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Education, Teaching & Health

Graduate Certificate in Teaching - Early Childhood, Elementary, Secondary, ESOL

This teacher certification program is designed for students with bachelor’s degrees in the arts, sciences, or humanities and several years of responsible work experience. Students complete the program and must pass certification (licensure) in the District of Columbia and through such certification are eligible for reciprocal certification in over 40 states. Some states may require additional courses or examinations. The certificate program may be taken in early childhood education, elementary, secondary, or English for Speakers of Other Language (ESOL) teaching. 


Admission to the Program

Applications must include transcripts of all college work, AARTS transcripts or equivalent, a cumulative grade point average of 3.00 (on a 4.00 scale) in the last 60 credit hours of undergraduate work and in all graduate work, a statement of purpose, and two letters of recommendations. Admission to the certificate program constitutes admission to the Teacher Education Program. To be admitted students must earn a passing score on the PRAXIS I: Pre-Professional Skills Test (PPST) as set by the District of Columbia. The College of Arts and Sciences uses a rolling admissions process and applications are accepted at all times. Apply online or visit the Graduate Admissions Website for additional information.


Certificate Requirements

  • 27–33 credit hours of approved graduate work, including 6 credit hours of student teaching, with grades of C or better, and at least 9–12 credit hours at the 600-level or above For secondary certification, specific course work in the subject area to be taught may be needed to meet requirements for certification 
  • Grades of C- or D in certificate program courses are not accepted toward the fulfillment of certificate requirements, although these grades will be included in the calculation of the GPA. Students must have at least a 3.0 GPA in certificate courses in order to be awarded a certificate. Students in certificate programs must take a minimum of 6 credit hours during each 12-month period and complete the certificate in four years. International students must enroll in 9 credit hours each semester (except for summer). A maximum of 6 credit hours earned at an accredited college or university may be applied toward the certificate as transfer credit. 
  • Students submit a professional teaching portfolio and complete the PRAXIS II exam prior to being awarded the certificate. Click here for Praxis information.

Course Requirements

All course work must be approved by the director of Teacher Education. Evaluation of field performance may involve videotaping of classroom teaching. 

Core (15 credit hours)

  • EDU-521 Foundations of Education (3) 
  • EDU-541 Foundations of Special Education for Exceptional Children (3) or EDU-545 Overview of All Exceptionalities: The Arts in Special Education (3) 
  • EDU-620 Theories of Educational Psychology and Human Development (3) or EDU-618 Human Growth and Development across the Life Span (3) 
  • EDU-699 Student Teaching Seminar in Professional Practice (6) 

Early Childhood Education (18 credit hours)

  • EDU-609 Effective Teaching for Diverse Students (3) 
  • EDU-621 Topics in Social Science Research (1) (three topics for a total of 3 credits) 
  • EDU-623 Topics in Literacy Education (3): Literacy, Technology, Media, and the Arts in Early Childhood Education 
  • EDU-623 Topics in Literacy Education (3): Theoretical Models and Methods for Early Childhood Education across the Curriculum 
  • EDU-625 Advocacy and Leadership in Early Childhood Education (3) 
  • EDU-628 Topics in Early Childhood Education (3) 
  • EDU-635 Theory and Curriculum in Early Childhood Education (3) 

Elementary (18 credit hours)

  • EDU-601 Teaching Reading in the Elementary School (3) 
  • EDU-602 Teaching Language Arts in the Elementary School (3) 
  • EDU-603 Teaching Mathematics in the Elementary School (3) 
  • EDU-604 Teaching Science in the Elementary School (3) 
  • EDU-608 Teaching Social Studies in the Elementary School (3) 
  • EDU-609 Effective Teaching for Diverse Students (3) 

Secondary Education (12 credit hours)

  • EDU-520 Reading, Writing, and Literature across the Curriculum (3) 
  • EDU-522 Principles of Effective Methods and Instruction (3) 
  • EDU-540 Methods, Materials, and Management in Secondary Education I (3) (or other approved methods course) 
  • EDU-662 Classroom Management (3)

English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) (15 credit hours)

  • TESL-500 Principles of Linguistics (3) 
  • TESL-501 English Language Teaching I (3) 
  • TESL-523 Second Language Acquisition (3) or TESL-527 Cultural Issues in the ESL/EFL Classroom (3) 
  • TESL-524 Reading and Writing in the ESL/EFL Classroom (3) 
  • TESL-531 Language Assessment (3) 

Ongoing Assessment of Academic and Professional Performance

To remain in the Teacher Education Program, certificate students must maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.00; receive satisfactory evaluations in field and methods placements; obtain a satisfactory evaluation from the Teacher Education Committee based upon academic, professional, and performance criteria established by the committee; and meet specific course grade requirements. Students must also earn a passing score (as set by the District of Columbia teacher licensing agency) on the PRAXIS I: Pre-Professional Skills Test (PPST). 


Admission to the M.A.T.

Students in the certificate program seeking admission to the M.A.T. degree program will be considered after satisfactory completion of up to 18 credit hours of course work. A maximum of 21 credit hours earned in nondegree status in a completed certificate program may be applied to a graduate degree program.