1. Can I become certified to teach in PreK-12 schools through a Graduate Program at MWSU?
a. If you do not have a PreK-12 teaching license from any state when you enter the program, you will not be able to earn any teaching certification through the MWSU Graduate Programs.
b. If you do already hold a PreK-12 teaching license from any state, you can choose to take the series of MWSU classes required by the State of Missouri to earn the additional K-12 certification to teach English language learners (ELL).
c. All of the Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) content area classes, required for the MWSU TESOL Graduate Certificate and/or M.A.S. degree, do count toward MO K-12 ELL certification.
d. The State of Missouri does not offer a teaching certificate specific to the area of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Therefore, completion of the series of classes required for the MWSU ASD Graduate Certification and/or M.A.S. degree does not result in additional Missouri teaching certification.
2. If I complete the MWSU TESOL Graduate Certification, will I be automatically certified to teach English language learners in public K-12 settings?
a. You must already possess an initial teaching license in order to earn the MO K-12 ELL add-on state certification (see FAQ #1 above).
b. All of the TESOL content area classes required for the TESOL Graduate Certificate and/or M.A.S. degree count toward MO K-12 ELL certification.
c. Depending on the classes you completed in order to earn your initial teaching certification, you might be required to take a few additional classes (i.e., Secondary Reading Techniques, Reading Deficits, and/or Psychology of the Exceptional Child) outside of your degree/certificate program to fulfill basic state licensure requirements.
3. May I apply for K-12 ELL teaching positions even if I have not completed my TESOL teaching license and/or MWSU TESOL graduate program?
a. Because ELL teachers are in high demand in many districts, occasionally a school district will hire a teacher who is willing to pursue ELL teaching certification. Such a teacher could be granted a provisional state license while completing the required TESOL coursework at MWSU.
4. I am not interested in teaching in a public, PreK-12 setting in the United States. What might I do with a Graduate Certificate in TESOL?
a. The Graduate Certificate in TESOL verifies that you have completed extensive coursework in TESOL, including: instruction, assessment, methods, and theory at the graduate level. This might be useful and/or required for obtaining English teaching positions in other countries or university settings.
b. Often, a full Master's degree is required to teach in the university setting. Please refer to the individual job posting for the position in which you are interested to determine the best graduate program to help you achieve your professional goals.
5. I have already completed some coursework, which I think should fulfill requirements for my desired add-on certification (i.e., ELL). How can I find out if these previously completed courses will count toward meeting requirements?
a. You should request a "transcript evaluation" from the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE). To do this, you will need to log-in to the DESE Web Applications portal to request a transcript evaluation, which may include a small fee: https://apps.dese.mo.gov/weblogin/login/aspx
b. Next, you will need to mail all of your official university transcripts to: DESE Educator Certification, PO Box 480, Jefferson City, MO 65102. (This office does not accept faxed, scanned or emailed transcripts).
6. May I transfer course credits from another university to an MWSU graduate program?
a. Yes. You may transfer up to 6 credit hours of graduate level coursework to any of MWSU graduate programs, provided that your previously completed courses are sufficiently similar to courses in the MWSU degree/certificate program.
7. When I finish my MWSU coursework or degree/certificate program, how do I actually obtain my State of Missouri K-12 add-on ELL certification?
a. Once you have finished all required coursework for your add-on certification, you must fill out an application through the Missouri DESE Web Applications portal, as well as mail all university transcripts to DESE, in order to officially be approved by the state for your "additional add-on certification." Please refer to the guide for teachers on the DESE website for additional directions, DESE certification contact information, and a link to the DESE Web Applications portal: https://dese.mo.gov/educator-quality/certification/already-certified-teacher#addarea