Stephen F. Austin State University

Teacher Education EC-6

The first step in reaching the goal of becoming a teacher is acceptance to SFA and meeting with an academic adviser in the Department of Elementary Education. You will join outstanding students and an experienced faculty at our nationally recognized, fully NCATE-accredited university on one of the most beautiful campuses in the nation.

The department is located in the Early Childhood Research Center. This new state-of-the-art facility houses several centers of excellence. The Early Childhood Laboratory and the University Charter School provide observation/participation experiences with children from 1 month to fifth grade. The lab school is accredited by NAEYC, and the charter school is rated exemplary by the state. Students have access to a resource center with educational resources and technology available for preparation of teaching materials. The department also participates in grant, research, and community outreach activities.

Internship and student teaching semesters provide early childhood (EC-6) and middle-level grades (fourth-eighth) teacher candidates the opportunity to interact with children in grades kindergarten through fourth grade or fourth through eighth grade in public school classrooms. Teacher candidates have the opportunity to observe and interact with children at multiple grade levels and in diverse settings during their three field-based placements.

Few professions offer the opportunity that teaching provides to contribute to the formative years of people's lives. Today, more than ever, the job of preparing young people for happy, productive lives in a demanding and ever-changing society is taking place in the classroom. The teacher shortage of recent years means that employment opportunities are abundant. In addition to the public sector, private business is beginning to take interest in on-site child care facilities and tutorial services. Talented teachers in all fields are, and will continue to be, in great demand.

Undergraduate Programs

The program leading to the elementary teacher's certificate requires early academic advising. Students seeking elementary teacher certification should follow the program guidelines that have been developed by the department.

The Department of Elementary Education offers academic advising each day throughout the year-including summers. Visit SFA for a tour of the campus and schedule an academic advising appointment after your tour. Please contact the department for the academic advising schedule.

Distance Education Completion Program

The EC-6 Distance Education Completer program provides an opportunity for elementary public school paraprofessionals and other qualifying students to transfer from a community college to complete a BSIS with EC-6 Certification via distance education. Contact the department or check the Web site for more information about the EC-6 Distance Education Program.

Elementary & Middle-Level Teacher Certification

Early Childhood - Grade six*

Grades four-eight*

*ESL and bilingual may be added to these certificate plans.

Overlap Program

The elementary education department offers a Senior Overlap Program for qualified undergraduate students. The Overlap Program permits qualified undergraduates to pursue a limited amount of graduate study (usually 12 credit hours or less) concurrently with undergraduate study. Overlap courses count only for graduate credit and will apply to a 36-hour Master's Degree in education. The Department of Elementary Education offers two supplemental certificates: English as a Second Language and Bilingual Education that may be completed in the Overlap Program or at the graduate level. Please contact the department for the Senior Overlap Program guidelines.

Graduate Programs

Master of Education

The Elementary Education department offers four 36-hour Master of Education Degree Programs: Standard Elementary, Standard Elementary with Content Emphasis, Reading Specialist and Early Childhood Specialist. Undergraduate students admitted to the Senior Overlap Program may begin work on the M.Ed. as they complete their undergraduate programs. Some to most of our M.Ed. programs are completely Web-based allowing students to begin an M.Ed. program while at SFASU and to continue their program after they leave the campus.

Post Baccalaureate Initial Certification (PBIC) Program

The Post Baccalaureate Initial Certification (PBIC ) Program at SFA is approved by the State Board of Educator Certification as an acceptable alternative route to certification under the federal law "No Child Left Behind." The PBIC program is designed for individuals holding a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university who are seeking teacher certification. The Elementary Education PBIC Program is a Web-based program leading to EC-6 or fourth-eighth grade certification. Contact the department for details about the PBIC program.

For more information, contact the Department of Elementary Education at or 936.468.2904.