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Teach Residency FAQs

What is a Missouri Alternative/Provisional Certificate?

This is an alternative two-year teaching certificate offered to students who have met the following DESE requirements:

  • Conferred Bachelor's Degree
  • Minimum Overall GPA of 2.75
  • Pass appropriate Missouri Content Area Assessment (MoCA)
  • Employment with a Missouri School District
  • Enrollment in a state-Approved Alternative Certification program
  • Signed Academic Contract
What is the Academic Contract?

Resident teachers are required to sign an academic contract which outlines their commitment of meeting the university's academic program requirements. This contract is approved by DESE and is a contributing factor towards the administration of provisional certificates. The contract includes the following information:

  • Area of certification
  • A list of all required courses
  • A list of all required MO assessments
What happens if I breach the Provisional Certificate requirements?

Once the resident teacher has obtained provisional certification, UMSL will monitor his/her compliance with all requirements necessary to maintain license/certification and will notify both the school district and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education in the event that he/she is in jeopardy of forfeiting his/her certification/license. In the instance that a resident teacher has breached the requirements, he/she becomes ineligible for UMSL's alternate certification program.

Can I earn a master's degree with certification?

Yes. In addition to earning teacher certification, participants can earn a Master of Education (MEd) through the program. The master's degree requires an additional four to five courses depending on the certification area.

What tests do I need to take?

All candidates seeking educator certification in Missouri are required to achieve a passing score on the appropriate Missouri Content Assessment (MoCA) by August 1.

Do I need to take the GRE or GMAT?

No. Candidates apply through the UMSL Graduate School for admissions as a Master of Education Candidate. While all transcripts are required, the GRE and GMAT are not required for this program.

How are courses offered?

The program includes online courses and a school-based internship. Program courses are offered over a 2-year cycle and are designed in a modular format as opposed to discrete course silos.

How are placements determined?

All resident teacher candidates are recruited, hired, and placed by the school district's personnel. UMSL serves as the partnering university for certification.

Does it matter if I teach in an area other than my certification?

Yes. DESE requires that applicants complete two years of teaching in the chosen area of certification.

What is the final step to earning teacher certification?

By their final semester, candidates must have passed the final DESE assessment known as the Missouri Educator Evaluation System (MEES). Upon completion of all assessments and courses with a minimum GPA of 3.0, UMSL will recommend candidates to DESE for certification.