College of Education and Human Development

Department of Curriculum and Instruction

Elementary education MEd and teaching license

Earn your masters of education and a license to teach in elementary classrooms (K-6) in Minnesota in just over a year. Our accelerated program will prepare you to step into your classroom with confidence and solid classroom experience. You will complete all of the required teaching hours and coursework in 13 months. The license to teach in Minnesota is highly transferable to other states and our candidates are sought after by local school districts. This is a graduate-level, full-time program. (The program is nine months for graduates of the elementary education foundations major). 

If you are beginning your undergraduate studies and interested in a career in elementary education, visit the BS in elementary education foundations program.

97.3% Elementary education MEd graduates found full-time teaching positions within a year of graduation (2021-22 Cohort)

Quote from Mychi Nguyen

I liked the idea of getting my teaching license as well as my masters degree in just one year. I also know that the U’s teaching program is very social justice orientated and I wanted to be able to work with like-minded people as I continued my education.

Mychi Nguyen MEd 2021

About the program

Master's of education

Earning an MEd with your teaching license offers the following advantages:

Teachers who have a master's degree will see a roughly $7,000 annual salary increase [ ]

Though the salary increase with a master's degree will vary by district and state, Minnesota teachers are on the higher end of the payscale. The annual mean salary for elementary school teachers in Minnesota in 2019 was $63,250 [Bureau of Labor Statistics].

Teachers with advanced degrees can be promoted to school administration positions and can become mentors to other teachers based upon their graduate training.


Students starting the program without a BS in elementary education foundations from the University of Minnesota:

Courses start in May and finish June of the following year. Coursework taken in May-July are foundational courses to ground you in elementary education theory and practice. In the fall, you rotate between your student-teaching placement site and campus coursework. During spring, you will remain full-time at your student-teaching site and take two evening courses on campus.

UMN BS elementary education foundation students:

For students who are transitioning from the BS in elementary education foundations, the program runs August through June, in tandem with the public school calendars. In the fall, you rotate between your student-teaching placement site and campus coursework. During spring, you will remain full-time at your student-teaching site and take two evening courses on campus.

Student experience
Our unique co-teaching program and cohort experience will help you gain the confidence you need to start in your own classroom with plenty of support. Learn more about the student teaching experience .

Program coursework
To look at the core curriculum and electives for the program, visit the University course catalog teaching MEd page and scroll down to see the elementary education sub-plan.

Admission, tuition, and scholarship information
See admissions deadlines, prerequisites, application requirements, and program costs.

teachers taking a selfie

Teacher scholars of color program

Do you identify, or are you identified, as a non-majority racial group? Consider participating in the Teacher Scholars of Color program. Students admitted to the MEd and initial teaching license programs have the opportunity to join a community of prospective teachers of color and get paired with a faculty mentor. International students are also welcome to this program. Find out more about the TSoC program.

How to apply

    Application deadline and instructions

    • October 1: MEd/ILP application opens
    • October 4: Scholarship application opens
    • November 30: Priority deadline for a transcript review/prerequisite evaluation
    • December 15: Priority application and scholarship application deadline, elementary education program accepting applications through January 15
    • January 15
      • Deadline for Arts in Education and Elementary education program
      • Final scholarship application deadline
    • March 15 - April 30: Admissions notifications will be sent on a rolling basis between March 15 and April 30. Students waitlisted may receive a notification after April 30.

    Request information

    We’re here to help. Simply complete one of these forms and a member of our department will be in touch