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Department of Counseling, Educational Psychology & Special Education

Educational Psychology and Educational Technology

Certification in College Teaching Program

The CEPSE department, in conjunction with the MSU Graduate School is pleased to offer the opportunity to for PhD students to participate in the University Graduate Certification in College Teaching (CCTP) program.  The CCTP helps graduate students organize, develop, and document their teaching experiences. Through a series of focused workshops, a class on disciplinary teaching methods, and a mentored project, participants will build and consolidate their preparation for college and university teaching. The program culminates in an e-portfolio that will help students prepare for academic job interviews and plan for their professional development as early career faculty.

How do I get started?

FIRST, review the CCTP details for CEPSE (below.)

SECOND, CEPSE students wishing to participate in this program should email the CEPSE Certificate in College Teaching Coordinator, Leigh Graves Wolf ( to set up a meeting. Dr. Wolf will assist you throughout the program and will help you get started with preparing and submitting the application form, statement of interest, and a letter of support from your research advisor to your college’s Graduate Associate Dean.

The University Graduate Certification in College Teaching Institute is a great way to get started and fulfilling the requirements for CCTP.  The institute is held each May.  The workshop fee is $20 and you must register in advance by visiting


CEPSE Department Procedures Certificate in College Teaching
(Procedures approved by Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Education and the MSU Graduate School, April 2013)

Doctoral students have a unique opportunity to complete the competencies for the University’s Certificate in College Teaching. Once completed and approved, the Certificate is designated on a student’s official transcript at the direction of the Graduate School.

Before beginning work on the Certificate, students should:

  1. Review the required competencies and guidebook at
  2. Speak with advisor or other CEPSE faculty member to obtain agreement to be the discipline-related mentor.
  3. Develop a draft plan of activities and timeline to attain each competency.
  4. Complete the Application Materials: (online link to application will be provided once approved)
  5. Send the materials to CEPSE Certificate in College Teaching Coordinator for review and approval. The approved application will be forwarded to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Education who makes the College’s recommendation to the Graduate School.
  6. Send a copy of the approved application to the appropriate Graduate Program Secretary for departmental/program  record keeping.

While working on the Five Core Competencies, students should:

  1. Be diligent in recording their work (e.g., attending workshops, completing a class) related to each competency.
  2. Write the reflection required as soon as possible after each competency is completed.
  3. Be sure to complete steps required by the Graduate School for specific competencies (e.g., mentored teaching project worksheet, portfolio checklist).
  4. Work closely with CEPSE mentor regularly.
  5. Seek permission to enroll in one of the required courses from your graduate advisor.
  6. Maintain all work in an electronic portfolio. See the sample portfolio from colleagues in Kinesiology that received high praise from the Graduate School for organization and quality of content at: under the “Certificate in College Teaching” heading.

After completing all requirements, students should:

  1. Organize all their work in an electronic portfolio and review for clarity and accuracy.
  2. Use the Graduate School checklist to ensure that all competencies are documented in the portfolio.
  3. Submit to CEPSE mentor for review and approval.
  4. Send a final copy of the portfolio and mentor approval to the appropriate Graduate Program Secretary, with a copy to the CEPSE Certificate in College Teaching Coordinator.
  5. Submit the completed and approved portfolio to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the College of Education who forwards the complete E-portfolio to the Graduate School after review.
  6. Notify the mentor, the CEPSE Certificate in College Teaching Coordinator, and the appropriate Graduate Program Secretary when the Graduate School approves transcript designation.