Bachelor's Degree Pathway


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Bachelor's Degree Pathway

Whether you are new to college or have prior credit, you can begin your journey to obtain a bachelor’s degree in education with a dual emphasis in Elementary Education (K-8) and Special Education (K-12).

The BA Elementary Education/Special Education enrollment process at Rio Salado College is broken down into five steps, including completion of lower division (100/200) level courses and upper division (300/400) level courses.

Some courses and programs may require additional fees charged separately from the tuition. Please visit our Tuition and Fees page for a current listing of additional course fees.


Get on the right track toward a bachelor’s degree and learn more about our program during a virtual orientation. Many frequently asked questions will be answered during these sessions.

  • Please click a date to register
  • You will receive an email confirmation with details once your reservation is complete.

Bachelor's Degree Elementary & Special Education (Dual Certs) Orientations

January 17, 2024

12:00 - 1:30 PM

January 25, 2024

6:00 - 7:30 PM

February 6, 2024

12:00 - 1:30 PM

February 15, 2024

6:00 - 7:30 PM

March 7, 2024

6:00 - 7:30 PM

March 19, 2024

12:00 - 1:30 PM

March 28, 2024

6:00 - 7:30 PM

April 11, 2024

12:00 - 1:30 PM

April 23, 2024

6:00 - 7:30 PM

May 21, 2024

6:00 - 7:30 PM


A link to join the virtual events via WebEx will be sent upon completion of registration.

Complete the Maricopa online admissions application to set up your student account.

If you need further assistance with the admissions process, please contact (480) 517-8540.

After admission to Rio Salado, schedule an appointment with your designated academic advisor. 

Whether you are new to Rio Salado and higher education, have prior college credits, or hold a degree, you should talk to an academic advisor once you are admitted. 

  • If you are a Rio Salado student, you can find your advisor in RioLearn or contact them online
  • If you are new to Rio and have selected a bachelor's degree as your program of study, you will be assigned an advisor. You can also email


To make this a smoother transaction, if you have prior college credits at another institution, be sure to have your transcripts sent to Rio Salado

  • If you are new to the Maricopa Community Colleges, have your transcripts sent to Rio Salado.
  • If you have ever had your non-Maricopa transcripts sent to an MCCCD college other than Rio, contact the records office of that college and request a copy of those transcripts be sent to Rio Salado. Transcripts are only held by colleges for a limited time and may be purged after four years of inactivity.
  • If you have previously attended one of the Maricopa Community Colleges, Rio can access those records.

All students are required to complete a minimum of 60 lower division credits prior to beginning upper division (300/400 level) coursework. These 60 credits must be evaluated for equivalency to an education associate degree (AAEE).

Applicants who have previously completed upper division (300/400 level) coursework may complete a transcript evaluation if they believe that the coursework aligns with the BAEE upper division requirements. Unofficial transcripts may be used for the evaluation but official transcripts will be required to post your credits to your student record. You must be signed into the Maricopa system to access the form.

Upper Division Transcript Evaluation

The BA Elementary Education/Special Education program is broken down into lower division coursework requirements equivalent to the Associate of Arts in Elementary Education and then admittance to the upper division coursework.

Before applying for upper division courses, applicants must be within 15 credits or less of completing an associate degree in education or equivalent, and complete the following additional requirements.

Additional requirements:

  • Completion of the Arizona Constitution and United States Constitution course(s)
  • Meet minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) requirements
  • Obtain a valid Identity Verified Prints (IVP) Fingerprint Clearance Card
  • Take the Arizona Educator Proficiency Assessments (AEPA), Elementary Subtest I and II

Review carefully the full list of requirements for the bachelor’s degree listed under Admissions Criteria at the top of the Elementary Education and Special Education degree page. Note: This page also includes information and a semester-by-semester guide to course completion.

Once applicants are within 15 credits of meeting the lower division requirements and have met all testing, GPA, and fingerprint requirements, they can move to Step 5. 

If you have additional questions, please contact

Upon meeting the lower division requirements, the student needs to complete the application for admission to the upper division coursework

 The application will require:

  • The name and email information of two individuals who can complete a Letter of Reference
  • A scanned copy of the IVP fingerprint card
  • A copy of the NES exam report for Subtests I and II  
  • Completion of general candidate questions   

Applicants will receive a confirmation email verifying that the application is under review. The review process may take up to two weeks from the date that the letters of reference have been received.  

Use the button below to access the application. You must be signed into the Maricopa system to access the form.

BAEE Upper Division Application

If you have previously started the form, you can continue the application below after you have signed into the Maricopa system.

To continue Application 

If you have additional questions regarding the application for upper division coursework, please contact the Educator Preparation Program at