teacher with student

Elementary Education, Concentration: Reading

Bachelor of Arts

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Program Intro

The coursework and field experiences in this program acquaint you with the rich diversity found in K-12 classrooms. In these rich learning environments, you’ll practice pedagogies appropriate for each grade level context and learn alongside talented school-based educators.

School of Education and Counseling

The number of children entering elementary schools is expected to grow in the coming decade, and the number of classes needed to accommodate these learners will also increase, resulting in the need for more teachers. As part of a CAEP accredited program, you will be prepared to teach all learners in kindergarten through sixth grade to help meet this demand.

Curriculum Overview

As an Elementary Education student with a concentration in reading, you’ll focus on literacy strategies for students of all abilities, as well as methodologies for the study of literature itself.

All Educator Preparation Programs (EPP) at PNW follow both inTASC and CAEP accreditation standards.

Start with an introduction to special education and an overview of education throughout history.

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Sample Courses

  • EDST 20000 – History and Philosophy of Education
  • EDPS 26000 – Introduction to Special Education


Interview for full admission to the Educator Preparation Program and expand your knowledge of pedagogy.

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Sample Courses

  • EDPS 28500 – Diversity and Education
  • EDCI 35550 – Teaching and Learning in the K-12 Classroom
  • EDCI 2300 – Academic Language in Education

Explore strategies for literacy instruction and sharing literature with your students. This year, you’ll also complete three licensure assessments.

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Sample Courses

  • EDCI 32303 – Literacy Instruction in K-3
  • ENGL 20100 – The Nature of Literary Study
  • ENGL 23100 – Introduction to Literature

Conclude your studies with hands-on teaching experience. In your seventh semester, you’ll spend three days each week in the classroom before going on to a full-time student teaching assignment during your final term.

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Sample Courses

  • EDPS 43000 – Creating and Managing Learning Environments
  • EDCI 32200 – English for New Language Learners
  • EDCI 36800 – Literacy Intervention Strategies for Diverse Learners

Program Requirements

For full admission to this program, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Faculty interview
  • 2.5 GPA and a grade of C or better in all courses
  • Score of 20 or higher on the ACT, 1030 or above on the SAT, passing CASA score or approved alternative


As a reading-focused student, you’ll engage in immersive coursework that covers the fundamentals of teaching and extends beyond those essentials to include strategies today’s teachers need. These include effective instruction, classroom and behavior management, assistive technology, assessment and collaboration.

You’ll also have extensive opportunities for field placement in urban, suburban and rural schools.

A lion sculpture on PNW's campus PNW graduates at commencement


Because of the high demand for teachers who are qualified to meet the individual needs of exceptional students, our graduates are offered a broad variety of career opportunities.

This degree enables you to choose where you want to teach –whether it’s in a general education classroom, a self-contained classroom or a resource room – in school districts across the country.


Funding opportunities available to Elementary Education students with a Reading concentration include:


Beyond the Classroom

We encourage you to get involved in activities like:

  • PEL Fellows
  • Student Ambassadors
  • PNW Aspiring Educators


Career Paths

You’ll find many opportunities to make a difference for students in careers such as:

  • Elementary teacher (K-6)
  • Principal (requires master’s degree )
  • School counselor (requires master’s degree)



Our alumni are thriving in:

  • Michigan City Area Schools
  • Valparaiso Community Schools
  • School City of Hammond


All of the Educator Preparation Programs (EPP) at Purdue University Northwest are accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).

Success is no accident. It’s hard work, perseverance and love of what you’re doing. I wouldn’t be where I am without the guidance of my professors in the School of Education and Counseling.

Brittnie Beach
Elementary Education, Valparaiso

Meet the Faculty

Patrick Keegan

Patrick Keegan, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Education

Patrick Keegan is an assistant professor in the School of Education and Counseling. He teaches courses in elementary social studies methods and multicultural education.

David Pratt

David Pratt, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Education

David Pratt is a professor who specializes in the preparing K-12 preservice teachers in the area of assessment and educational technology.

Kelly Vaughan

Kelly P. Vaughan, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of English Education

Kelly Vaughan is an assistant professor of English Education at Purdue University Northwest. Her research and teaching interests include curriculum studies, teacher education, and disability studies.

A PNW Student in the Classroom

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