Earn a master's degree while obtaining initial teacher certification
Pursue your calling and be equipped to teach in elementary, middle, or secondary schools with SBU's Master of Science in Education with Initial Teaching Certification or Alternative Certification programs. Through this degree program, you will be prepared to meet qualifications for a Missouri teaching certificate, as well as concurrently complete the requirements for a Master of Science in Education degree, all within a Christian setting.
Who can apply for this degree?
This master’s degree is designed to help top students from different areas of study enter the teaching profession. If you have completed a bachelor's degree, you may directly apply to this degree program. Those who have not completed a bachelor's degree may request special permission from the Education Division Head to apply for the program. This degree is ideal for students whose undergraduate program is closely related to the field(s) in which they plan to teach and who have an outstanding undergraduate record.
What routes to certification are available?
Master of Science in Education with Initial Teaching Certification
This is the traditional route to obtaining your teaching certification while at the same time earning your master’s degree. It is available for all offered certification areas, listed below. Completion of degree takes at least six semesters, including some summer coursework, depending on your transcript audit.
You must complete all required content-focused coursework and all required education coursework, including 12 hours of master's level core courses. These include Curriculum Design and Development, Learners and the Learning Process, Master's Capstone and Educational Research. A minimum 3.0 GPA is required in both content-area and education coursework.
You must pass the Missouri Content Assessment (MoCA) for your certification area before student teaching.
Master of Science in Education with Alternative Certification
With this option, students who have a bachelor’s degree in a closely related content area to the certification they are pursuing can take the Missouri Content Assessment before beginning coursework. A passing score waives the content-area coursework requirement. Completion of degree takes at least four semesters, including some summer coursework, depending on your transcript audit.
This track is available for all offered certification areas, EXCEPT elementary certification. You must complete all required education coursework, including 12 hours of master's level core courses. These include Curriculum Design and Development, Learners and the Learning Process, Master's Capstone and Educational Research. A minimum 3.0 GPA is required in education coursework.
What certification areas can I pursue?
Students can get certified in the following teaching areas at SBU:
Elementary Education (grades 1-6)
Courses available in a seated format on the Bolivar campus or through online evening courses
Middle School Education (grades 5-9)
- English/Language Arts
- Social Science
Secondary Education (grades 9-12)
- Social Science
K-12 Education (grades K-12)
- Physical Education
What are my course delivery options?
If you are pursuing a certification in elementary education, you have two options:
- In-person class sessions on the SBU-Bolivar campus
- Online class sessions offered during the evening
Required classroom field experiences and student teaching will need to be completed during the day when schools are in session.
If you are pursuing a certification for middle school, high school or K-12, you may do so through traditional class schedules on the SBU-Bolivar campus.
What happens after I am accepted?
After you are accepted, you will have an initial interview with the Certification Officer in the Education Division to discuss the program, field experiences and previous coursework. You will then be assigned an advisor who develops your plan of study and provides guidance throughout your time in the program from admission to completion of both the Master's in Education degree and certification requirements.
Want to learn more and apply?
Visit the Graduate Education page to learn more about the application and admissions process, financial aid, and more.
This degree is offered through online and face-to-face classes.