Elementary Education Teaching Certification

Master of arts (M.A.) with teaching certification

Admissions requirements

  • Pre-application interview
  • Bachelor's degree with GPA of 3.0 or higher in the last two years of undergraduate work.
  • A concise written statement of purpose (250 words or less) indicating the applicant’s reasons for seeking admission to the program and what the applicant hopes to accomplish during the program of study.
  • Two letters of recommendation.
  • A resume or curriculum vitae (CV).

Student TEstimonial

    "The professors and I had thorough conversations about what my career goals were and how to create an action plan to develop myself into an effective teacher."Zyaire Kahnah

Program overview

This program is offered in-person.

This master's program meets state requirements to obtain elementary education certification at the graduate level.

The program is designed for non-certified elementary educators who:

  • Are currently employed full-time in a K-5th grade classroom that can serve as your internship placement or can be placed for a full-time internship or paid position during the school year
  • Want to be a part of a supportive professional learning community
  • Are ready to complete the required online classes in 12 months

Please note: admission to this program requires an interview prior to submitting an application to the program. Complete the form prior to December 1. You will be notified by December 1 to schedule your interview. Please contact Dr. Regena Nelson for more information.


Why elementary education at Western Michigan University?

  • Students in this program co-teach with trained mentors and receive extensive coaching during the school year. 
  • Students in this program complete a year-long clinical experience with the required coursework for certification. 
  • Students in this program work in cohorts and receive targeted feedback on their practice as they apply what they are learning in their coursework. 
  • Students will have the opportunity to be placed in the district as full-time teachers and receive comprehensive induction support for three years
  • WMU is ranked No. 3 in the state of Michigan and in the top 100 public institutions for best graduate schools in education.
  • This program is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).
  • All WMU programs offer an optional WMU Signature Designation, which helps students degrees stand out through an integrative learning project in one of several pathways including: Teaching & Student Success, Leadership, Health & Wellbeing, Diversity, Inclusion, Equity & Justice, and more! 

Who should apply?

Those who hold a bachelor's degree and are seeking initial teaching certification in elementary education.

    1. Complete this form to be contacted by December 1 for a pre-application interview.
    2. Interviews will determine selection for the cohort.
    3. Once selected for the cohort, submit the graduate program application.

Cost & Funding

Helpful links


Regena Nelson

Dr. Regena Nelson, Program Coordinator