Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Elementary Education

Typical Length 18 months

Delivery Hybrid




Stipends Available

If interested, please refer to the “How to Apply” page for this program. Questions and concerns can be shared using the “Request More Info” page.

The Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Elementary Education is a 31-credit program that is designed for individuals who already hold an undergraduate degree or higher (in any field) and would like to become licensed to teach at the elementary level (Kindergarten to Grade 6). It also provides a pathway to teacher licensure for paraprofessionals and long-term substitutes already working in Hawaii public schools. This statewide online/hybrid program for teacher licensure addresses the growing need for highly qualified teachers in grades K-6, particularly in geographic areas that have historically experienced difficulty recruiting and retaining classroom teachers.

Career and Licensure Information

Once completing an initial teacher licensure program, graduates are eligible to apply for a state license through the Hawai‘i Teacher Standards Board, which will allow the licensee to teach in public and charter schools in the State of Hawai‘i.

Hawai‘i also participates in the NASDTEC Interstate Agreement which facilitates the mobility of educators among states that are members of NASDTEC. UHM recommends you contact the office of certification in any state to which you may be relocating to get the most current information. See NASDTEC website for more information.

Admission Requirements


  • 2.75 GPA or higher from all postsecondary institutions attended
  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited and UHM-recognized four-year institution of higher education
    • For applicants who graduated from institutions outside of the U.S- an evaluation of your transcripts from a NACES member is required.


  • Complete SPED 304: Foundations of Inclusive Schooling (with a passing grade of a C or better)
    •  Register through Outreach College (Video demo for how to apply)
      • Choose Summer 2024 Extension as your semester:
        • CRN 4151: May 20 – June 28, Online – Thurs., 4:30 – 7:00pm)
        • CRN 4152: July 1 – Aug. 9,  Online – Thurs., 4:30 – 7:00pm
    • Note: Can be taken in the summer or fall after applying to the program if needed
  • Complete 40 hours of paid or voluntary group leadership field experience with K-6th grade students. The experience cannot have occurred more than 5 years prior to acceptance into the program.
  • Effective Fall 2025: Either DA or DL course with HWST 107 (DH) will be required for admission prior to the start of the licensure program.
  • Effective Fall 2025: Completion of two Writing Intensive (WI) courses with C or better will be required for admission prior to the start of the licensure program (Non-UH system transfer students can meet this requirement by completing 2 English Literature or Composition courses with grades of C or better).

Application Requirements

  • Interview with the program. – Demonstrate verbal and nonverbal competence
    • All applicants will complete an interview after submitting an application.  Applicants will be provided with more information in October. Applicants with any learning, physical, psychiatric, or other documented disabilities who need special accommodations for the interview should contact Kokua Services at: 
  • Write a personal statement (about 1 page, or 500 words)
    • Think of the most influential teacher you have had.
      1. Tell us who that person is (including their name, level, and school) and how/why that person impacted you the most.
      2. Then tell us what unique qualities and skills you have that would make you a successful teacher.
  • Provide Three (3) Professional References (Name, email, phone number)

All applicants are encouraged to meet with an academic advisor ( prior to applying in order to verify admission requirements. Academic advisors can assist with identifying which requirements have been met and provide support in registering or completing next steps.

Set up an appointment with an academic advisor

Note: Additional Content Knowledge Verification – Enrolled candidates must demonstrate Elementary content knowledge prior to their final semester of student teaching. Content Knowledge can be verified in one, or a combination, of the following:

  • 9 credits and a minimum GPA of 2.75 for each of the following fields: English, math, science, and social studies. The program provides 3 credits of coursework for each field, therefore candidates having 6 credits or more for each field prior to starting the program could use their credits towards meeting this licensure requirement.
  • Praxis: Content Knowledge Exam – candidates with passing scores will have met this requirement. Candidates who have met the 9-credit coursework requirement for some of the content areas and not others would only need to take the Praxis exam for the content areas they need. 
Application Deadlines

New cohorts start only in Spring semesters. Application deadlines are as follows:

Starting Semester  Early Admission (Priority) General Admission (Final)
Spring September 1 October 1

Note: The start date of the PBCTE Elementary cohort may be delayed if the minimum number of participants is not met.

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Program & Coursework

This program is primarily online, utilizing a combination of synchronous (Zoom) and asynchronous courses. Synchronous class sessions meet 2-3 times per week, between 4pm and 7pm. There may be up to two one-day (Saturday) in-person events scheduled over the course of the program. Candidates living on neighboring islands would travel to O‘ahu and some financial support is provided to assist with travel costs.

In addition, candidates will complete fieldwork in a local elementary school for two consecutive days each week, from 7:30am to 3:00pm in their first and second semesters of the program. The final semester is a full-time student teaching experience, Monday through Friday. Candidates already employed in school settings (e.g. emergency hire or long-term sub) may be able to use their position to fulfill field requirements, however, candidates must teach the required number of hours in the area in which they are receiving licensure. Therefore, candidates wanting to use their employment towards program field requirements must receive approval from the program coordinator and director prior.

Candidates will complete a total of 31 credits:

  • 15 credit hours of teaching in the content areas
  • 3 credit hours of educational inquiry
  • 4 credit hours of teaching
  • 3 credit hours of educating exceptional students
  • 6 credit hours of teaching residency

See the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Teacher Education (Elementary) brochure for more information.

Tuition & Funding

Tuition Cost (31 credits)

Note: This program charges undergraduate tuition rates. See:

  • Resident: Approximately $471/credit x 31 credits = $14,601
  • Non-Resident: Approximately $1,389/credit x 31 credits = $43,509
  • WUE/WICHE: Approximately $706/credit x 31 credits = $21,886

Grow Our Own (GOO) Stipends

Students admitted to the PB – Elementary Ed program may be eligible for Grow Our Own Teacher Initiative (GOO) stipends that cover most of the cost of tuition and fees. GOO is made possible through a partnership between the College of Education of the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa and Hawai‘i Department of Education. For more information on eligibility requirements and the application process, please visit our Grow Our Own Teachers page. Subject to availability of funds.


Please complete the “Request More Info” form and we will connect you with someone who will be happy to answer your questions, provide more detailed information, and assist with the application process once admissions open. You can also send general inquires to our Email: