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Alternative Certification

The College of Education understands the demand for quality and accountability in educator preparation programs. Our programs work collaboratively with local school districts to assess the current needs of K-12 schools and how we can best serve them.

In creating partnerships with practitioners, researchers and education innovators who are at the forefront of affecting change in their professions we can ensure that our program is directly representational of the current demands upon on today’s professionals. Whether you are in a classroom now and need certification or are thinking about education as a career field, we have accelerated programs that are flexible, experiential, and will prepare you for the classroom.

Alternative Teacher Certification Programs

Our four Alternative Teacher Certification programs are designed to empower individuals who have completed their undergraduate degree with the necessary aptitudes and understanding to thrive as a teacher in the shortest time possible as compared to traditional programs.

Alternative Certification programs offered include:

  • Finish Line Teaching Apprenticeship: This program offers a high-quality, industry-driven career pathway that helps school districts develop and prepare their future workforce to use paid work experience, classroom instruction and a nationally recognized portable credential through the DOL.
  • Teach in 12: Accelerated program to earn Missouri teacher certification in as little as three (3) semesters and a summer of online courses, field experiences, and practicum. A Bachelor’s degree and passing the Missouri Content Assessment are required to enter the program.
  • Teach in Residency: This program is designed for people who want to teach full-time while taking the required coursework to earn their initial teaching certification. This program is designed for non-certified teachers of record to earn Missouri certification online in six (6) semesters while teaching. There is an option to earn a Master's degree. A bachelor's degree, passed Missouri Content Assessment and ability to secure a teaching position in the certification area are required to enter the program.
  • Temporary Authorization Certification: Non-certified teachers of record earn certification with online courses over two years, with an optional MEd. A Bachelor’s degree is required.
  • Teach for America: This program is designed for people who have already been accepted into the Teach for America program and have been assigned to Kansas City, Missouri for their teaching placement. This is designed for non-certified teachers of record to earn Missouri certification online in 6 semesters. It includes the option of earning an M.Ed.degree. Requires acceptance into TFA program, bachelor’s degree, and passed Missouri Content Assessment.

All courses taken in our Alternative Certification offerings provide graduate credit that applies directly toward a Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree. 

If you are a prospective student with questions about program requirements, transfer credits, or other questions related to your application, fill out this form to contact our advising team. For general questions about the College of Education, please contact coeadvising@umsl.edu.