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Education - Early Childhood Elementary (PreK-4) and Special Education (PreK-12) Dual Certification , Bachelor's


The DeSales dual-certification program enables students to prepare to teach both in Elementary Education PreK-4 and Special Education PreK-12 settings.

We believe a strong preparation helps new teachers to do important work in a rewarding profession.

Preparing to teach includes experiences in the DeSales classrooms and in local public and private school classrooms with expert educators. Our work also includes volunteer opportunities in the community with partner schools and organizations, such as Special Olympics and Cops n' Kids of the Lehigh Valley.

Wherever your passion takes you to teach, we know you will be well-prepared with a teaching degree from DeSales University.

Teacher Education at DeSales

Admissions Requirements

At DeSales, we not only look at your past academic achievement but also your potential for future growth to determine your admission.

We find that students who have demonstrated significant achievement within a demanding curriculum are best suited for academic life at DeSales. Quality of academic performance plays a critical role in the admissions decision making process. This helps indicate a student's potential for academic growth going forward. We welcome applications from all qualified students regardless of race, religion, sex, national, or ethnic origin.

Application Checklist

  • Application Fee: None
  • Transcripts: Official High School Transcript
  • Standardized Tests: Test-optional, however, an Admissions Interview may be requested
  • Recommendations: Completed Guidance Counselor Form and Teacher Recommendation Form
  • Please refer to the Program Specific Requirements section for any requirements specific to this program

All materials can be mailed to:
DeSales University Admissions Office
2755 Station Ave.
Center Valley, PA 

* SAT scores are highly recommended for students applying for the Nursing and Health Science programs. Please refer to the Program Specific Requirements section for any requirements specific to this program.

Additional recommendations

High School Academics - Remember, there is no single preferred high school academic program, but a college preparatory course of study is highly recommended. Here's an example:

  • Four years of English
  • Three or four years of college preparatory mathematics
  • A minimum of two years of modern, foreign, or classical language
  • At least two laboratory science courses

Visiting DeSales - A personal, on-campus interview is strongly recommended, but is not required. We encourage you to visit so that you'll have a chance to learn more about DeSales, and we'll have the opportunity to learn more about you, too.

Learn more about Undergraduate Admissions & Aid 

When to Apply

We encourage you to apply early in your senior year. We use a rolling admissions system, which means you will be notified promptly about your admissions status—usually within four weeks of our receipt of your completed application.

Priority deadline for scholarship consideration is December 1 of your senior year.


Our curriculum includes courses in teaching Elementary content, such as STEM, Social Studies, Literacy, and the Arts, and teaching Exceptional Students through courses on IEP Development and Inclusive Classroom practices. 

Field Experiences take students to classrooms ranging from pre-Kindergarten through 12th grade in diverse school settings. Work with Mentor Teachers and their students with both high-incidence and low-incidence learning needs. 

Student Teaching enables students to practice their teaching under the careful support of a Cooperating Teacher and University Supervisor.


Value-Added Teacher Education

Enriching Field Experience: Students begin field experiences in the first semester of sophomore year, always under the guidance of a university professor. To arrange placements, we employ a former principal with important contacts in local districts. Students benefit from excellent field placements with great local teachers.

Study Abroad: Our Teacher Education students gain global perspectives, studying in Rome, London, and Limerick, Ireland with Spain and other destinations on the horizon.

Teach Abroad: Education students can take their global perspectives even further. In recent years, they have taught in primary and secondary schools in Capetown, South Africa and India through DeSales-sponsored faculty-led trips. Recent graduates are teaching throughout Asia and other countries in full time positions.

Technology-Rich Curriculum: DeSales University Teacher Education has received a special designation from the Pennsylvania Department of Education for industry-leading technology integration in our teacher education programs.

Transferable Certification to Other States: Pennsylvania mandates rigorous, clear, teacher certification standards that make Pennsylvania certification easily transferable to other states. For additional detail on individual state certification requirements, refer to the state of choice.

Education Resource Lab

Students of DeSales education programs benefit from having access to the Department of Education's Resource Lab. The Lab is a convenient space where students gather to discuss topics, research, study, and work together on group projects. All the resources needed -- computers, art supplies, research library texts, and more -- are available to assist education students with their academic pursuits

Careers & Internships

Certification in Special Education PreK-12 prepares teachers for careers in Early Childhood, Elementary, Middle, and Secondary classrooms.

Students gain experiences in diverse field settings, including high-incidence and low-incidence disabilities and inclusive and self-contained classrooms.

This undergraduate degree and certification prepares students for careers in:

  • Public School Employment
  • Charter School Employment
  • Private and Parochial School Employment
  • Cyber and Online Teaching

DeSales has Internship opportunities with:

  • CAI Autism2Work
  • Lehigh Valley Health Network
  • Bucks County Intermediate Unit
  • Mercy School for Special Learning
  • Camelot for Children
  • Lehigh County Children and Youth Services

Tuition & Fees

DeSales can help make your college expenses affordable through a combination of grants, loans, student employment, and scholarship resources.

View a comprehensive list of financial aid forms and undergraduate program information sheets

Cost of attendance for undergrads for 2024-2025


Resident Students

Direct Costs
Tuition - $45,000
Room and Board - $13,800
Mandatory Fees - $1,800
One-time Orientation Fee for First-Year students and Transfers - $200
Total = $60,800 (including first-year/transfer fees)

Estimated Indirect Costs
Books/Supplies - $1,711
Personal Expenses - $4,605
Total cost for resident students: $67,116

Commuter Students

Direct Costs
Tuition - $45,000
Mandatory Fees - $1,400
One-time Orientation Fee for First-Year students and Transfers - $200
Total = $46,600 (including first-year/transfer fees)

Estimated Indirect Costs
Books/Supplies - $1,711
Personal Expenses - $4,605
Transportation Costs - $1,908
Living Expenses - $2,298
Total cost for commuter students: $57,122


Direct Costs
Tuition - $45,000
Mandatory Fees - $1,400
One-time Orientation Fee for First-Year students and Transfers - $200
Total = $46,600 (including first-year/transfer fees)

Estimated Indirect Costs
Books/Supplies - $1,711
Personal Expenses - $4,605
Transportation Costs - $1,908
Living Expenses - $9,192
Total cost for off-campus students: $64,016
*First-year students are required to reside on campus or commute from home.

Parking Fee - $100

View a comprehensive list of financial aid forms and undergraduate program information sheets

Dual Degree Undergraduate-to-Graduate Programs

If you are enrolled in an undergraduate-to-graduate degree program — for example a 5-year, 3+2, 3+3, program — the undergraduate tuition and fees apply only to the undergraduate portion of the program. As you progress into the graduate phase of your program, graduate tuition and fees apply. Please see your respective graduate program for more information. 

The financial aid process may appear overwhelming at first glance, but don't worry, we'll help you through it.

Accepted students are automatically considered for scholarships upon receipt of a completed application and are awarded regardless of financial need. Funds for scholarships are limited, so we do encourage students to apply early.

Our comprehensive financial aid packages carefully explain the types and amounts of assistance —including federal, state, and institutional — that you may be eligible for to help cover education related expenses.

Total cost of attendance includes estimates for tuition, fees, room, board, books, and personal, transportation, and living expenses.

You can estimate your total cost of attendance with our Net Price Calculator

DeSales Education Classroom

Expand your PreK-4 Certification to Middle School

Students certified in our PreK-4 program can easily add 5th and 6th grades by passing the state-approved add-on test. The good news is that 100% of DeSales students who have taken the additional test have passed! This testing option is a fast-track for students interested in working with middle level students. 

DeSales Teachers are in Demand

With the teacher shortage in the United States, our graduates find employment in the Education field with ease. DeSales grads are highly sought after and accept positions in public, private, charter, and parochial schools in Pennsylvania and in other states.  
teacher talking with a student
DeSales Lehigh Valley Campus in the Fall

Get Involved—Kappa Delta Pi Honor Society

Join a global network of education professionals in Kappa Delta Pi, the International Honor Society in Education, through DeSales' Alpha Alpha Chi chapter.

learn more about kappa delta pi