Program goal

The post-baccalaureate Certificate in Teaching program is designed for students who have earned bachelor’s degrees in fields other than education, who wish to become teachers in secondary schools in one or more subjects and for whom a master’s degree is not a priority. This program is for applicants who may already have earned a master’s degree or wish to earn a master’s degree in a specialized area of education later. Applicants must have a major or its equivalent in the subject they wish to teach.

Students are required to complete a minimum of 24 hours beyond the bachelor’s level, including the courses listed below. Equivalent courses taken within the past five years may transfer; however, a minimum of 27 credit hours, including clinical experiences, must be taken at VCU after admission to the program.

Student learning outcomes

  1. Learner and learning: Understand human development and learning theory appropriate to the age group they will teach and acquire an awareness of the diversity of the school-age population in cultural backgrounds and styles of learning
  2. Content: Demonstrate knowledge of the subjects they will teach
  3. Instructional practice: Demonstrate an ability to plan and implement effective teaching and measure student learning in ways that lead to sustained development and learning
  4. Professional responsibility: Develop an understanding of purposes for education and a defensible philosophical approach toward teaching and demonstrate professional dispositions

VCU Graduate Bulletin, VCU Graduate School and general academic policies and regulations for all graduate students in all graduate programs

The VCU Graduate Bulletin website documents the official admission and academic rules and regulations that govern graduate education for all graduate programs at the university. These policies are established by the graduate faculty of the university through their elected representatives to the University Graduate Council.

It is the responsibility of all graduate students, both on- and off-campus, to be familiar with the VCU Graduate Bulletin as well as the Graduate School website and academic regulations in individual school and department publications and on program websites. However, in all cases, the official policies and procedures of the University Graduate Council, as published on the VCU Graduate Bulletin and Graduate School websites, take precedence over individual program policies and guidelines.

Visit the academic regulations section for additional information on academic regulations for graduate students.

Graduation requirements

As graduate students approach the end of their academic programs and the final semester of matriculation, they must make formal application to graduate. No degrees will be conferred until the application to graduate has been finalized.

Graduate students and program directors should refer to the following graduation requirements as published in the Graduate Bulletin for a complete list of instructions and a graduation checklist.

Visit the academic regulations section for additional information on graduation requirements.

Apply online today.

Admission requirements

Admission requirements
Degree:Semester(s) of entry:Deadline dates:Test requirements:
CertificateFallFeb 1GRE
SpringOct 1
Summer Feb 1

In addition to the general admission requirements of the VCU Graduate School, the following requirements represent the minimum acceptable standards for admission:

  1. Bachelor’s degree with a major, or equivalent, in English
  2. Three letters of recommendation addressing the student’s potential for graduate study in education
  3. Statement of intent
  4. Transcripts of all previous college work
  5. Satisfactory scores on the GRE 

There are several tests that students must pass for admission to teacher preparation, admission to student teaching and licensure in Virginia. Students should consult the Teacher Preparation page on the School of Education website for current testing requirements. Admission to clinical experiences in schools requires a background check and fingerprinting.

Please visit the School of Education website for further information.

Degree requirements

In addition to the VCU Graduate School graduation requirements, students are required to complete course work in core and elective courses.

  1. Credit hour requirements: Students are required to complete a minimum of 33 credit hours depending on concentration. Note that three credit hours are taken at the undergraduate level.
  2. Grade requirements: Receipt of a grade of C or below in two courses constitutes automatic dismissal from the program. Courses with a grade below C cannot be used to satisfy degree requirements.
  3. Student teaching requirements: Students must successfully complete approved student teaching experience.
  4. Additional testing requirement: Students must pass Praxis II, where applicable, for licensure.

Curriculum requirements

Courses taken at the undergraduate level 1
TEDU 311Middle School Practicum (taken concurrently with TEDU 537)2
TEDU 312High School Practicum (taken concurrently with TEDU 548)1
EDUS 617/PSYC 657Advanced Educational Psychology for Secondary Teachers3
EDUS 673Democracy, Equity and Ethics in Education3
TEDU 537Secondary School Curriculum3
TEDU 548Teaching Secondary School English3
TEDU 562Reading Instruction in the Content Areas3
TEDU 588Classroom Management3
TEDU 681Investigations and Trends in Teaching3
TEDU 672Internship4
TEDU 674Internship II5
Total Hours33

The minimum total of graduate credit hours required for this certificate is 30.1


Program requirements consist of three undergraduate and 30 graduate credits. 

Communications and Enrollment Management
(804) 827-2670

Additional contact
Ross Collin, Ph.D.
Associate professor and graduate program director
(804) 828-1305

Program website: