Engaging Minds, Transforming Lives


Admission to the Teacher Certification Program

Admission to the University and admission to the Teacher Certification Program are two separate entities. The requirements for admission to teacher education at Southwestern University are as follows:

  • A grade point average of 2.5 or above on a minimum of 60 semester hours of work completed.
  • A grade of at least "C-" in an English composition course.
  • Satisfactory scores on the Texas Higher Education Assessment (THEA) tests or approved exemption.
  • Proof of professional insurance for seniors in the field-based program and student teaching through membership in a statewide teacher organization.
  • Completion of an interactive, sustained intercultural experience, including no fewer than 20 hours (in some cases two experiences may be used to accumulate the required hours). The experience must be over an extended time period (typically one semester). Some students may need to choose a summer experience, due to scheduling constraints. If a summer experience is chosen, it must be at least 3 weeks in duration.

    Most students will participate in this intercultural experience prior to their junior year. Regardless of whether the experience is completed locally, out of state or in another country, the experience should represent a significant "stretch" for the applicant.

    Students must submit a proposal prior to engaging in the experience. Proposals must be submitted and approved by the Education Department by the following dates: For a Summer experience - noon on the Friday before spring break; for a fall experience - noon on the Friday before spring break; for a spring experience - noon on the Monday following the Thanksgiving holiday.

    Typical course requirements such as field placements and observations do not fulfill this requirement. Special programs that include educational components such as the Jamaica and Innovative Schools programs may fulfill this requirement, if the student's proposal meets the requirements.

    Students are required to keep a journal that documents and reflects on the selected experience. Post-experience reflection papers must be submitted to and approved by the department faculty in order to finalize this admission requirement. Final reflection papers are due by December 1 for fall experiences, May 1 for spring experiences and September 1 for summer experiences. Specific guidelines may be obtained in the Education Department, Mood-Bridwell Hall, room 235.
If an applicant is denied admission to the Teacher Certification Program, he or she may appeal. This appeal process is initiated by contacting the Chair of the Education Department.

Courses which may be taken while seeking admission to the Teacher Certification Program are EDU 40-311, 40-313, 40-483, 40-553, 40-593, 43-403, 43-473, 44-643, 44-653, 45-733. No other professional Education courses may be taken until after admission to the Teacher Certification Program.

*Prerequisites for 45-733 are completion of at least 45 semester hours with a 2.5 grade point average. The prerequisite for 40-593 is a minimum of six hours in Education.

All students considering certification to teach should join the SU-TEACHER listserv. Additional information about the Education Major and Certification requirements can be found on the Education Department and Certification Segue site.