Middle Level Education Social Studies

Middle Level Education Social Studies Bachelor of Science in Education (B.S.Ed.) with Certification

Middle Level Education Social Studies

Open students' eyes to the world of geography, history, government and current events.

Become a middle school social studies teacher with a bachelor's degree in middle level education and grades 4-8 social studies certification from California University of Pennsylvania.

 Cal U has a history of producing top-quality teachers for more than 165 years in Pennsylvania and beyond. Our middle level education program adheres to the standards of the Association of Middle Level Education (AMLE), and takes a hands-on approach to teacher training that includes:

  • Fieldwork experiences in local Pennsylvania
  • A full semester of student teaching.
  • In-depth courses grounded in evidence-based teaching practices.
  • Full preparation for Pennsylvania grades 4-8 teaching

 You'll graduate from Cal U's middle level education program with the knowledge, skills and disposition needed to become a top middle school social studies teacher.

Program Highlights: Middle Level Education

Top Professors: All program faculty members have experience teaching in childhood education classrooms and can relate theory to real-life experiences. You'll work closely with professors who are available, approachable and ready to answer your questions, provide personal assistance and give you resources for career success.

National Accreditation: Cal U's bachelor's degree in middle level education is approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Our education programs have also been accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) since 1954, and we are continuing with the successor organization, the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). This program is nationally recognized by the Association for Middle Level Education.

Top Accreditation: This undergraduate degree program is approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Cal U's education programs have also been accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) since 1954, and we are continuing with the successor organization, the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). See CAEP reporting measures of program impact and outcomes.

Learn about applying.

Weeks of student teaching in a grades 4-8 classroom with increasing levels of responsibility for planning, instructional delivery and assessment.
Is the average annual salary for middle school teachers according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
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Degree Benefits

Benefits of earning your Cal U middle level education bachelor's degree with a concentration in social studies include:

  • The development of proven teaching techniques in both general middle school and specialized social studies teaching
  • Fieldwork and student teaching in local Pennsylvania middle schools.
  • On-campus seminars that keep you up to date on current education topics and trends.
  • Job placement support from faculty, alumni and Cal U's Career and Professional Development Center.
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Graduate Outcomes

Cal U's middle level education bachelor's degree with a concentration in social studies will give you the hands-on experience and key teaching credentials that school districts look for in new hires. Our student teaching and fieldwork requirements ensure you graduate with the confidence and resume you need to hit the ground running in a variety of educational roles. Cal U program alumni have gone on to careers as:

  • Public or private school
  • Para-educators and remediation teachers.
  • Children and youth services members.
  • Substitute teachers and recreation services instructors.
  • Curriculum authors, and more.

Curriculum and Related Courses

This bachelor's degree and teaching certification program will give you in-depth training in grades 4-8 education and specialization in the teaching of social studies. Upon successful completion of this program, you will earn a bachelor's degree and will be eligible for Pennsylvania teaching certification.


Course Credits
Freshman Year  
First Semester 16
ENG 101  English Composition I 3
HIS 101  U.S. History to 1877 3
MAT 120  Elementary Topics in Math I 3
PSY 206  Adolescent Psychology 3
UNI 100  First-Year Seminar 1
Fine Arts Course 3
Second Semester 18
CHD 250  Teaching Health and Physical Education 3
ESP 210  Special Education Foundation and Collaboration 3
HIS 102  U.S. History since 1877 3
MAT 130  Elementary Topics in Math II 3
Any Approved American/British Literature Course 3
Natural Science with Lab 3
Sophomore Year  
Third Semester 15
CHD 350  Family and Community Collaborations 3
ELM 200  Intro to Middle Level Education 3
GEO 100  Intro to Geography 3
HIS 112  World History since 1500 3
MAT 181  College Algebra 3
Fourth Semester 15
ECO 100  Elements of Economics 3
ELM 220  Instruction and Assessment in 4-8 Class 3
ESP 311  Assessment and Positive Behavior Intervention* 3
POS 105  American National Government 3
PSY 208  Educational Psychology  3
Junior Year  
Fifth Semester 15
ELM 302  Language Arts Methods Assessment* 3
ELM 321  Science Methods Assessment* 3
ELM 331  Social Studies Methods Assessment* 3
HIS 200  History of Pennsylvania 3
Free Elective 3
Sixth Semester 15
CHD 413  Content Area Literacy Field Experience*
ELM 301  Reading Methods Assessment* 3
ELM 311  Math Methods Assessment* 3
EDU 333  Technology for Teaching and Learning 3
Approved Social Studies Concentration Course 3
Senior Year  
Seventh Semester 15
CHD 450  Assessment and Data Literacy* 3
EDU 350  Supporting English Language Learners 3
EDU 375  Intro to Integrated STEM Education 3
ELM 415  Middle Level Field Experience* 3
ESP 412  Evidence Based Practices* 3
Eighth Semester 12
ELM 461  Student Teaching* 12
Total 121

