Mission

The Teacher Education Program at Elon University prepares teachers to be effective practitioners who are engaged learners, ethical leaders, globally aware citizens, and advocates for equity and excellence.

Elon offers programs leading to initial North Carolina licensure in elementary education, middle grades education, and special education, in special subject areas for grades K-12 (music and Spanish), and in high school (9-12) subject areas of English, history, math and science.

Undergraduate students majoring in a teacher education program that leads to initial licensure can also choose to add-on a license in one of these areas: Pre-K or Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). Secondary education majors also have the option to complete the Special Education Add-on Licensure.

Transition Point 1: Application & Admission to Teacher Education

When To Apply

You will begin the process of applying for admission to the Teacher Education Program while taking EDU 2110: Education and Society or SOC 2430: Sociology of Education or EDU 2500: Teaching Fellows Seminar.

To be admitted to Teacher Education before the fall semester of 2024 begins, your application and all admission requirements must be received/completed by August 2, 2024.

How To Apply

  1. Declare your major online or visit Academic Advising in 231 Koenigsberger Learning Center if you need assistance.
  2. Submit your Application for Admission to Teacher Education through eDocs while enrolled in EDU 2110, EDU 2500 or SOC 2430.
  3. Complete any outstanding requirements, listed below.

If you have questions about the application or admissions process, please contact Jennifer Strange, Coordinator of Teacher Education Admission at jstrange3@elon.edu or by phone at 336-278-6099.

Requirements for Admission

All candidates must meet the following requirements before admission into the Teacher Education Program.

  • Satisfactory performance in EDU 2110: Education and Society or SOC 2430: Sociology of Education or EDU 2500: Teaching Fellows Seminar (grade of C or better and acceptable clinical experience performance).
  • Completion of the NC Professional Ethics for Teachers mini course through Participate; must earn an 80/100 on the quiz to earn your badge required for program admission.
  • Completion of the Teaching Beliefs and Mindsets survey.
  • Overall minimum grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.70.
  • Minimum qualifying admission scores on the SAT or ACT or the Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators tests as required by the NC State Board of Education.
    • Qualifying SAT scores:
      • Minimum overall score of 1170
        • Minimum score of 600 on ERW; Minimum score of 570 on Math
    • Qualifying ACT scores:
      • Minimum ACT composite score of 24
        • Minimum score of 24 on English; Minimum score of 24 on Math
    • If you have taken the SAT/ACT, please send your score report to Jennifer Strange at jstrange3@elon.edu. Upon review, you will be notified if additional testing is required for admission to Teacher Education.
    • If you have not taken the SAT/ACT or need additional testing for admission, you will need to register for the Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators tests below. When registering for the test(s), candidates must ensure Elon University is listed as a score recipient. Our institution code is 5183. Candidates must achieve a combined score of 468 on all three sections of the Core Academic Skills for Educators for admission. For single scores, refer to the list below.
      • Core Academic Skills for Educators: Reading (Test Code 5713)
        • Qualifying score = 156
      • Core Academic Skills for Educators: Writing (Test Code 5723)
        • Qualifying score = 162
      • Core Academic Skills for Educators: Mathematics (Test Code 5733)
        • Qualifying score = 150
      • Click here for Praxis resources
        Please contact your advisor if you need additional support in preparing for the Praxis.
  • Grade of C- or better in ENG 1100
  • Grade of C- or better in STS 1100, MTH 1510 or STS 2120
  • Two positive recommendations from non-EDU faculty.
    NOTE: A recommendation form will be sent to the references listed on your application by the Coordinator of Teacher Education Admission. References must be two non-EDU teaching faculty from your academic courses. EDU 2110, SOC 2430, EDU 2500 and Elon 1010 instructors may not serve as references.
  • Satisfactory dispositions ratings
  • Ongoing positive background check
  • No significant violations of Elon’s Academic and Social Honor Code

When all of the above steps have been completed and all requirements have been met, your application package will be reviewed by the program coordinator, Department Chair, and the Director of Teacher Education. The Director of Teacher Education makes the final decision on all admissions to the Teacher Education program, and applicants will be notified of the Director of Teacher Education’s decision.

