ESL Teacher Certification in Missouri

Jan 02, 2019

Your native ability to speak English will prove invaluable in your new career as an ESL teacher. Read on to find out how to prepare with a proper education, take the correct exams, and get yourself certified as a teacher in Missouri!

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Just like other teachers in the state of Missouri, ESL instructors must complete a teacher education program prior to getting certified. Administrative prerequisites and suitable exam scores are required as well.

Requirements for ESL Teacher Certification in Missouri

Average Salary for Teachers in (2017)* $52,700 (Elementary), $52,620 (Middle), $51,720 (Secondary)
Required Degree Master's Degree or Graduate Certificate
Degree Field Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)
Testing Requirements Missouri General Education Assessment (MoGEA), Missouri Educator Profile (MEP), Missouri Pre-Service Teacher Assessment (MoPTA), Missouri Content Assessment for grade level

*Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Education Requirements for ESL Teacher Certification in Missouri

After completing a bachelor's program in education with a student teaching experience, potential teachers of English to non-native speakers will need to find a graduate program for certification. The shorter Graduate Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) provides a gateway for unsupervised classroom conduction for non-English speakers. Students who pursue the graduate certificate can expect programs to consist of approximately 18 credits and include courses such as linguistic theory, grammatical analysis, and principles of second language acquisition. There is also a Master of Arts in TESOL, which requires a longer investment of time. Classes in this two-year program might include early English literature, introduction to research methods, and a course in theory.

Testing Requirements for Missouri ESL Teacher Certification

All educators will have several Missouri Educator Gateway Assessment (MEGA) exams to pass on their way to becoming certified ESL teachers. To start, the Missouri Educator Profile (MEP) is a mandatory survey that, while not scored in the traditional sense, provides a vital personality analysis to the state of Missouri. This 192-question multiple-choice 'test' can be completed at any pace, and those taking it are free to take a break and come back to it at another date. No official testing center is needed for this exam, as it can be sent from any computer with an internet connection.

The four-part Missouri General Education Assessment (MoGEA) consists of Reading Comprehension and Interpretation, Writing, Mathematics, and Science and Social Studies subtests. Completing these in one session will take four and a half hours, but examinees have the option to sit for multiple testing sessions. Passing scores vary depending on the educational institution giving the exam.

There is also the Missouri Pre-Service Teacher Assessment (MoPTA) which evaluates student teachers as they work their way through their practicum sessions. If allowed by the educational institution, video recordings can be used to supplement the four components required for submission as part of the exam. The goal of this test is to help student teachers grow as educators, and identify core strengths and areas that can be improved upon. After the passing of the submission deadline, scores will be sent in no more than four weeks.

Lastly, the Missouri Content Assessments are designed for specific areas in which teachers are assigned. Eighth-grade English teachers will need the Middle School: Language Arts exam, while high school teachers will take the Secondary Education: English test. A third-grade teacher will need to pass all four subtests on the Elementary Education Multi-Content exam. Passing each multiple-choice test requires a score of 220 on a scale of 100-300.

Certification Requirements for ESL Teachers in Missouri

At all grade levels, ESL teachers looking for certification in Missouri will apply for an Initial Professional Certificate (IPC), which entitles them to teach a classroom without supervision. Earning this certificate requires undergraduate GPA levels of a minimum 2.75 out of 4.00 for overall coursework, and a 3.00 in all education-related courses. In case a teacher has not undergone a background check in the twelve months before applying for certification, they will need to submit to a new one through the Missouri State Highway Patrol's website. Evidence of passing all assessments must be provided at the time of application. Once submitted, processing time is dependent on administrative backlog, time of year, and the timely receipt of documentation, including official transcripts.

Extra Resources for ESL Teaching Certification in Missouri

If you wish to review for any MEGA assessments you might be taking, Study.com has you covered. Our database has practice guides, including the ones listed below, to give you an idea of what to expect on the exams you'll be taking for certification:

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