How to Become a Gym Teacher in Michigan

Jan 02, 2019

Gym teachers work with students of all ages. In Michigan, prospective gym teachers are required to complete a number of education, training and testing steps in order to qualify for state teaching licensure.

Gym teachers educate students on health, fitness, and sports. They play an important educational role that is influential in the sphere of preventative health and enables young people to learn to work in teams and value wellness. In Michigan, aspiring gym teachers must go through a number of education and testing steps before they can apply for licensure. These steps are described here.

Gym Teacher Certification Requirements in Michigan

Average Salary for Teachers in Michigan (2017)* $62,720 (Elementary), $64,620 (Middle), $62,910 (Secondary)
Required Degree Bachelor's Degree
Degree Field Physical Education
Testing Requirements Michigan Test for Teacher Certification (MTTC) Physical Education Test (test code 044). Elementary-level candidates will also need to pass the MTTC Elementary Education Test (test code 103)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Step 1: Earn a Degree

In Michigan, the first thing an aspiring gym teacher should do is undertake a bachelor's degree program with an accredited university or college, alongside an approved physical education teacher preparation program. There are a number of approved programs in Michigan, including physical education, health & exercise science and kinesiology majors. These programs have varying curricula but typically include courses in the following subject areas:

  • Physiology and anatomy
  • Exercise physiology
  • Kinesiology
  • Sports and games

Candidates are also required to maintain at least a 2.5 GPA and also undertake student teaching and an internship. In addition, candidates must satisfy the Michigan Department of Education's (MDE) reading course requirement, which obliges elementary teacher candidates to complete six semester credit hours in the subject and secondary-level candidates to complete three semester credit hours. Furthermore, all candidates must complete a course in first aid and cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

Current certified teachers who wish to add a physical education endorsement must complete 20 semester hours of coursework at an approved university or college and then pass the required tests.

Step 2: Pass All Required Tests

Gym teacher candidates must pass the Michigan Test for Teacher Certification (MTTC) Physical Education Test (test code 044). The test consists of 100 multiple-choice questions and is offered as either a computer-based or paper-based test. The minimum passing score is 220.

Candidates who wish to teach at physical education at the elementary level must also pass the MTTC Elementary Education Test (test code 103). This test is also comprised of 150 multiple-choice questions and the passing score is 220.

Candidates can register for tests online through the MTTC website.

Step 3: Apply for Licensure

Once all of the education and testing requirements have been satisfied, candidates may apply for initial teacher licensure and a physical education endorsement. Applications must be submitted online through the Michigan Online Educator Certification System (MOECS).

When an application is accepted, candidates will be awarded a Standard Teaching Certificate, which is issued for five years and can be renewed an unlimited number of times.

Michigan Gym Teacher Certification Resources

Gym teacher candidates preparing for certification exams can click on the following links to access study materials for their Michigan certification tests:

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