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  • Teaching Certificate in Middle School Education

    Drexel University’s online part-time Post-Bachelor’s Teaching Certificate in Middle Level Education is designed for those who already hold a bachelor’s degree and want to qualify for state teacher certification for grades 4-8. Perfect for career changers and current educators who do not have a formal teacher certification, this program provides a thorough and highly specialized look at middle level education. The mix of online classes and in-person field and student teaching experiences is designed to help you feel comfortable in your classroom from day one.

    What is a Certification in Middle School Education?

    Drexel’s online Post-Bachelor’s Teaching Certificate in Middle Level Education prepares you to become an educator for grades 4-8 in one of the following subject areas:

    • English
    • Math
    • Science
    • Social Studies

    The curriculum mixes foundational pedagogy classes with courses that focus on teaching your specific subject area. Sample courses include "Teaching the Middle School Child" and "Evaluation of Instruction." The curriculum also covers topics like using culturally responsive pedagogy for diverse classrooms, making decisions based on the Pennsylvania Professional Code of Conduct, and creating an optimal learning environment for middle level students.

    This program will prepare you for a Pennsylvania Instructional I Certificate. Through interstate reciprocity agreements, a Pennsylvania teaching certificate may be converted to the analogous teaching certificate in most states. We recommend contacting your state’s Department of Education to find out more about these transfer procedures. Learn more about interstate reciprocity policies, eligibility, and requirements in other states.

    Program Features

    • Prepares you for Pennsylvania Instructional I Certification—through Interstate Reciprocity Agreements, you can become certified to teach in almost any state in the nation
    • Drexel’s teacher education programs are approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education
    • Classes are completely online—the only face-to-face requirements are the various field experiences and student teaching
    • Drexel’s field placement office works with you to secure appropriate school placements, no matter where you’re based
    • Credits earned in this program may be applied toward the MS in Teaching, Learning and Curriculum

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    What Can You Do with a Teaching Certificate in Middle Level Education?

    A teaching certificate in middle level education prepares you to obtain a state teaching certification. Once you receive your state teaching certification, you will be prepared to lead your own classroom.

    Drexel’s program is specifically tailored to the middle school educator, and the curriculum focuses on the skills you need to effectively run a middle school classroom. This goes beyond pedagogical content knowledge to include topics such as creating a safe and productive learning environment, developing informed teaching practices that meet the needs of diverse learners, and using data and classroom-based evidence to inform your teaching.

    Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Teaching Middle-Level Salary Expectations

    Teaching salaries for middle school educators will vary state-by-state. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary for a middle school teacher is $57,720. For more information, please see our Teacher Salary Guide.

    What Degree Do You Need to Teach Middle School?

    Most middle schools require you to have a state teaching certificate. You will need to meet certain requirements to qualify to obtain your certification. In Pennsylvania, you must obtain a recommendation to be certified. This can be accomplished by successfully completing a bachelor’s or master’s degree in teacher education or by earning a certificate like Drexel’s Post-Bachelor’s Teaching Certificate in Middle Level Education, which is designed for those with undergraduate degrees in non-education fields. In these programs, you will learn how to create safe, positive, and productive learning environments that support and facilitate learning for students of all backgrounds.

    Additional requirements need to be met to earn your teaching certification, such as passing required exams. These requirements vary by state. Learn more about state certification requirements.

    How Do I Earn a Teaching Certificate Online?

    Teacher certification programs can be completed online or in-person. Online teaching certificates, such as Drexel’s Post-Bachelor’s Teaching Certificate in Middle Level Education, typically consist of online courses mixed with field and student teaching experiences.

    Online courses in Drexel’s program are asynchronous. That means you don’t need to meet at the same time every week, and can instead focus on learning when it’s convenient for you. Your professor will upload assignments and lectures every week, and you’ll complete and submit your assignments via Drexel’s online learning portal. Your academic experience will vary from course to course, but most classes consist of a combination of discussion posts, quizzes, tests, or a series of projects. Throughout your time in the program you will have lots of opportunities to connect with your professors and classmates. Learn more about online learning at Drexel.

