Elementary and Special Education- Traditional Track

Elementary and Special Education- Traditional Track

Due to the statewide teacher shortage, applications are still open.

If you are applying to Gordon State College as a transfer student, please mark "summer" for the admission term and, in addition to sending transcripts to the admissions office, please send unofficial copies directly to sraynie@gordonstate.edu. Doing so will enable us to make sure you meet all the requirements to begin with the fall 2024 cohort.

What degree will I earn from this program/track?

The elementary education traditional track leads to a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education. With this degree, graduates can complete the GACE test in Elementary Education/Special Education General Curriculum to gain initial certification from the Georgia Professional Standards Commission (teacher licensing body in Georgia). You may review our certification status on the PSC website here (search for Gordon State College) here.  

Who is this track designed for?

This program is for individuals who plan to become elementary school educators in Georgia. In most cases, these individuals will teach in a public school setting but being a certified teacher will be a plus if you plan to teach in a private school setting. Students participating in the traditional track program do not have to maintain employment in a school system during the completion of the required pre-courses or during the education program itself.

If you are unsure if you prefer the parapro or traditional track in the elementary education program, please review this document to see the differences. 

What courses will I need to complete before starting the track?

All students will be required to complete certain pre-courses before being accepted and starting the elementary education program. The courses might be transferred in from other institutions or may be completed at Gordon (via our campus in Barnesville, our site in McDonough, or online). Students can choose the number of classes they would like to take per semester. These courses are offered every fall semester (August-December), every spring semester (January-May) and usually in summer semesters (May-June, June-July). A list of the pre-courses required can be found in this document.

What is the elementary education program- a traditional track like? 

Once accepted into the program, which starts in the fall semester (August), the students will complete two years of courses to complete the education program. This is usually noted as Fall 1, Spring 1, Summer, Fall 2, Spring 2. During this time, students will be full-time students completing 4-5 classes a semester. These courses will be offered primarily in the afternoons. While in the program, students are in a cohort format and must take the courses in the correct semester. The course rotation for the program can be viewed at this link. 

Students will also participate in field experiences during the semester. In the traditional track, students will be placed in their field experience by our field placement director based upon our partnership school systems, availability, and location of the student. Students can expect to be placed in a different school each semester, in most cases. Students usually participate in their field experience placement in the mornings before reporting to their Barnesville campus college courses in the afternoon.

Grade bands for field experiences in the elementary education program: 

  • 1st Fall Semester in the Program: Kindergarten or 1st grade, 100 hours
  • 1st Spring Semester in the Program: 2nd or 3rd grade, 100 hours
  • Summer Semester: No field experiences
  • 2nd Fall Semester in the Program: 4th or 5th grade, 100 hours
  • 2nd Spring Semester in the Program: Choice of K-5 grade, 600 hours (student teaching) 

What should I do to be accepted into the education program? 

In order to be accepted into the education program, students will need to do the following:

Application documentation (which should include: application, recommendations, dispositions, & proof of GACE Ethics completion/scores) should be submitted to: Dr. Stephen Raynie at sraynie@gordonstate.edu

Have questions?

Watch the Program Overview Video below for more information or Email Dr. Stephen Raynie at sraynie@gordonstate.edu.