Study Elementary Education at the University of Montana

Elementary school teachers have a profound influence on the early learning experiences of their students. At UM, we're making it more convenient than ever to earn your bachelor's degree and prepare for this fulfilling career in this flexible, 2+2 distance education hybrid program that saves you time and money.

If you attend Flathead Valley Community College or Helena College, the elementary education 2+2 program allows you to complete your Bachelor of Arts degree from your home community, taking synchronous classes on Zoom taught by instructors at the University of Montana. As part of the curriculum, you'll also complete three field experiences and a full semester of student teaching, all of which take place in person at educational settings in Helena and Kalispell. Learn more about distance cohort programs at the University of Montana.

Our elementary education degree is fully accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and led by experienced K-12 teachers and other professional mentors.


hours with children before student teaching


professional mentors


dollars in scholarships awarded annually

What can you do with a degree in elementary education?

Elementary education majors at UM are prepared with the knowledge and classroom skills to teach any subject in kindergarten through eighth grade. Our graduates go on to career opportunities in Montana, across the nation and around the world. 

Why employers choose UM teacher education graduates

  • UM elementary education majors regularly exceed the required Montana score on the Praxis content exam, scoring 13 points higher on average.
  • The cumulative GPA of all students admitted into our Teacher Education Program exceeds national accreditation requirements, with our most recent cohort holding an average GPA of 3.2.
  • Our students have access to engaging research opportunities and extensive faculty mentorship that prepare them to be innovative education professionals.

Elementary education jobs

  • School guidance counselor
  • Librarian
  • Instructional coordinator
  • Education consultant
  • Substitute teacher

Elementary education salary

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that kindergarten teachers in Montana earn an average of $51,900 per year, and elementary school teachers in the state average $52,160 in annual earnings.

Video: Teaching to inspire: The UM Teacher Education Program

Students in the University of Montana's Teacher Education program discuss their experiences and how the curriculum has prepared them to teach.

Student Success Story: Haley VonGoedert

“There's no way you come out of UM's teacher education program without a commitment to teaching to and being responsive to a culturally diverse curriculum. That's something I'm really proud of, and I think that focus is distinct to UM.”

— Haley VonGoedert, UM education major

Beyond the classroom: Experiential learning in the elementary education program

As an elementary education major at UM, you'll spend more than 200 hours working with elementary school children and youth even before you begin student teaching, providing rich opportunities for experiential learning and growth.

Students in our 2+2 distance education hybrid program complete three field experiences and a full semester of student teaching at educational settings in Helena and Kalispell. Graduates are prepared to teach any subject, for children in kindergarten through eighth grade.

Career development in the elementary education 2+2 hybrid program

At UM, you'll learn to teach as part of a community, supported and inspired by faculty and peers. You'll learn from instructors who are experienced P-12 teachers and dedicated mentors. And even though you're attending classes via distance education, you'll enjoy the same sense of connection, and access to support, as students here on campus.

Networking and professional development for elementary education majors

A variety of field experiences offers our students opportunities to build professional networks and meet potential employers. You can connect with additional opportunities through Experiential Learning and Career Success at UM.

Explore classes for elementary education

The elementary education major includes content coursework, general education coursework, and professional licensure coursework. Required courses span a wide range of content areas, covering topics such as science, social studies, language arts, math and more. 

View all classes for the bachelor's degree in elementary education at the University of Montana.