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Mississippi has expanded opportunities for people who wish to become teachers. Specifically, the change benefits those who hold a degree in a subject other than education and wish to transition to a teaching career. Because of the change—which we detail below—Mississippi teacher certification is now more accessible.

Alternative Teacher Certification

If you hold a degree in a subject other than education and you’re ready to become a teacher, alternative teacher certification is likely right for you. Alternative certification will allow you to earn your state teaching license without going back to college for an additional degree. Alternative certification programs are as rigorous as traditional college programs, but often have fewer requirements for completion. If you’re still unsure if alternative certification is right for you, read this blog post.

Changes in State Policy

Recently, Mississippi changed state policy to expand who can earn Mississippi teacher certification using an alternative certification program. The change affects entry requirements.

Previously, to enroll in an alternative certification program in Mississippi, you needed to hold a bachelor’s degree with a grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher. Now, thanks to the policy change, you can enroll even if your GPA falls short of the 3.0 requirement. Instead, you can present an ACT score or SAT score, or a qualifying Praxis Core score, in lieu of the GPA.

Perhaps you’re concerned thinking you took the ACT or SAT ages ago and cannot recall your score, or perhaps you scored just below the cut off. Thankfully, you can schedule and take the ACT or SAT at any age. This means, instead of spending thousands of dollars taking university courses in an effort to improve your GPA, you can simply schedule, take, and pass one of the three available test options—the ACT, SAT, or Praxis Core.

Additionally, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the state has waived the Praxis Subject Assessment as an American Board entry requirement. This means you can enroll in American Board’s program and begin studying the online material while you wait to take your Praxis subject test down the road. This change remains in effect until December 31, 2021.

Earn Your Mississippi Teacher Certification

To become a teacher in Mississippi using an alternative program like American Board’s, simply complete the following steps.

  1. Enroll in American Board’s online teacher certification program.
    a. You must have 3.0 college GPA, OR
    b. You have an ACT score of 21 or higher, OR
    c. You have an SAT score of 1060 or higher, OR
    d. You have a qualifying Praxis Core score.
  2. Complete your testing requirements by passing American Board’s two required final exams, and passing the Praxis Subject Assessment.
  3. Get hired in a Mississippi school.
  4. Apply to the Mississippi Department of Education for your state-issued initial license.

It’s truly that easy to transition to your dream job as a Mississippi teacher. As is the case in every state, during your first year in the classroom you’ll be required to complete professional development activities to move from your initial license to your state-issued standard license.

Click here to learn more about Mississippi teacher certification.

Unsure if alternative teacher certification is right for you? Visit American Board’s YouTube page or browse American Board’s blog to hear from recent program graduates.

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