RICHMOND — Beginning in August 2023, Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) will offer an online bachelor of science in elementary education. While addressing the ongoing teacher shortage, the online programme creates a new pathway for students to receive their education.
“Due to severe teacher shortages in Kentucky and elsewhere, there is an increase in demand for educators who can positively impact student learning.” “Providing this flexible path to teacher certification is yet another way EKU is working to increase the number of high-quality teachers in our region,” said Dr. Elizabeth Smith, incoming dean of EKU’s College of Education and Applied Human Sciences. “EKU has world-class teacher education programmes, and we are excited to expand access to our elementary education programme through an online option.”
The new elementary education programme offered by EKU Online allows students to earn the same respected degree that has been offered on EKU’s campus for over 100 years. Working professionals who need a convenient option will be able to take the same courses from the same faculty as students on campus, but with the flexibility of online learning.
Students will enrol in 8-week accelerated courses and complete all coursework online, with no need for campus visits. Every online student receives personalised support from the moment they inquire until the day they graduate and beyond.
The clinical office at EKU will work with each student to arrange the required student teaching experiences from the Education Professional Standards Board (EPSB). Enrollment is limited to Kentucky and the surrounding states of Ohio, Missouri, West Virginia, Tennessee, Illinois, Indiana, and Virginia in order to properly manage the required classroom observation hours.
Those with an associate degree or some college credit who want to advance as certified elementary school teachers will benefit from EKU’s online elementary education bachelor’s degree. Students will be prepared to teach as a result of an education that combines academic and professional preparation via relevant course topics such as engineering in the classroom and emerging instructional technologies.
“Recent data from the Kentucky Department of Education show that many teaching positions go unfilled each academic year,” said Dr. Nicola Mason, professor and chair of EKU’s Department of Teaching, Learning, and Educational Leadership. “This is a field that has a positive impact on individuals and communities.” Those who want to become teachers but are unable to attend our on-campus programmes can benefit from an online degree.”
EKU is committed to addressing the Commonwealth’s teacher shortage. Innovative solutions, such as the new online bachelor’s degree programme in elementary education and the Option 9 alternative route to certification, assist working professionals in completing their degrees and securing or advancing employment in a high-demand field.