Pre-Elementary Education

Program Information

Degree Type: 
Associate in Arts

Designed for students seeking teacher certification in Elementary Education. This degree focuses on teaching children in grades K-8. Upon completion of this program students are eligible for work in various education and child care professions, however, transfer to and completion of a four-year university teacher preparation program is necessary for full teacher certification. When following university articulation guides, graduates pursuing a bachelor's degree should be able to transfer all of the required and elective coursework toward that degree.

Learning Outcomes: 
  • Apply current educational theories and practices to a classroom setting.
  • Analyze children’s literature for its use in the elementary or middle school classroom.
  • Apply knowledge of the physical, emotional, intellectual, and social development theories of the learner in a school setting.
  • Apply knowledge of the exceptionalities, learning environments, and laws as they relate to special education programs.
  • Develop lesson plans implementing educational software for grades P-8.
  • Analyze elementary and middle school mathematics at the level necessary for teaching.
  • Construct scientific knowledge using inquiry-based techniques.
  • Follow appropriate health, physical education, nutrition, and safety practices for K-8 classrooms.

Degree-Specific Requirements

All students receiving an Associate Degree are required to meet Degree-Specific Requirements AND General Education Requirements. Courses listed in the Required Core and/or Required Support Courses may also be used to fulfill Degree-Specific and General Education Requirements. Developmental courses (those numbered below 100) cannot be used to fulfill these requirements.

Attention: It is the student's responsibility to review the entire program form before making course selections for registration purposes. The College recommends that students meet with an advisor or counselor well in advance of registration deadlines and before making course selections.

General Education Requirements: 

The following courses are required in this program and satisfy HFC’s General Education Outcomes for this program. Students who change their program will need to confirm in advance that they are completing all required courses for their specific program of study, including additional General Education courses. All Associate in Arts degrees require at least 24 credits total, including at least three credit hours from each of the five areas below. For this program:

  1. Civil Society & Culture: Complete one of the following courses:

  2. Communication: Complete the following:

  3. Computer Technology: Complete the following:

  4. Critical Thinking & Information Literacy: Complete the following:

  5. Quantitative Literacy: Complete the following:

  6. Complete additional General Education course(s) to reach a minimum of 24 credit hours:

*Math 115 or beyond is highly recommended as preparation for the Professional Readiness Exam. **Consult transfer guides and speak with an advisor regarding transferability.

NOTE: For this program, General Education minimum credits: 24

Degree-Specific Requirements: 
  1. Wellness: This category is satisfied with the Required Core Courses in this program.

  2. Humanities: Complete 8 credit hours, including any Humanities courses taken from the General Education area, from:

    • Art (ART); Dance (DNCA); English (ENG) (except ENG-131, ENG-132, ENG-135); Humanities (HUM); Interior Design (INTR); Journalism (JOUR); Music (MUS); Philosophy (PHIL); Telecommunication (TCM); Speech Communications (SPC); Theatre (THEA), Virtual Theatricality Lab (VTL); World Languages (American Sign Language (ASL), Arabic (ARA), Chinese (CHN), French (FRE), German (GER), Italian (ITAL), Spanish (SPN)); or World Religions (WR).
    • NOTE: Three hours of Humanities credits are included in the Required Core Courses area.
  3. Science and Mathematics: This category is satisfied with the General Education and Required Core Courses in this program.

  4. Social Science: Complete 8 credit hours, including any Social Science courses taken from the General Education area, from:

    • Anthropology (ANTH), Criminal Justice (CRJ), Economics (BEC), Geography (GEOG), History (HIST), Political Science (POLS), Psychology (PSY), Social Science (SSC), or Sociology (SOC).
    • NOTE: Six credit hours are satisfied in the Required Core Courses category.

NOTE: For this program, Degree-Specific minimum credits: 2

Required Core Courses

Complete a minimum of 4 credits in science courses with a lab from the following areas:
Astronomy (ASTR), Biology (BIO), Chemistry (CHEM), Geology (GEOL), Physics (PHYS), Physical Science (PSCI), or Science (SCI)
Minimum Credit Hours: 

Students should consult articulation and transfer guides for their chosen four-year institutions regarding science courses which apply towards the bachelor's degree.

Elective Courses

Complete additional 100-level or above courses as needed to reach the 60 credits required for Associate in Arts degrees.
The courses below are suggested electives. For assistance with additional selections, contact the Program Director.

Maximum Credit Hours Necessary: 14

Minimum Number Of Credits To Graduate: 
60.0 (Including Options/Electives)

Program Requirements

Additional Program Requirements: 

The law requires new teachers, school administrators, school psychologists, and other personnel to provide documentation of a completed criminal record check. Students who complete field experiences as part of their HFC coursework must provide a statewide criminal record check prior to working with children in public or non-public schools.

Requirements are Subject to Change

The information represented here is for the current catalog year. If you were admitted prior to this year, please check your requirements under the Program Evaluation section of WebAdvisor.

Other Information

Year Established: 
Program Code: 


Social Science, Arts, and Fitness Division: 313-845-9625,, Fine Arts Bldg, Room: F-140
Patricia Lanzon: 313-317-1532,, Liberal Arts Building, Room: K-307

Transfer Information

Transfer Options/Requirements: 

The College has articulation agreements and/or transfer guides to help students who want to transfer to other institutions once they have completed their studies at HFC. Articulation agreements ensure that graduates from HFC can transfer to another institution and work towards a bachelor’s degree without a loss of coursework completed at HFC. Transfer guides denote the transferability of HFC coursework toward specific degree programs at other institutions. It is important that students who intend to transfer to another institution consult the appropriate articulation agreements and/or transfer guides to ensure the transferability of the courses they take to the institution they plan to attend. Articulation agreements and transfer guides are available on the HFC Transfer Resources page. For additional resources and assistance with transferring, students are encouraged to work with HFC’s University Transfer, Advising, and Career Counseling Center (313-845-9612,, Learning Resource Center). Students enrolled in this program frequently transfer to institutions such as:

  • Eastern Michigan University
  • Marygrove College
  • University of Michigan - Dearborn
  • Wayne State University
Career Opportunities: 

Pre-Elementary Education program graduates may seek employment in child development centers. For those wishing to teach in K-8 schools, completion of a four-year teacher preparation program with teacher certification is necessary.

This degree requires coursework that can be transferred to most four-year teacher preparation programs without loss of credit. The elective component of this program allows students to select courses that apply toward the bachelor's degree at their intended transfer institution. Students are encouraged to consult the university guide sheets in the University Transfer, Advising, and Career Counseling Center located in Learning Resources Center.