  • A student may be denied admission to the program by the Teacher Education Committee.
  • As stated in the Academic Catalog, a teacher candidate must be unconditionally admitted to the program before being permitted to take any of the following education methods courses: EDU 3040, EDU 4040, EDU 4200, EDU 4210, EDU 4220, EDU 4230, EDU 4240, EDU 4250, EDU 4260, EDU 4280, EDU 4300, EDU 4440, EDU 4450, MUS 4530, PEH 4980, and EDU 4970.
  • Questions or concerns regarding an applicant’s acceptance status may be directed to the Director of Teacher Education, Ann Bullock, by calling 336-278-5900.

At the end of the program, for all classes where candidates earn a C or better, they will have received the academic content to be eligible for licensure candidacy. The candidate will have also obtained skills and knowledge to prepare them for the North Carolina licensure tests. The Dr. Jo Watts Williams School of Education has many graduates that teach in states across the country for which North Carolina has reciprocity, and those where do we not. If a candidate is planning to teach in another state, reciprocity information may be found online, here. Even if North Carolina does not have reciprocity with a state of interest, it is typically quite easy to enter teaching in a state with an existing teaching license. The Dr. Jo Watts Williams School of Education is here to help our candidates with these requests. For more information, please contact the Dean of the School of Education at 336-278-5900.

Transition Point 2: Satisfactory Progress in Teacher Education

To continue in the Teacher Education program, candidates must meet the following criteria:

  • minimum overall GPA of 2.70 as required by the State of North Carolina
  • a grade of C or better in PSY 3820 before enrollment in a methods class in any of the teacher education programs
  • methods course grade of C or better and satisfactory completion of field component of methods courses
  • overall GPA of 2.0 in content courses
  • satisfactory disposition assessments
  • positive departmental recommendation
  • ongoing positive background checks

Addressing Professional Dispositions and Academic Performance Concerns

While serious concerns about the performance or growth of our teacher candidates do not often occur, when a concern exists, it is best for the candidate and program to address it honestly and directly. For this purpose, the Professional Dispositions and Academic Performance (PDAP) process has been created.

The PDAP process documents the interventions required for teacher candidates who demonstrate inadequate performance in their professional dispositions and/or academic coursework. We believe that teacher candidates with excellent academic performance and positive dispositions are well prepared to teach and lead in their classrooms and have a positive impact on student learning. A grade of C or better is required in all EDU courses.

Information provided during this process is designed to be of value to the candidate in planning for growth and to the Teacher Education Program and faculty in facilitating growth. The information may have important implications in decisions regarding admission to Teacher Education, continuance in the program, admission to student teaching, and recommendation for licensure.

Learn more about the PDAP Process

Candidate Complaint Procedure

The candidate complaint procedure is designed for complaints that arise during matriculation in the Teacher Education Program. Should a teacher candidate have a concern, the following steps should be taken:

  1. The teacher candidate should submit a written complaint to the individual with whom there is a concern, with a request for a meeting.
  2. The teacher candidate should meet with the individual. Most concerns can be resolved through direct and open communication between the parties involved.
  3. If the teacher candidate is dissatisfied with the results of Step 2, the teacher candidate may submit a written complaint to the individual’s supervisor or department chair within 10 working days of the meeting. The individual’s supervisor or department chair will offer to meet with the teacher candidate and the individual with whom there is a concern. After the meeting, the supervisor or department chair will provide both parties with written documentation of the concern/s expressed and resolutions/s discusses at the meeting.
  4. If the teacher candidate wishes to appeal the resolution/s from Step 3, they should submit a written request to the Dean who will determine the appropriate audience for the appeal (e.g., Teacher Education Committee, M.Ed. Faculty Committee, Provost, etc.).