Program Notes

  • Course titles in bold are scheduled together and must be taken at the same time.
  • ALL ELM, CHD and ESP courses require current clearances and minimum 2.5 GPA to register for course, except ELM 200 and 220, which require a 2.0 GPA to register.
  • All courses required for certification with a grade of C- or lower must be repeated.
  • Candidates must follow policies for Admission to Teacher Education as stated in the Teacher Education Handbook. 
  • Courses marked with an asterisk are restricted to candidates admitted to Teacher Education. 
  • Pre-requisite for ELM 220 and all 300-level ELM and CHD courses is ELM 200. 
  • State licensure for exams must be passed before student teaching. 
  • Current clearances are required prior to enrolling in program courses.

Approved British or American Literature Courses

  • ENG 107  Introduction to Fiction
  • ENG 125  The American West
  • ENG 127  Woman as Hero
  • ENG 148  Horror in Literature
  • ENG 150  Baseball in Literature
  • ENG 155  Black Literature                                         
  • ENG 160  Introduction to British & American Literature
  • ENG 203  Great Books
  • ENG 301  English Literature I (pre-requisite ENG 101, 102)
  • ENG 302  English Literature II (pre-requisite ENG 101, 102)                  
  • ENG 337  Survey of American Literature I (pre-requisite ENG 101, 102)
  • ENG 338  Survey of American Literature II (pre-requisite ENG 101, 102)
  • HON 250  Honors Comp II (pre-requisite HON 150)

Concentration Courses

Take one of the concentration courses listed below:

  • ECO 200  Current Economics Issues
  • ECO 201  Principles of Microeconomics
  • ECO 202  Principles of Macroeconomics
  • GEO 105  Human Geography
  • GEO 217  Demographic Analysis
  • GEO 220  Geography of North America and PA
  • POS 101  Contemporary Policy and Politics
  • POS 306  The Congress
  • POS 310  The Presidency

View Course Sequence

Related Courses
A Cal U student works with middle school students.

Course Spotlight: Technology in Teaching

Learn the skills and concepts for applying technology in the middle school classroom. This degree course focuses on current technologies (such as computers, mobile devices and online tools) and how to effectively incorporate them into your lesson plans. The class emphasizes building knowledge, increasing technological skills, understanding best practices and applying your learning in an educational setting.

Students learning in the classroom.

Practical Skills that Make a Difference

"I can't express how valuable the education program was to me at Cal U. ... Learning how to analyze student data and how to make changes to my instruction to meet students' needs enables me to provide the best education for each student that I have on a regular basis." - Amanda Bilitski '15

A Cal U student educating middle school students.

Professional Development Schools

As a middle level education major at Cal U, you'll you have the opportunity to travel to nearby Pennsylvania middle schools to practice instructional delivery in real-world classrooms. These Professional Development Schools (PDS) collaborate with Cal U, and often hire program graduates.

Middle Level (Grades 4-8) Education Faculty

Dr. Peter Cormas
Associate Professor


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Dr. Holly L. Diehl
Professor and Coordinator of Professional Development Schools Program


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Dr. Diane Fine
Associate Professor and Coordinator, Reading Specialist Program and Integrative STEM Education Program


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Dr. J. William Hug
Associate Professor; Science, Environment and STEM Teacher Education


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Dr. Rebecca Maddas
Associate Professor


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Dr. Michelle Torregano
Associate Professor and PreK-4 Graduate Coordinator


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