Graduate Certificate / M.A.T. in Elementary Education

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Elementary school teachers are uniquely positioned to motivate, mentor and mold young people. Whether your career path has always been headed toward education, or you are looking to make a change, we will help you learn what it takes to be a great teacher.

Our streamlined graduate certificate program (21 hours) leads to initial certification for those who hold bachelor’s degrees in other fields and are seeking the North Carolina Standard Professional 1 (SP1) Educator’s License in elementary education. Upon successful completion of the Graduate Certificate, you are eligible for a level “A” professional educator’s license for North Carolina.

Graduate Certificate Program Planning Sheet

Students who complete the graduate certificate may choose to pursue an M.A.T. in Elementary Education (9 hours) and qualify for the North Carolina Standard Professional 2 (SP2) Educator’s License.

Why choose our program?

Cost Effective

Complete our streamlined certificate program at a reduced rate. Learn more about scholarship opportunities and financial aid here.

Flexible Study

The program consists of 85% online coursework that can be completed in as few as 16 months. Each semester students will engage in face-to-face focus practice lab sessions to build essential teaching skills. The program culminates in a 15-week student teaching experience, and currently employed teachers can complete student teaching in their own classroom.

Strong Network

The program provides a collaborative network between faculty, peers, and clinical educators to develop deep understandings of content and teaching practices. The program supports residency teachers in North Carolina school districts who must enroll in a teacher preparation program while teaching as well as those not currently teaching who want to pursue a career in the field.

Academic Excellence

UNC Charlotte has a strong reputation for academic excellence and is a leader in the field of teacher preparation.

Graduate Employability

Our graduates are highly competitive securing employment in school districts as teachers in North Carolina and across the country.

Student Opportunities

The Office of Teacher Education Advising and Licensure (TEAL) is an information and student success resource for current and potential teacher candidates. Their staff provides a variety of services such as: information on (and preparation resources for) testing required for program admission and teacher licensure, verification of program completion for teacher licensure, guidance surrounding the teacher licensure application process, and information on campus resources and scholarships/loans for education students.

The Center for Graduate Life provides the support and sense of community students need to meet the challenges and opportunities they will face throughout their graduate experience. The Center offers workshops on topics like grant writing, presentation skills, publishing in scholarly journals, and understanding the academic job search. Virtual workshops are available online on subjects such as graduate academic writing and research writing at the graduate level.

The University Career Center provides services, programs, and support for students and alumni. Services include such options as an Education Career Fair held each spring semester, individual appointments with career advisors and the Hire-A-Niner online job and internship database.

Learn from Experts in the Field

Our faculty members not only demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of their field, but also a passion for the ideas embodied in their discipline. Faculty have authored multiple books such as Improving Teaching and Learning: Using Self-regulation to Engage in Strategic Action, Research and Action Research: Using Strategic Inquiry to Improve Teaching and Learning, to name a few.

Professors have also been recognized for their teaching, research and student mentoring as recipients of several prestigious awards, including the Teaching Fellows Teaching Excellence Award, the Bank of America Award for Teaching Excellence, the Board of Governor’s Award for Teaching Excellence.

Do you want to help shape the minds of the next generation? If so, click here to learn more about the requirements for the Master of Arts in Teaching – Elementary Education, graduate student financial aid and the graduate application process.

For more information on the program please contact:

Dr. Karen Cross
Director of the Elementary Education Graduate Certificate Program

​Ashley Langan
Academic Advisor

Education Recruitment Office