*The above steps should NOT be used for complaints or grievances regarding:

Teacher candidates may also follow the University’s Student Complaint Process which provides students with an avenue to submit a concern regarding any area on campus for which no other specific process exists.

Learn more about the University’s Student Complaint Process

Submit a Complaint Online

Transition Point 3: Entry into Student Teaching

Teacher candidates must apply for and be approved by the Teacher Education Committee to student teach. The Director of Teacher Education reviews each student’s GPA, course performance and disposition history each November and then presents a slate of candidates to the Teacher Education Committee. If there are concerns related to individual candidates, the committee discusses the concerns and possible plans for those students. If candidates are not accepted into student teaching, candidates are either delayed an additional semester to meet requirements or advised appropriately about different majors or placement options.

To enter student teaching, candidates must meet the following requirements:

  • A teacher candidate must complete and earn a grade of C or better in all Education courses in order to be eligible to student teach.
  • A teacher candidate must have ongoing positive background checks.
  • Teacher candidates in Elementary and Special Education programs must earn a grade of C or better (or appropriate transfer credit) in both MTH 2080 and MTH 2090.
  • All Elon teacher candidates are required to complete the Intercultural Learning Certificate Program prior to student teaching (semester two).
  • All Elon teacher candidates are required to take the Praxis and Pearson Subject Assessments (expand Licensure Testing Requirements below) prior to full-time student teaching (semester two).

Transition Point 4: Exit from Student Teaching

Teacher candidates must receive a final grade of C or better in EDU 4970: Student Teaching and meet all requirements on the Certification of Teaching Capacity, as required by the State of North Carolina. The Teacher Education program at Elon University requires a passing edTPA score (see Transition 5 for more information on edTPA) as part of the student teaching grade. In cases where a candidate is unable to successfully complete the student teaching semester, but is still in good standing within the Teacher Education program, an alternative placement may be found making the candidate ineligible for licensure but still eligible for graduation.

Transition Point 5: Program Completion and Recommendation for Licensure

To be recommended for licensure, candidates must:

  • submit a final transcript as required by the State of North Carolina
  • submit the original (and signed) Certification of Teaching Capacity form
  • complete and receive a minimal passing edTPA score
    • For 2023-2024, per NC State Board of Education policy, all candidates seeking a North Carolina licensure recommendation must have an official edTPA minimal passing score:
      • For 13-rubric handbooks, a score of 32
      • For 15-rubric handbooks, a score of 38
  • successfully complete the required North Carolina subject assessment tests for licensure (Praxis II/Pearson) prior to graduation

Teaching Out of State

Many candidates choose to teach somewhere besides North Carolina. Once a candidate is eligible for and receives their North Carolina teaching license, it will make it easier for a candidate to work in another state. North Carolina has reciprocity with 36 other states. By definition, this means the state will honor the North Carolina teaching license, but candidates may be required to take additional testing or meet another licensure requirement. However, candidates are typically given a year or so to fulfill these requirements while teaching.

It is important to note some particulars for states listed below.

  • Massachusetts requires the MTEL tests for elementary and special education. Those who are seeking elementary and special education licensure in North Carolina may take the Massachusetts versions of the Foundations of Reading and the Mathematics subtests. This will allow candidates to “count these tests twice.”
  • Massachusetts and several other states require a course in working with English as a Second Language students. The Dr. Jo Watts Williams School of Education suggests minoring in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) to fulfill this requirement. Candidates should speak with their academic advisors about this option.
  • While North Carolina does not have reciprocity with New York, we have many graduates who teach in New York State successfully, porting their North Carolina license and fulfilling a few other requirements —just like in states with reciprocity.

Please contact the Dr. Jo Watts Williams School of Education Dean’s Office for more information at 336-278-5900.

Candidates who plan to teach outside of North Carolina, can find more information about Teacher Reciprocity Agreements here.

Licensure Testing Requirements

If a teacher candidate intends to become licensed in another state, please contact your advisor or Dean Bullock for more information. It is the expectation that teacher candidates complete North Carolina licensure testing requirements and port their North Carolina license(s) to other states.

