missouri flag

When calculating their methodology behind the “Best States for Education” U.S. News considered the following of each state:

  • health care
  • Education
  • Economy
  • Opportunity
  • Infrastructure
  • Crime and Correction
  • Fiscal Stability
  • Quality of Life

Of the 50 states, Missouri ranked 25 for best states for education. What this indicates is that Missouri ranks right down the middle when factoring in these metrics. To be specific, Missouri ranked 27th for higher education, and 19th for K-12 education. If this helps, New York State ranked 31st for K-12 education, but 14th for higher education. We needed to take a closer look at the data to get a better picture of Missouri. The areas where Missouri shined were: high school graduation rate, Pre-K Quality, low unemployment rate, high levels of entrepreneurship, highly affordable, and fiscally stable. When examining these strengths what we determined was that Missouri is a fantastic place to make a start as a teacher. You are likely to have far less student debt, enter into an affordable living situation and in a state where you are highly likely to find employment. In fact, all types of teachers are in demand in Missouri whether you’re teaching Art or special education. When it comes to quality of life, Missouri ranked 15th in the nation as this state offers some great natural perks as well as social perks. Cities like Saint Louis are up and coming and ripe for the taking with some fantastic natural getaways at your doorstep. If you are looking for a secure place to work as a new teacher, Missouri is a fantastic option.

Requirements for Teaching Licensure
in Missouri

The “traditional” route to certification in Missouri involves four main steps:

1.) Complete a Bachelor’s Degree in Education

For the most traditional route towards certification, complete a bachelor’s degree in education. Usually, a bachelor’s degree in education requires about 120 credit hours of general education courses, education courses, electives, and practicum experience. Though in Missouri, those pursuing secondary education may be required to fulfill about additional credit hours for employment. The common curriculum usually aligns with state certification requirements, including both theory and practicum. We suggest you check the Licensing Guide For Missouri for an approved route towards certification.

2.) Complete a State-Approved Teacher Certification Program

Missouri teachers must complete an education preparation that has been approved by the Missouri State Board of Education. A “state-approved” teacher preparation program means working in an educational facility- typically a public school with a supervisor. Essentially it’s like having supervised on-the-job training before you are actually on the job. Teacher preparation programs are an important step into the field of education. Here you will gain exposure to the school system, learn how to work with a team, and learn how to put education theory into practice. Here’s a great resource for educator preparation programs in the state of Missouri.

3.) Pass the State-Mandated Exams

The Missouri exam requirements include the College Basic Academic Subjects Examination, and the Praxis II exam.

Are you finished with your bachelor’s in education, teacher preparation, and exams? Here’s a helpful checklist to ensure you have everything in order for licensure:

  • Complete a Background Check
  • Demonstrate Proof of Degree Completion with Official Transcripts
  • Demonstrate Proof of Teacher Preparation Completion
  • Provide Passing Scores for State-Mandated Exams
  • Complete an Application for Teacher Certification in the State of Missouri
  • Pay a non-refundable Certification Processing Fee

If you have a bachelor’s degree in an area other than education or are simply looking for other methods that lead to licensure check out these alternative routes towards teacher certification for the state of Missouri.

Online Education Program Admission Requirements

Every school varies when it comes to admission and furthermore, admission requirements will differ depending on whether or not you are looking to complete an undergraduate or graduate degree. Let’s first take a look at general admission requirements for a bachelor’s degree in education at the University of Missouri

Generally speaking in order to gain admission to a bachelor’s degree in education you must have a high school diploma or have passed a GED with an acceptable GPA. College entrance exams like the ACT and SAT are still very common and score requirements vary per institution. In general, the application requirements include the application itself, the 2 or 3 letters of recommendations, an entrance essay demonstrating how you are good fit with the institution and occasionally an interview.

Admissions into a master’s program also varies but many require: a bachelor’s degree with least a 2.75 GPA, 2 years of teaching experience, 2-3 letters of recommendation from academic and professional supervisors, written essays of intent/ demonstrated passion and desire to attend program, and a GRE score. It’s important to check with your institution as some schools do not require a GRE score. If English is not your first language you must complete a TOEFL exam with a minimum score of 550 on the paper-based TOEFL.

