Alternative Teaching Certification Programs in Mississippi

Unlike many states, Mississippi keeps detailed statistics regarding alternative certification programs and their participants. That means alternative route candidates in this state can get a clear picture of what it entails to enter teaching via a nontraditional route.

Overall, the statistics paint a rosy picture of alternative certification in Mississippi. There are four state-approved paths, and the National Center for Alternative Certification reports that in 2008-2009 fully 90 percent of those enrolled in one of those paths completed their programs and received certification. That translated to 950 alternative route certifications issued in 2008-2009 according to NCAC.

Wondering what type of school district hires alternative certification candidates in Mississippi? Unlike some states where alternate route teachers are restricted to high need school districts, Mississippi candidates teach in a variety of settings. According to the NCAC, 30 percent are teaching in inner city schools, 25 percent in small towns, 30 percent in suburban districts, and 15 percent in rural areas.

Featured Online Programs:

Online programs may not be available in all states

Traditional On Campus Programs:

One fast path into the classroom is the Mississippi Alternate Path to Quality Teachers (MAPQT). Sponsored by the Mississippi Community College Foundation, this program results in a nonrenewable, one-year alternate route license in one of 17 content areas. Candidates must hold a bachelor's degree with a 2.0 or higher GPA from a regionally accredited college or university and pass the Praxis I and II tests. Once accepted, participants complete a 90-hour training program through one of seven community colleges. Participants who complete additional training can secure a renewable, five-year alternate route license.

If the idea of becoming a classroom teacher while earning a master's degree sounds appealing, consider the Master of Arts in teaching alternate route. This program has the same entrance requirements as the MAPQT. However, candidates for this program enroll in a master's of teaching program at an approved university and complete six graduate hours of preteaching course requirements. Upon completion of the six hours, candidates may apply for a nonrenewable, three-year alternate route license. The program is available through 10 universities in the state and in 17 content areas.

Schools in Mississippi:

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