Middle Level Education

Middle Level Education

UNI's middle level education program prepares teachers who are able to design instruction for young adolescents in grades five through eight, enjoy an ever-changing group of students and school settings, and provide leadership in best programs and practices. A division of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction, the middle level education program increases job prospects for graduates who learn to teach, work with and understand the characteristics of young adolescents. Since 1938, UNI has provided Iowa with thousands of teachers specifically educated to teach young adolescents.

This dual major offers UNI students a large amount of marketability/flexibility for a small number of additional credits. The program adds an extra nine credit hours (four classes) to elementary programs, and 15 credit hours for secondary.

Students must choose at least two specialty areas (can also do three or four) from math, science, social studies and reading. Each specialty area requires 12 credit hours, but most, if not all, of those areas duel count with classes you have already taken.

For as little as nine credits, you can teach grades five through eight in the specialty areas of your choosing. Middle school principals are looking for this endorsement for any middle level hires, even if your other degrees allow you to already teach grades five through eight. Having this degree shows prospective principals and districts that you have not only worked with middle level students, but also have keen knowledge of their uniqueness.

The University of Northern Iowa is the only higher education institute in the state of Iowa to feature a major in middle level education (to be paired with elementary education or secondary education).


Students transferring to UNI for an education major are encouraged to take and pass the PRAXIS Core test before you arrive on campus. And remember, an instructional technology minor can go with any major!


Middle Level Education

The middle level program has an active student organization, the Student Association of Middle Level Educators (SAMLE), that meets twice a month and features guest speakers who specialize in certain aspects of middle school. The organization has also planned opportunities to work with middle school students, and is eligible to present at the national conference, AMLE. In many cases, funding for this trip is partially paid from various sources. 

Middle Level Education
Hands-on experience

The middle level major requires 30 field hours with middle level students. This gives pre-service teachers a chance to work with actual middle school students and implement what has been discussed in class. Many of these hours can be in actual classrooms working with current middle school teachers as well. The middle level program also alters student teaching so one of the placements will be in a middle school. 

Middle Level Education
Be Dually Prepared

Since middle level education is a dual major with either elementary education or a secondary education subject, middle level education majors are prepared to work with a wide variety of students. 


96% of last year's graduates are either continuing their education or employed




Have questions or want more information? Fill out the form below and someone from the department will contact you directly. To receive general university information from UNI’s admissions office, please click on ‘Request More Info About UNI’.

Carolyn Weber
Middle Level Coordinator

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