Certification Requirements for Candidates with Bachelor’s Degrees

Applications Available

Do you already have your bachelor’s degree?
View the instructions for Post-Bachelor’s admission here

Are you a transfer student?
View the instructions for Transfer Student admission here

Post-Bachelor’s Route to Initial Teacher Certification

The post-bachelor’s route to initial teacher certification is available for individuals who decide to pursue teaching after they have earned a bachelor’s degree. Ideally, an applicant will have earned a degree in a subject that is “teachable,” or will have completed a substantial portion of the coursework required for one or more of the teaching majors offered at MSU. Individuals with degrees in non-teachable subjects can earn teacher certification, but it requires additional coursework and more time to complete.

MSU’s teacher certification program is not available online or via distance, although some courses may have online sections. The post-bachelor’s route requires a commitment at least two years.

Applicants to the post-bachelor’s program must have earned a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution with an overall GPA of 2.5 or higher. The applicant’s GPA for coursework used to complete the teaching major and minor must also be 2.5 or better. 

Please note that Special Education leads to K-12 certification in Learning Disabilities and is part of the elementary program, whereas Music Education and Art Education lead to K-12 certification and are part of the secondary program.

Secondary-Level Certification

Applicants interested in pursuing secondary certification must complete requirements for a secondary teaching major. Please see requirements for the secondary teaching majors and minors offered at MSU. Previous coursework is evaluated relative to State of Michigan standards and, to the extent possible, used to satisfy requirements; additional coursework in the content areas may be required. Remaining disciplinary coursework is combined with a series of Teacher Education courses, at least three of which involve classroom field placements. Students who meet coursework, examination, and all other requirements are eligible to progress to the internship year (see Progression to the Internship below).

Elementary-Level Certification

Applicants interested in pursuing elementary certification are required to complete a broad Elementary Planned Program, which prepares them to teach all subjects in grades K-8, and one of four elementary teaching majors, which prepares them to teach a subject area in grades 6-8. The curriculum also includes a series of seven Teacher Education courses (21 credits), at least four of which involve classroom field placements.

A major in Special Education is another elementary certification option. Students who major in Special Education complete the full elementary program as well as the coursework and experiences required to add a K-12 endorsement in Learning Disabilities. Admission as a Special Education major requires pre-admission experience with children/youth who have special needs. Students who meet coursework, examination, and all other requirements are eligible to progress to the internship year (see below).

Candidates with Bachelor’s Degrees in Non-Teachable Subjects

Individuals with undergraduate degrees in non-teachable subjects can also pursue initial teacher certification as post-bachelor’s students, but considerably more disciplinary coursework will be required. In this case, the timeframe needed to complete all teacher certification requirements, including the internship year, will likely be three years or longer. These applicants may consider earning a second bachelor’s degree in the process of meeting certification requirements.

Progression to the Internship

After completing all required coursework and passing the appropriate Michigan Test for Teacher Certification (MTTC) subject test, candidates complete a full-time teaching internship that lasts a full school year. Concurrent with the internship, interns take 12 credits of graduate-level coursework, some of which can later be applied to selected graduate programs (with faculty approval). To be eligible for the internship, candidates must have an overall GPA of at least 2.5 as well as a GPA of at least 2.5 in the teaching major and required professional education courses (with no individual grade in a required TE/CEP course below 2.0). Elementary candidates must have grades of at least 2.0 in all courses on the Elementary Planned Program, and secondary world language majors must meet oral proficiency standards in their language. Finally, all students must demonstrate proficiency with technology and satisfy the College of Education’s professional standards.

Advising for Post-Bachelor’s Degree Candidates and Prospective Candidates

In-person, telephone and email advising are available to post-bachelor’s degree candidates enrolled in the teacher preparation program. Call 517-353-9680 to schedule an appointment.

Prospective candidates interested in having their transcripts reviewed and an individualized program plan created should schedule an appointment with an advisor. The advisor can also advise them about the application and enrollment processes. There is a $15 fee for that appointment. Please pay the fee online. Call 517-353-9680 to schedule.