Academic Catalog

Certification Programs

Program Overview

One of the distinctives of Seattle Pacific's undergraduate teacher education program is its academic rigor. Another, is that you can complete a bachelor's degree and the teacher certification process in four years.

Whether you want to be certified with an endorsement to teach pre-school, elementary school, secondary, pre-kindergarten through secondary, or special education, you will complete the requirements for the Residency Teacher Certification in the School of Education while completing a bachelor's degree at SPU. Your chosen academic major will match your teaching endorsement.

Earning a Residency Teacher Certificate at SPU identifies you as someone of significant academic achievement.

Residency Teacher Certification Program

The professional program leading to a Residency Teacher Certificate at Seattle Pacific consists of four stages of study:

  • Education Foundations
  • Endorsement Content
  • Methods
  • Professional Year

Each of these stages builds upon the preceding stage, supporting a developmental approach to teacher preparation.

Education Foundations

You will gain a broad base of knowledge in the first stage of the Residency Teacher Certification Program. In Education Foundations courses, you will be introduced to the theory and background of teaching, and you will observe this theory being applied by completing field experience requirements.

As a teacher candidate, you will also be required to reflect on the application of educational theory through discussion and writing. During the Education Foundations stage, you will meet with the certification office to plan your certification program and discuss the application process to the Residency Teacher Certification Program.

Endorsement Content

Your academic major will prepare you with the required content for your endorsement area. You may choose to pursue Residency Teacher Certification with an endorsement in elementary education, early childhood education, a secondary content area(s), music, art, theatre, or special education. For a full list of which academic majors correlate with endorsement areas, please contact the Certification Office.


During the Methods stage, you will begin to apply the content knowledge that you have gained for your intended endorsement by completing Methods coursework and spending time in a school setting.  This provides an opportunity to synthesize your knowledge of educational foundations, subject matter, methodology, classroom management, assessment, and student development.  

Professional Year

In the Professional Year, students will complete a year-long internship which provides practical, real-world teaching experience and serves as a bridge between academic coursework and becoming a certified teacher.