Steps for Becoming a Teacher

“I am in awe of the opportunities that Grand Valley gives students to become the best versions of themselves, whether that's through academic development, leadership development, or professional development.”

Selena Brown, Comprehensive Science and Arts for Teaching Major / Class of 2020

1. Become a GVSU Student

The first step to becoming a teacher is to apply to GVSU. You need to be a GVSU student before you may enroll in Education courses. You will begin taking courses in your first year at GVSU, then apply for a Teacher Apprenticeship in your junior year.

Apply to GVSU

2. Explore Education Program Options

GVSU offers multiple undergraduate programs for teachers to become certified to teach specific grade levels. In the Education courses, you will learn the most effective, research-based teaching methods to help you meet the unique needs of each of your students.

Explore Program Options and Requirements

3. Connect with Your Advisor

Academic advising engages students in the process of exploring and defining their academic and career goals and in creating effective strategies to achieve these goals. Through collaborative relationships with academic advisors, students are encouraged and supported as they develop the skills necessary to take responsibility for their own development and success.

Schedule Advising Appointment

4. Plan Your Course Sequence on myPath

GVSU provides all students with myPath, a tool designed to assist you in preparing for and tracking your academic progress toward graduation. It encompasses both a degree analysis audit and an educational planner. This tool is not intended to take the place of an advisor. We strongly recommend meeting with your advisor periodically to review your academic plan.

Plan Ahead with myPath

5. Take Your Teacher Certification Test

GVSU's Education courses prepare you to take the Michigan Test for Teacher Certification (MTTC) exam through the Michigan Department of Education. 

NOTE: You do not need to take or pass your certification test before applying for teacher certification, but you can choose to take the certification exam before your Teacher Apprenticeship or Teacher Internship.

Teacher Certification Exam Information  

6. Apply for Teacher Apprenticeship

During your junior year at GVSU, you will apply for a Teacher Apprenticeship. During the Apprenticeship semester, you will work alongside a current teacher in an area school.

Apply for Teacher Apprenticeship

7. Apply for Student Teacher Internship

During your Teacher Apprenticeship semester, you will apply for a Teacher Internship. As a Teacher Intern, you will work independently as a full-time teacher in a classroom with a current teacher serving as your mentor.

Apply for Teacher Internship

8. Complete CPR & First Aid Training

Before you apply for teacher certification in Michigan, you must complete a CPR & First Aid course from an approved provider. We recommended you complete CPR & First Aid training either during or before your final Teacher Internship semester. Each certification for CPR and First Aid training is valid for 2 years.

List of Approved Providers for CPR and First Aid Certification

9. Apply for Teacher Certification

Once you have completed all the requirements needed for teacher certification, you will need to apply through the Michigan Online Educator Certification System (MOECS). All Michigan teachers seeking certification of any kind must register with MOECS to receive their certificate.

State Certification Information

10. Apply for Graduation

Students should submit their application to graduate the semester before their degree requirements will be completed.

Graduation Information

Page last modified January 30, 2023