade of C or better, or appropriate math placement test score

    A one-semester lecture and laboratory physics course. Topics addressed include the fundamentals of kinematics, dynamics, statics, oscillation, electromagnetism, and optics.

    3 credits from:

    An introduction to basics of music theory: notation, rhythmic reading, sight singing, scales, key signatures, intervals, chords, transposition, and terminology. Functional skills of playing melodies and simple accompaniments on piano and other classroom instruments are taught. This course is for Elementary Education majors.

    A survey of the major forms and compositions of Western art music, with units in world music and jazz. Emphasis is placed on the development of listening skills, as well as historical, biographical and sociological study to enhance appreciation of the music. This course is designed for the general student. (Required field trip, with fee.)

    A survey of the development of music in America, including concert styles, popular and show music. This course is designed for the general student. (Required field trip, with fee.)

    A chronological study of jazz and its antecedents from 1900 to the present. Includes style periods, major artists, relevant historical/sociological background and the development of listening skills. This course is designed for the general student. (Required field trip, with fee.)

    A study of various world musics including Oriental, African, Eastern European, American jazz and others, but not including Western art music. Includes study of the structure and the sociological setting of the music with an emphasis on the development of listening skills. This course is designed for the general student. (Required field trip, with fee.)

    3 credits from:


    A study of American literature from its beginning to the Civil War, tracing the development of American writing in its cultural contexts. In lectures and discussions, students are introduced to a broad range of critical methods for approaching major American authors.


    A study of major writers of Europe, Africa, Asia, and the New World, with emphasis on writers of international stature and influence. The course offers students a broad perspective on literary history from classical times to the 17th century. A chronological survey of significant work leads to discussion of problems in the historical examination of literature: the definition of movements, the relationships between society and literature, and the evolution of literary genres.

    3 credits from:

    A survey of world civilizations from human origins to the 16th century. Exploration of the cultural, political and economic development of humankind in a global context.

    A survey of world civilizations from the 16th century to the present. Exploration of the cultural, political and economic development of humankind in a global context.

    3 credits from:

    A survey course in which the cultural, political and economic events that have shaped American history from the precontact period to 1877 will be explored. The course will pursue several key topics including the evolution of race and gender relations, independence, the emergence of popular democracy, the era of the Civil War and Reconstruction and the impact of industrialism and urbanization upon American life.

    A survey course in which the cultural, political and economic events that have shaped American history from 1877 to the present will be explored. The course will pursue several key topics including the continuing development of race and gender relations, the impact of industrialism, the world wars and the Cold War upon American life.

    3 credits from:

    This course focuses on the exploration of fundamental principles of effective communication. Skilled communication behaviors are developed through the study and practice of interpersonal communication, public speaking, listening, and group dynamics. Practical applications include class discussion, group activities, listening exercises, and individual presentations.

    A course applying traditional rhetoric and communication theory to oral presentations. Students study, write, deliver and evaluate public speeches. Emphasis is placed on the students’ ability to speak from an outline in a variety of situations including informative speaking, persuasive speaking and demonstration speaking. All presentations are made in class and videotaped to aid in evaluation.

    Elementary-Middle and Education Courses 55 credits:

    Introduction to the foundation and philosophical background of education in the United States, through examination of principles, policies, current trends, and history. An overview of the knowledge and performance skills needed to become an effective teacher, including a 10 hour field experience in a partner school classroom.


    The course will focus on the educational implications of psychological principles and theories of child and adolescent development derived from research. The application of theories and principles will emphasize components of the teaching-learning situation.

    Introduces and begins to develop foundational skills for clinical practice such as lesson planning, instructional approach, assessment, integrating technology, and classroom management. Students will plan and deliver micro-lessons and engage in reflective practice. This course includes a 20 hour field experience.


    Critical examination of factors that impact student learning, ie: sexual orientation, gender, religion, socio-economics, language, and age. Forces of discrimination in schools are evaluated. Particular attention is given to critical race theory, educational equity, and critical social justice theory. American Indian culture is studied. Students have opportunities to develop relationships with people from various cultural backgrounds. Includes a 10 hour field experience.

    Pre-student teaching clinical experience for all teacher education candidates. Students complete a 60-hour field experience, under the supervision of the cooperating teacher. Students apply and analyze instructional methods, assessment alternatives, reading strategies, technology integration, co-teaching and collaborative methods, through teaching experiences and reflective practice.


    Introduces elementary education candidates to the knowledge and skills needed to integrate visual arts, drama, music, human movement and physical activity in the elementary curricula to enhance student learning. Emphasis is placed on the educational, communicative, and aesthetic value of visual arts and the role the arts plays in promoting students’ ability to express themselves creatively.


    Reading is a complex process that is best developed through both holistic and systematic methods.  This course is intended to provide an overview of early reading and writing instructional strategies in word recognition, including phonemic awareness and phonics, vocabulary development, and comprehension.  It was designed to encompass both the theoretical and practical aspects of learning how to teach and assess reading in pre-kindergarten, kindergarten, and primary grade classrooms. Includes a 10 hour embedded field experience.


    Designed for teachers of intermediate or early adolescent students.  Emphasis will be placed on a developmental approach to teaching reading which uses a balanced approach to meeting the needs of the students.  Strategies for teaching fluency, vocabulary and word study, and comprehension will be studied to enable learners to become independent and competent readers.  The reading/writing connection will be expanded upon.  Assessment and evaluation will be taught as a means to inform instruction.  Includes a 20 hour embedded field experience.


