Teacher Certification

The Educator Preparation Program at SMU prepares individuals for state examinations to become teachers certified through the Texas State Board of Educator Certification program (SBEC).

So You Want to Be a Teacher?

The credential required to teach any grade from pre-kindergarten through grade 12 in a Texas public school is a teaching certificate. The certificate identifies both the grade range and at the middle and high school levels the subject/content area. The four grade ranges are:

  • Early Childhood through 6th grade (EC - 6)
  • Grades 4 - 8
  • Grades 7 - 12
  • Kindergarten through 12th grade (K - 12)

This non-degree program incorporates 24 credit hours of education coursework and 6 credit hours of student teaching for a total of 30 credit hours.

Before enrolling in the Department of Teaching and Learning program, post baccalaureate students must provide the following:

  • Official transcript(s) showing degree conferred. Transcripts from countries outside the United States must be accompanied by an official transcript evaluation from a recognized SMU evaluation agency. The transcript evaluation must include a 3.00 GPA as validated by the course by course evaluation and the equivalency of the degree conferred.
  • If Baccalaureate Degree is conferred from an institution of higher education outside the United States, evidence must be provided to establish English language proficiency by one of the following: 1) Completion of a graduate degree at an institute of higher education in the United States or 2) Verification of satisfactory scores on an English language proficiency examination approved by the Texas Education Agency.
  • For those applying for EC-6 grades or 4-8 grades, at least 6 credit hours each in English, math, social studies and science with no grade lower than a C (2.0)
  • For those applying for 7-12 or K-12 grades, a major or at least 24 credit hours (half of which must be in upper division courses) in an approved teaching field with a GPA of at least 3.0
  • International students applying from countries where English is not the native language are required to provide scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).
  • An overall GPA of 3.0
  • Letter of reference from an employer or professor
  • Official interview with advisers in the Department of Teaching and Learning office
  • Written essay
  • Completion of application and application fee payment.

Special Note: The required courses in the educator preparation program at SMU are 5000-level courses. Education courses taken at other institutions generally are not eligible to fulfill SMU's program requirements.

At the SMU Simmons School of Education and Human Development, we believe that teachers should be trained to create engaging and student-centered learning experiences in both technology-resourced environments as well as in contexts where technology is not available. Best practice for the use of technology is discussed in the context of each course as applicable to content and methodology, and is integrated in the course sequence throughout the program to meet the requirements for certification in the state of Texas. Content methods courses specifically address the use of technology for data analysis to improve teaching and learning in order to increase student achievement.  Participation in the Educator Preparation Program does not guarantee a teaching position.

All candidates pursuing recommendation for teacher certification must undergo a criminal history background check prior to clinical teaching and employment as an educator. If a candidate has any reservations about their criminal background check, a preliminary evaluation can be obtained before applying to the SMU Educator Preparation Program.  For further information, go to TEA sites, Preliminary Criminal History Evaluation and National Criminal History Checks.

For more information about the Educator Preparation Program, please contact Samia Siddiqui, the adviser for the Department of Teaching and Learning.

Applicable resources of our program, specific information for admitted students, as well as our policies, program performance, and Texas educator employment projections can be found at Educator Preparation Program.