Memphis Schools with Teaching Degrees
Although several schools offer teacher training in Memphis, only three public or non-profit institutions have degree programs at the bachelor's and graduate levels. This article highlights the coursework requirements in the schools' programs to give you a better idea of what to expect from training in this field. Also included is a table of stats on the profiled institutions and some info on another education choice in the vicinity.
- The University of Memphis is a major research university that was founded in 1912 and is home to two major research centers in the field of education. Located around seven miles from the center of the city, the school offers several bachelor's degrees in education as well as a master's degree program in elementary education; a master's program in middle school and special education is also available.
- Those who prefer a smaller school might consider Christian Brothers University, a small Catholic school ranked in the top 20% of all national colleges by Forbes magazine. It offers bachelor's degree programs in special education and early childhood education. Students can also earn a teaching master's degree or a reading specialist licensure at the institution, which is located around five miles from downtown Memphis.
- LeMoyne-Owen College, a historically black school established in 1968, is situated just three miles from downtown Memphis. Students can complete bachelor's degree programs in child development or special education; several teaching licensure programs are also offered. The college provides career workshops on such topics as resume writing to help students adjust to the professional world.
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Comparison of Schools
Finding the right teaching degree program is important, but take time to also learn about some other characteristics of the profiled institutions. The table below offers facts and figures on acceptance rates, student retention, tuition and more.
|University of Memphis||Christian Brothers University||LeMoyne-Owen College|
|School Type||Four-year; public||Four-year; private not-for-profit||Four-year; private not-for-profit|
|Total Enrollment (2014)||21,059*||1,667*||1,006*|
|Campus Setting||Large city||Large city||Large city|
|Tuition & Fees (2015-2016)||$8,903 in-state; $20,615 out-of-state*||$30,166*||$10,680*|
|% of First-Year Students Receiving Some Form of Financial Aid (2013-2014)||97%*||100%*||98%*|
|Acceptance Rate (2014)||47%*||50%*||52%*|
|Retention Rate (2013-2014)||78% for full-time students*||84% for full-time students*||58% for full-time students*|
|Graduation Rate (Students began in 2008)||44%*||55%*||20%*|
Source: *NCES College Navigator
University of Memphis
The University of Memphis is a major research university with two significant institutes dedicated to the field of teaching. The Center for Research in Education Policy conducts research into literacy, educational technology and school improvement. The Barbara K. Lipman Early Childhood School and Research Institute provides an innovative educational facility for young children while also serving as an observation laboratory for researchers. This university offers several degree programs in education at both the graduate and undergraduate levels.
Bachelor of Science in Education: Human Development and Learning
A student who completes this degree program is qualified to apply for teaching licensure in early childhood education. This course of study requires 120 credit hours. Students first complete 41 credit hours in general education courses and 30 credit hours in coursework for the major. They then take 41 more credit hours in professional education courses and pass the Praxis II Elementary Content Knowledge Exam before participating in a fall practicum and a spring semester of student teaching in their senior year.
Bachelor of Science in Education: Integrative Studies
This integrated studies program prepares students for teaching grades 4-8. The program includes two residency semesters, in which students participate in field experiences and student teaching opportunities. Courses cover such areas as urban middle school education, literacy, middle grades teaching methods and research. Students who complete this program can apply for state licensure.
Bachelor of Science in Education: Teaching all Learners
Students in this program prepare for licensure in K-6 education and modified K-12 special education. An endorsement is also available for students who want to earn comprehensive K-12 special education licensure. Students participate in two residency semesters and acquire skills to teach math, social studies and science. Required courses cover methods for teaching and assessing students with disabilities. To qualify for comprehensive licensure in special education, students take three additional courses.
Master of Arts in Teaching in Elementary Education
Students in this program prepare for initial licensure as elementary school educators. Focusing on teaching methods for grades K-6, this program covers literacy development, child psychology, uses of technology in the classroom and instruction models. Before students can begin student teaching, they can expect to complete at least 68 hours of field experiences in elementary classrooms.
Master of Arts in Teaching and Middle School/Special Education Licensure
This degree program is designed for students who wish to earn dual certification in both middle school teaching and special education. It is divided into three levels. At level one, students take 21 credit hours in professional core courses and 13 credit hours of fieldwork. Level two requires 15 credit hours in the professional specialization and 48 hours of fieldwork. At level three, students conclude their studies with nine credit hours in professional development, which includes a practicum, student teaching and a seminar.
Christian Brothers University
Founded in 1871 by the Institute of the Brothers of Christian Schools, this institution began as a community school that taught students of all ages, from elementary school through college. It became a four-year college in 1955 and began to instruct prospective secondary teachers in 1969. CBU now offers a variety of undergraduate, graduate and licensure programs in teaching.
Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education
Students who complete this degree program are prepared to earn licensure to teach at the pre-K-3 level. Students complete 121 credits, which includes core classes as well as coursework in human development, classroom management and effective strategies for teaching different subjects. They also complete two practicums, an internship and a seminar.
Bachelor of Arts in Special Education
In this program, students complete 123 credits and prepare for licensure in special education for grades K-12. Students learn about inclusion methods for students with disabilities, assessment strategies, behavior analysis and classroom management. Other courses cover social psychology, family consultation, rhythmic activities and exceptional learners.
Master of Arts in Teaching
A master's degree program is available for students who have already earned a bachelor's degree, but have not yet acquired a teaching license. The MAT program offers licensure preparation for aspiring teachers at the elementary, middle grades and secondary grades levels, along with a pre-K through grade 12 foreign language preparation program. Total credit hours required to earn the master's degree range from 36-40 hours.
Reading Specialist Licensure Program
This licensure program is designed for professionals who already have a teaching license and are either seeking or have earned a graduate degree in the education field. Individuals in this program complete 18 credit hours in graduate-level classes related to literacy. Once this degree program has been completed, participants must pass the Praxis Reading Specialist test to be eligible for licensure.
LeMoyne-Owen College has a long tradition of training teachers. One of its parent institutions, LeMoyne College, was created in 1871 after a philanthropist donated money to create a school for prospective teachers. Students at this college prepare for teaching licensure by completing an education curriculum in tandem with a bachelor's degree program in the academic field in which they wish to teach.
Bachelor of Science in Child Development and Family Studies
This degree program is available with and without teaching licensure. All students at LeMoyne-Owen complete a liberal arts core curriculum. Students following this degree plan then complete 33 hours of coursework in the major and 12 hours in the supplemental core, which offers additional study in childhood development and assessment. Students take 24 hours of coursework in the professional core, which covers teaching methods, student evaluation and portfolio development courses along with observation and fieldwork requirements. Those who wish to earn licensure also complete a clinical practice course, which includes student teaching requirements and a capstone project.
Bachelor of Science in Special Education
Professional core courses in this program include human development, behavior management, classroom behavior and evaluation. Students also participate in 12 credit hours of clinical practice to complete the program. Additional courses teach students how to work with children with mild disabilities, assess exceptional learners and understand the history of special education. Students can choose from licensure options in modified K-12 special education, special education and early childhood education or just special education.
Teacher Education Licensure Program Grades K-6
Students in this degree program complete 42 credit hours in the general education core and 36 hours in the professional education core. They also complete coursework related to the major they've chosen, which could include 25 credit hours in math, 36 credit hours in English, 24 credit hours for social studies or 27 credit hours for interdisciplinary science. Supplemental core courses related to the chosen major are also required, along with 12 credit hours of student teaching and capstone work. Students are awarded a bachelor's degree upon completion of the program.
Teacher Education Licensure Program Grades 4-8
Aspiring teachers who want to work with students in grades 4-8 must first select a major in math, science, English or social studies. Students complete major requirements and a supplemental core requirement that includes courses focused on the primary field of study. For example, the supplemental core for English majors includes courses in teaching English and adolescent literature. Teaching methods are covered in the professional core, and students complete a semester of clinical practice.
Teacher Education Licensure Program Grades 7-12
Students who want to teach grades 7-12 choose a major from one of six fields: political science/government, history, math, chemistry, English or biology. Students complete 33 hours in the professional teaching core and 12 credits in clinical practice to meet teaching licensure requirements. Coursework in general education and the major is also required. This program awards a bachelor's degree.
Other School Options
There are a few community colleges in the Memphis area that offer associate's degrees in early childhood education. Among these is Southwest Tennessee Community College, a two-year institution with an enrollment of almost 13,000 students.