    How to Become a Teacher if You Already Have a Degree

    Even if you already have a degree in a non-education field, it’s not too late to become a teacher! You will need to take teacher certification courses and obtain your teaching certificate. Drexel’s program is designed for those who already hold a bachelor’s degree and want to teach grades 4-8. Through a mix of online courses, field experience, and student teaching experience, you’ll graduate with the pedagogical foundation you need to teach in your own classroom.

    Related Programs

    State restrictions may apply to some programs.


    This program is organized into four 10-week quarters per year (as opposed to the traditional two semester system) which means you can take more courses in a shorter time period. One semester credit is equivalent to 1.5 quarter credits.

    Core Courses  
    EDEX 542 Fundamentals of Special Education 3.0
    EDUC 520 Professional Studies in Instruction 3.0
    EDUC 507 Teaching the Middle School Child 3.0
    EDUC 522 Evaluation of Instruction 3.0
    EDUC 565 Foundations in Instructing ELLs 3.0
    EDEX 544 The Inclusive Classroom 3.0
    EDLT 525 Design for Learning with Digital Media 3.0
    EDEX 546 Literacy & Content Skill Development (PK-8) 3.0
    EDUC 540 Graduate Student Teaching Seminar 3.0
    Concentration Courses  
    EDUC 564 ML English/Language Arts Methods (4-8) 1.5
    MTED 563 ML Math Methods (4-8) 1.5
    EDUC 561 ML Science Methods (4-8) 1.5
    EDUC 562 ML Social Studies Methods (4-8) 1.5
    Total Credits 33.0

    Admissions Criteria

    • A bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution with a GPA of 3.0 or higher  
    • Students pursuing teacher certification must meet the PA State content course requirements for their specific area of certification. Content course reviews are conducted at time of application. Coursework missing from a student's undergraduate background or below the minimum 3.0 GPA cumulative average may be taken concurrently with the graduate program.

    Required Documents

    With multiple ways to submit documents, Drexel makes it easy to complete your application. Learn more by visiting our Completing Your Application Guide.

    • A completed application
    • Official transcripts from all universities or colleges and other post-secondary educational institutions (including trade schools) attended
    • Two letters of recommendation (professional or academic)
    • An essay describing why you're interested in pursuing graduate study in this field and stating your intended area of certification (e.g. middle-level mathematics)
    • Additional requirements for International Students


    The tuition rate for the academic year 2019-2020 is $978 per credit. (A 25% tuition savings off Drexel's regular tuition rate of $1303 per credit)

    • This program is eligible for Financial Aid.
    • Special tuition rates available for Drexel University AlumniMilitary members, and members of our Partner Organizations
      • These rates apply only to new online students and students being readmitted.
      • These rates apply only to fully online courses. Hybrid or on-campus courses may have different rates.
      • Tuition rates are subject to increase with the start of each academic year in the fall term.
      • All students must contact applyDUonline@drexel.edu within the first two weeks of the term to request tuition savings for which they qualify.
      • Special rates cannot be combined. If you qualify for more than one special rate, you'll be given the one with the largest savings.
      • When receiving special tuition plans with Drexel University Online, you may not combine them with other tuition benefits that may be available from Drexel University.

    Field Experience

    There are four types of field experiences in K-12 classrooms required for certification embedded throughout the program:

    • Observing: (EDEX 542, 544, 546, EDUC 520, 565, Methods)
    • Participating & Assisting: (EDEX 542, 544, 546, EDUC 520, 565, Methods)
    • Pre-Student Teaching: (2 weeks up to 40 hours connected to Methods course prior to student teaching)
    • Graduate Student Teaching: (Capstone Experience 12 weeks)

    The Pennsylvania Department of Education requires approximately 130 hours of field experiences in addition to Graduate Student Teaching. Up to 40 hours of field experiences (except student teaching) may be transferred in from previous PK-12 school-based experiences.

