Integrated Studies Major (Elementary Ed)

Teacher and students

Are you planning to become an elementary school teacher? Housed in the College of Arts and Sciences, the Integrated Studies major is a comprehensive interdisciplinary major designed specifically for students who want to teach elementary school. If, as an undergraduate at SPU, you plan to earn a Residency Teacher Certificate with an endorsement in Elementary Education, you are required to take this major.


The Integrated Studies major enables you to develop a breadth of knowledge across six content areas you will teach in elementary school: the arts, health and fitness, language arts, mathematics, natural sciences, and social sciences. These are the six content disciplines of Washington state’s Endorsement Competencies for Elementary Education K–8.

If you want to be certified with an endorsement in Elementary Education, you will complete the requirements for (1) a bachelor’s degree in Integrated Studies and (2) the Residency Teacher Certification Program in the School of Education. You can complete all of these requirements in four years.

Major Courses and Degree Requirements

There are two components to the Integrated Studies major: the core courses, with studies across all six content disciplines, and a concentration of study in one of the six disciplines. 

Component I: Core Courses

Students take a total of 64 credits in the core courses. These courses enable you to develop a breadth of content knowledge across the elementary subject areas you will teach. These courses simultaneously fulfill the 40 credits required in SPU’s Exploratory Curriculum.

Component II:  Concentration in a Discipline

Students select a content discipline as an area of concentration early in their program. You will take 30–35 additional credits of coursework in this discipline with the goal of acquiring greater depth of knowledge in one of the six core content areas.
Review all Integrated Studies major courses and degree requirements.

Residency Teacher Certification Program

SPU has a long-held reputation as one of the premier teacher preparation programs in the state and region. The professional program leading to a Residency Teacher Certificate at Seattle Pacific consists of four quarters of study:

  • Foundations Quarter
  • Methods Quarter
  • Integrated Quarter
  • Internship Quarter

Each of these quarters builds upon the preceding quarter, supporting a developmental approach to teacher preparation.

Your Foundations Quarter and Methods Quarter focus on the theory, background, and methodology of teaching. Your Integrated Quarter and Internship Quarter focus on applying what you have learned. Learn more about becoming a teacher at SPU.

You may choose to pursue Residency Teacher Certification with an endorsement in Elementary Education, a secondary content area(s), or a number of pre-kindergarten through secondary (P–12) content area(s). Review requirements for the Residency Teacher Certificate with an endorsement in Elementary Education.

If You Don’t Want to Teach

Students may graduate with an Integrated Studies major without seeking teacher certification. If you don’t want to teach, you are not required to complete the Foundations Quarter, Methods Quarter, Integrated Quarter, and Internship Quarter required for the Residency Teacher Certification Program. You will complete a concentration-specific capstone course(s) instead of the education capstone course.

Entering the Integrated Studies Major

You may enter the Integrated Studies major during your first quarter at SPU.  Entrance after your first quarter requires only good academic standing (2.0 or higher SPU cumulative GPA).  Consult the undergraduate catalog for complete information on how and when to enter and what you must do to complete the program.   


You will be assigned an Integrated Studies faculty advisor during your freshman year. Once you are admitted to the Integrated Studies major, be sure to work closely with your advisor as you make decisions regarding course selection for the core courses, the concentration, the teacher certification and Elementary Education endorsement requirements, and the University’s graduation requirements.

If you plan to participate in a study abroad program, work with your advisor to determine the most appropriate quarter for such travel. This planning should be done during your freshman year if at all possible.

If you choose to pursue the Residency Teaching Certificate with your integrated studies major, you will work with the Undergraduate Programs Specialist in the School of Education to ensure you have the state requirements for certification. Contact the Certification Office to set up an appointment.

Transfer Students

If you are a transfer student from a Washington state community college with a direct transfer agreement (DTA) associate degree with an Elementary Education Major-Related Program (MRP), you will be allowed to transfer credits toward corresponding course requirements in the core courses and in the concentrations of the Integrated Studies major at SPU. Other transfer students may petition the Integrated Studies faculty advisors for course substitutions.

Use the Transfer Course Equivilancy Guide to see how credit from other institutions will transfer to Seattle Pacific University.

Admissions Contact

Allyson Rachal

Undergraduate Program Specialist

Phone: 206-281-2439
Office: Peterson Hall 306

Faculty Chair

Krystle Jalalian-Chursky

Assistant Professor; Director of Undergraduate Teacher Education
PhD, University of London, Birkbeck

Phone: 206-281-2365
Office: Peterson Hall 414


Solving for "X," With College in View

As an Integrated Studies major, Emmanuel Mancilla tutors urban high school students in math and helps them to see college in their futures.

Did You Know?

Help IconThe SPU School of Education offers graduate routes to teacher certification that culminate in certification and a Master of Arts in Teaching degree. Check out the AMAT and MAT programs.

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