Jun 14, 2024  
Graduate Catalog | 2018-2019 
Graduate Catalog | 2018-2019 Previous Edition

Middle Grades and Secondary Education, Graduate Certificate

The Graduate Certificate in Teaching - Middle Grades and Secondary Education is an 18 credit hour program, including the graduate student teaching/internship experience plus any background content deficiency courses, designed for students who hold a bachelor’s degree. Upon successful completion of the Graduate Certificate, students are eligible for the North Carolina Standard Professional 1 (SP1) Professional Educator’s License.

The required courses for the Graduate Certificate are identical to Phase I of the M.A.T. Upon completion of the Graduate Certificate, qualified students have the option of continuing into Phase II to complete the M.A.T. Admission to the Graduate Certificate is separate and distinct from admission to a graduate degree program and not an indication of automatic admission to the M.A.T. degree program. For more information on this option, refer to the M.A.T. in Middle Grades and Secondary Education .

All courses for the Graduate Certificate must be completed within four years.

General Requirements for Admission to the Graduate School

Please refer to admission information in The Graduate School  section.

Admission Requirements for the Graduate Certificate in Teaching program

  1. An undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited four-year institution
  2. A minimum undergraduate GPA of 2.75  (For alternative ways to demonstrate academic competence, contact the Office of Teacher Education Advising and Licensure (TEAL))
  3. One of the following:
    1. Hold a relevant undergraduate degree
    2. Obtain or already possess 24 credit hours of coursework in the content area for which licensure is sought
    3. Passing scores on PRAXIS II
  4. Three recommendations from persons knowledgeable of the candidate’s interaction with children or youth
  5. A statement of purpose
  6. Clear criminal background check
  7. Apply online at graduateschool.uncc.edu

Phase I/Graduate Certificate Requirements

Total = 18 Credit Hours

Clinical Field Experiences

Most courses require students to develop their knowledge, skills, and dispositions in public school/agency settings. All students are expected to complete clinical experiences in at least two significantly different settings. Clinical field experiences provide opportunities for helping all students learn, including children with exceptionalities and students from diverse ethnic/racial, linguistic, gender, and socioeconomic groups. During clinical experiences, students apply theories and understandings gained in coursework, analyze 6-12 student learning, and develop the ability to positively impact all learners. Arrangements for the clinical field experience are made through the Office of Field Experiences.

Candidates who are lateral entry teachers and teacher assistants must move beyond their own classrooms and schools for at least two clinical experiences. Alternative settings must be approved by the instructor. A limited number of clinical experiences may be approved in significantly different classrooms within their school of employment. Employed candidates are encouraged to seek assistance and support from their administrators.

Internship/Student Teaching

The graduate-level student teaching/internship is the culminating experience in the Graduate Certificate program, offering students the opportunity to demonstrate their readiness for the initial Standard Professional I teaching license. Students are assigned to an appropriate classroom for a full-time, semester-long experience under the supervision of the classroom teacher and University faculty. Lateral entry teachers and teacher assistants must contact the Office of Field Experiences to determine the appropriateness of their classroom for the student teaching/internship experience and licensure requirements. This contact should take place at least one semester before student teaching.


All students are assigned an advisor upon formal admission to the program. Students should consult with their advisors at least once each semester.


Upon successful completion of the Phase I/Graduate Certificate, students will be recommended for the North Carolina Standard Professional 1 (SP1) Professional Educator’s License. For this initial license, students are required to complete an electronic licensure portfolio that is created during coursework and student teaching.

Program Approval

All teacher education programs at UNC Charlotte are accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education. The Graduate Certificate in Middle Grades and Secondary Education has been approved by North Carolina State Board of Education.