The Middle Grades Education program prepares students to serve as teachers of sixth-, seventh-, eighth- and ninth-graders with specialties in language arts, mathematics, science or social studies. WCU’s teacher education program has won multiple awards from national education associations and is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education.
The Middle Grades Education program combines challenging educational and academic coursework with guided experiences in public schools. Students study child development; teaching methods, research and strategies; and differentiating instruction for different types of learners. Students take additional courses in their concentration. Language arts students study teaching literature and English. Mathematics students take courses from problem solving to calculus. Science students study astronomy, biology, chemistry, geology and physics. Social studies students complete courses in U.S. and world history. All students complete internships and student teaching with mentorship from dedicated, experienced teachers and guidance from WCU faculty. Students can enjoy service and social activities in a WHEE Teach organization and reside in a WHEE Teach living and learning community.
Graduates are recommended to the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction for initial licensure to teach sixth- through ninth-grades in public schools in the state. Teachers may find positions in which they specialize in specific age ranges or skills, or disciplines ranging from English and art to Spanish and science. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment of middle school teachers to grow 12 percent from 2012 to 2022.