Quick Links
Praxis/ETS North Carolina Licensure Test Requirements
Pearson Foundations of Reading Test

When registering for the Praxis/ETS test(s), candidates must ensure Elon University is listed as a score recipient. Our institution code is 5183.


Early Childhood Education candidates seeking an Early Childhood Education (B-K) or add-on license, are required to take the following test:

  • Praxis II: Early Childhood Education, Test 5025

NOTE: This is an Elon program requirement, not a state requirement.


Elementary Education candidates seeking an Elementary Education (K-6) license are required to take the following tests:

  • Pearson Foundations of Reading, Test 190
  • Praxis CKT Mathematics Subtest, Test 7813

Special Education candidates seeking a Special Education (K-12) license are required to take the following tests in addition to their secondary content area licensure test requirements, i.e. see Elementary Education, Middle Grades Education, etc.:

  • Pearson Foundations of Reading, Test 190
  • Praxis CKT Mathematics Subtest, Test 7813
  • Praxis Special Education: Core Knowledge, Test 5355

If you are a Secondary education candidate seeking a Special Education (K-12) add-on license, you are required to take the following test in addition to required test(s) in your initial licensure area:

  • Praxis Special Education: Core Knowledge, Test 5355

If an Elementary or Special Education candidate is planning to teach in Massachusetts, MA will now accept the Praxis Foundations of Reading (Test 190, NC Version). In addition, candidates will need to take the NC Gen Math Curriculum (Test 03, NC Version) instead of the Praxis CKT Mathematics. Candidates should not take the MTEL versions as Massachusetts now accepts the North Carolina versions.


Middle Grades Education candidates seeking a Middle Grades Education (6-9) license are required to take the following tests in their concentration area:

Language Arts (6-9)

  • Praxis Middle School English Language Arts, Test 5047

Mathematics (6-9)

  • Praxis Middle School Mathematics, Test 5164 or Test 5169

Science (6-9)

  • Praxis Middle School Science, Test 5442 or 5440

Social Studies (6-9)

  • Praxis Middle School Social Studies, Test 5089

If a Secondary Education candidate is seeking a (9-12) license in the following areas, the candidate is required to take the following test(s):

Biology (9-12)

  • Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching: Grades 7-12, Test 5264*
  • Praxis Biology Content Knowledge, Test 5235
    If you are secondary comprehensive science, this is not your test.

English (9-12)

  • Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching: Grades 7-12, Test 5264*
  • Praxis English Language Arts: Content Knowledge, Test 5038

Mathematics (9-12)

  • Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching: Grades 7-12, Test 5264*
  • Praxis Mathematics Content Knowledge, Test 5165

Science, Comprehensive (9-12)

  • Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching: Grades 7-12, Test 5264*
  • Praxis General Science: Content Knowledge, Test 5435

Social Studies, Comprehensive (9-12)

  • Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching: Grades 7-12, Test 5264*
  • Praxis Social Studies: Content Knowledge, Test 5081

*Beginning July 1, 2018, a teacher candidate will be exempt from the Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching Grades: 7-12 (Test 5624) assessment requirement for secondary licensure if the candidate can produce evidence of a passing score on the edTPA for North Carolina.


If a teacher candidate is seeking a K-12 license in the following areas, the candidate is required to take the following test(s):

Health and Physical Education (K-12)

  • Praxis Health and Physical Education: Content Knowledge: Test 5857

Music Education (K-12)

  • Praxis Music: Content and Instruction, Test 5114

Spanish (K-12)

  • Praxis Spanish: World Language, Test 5195

Spanish teacher candidates may also take the ACTFL written and oral exams and must score an advanced low on both exams.


If a teacher candidate is seeking an English as a Second Language (K-12) add-on license the candidate is required to take the following test:

  • Praxis English to Speakers of Other Languages, Test 5362

last revised 04.11.2023