Elementary Education (Pre K-4) B.L.S.

The Elementary Education PK4 major is an accredited program approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) and aligned with PDE requirements for teacher certification in PK4. Students will also engage with content and pedagogical approaches relevant to grades 5 and 6. Throughout the Elementary Education PK4 program, students integrate theory with practice through coursework and field experiences in PK4 classrooms. 

All undergraduate programs at the University are built upon a strong liberal arts curriculum provided through the General Education Program (GEP) at Saint Joseph’s University. This enables students in the Elementary Education PK4 program to integrate their understanding of interdisciplinary content with an understanding of developmentally appropriate pedagogy.

The General Education Program (GEP) at Saint Joseph’s University involves a distinctive liberal arts education in the Jesuit, Catholic tradition.  General education is essential to the University’s mission, providing all students with the broad knowledge, essential skills, appreciation of diversity, and ethically informed perspective needed by those who would aspire to be “men and women for others.” The GEP ensures mastery of skills required for further study, exposes students to the principal achievements and problems of the major fields of human learning, and introduces them to new disciplines that they may or may not wish to pursue. The Major Concentration component gives depth in a particular field and is thus a preparation for an effective career or for graduate study in that field. Free or general electives allow students to pursue interests, explore new fields, or to continue concentration in their major. 

The Adult Learner General Education Program (GEP) applies to students who are completing a bachelor's degree offered through the SJU Adult Learner Program.  These degrees include the Bachelor of Liberal Studies (BLS) and Bachelor of Business Administration degrees (BBA). 

The Adult Learner GEP is comprised of Signature Core, Variable Core,  Integrative Learning courses and a Diversity Overlay.

Signature Core

PHL 154Moral Foundations3
THE 154Catholic Theological Tradition (or THE 153 Encountering the New Testament, or THE 155 Catholic Social Tradition)3
ENG 102Texts & Contexts3
HIS 154Forging the Modern World3
Any course certified as Faith & Reason3
Any course in written and oral communication

Variable Core

  • One approved course in Art, Literature, or Music, Theater, Film.

  • One course in the Natural Sciences (lab-based or lecture based) in biology, chemistry, environmental science, or physics.

  • Two courses in Mathematics.  BLS degee majors require MAT 101 or higher; BBA degree majors require MAT 103 (or MAT 120 precalculus) and MAT 123 (or an alternate calculus course).

  • One course in a Non-Native Language (e.g., SPA 111-SPA 112) or one approved alternative course in Literature in Translation or Classics. Students who are bilingual may request an exemption for the language requirement.from the Department of Modern & Classical Languages.

  • One course in the Social-Behavioral Sciences including Political Science, Economics, Sociology, and Psychology.  Please note that some majors require a specific course.

  • One course that is certified as a Philosophical Anthropology course.

  • One course from Religious Studies or Theology that is certified as a Religious Difference course.

  • ENG 101 Craft of Language.

Integrative Learning Courses

(2 courses required)

  • Courses approved for ILC requirements will vary by major. Some majors have specific courses that must be taken.


  • Adult Learner Program students are required to complete one couse that is certified as a diversity overlay.

Free Electives

Except for Early Childhood/Elementary Pre K-4 Education majors, all students must complete a minimum of 18 free elective credits.  Elective credits may be used to pursue a minor or secondary major.

Social Science- GEP
EDU 151Cognition & Learning w/ Field3

 GEP Integrative Learning Component

Two courses

SPE 160Intro to Special Education3
HIS 201U.S. History to 18773
or HIS 202 U.S. History since 1865

Major Requirements 

EDU 121Child Development3
EDU 151Cognition & Learning w/ Field 13
EDU 231Assessment and Evaluation 23
EDU 155Found of Early Child w/ Field3
EDU 160Schools in Society w/ Field 33
EDU 232Literacy/Literature I w/ Field3
EDU 240Literacy/Literature II w/Field3
EDU 246Language and Culture w/ Field3
EDU 265Teaching Math in PK2 w/ Field3
EDU 362Soc Stud Thru Arts PK4 w/Field3
EDU 363Science Methods PK-4 w/ Field3
EDU 366Teaching Math Gr. 3-6 w/Field3
SPE 160Intro to Special Education 43
SPE 205Inclusive Classrooms w/ Field3
SPE 379Fam School & Comm:Diverse Soc3
EDU 495ECE Student Teaching12
Total Hours57

Also satisfies the GEP Social/Behavioral Science requirement


GEP Ethics Intensive


EDU 140 Public Schools & Social Equality in Urban Environments may substitute for this course


Integrative Learning Component