    You should not take it upon yourself to arrange any field experience on your own, however, you can list your desired school district on all field placement applications. Once you submit all required clearances (PA requires FBI, Child Abuse, Criminal History, and TB) and the appropriate Observation or Field Placement Application (listing a preferred district), a Field Experience Coordinator from Drexel's School of Education's Field Placement Office (FPO) will make every effort to arrange a school-based, appropriate field placement related to your area of certification in a location reasonably close to where you live or work, providing that the requested school meets PA State requirements. The FPO must receive a confirmation for all field experiences from the School District's Field Placement office prior to allowing students to enter into any school classroom.

    For Graduate Student Teaching, you're required to spend a total of 12 weeks, full-time, under the supervision of a certified cooperating teacher and university supervisor. At a minimum, 6 of the 12 weeks of student teaching must be located within a public or charter school. Once Drexel's FPO locates an acceptable site, you'll work with the school's principal, university supervisor, and certified cooperating teacher regarding meeting the course's objectives/goals. You'll videotape yourself teaching and periodically send tapes to the Field Experience Coordinator for evaluation. In addition, you'll be required to complete the required hours of regular in-class observations and fieldwork in most core Pedagogy courses.

    Drexel students are also able to complete student teaching at Department of Defense Dependent Schools (DoDDS.)


    You must submit the required clearances to enter into PreK-12 schools in PA, another state, or an international school. Since the process of obtaining clearances can take up to 8 weeks, you're encouraged to begin the process within the first term at Drexel.

    PA requires that pre-service teachers must submit copies of all required clearances (FBI, PA Child Abuse, and PA Criminal Background) to the FPO by the second week of the first term. In addition, some school districts will require that you obtain the TB Skin test. You should retain all original copies and present them to the schools during all field experiences as well as fax them to the FPO at 215-571-4270.

    • Clearances (Out of State)
      For applicants not living in PA, please contact your State’s Department of Education or local School District to determine which clearances will be required in your state/school district to enter classrooms for all types of field experiences. Once obtained, follow the instructions above to submit them to Drexel’s School of Education.
    • Clearances (International)
      For applicants living overseas or planning to complete field experiences in an approved International or DoDDS school please obtain FBI and Criminal History background checks at the very least. Also please indicate your intentions within your application essay and contact the School of Education for more information regarding International Field Experiences at 215-895-6770.

    International Students

    If you wish to complete the field experience requirement outside of the United States, you must contact the School of Education's Field Placement Office to be aware of the international deadline and procedures to submit your field placement application. All field experiences must be completed in a U.S. accredited school, or an approved international school whereby English is the language spoken in all classrooms, and the school is following PA Department of Education and US Department of Education guidelines. You should not choose field placements which include working with students with special needs or students whose first language is not English.

    Typically students living overseas student teach in a U.S. affiliated school, such as on an Army base, under the guidance of a U.S. fully certified teacher at the grade level and subject appropriate for the intended area of certification. The cooperating teacher needs to be certified in the U.S. with a minimum of 3 years teaching experience in the area of certification being pursued. All international field placements will be arranged by the School of Education's Field Placement Coordinator.

    • All PA certification candidates living overseas must submit the original PDE required Health form signed by a US Licensed Physician or US Licensed Physician's Assistant prior to completing the TIMS certification application.
    • PreK-4 students can only take the PECT exams in the USA, Canada, Puerto Rico or Virgin Islands.

    Any student (U.S. Citizen or otherwise) living overseas or planning to move overseas should contact their advisor to discuss their situation prior to enrolling in the program or completing courses and certification requirements. 

    Academic Calendar

    2019-2020 Academic Year


    Classes Begin

    Classes End

    Exams Begin

    Exams End

    Fall 2019

    September 23, 2019

    December 7, 2019

    December 9, 2019

    December 14, 2019

    Winter 2020

    January 6, 2020

    March 16, 2020

    March 17, 2020

    March 21, 2020

    Spring 2020

    March 30, 2020

    June 8, 2020

    June 9, 2020

    June 13, 2020

    Summer 2020

    June 22, 2020

    August 30, 2020

    September 2, 2020

    September 5, 2020

    Apply today for the Teaching Certificate in Middle School Education

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