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Stephen F. Austin State University

4-8 Middle Level Education


Welcome to the Middle Level Grades (MLG) Program! The Education Studies Department offers a Bachelor of Science degree in Interdisciplinary Studies to prepare future educators for teaching grades 4-8. Students have several degree options for the MLG 4-8 Program.

Overview of the MLG 4-8 Program

The MLG 4-8 Program includes university-based courses designed to develop future teachers' knowledge, skills, and dispositions in education along with the field-based courses designed to give future teachers hands-on experiences working with young adolescents in grades 4 through 8.

The MLG 4-8 Program is offered in two venues. The Face-to-Face program is for traditional students seeking a degree by attending classes on campus. The Online Completer Program is designed for non-traditional students most of whom are paraprofessionals in public schools. Admission into the Online Completer Program is by application only.

For information on the MLG degree program contact:

Dr. Michelle Williams 936-468-1597

MLG Degree Options

Students will select one of the following content areas for certification:

Why certify in Grades 4-8?

  1. Middle school students are unique. They need teachers who understand their unique characteristics, are trained in techniques and strategies that are appropriate for that grade level, and want to work with young adolescents.
  2. The MLG program provides a balance between pedagogy (how to teach) and content knowledge.
  3. Grades 4-8 are a high demand employment area. Students who specialize in English/language arts, math, science, or generalist may qualify for the TEACH Grant.
  4. The MLG Program offers hands-on experience working with students in grades 4-8. This experience includes observing students at the Charter School and in public schools as well as two internships prior to student teaching.
  5. Because the MLG program is relatively small, you can expect to develop relationships with supportive faculty who want you to be successful.
  6. The MLG Program is located in the new Early Childhood Research Center.
  7. The faculty for the 4-8 program has extensive experience in public middle schools in Texas. They have served as superintendents, principals, assistant principals, and teachers in all areas at the middle school level.
  8. The Collegiate Middle Level Association (CMLA) is a student organization that is affiliated with the National Middle School Association and offers professional development opportunities throughout the year.

MLG 4-8 Curriculum

Core Curriculum

The core curriculum includes 42 hours in Communication, Mathematics, Life and Physical Sciences, Language/ Philosophy/Culture, Creative Arts, American History, Political Science, and Social and Behavioral Sciences.

Pre-Professional Courses

Pre-professional courses provide the foundational knowledge, skills, and dispositions in areas of technology and special education.

Interdisciplinary Academic Major

The Interdisciplinary major includes courses in all 4-8 content areas - English language Arts/Reading, Mathematics, Science, and Social Studies.

Professional Teacher Education

Field Experience I

Field Experience I (typically completed in the second semester of a student's junior year) provides future educators experience teaching science, social studies, mathematics, or language arts in a fourth or fifth grade classroom setting. Students spend four hours twice per week in the classroom and take additional courses as well.

Field Experience II

Field Experience II (typically completed in the first semester of a student's senior year) provides the future educators experience teaching science, social studies, mathematics, or language arts in a sixth, seventh, or eighth grade classroom setting. Students spend two full days in the classroom each week and take additional courses on the remaining days.

Student Teaching

Student teaching (completed in the student's final semester) gives future educators extensive and full-time experience in a classroom setting in grades 4-8.


Students on campus may schedule advising appointments by contacting:

Ms. Megan Kelley, (Freshmen)

Ms. Kelly Morgan, (Sophomores-Seniors)

The advising office for MLG Program is in the Student Services and Advising Center, McKibben 118.

Advising for students in the MLG Online Completer Program is completed online and at the face-to-face visit each semester with Diana Tannery,

About the Online Completer Program

The Middle Level Grades Online Completer Program provides nontraditional students an opportunity to complete a Bachelor of Science Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies and obtain certification to teach students in fourth through eighth grade.

Potential students must apply and be accepted. Requirements for acceptance include:

Additionally, students must have:

  1. Self discipline and technological skills
  2. GPA of 3.0 in approved 45 hours of specified courses
  3. Prior or current experiences with children and access to a middle level classroom for field experience

Applicants must agree to:

Steps to be completed for admission to the program and university

  1. Contact Dr. Williams to ensure that you are eligible to apply.
  2. Apply for admission to Stephen F. Austin State University.
  3. Apply for financial aid if needed.
  4. Be advised by Diana Tannery,
  5. Meet the criteria for admission to Educator Preparation.

For more information, contact:

Dr. Michelle Williams
Early Childhood Research Center 209AA

P. O. Box 13017-SFA Station, Nacogdoches, Texas 75962
Phone: 936-468-1597
Fax: 936-468-1701