    Students study the development of written and oral language for children from birth through early adolescence. Students explore the socio-cultural, practical, and political aspects of language arts instruction including the reciprocal nature of reading and writing.  Topics include oral and written language development, methods of teaching and assessing writing, grammar instruction, and the role of children’s literature within language arts instruction.  Includes a 10 hour embedded field experience.


    A course that provides students with experiences using methodologies recommended for the effective teaching of mathematics. Students evaluate mathematics curricula and supplementary materials using specific assessment tools. Students review mathematics theory and content necessary for teaching early childhood, elementary, and middle school levels.


    Major concepts, procedures, and reasoning processes related to number systems, number sense, geometry, measurement, statistics, probability and algebra are examined. Candidates are exposed to the selection and use of a wide range of manipulatives, and instructional resources to support the teaching of mathematics. Candidates learn to promote all students’ abilities to apply, interpret, and construct mathematical thinking skills. This course includes 10 hours of field experience.


    A course that explores the disciplines that comprise the social studies core and also stresses the importance of addressing environmental issues. Students study a variety of methodologies and materials and have opportunities to teach social studies lessons, and discuss value clarification processes, questioning techniques, and current issues and social studies education.


    A course that gives students opportunities to peer-teach science lessons using inquiry and process-orientation methodologies. They evaluate science curricula and materials using specific criteria, and review physical, biological and earth science content necessary for teaching for the early childhood, elementary and middle school grades.


    Addresses the characteristics of exceptional children and introduces successful inclusive teaching practices. Topics covered may include disability conditions, gifted and talented, legislation, collaboration, planning, assessment, response to intervention, and diversity. Includes a 20 hour field experience.


    Permission of faculty


    Pedagogical theories are applied to authentic learning environments. Students compile comprehensive work samples for planning, instruction, and assessment. Student teaching experiences are shared with peers in a supportive manner.


    Permission by faculty


    Students engage in the practical application of educational theory and best practice during a full semester of student teaching that is developmental in scope and sequence, and corresponding to the student’s licensure program(s). Under the supervision of a cooperating teacher and college supervisor, the teacher candidate will assume full responsibility for planning lessons, delivering instruction, and assessing student learning.

    International Society for Technology in Education
    ISTE Standards for Teachers
    ISTE-T Standards

    InTASC Model Core Teaching Standards
    InTasc Standards

    Wisconsin Teacher Standards
    WI Teacher Standards

    Teacher Education Department Mission
    The mission of the Elementary-Middle Education program is to prepare candidates for the teaching profession by providing them with the knowledge, skills and experience necessary to develop the pedagogical, content and technological skills necessary to function effectively as a teacher.

    Program Learning Outcomes
    After completion of this program, candidates will demonstrate:

    1. An understanding of the teaching standards, including the knowledge, skills and dispositions expected of a professional teacher.
    2. Academic competence in a broad base of general education and in a major appropriate for the licensure being sought and demonstrate knowledge of a variety of effective teaching methods and materials (including technology) which utilize skills that effectively apply content knowledge and knowledge of children and adolescents to the learning environment.
    3. The ability to design instruction effectively using a variety of instructional strategies and adapting instruction to encourage the development of critical thinking, problem solving and performance skills for all students. Candidates also reflect on the instructional process to improve future teaching and learning experiences.
    4. An understanding and an ability to design, assess and evaluate (both formal and informal) assessments for student learning and reflects on the assessment process to improve future teaching and learning experiences.
    5. An understanding of a diverse student population and apply appropriate instructional strategies and assessments that acknowledge sensitivity to students’ diverse learning needs.

    The BS in Elementary-Middle Education program prepares you for success in the 21st-century classroom. Our program will equip you with the knowledge and skills to guide young students to achieve their potential. With numerous field and student teaching experiences, you will graduate prepared for elementary-middle childhood education positions across the state of Wisconsin.

    School of Education Assessment Reports

    2014-15 Annual Analysis: Teacher Education Undergraduate Programs

    The Education Programs offered by the Marian University School of Education are approved by the:

    wi-dept-public-instruction-logo     aacte-logo     caep-logo

    Marian University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

    Admission to the Education Department

    1. A minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.50 upon completion of 40 credits
    2. Meeting one of the following criteria:
      1. Reported passing scores on all components of the Praxis Core tests (Required: Reading-156, Writing-162, Math-150
      2. ACT score of 23 or SAT score of 1030
      3. score of “Sufficient” or higher in Mathematics, English and Essay sections of the Accuplacer exam
    3. Successful completion of EDU 101: Introduction to Education (grade of “C” or better)
    4. Proficiency in speaking and listening (grade of “C” or better in COM 101 or COM 232)
    5. Completion of EDU 202: Psychology of Learning (grade of “C” or better)
    6. Successful completion of EDU 290: Introduction to Clinical Practice (grade of “C” or better)
    7. Submission of three Professional Disposition Performance Assessments


    Philip Johnson, M.S.

    Polly Manske, M.S.
    Assistant Professor

    Sr. Cyndi Nienhaus, Ph.D.
    Assistant Professor

    Kimiko Ott
    Assistant Professor

    Hundreds of exceptional teachers across Wisconsin got their start at Marian University. If you’re ready to join their ranks, we’d love to help get you there.

    Apply Now

    Dr. Kimiko Ott
    Chair, Education Department

    Support Staff
    Ms. Leah Schraeder, Support Specialist III
    800.262.7426 ext. 8128 or 920.923.8128