Average Salaries
For Common Educator Roles in Missouri

  • Preschool Teacher:$27,800
  • Primary School Educator:$48,460
  • Secondary School Educator:$47,510
  • Higher Education Administrator:$139,980
  • Principal:
  • Special Education Teacher:$100,637
  • Math or Science High School Teacher:$52,680
  • ESL Teacher:$41,600
  • School Psychologist:$64,560

Scholarships for Future Educators in the State of Missouri

Missouri TEACH Grant

Jim & Vi Pollard Memorial Scholarship Fund

Minority Teaching Scholarship

The 5 Best Online Education Degree
Providers in Missouri

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Missouri has a total of 21 education degree-granting institutions that provide online education degrees. These range from community colleges offering associates in early childhood development or human services, to nationally ranked universities that offer a wide spread of masters level and education endorsement-level programming. While future students may want to go to the “best” online institution in their state for education degrees, they should take some to double check what exact degrees are offered by their institution of choice at the directory of all online education degrees at the bottom of the page. To select the following top five universities, we’ve looked at two factors: the number of fully online education degrees offered by an institution, and an “academic prestige” score. The academic prestige score takes into account metrics such as average amount of financial need received, average class sizes, admissions standards, and the percentage of faculty holding terminal degrees in their field. Also note that the tuition numbers below are just indicators of relatively how expensive or affordable a college is. The tuition numbers below, specifically, are the in-state (where applicable) undergraduate yearlong tuition rates for education degrees. Many universities, however, have similar tuition rates at the undergraduate and graduate levels.

University of Missouri-Columbia
In-State Tuition: $17,762
Online Ed Degrees: 1

The University of Missouri Columbia is a public research university. There are 33,239 students enrolled, and the student-to-faculty ratio is 19:1. The Higher Learning Commission accredits the University of Missouri to award bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees as well as professional certifications. According to U.S. News the University of Missouri ranks as the 120th best school in the nation, 75th best college for veterans, 77th best value school, and 36th for best online graduate education programs. The institution provides students support via remedial services, academic counseling, and career counseling. There are a wide range of academic offerings for both traditional and nontraditional students including in fields like agriculture, film, geology, and religion. There are currently over 40 online degrees and professional certifications available.

The University of Missouri Online offer a wide range of online master’s degrees, doctoral degrees, and professional certifications in education. All programs are taught 100% online except for the Art and Educational Leadership programs. Those requires some time in person . In general, the Master’s degrees requires 30 credit hours for completion and cover a number of emphases:

  • Autism Education (M Ed)
  • Early Childhood Education (M Ed)
  • Early Childhood Special Education (M Ed)
  • Early Childhood Special Education/Autism (M Ed)
  • English Education (M Ed)
  • Gifted Education (M EdCert Prep)
  • Learning Technologies and Design (MS EdSp)
  • Literacy Education (M Ed)
  • Mathematics Education (M Ed EdSp)
  • Mental Health Practices in Schools (M Ed EdSp)
  • Online Education (MS EdSp)
  • Positive Coaching (M Ed)
  • Social Studies Education (M Ed)
  • Special Education, General (MA)
  • Student Learning & Well-Being (M Ed focus option)
  • Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (M EdGrad CertMo K-12 ESOL Cert Prep)

The University of Missouri also offers online graduate certifications, an online Bachelor of Educational Studies, and two online Doctor’s in Education programs. If you are looking to advance your career in education, chances are UM has a program for you.

Webster University
In-State Tuition: $23,835
Online Ed Degrees: 2

Webster University is a private institution located in Saint Louis, Missouri. There are 13,906 students enrolled, and the student-to-faculty ratio is 13:1. The Higher Learning Commission accredits Webster University to award bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees as well as professional certifications. According to U.S. News Webster University ranks as the 23rd best school in the region, 15th best college for veterans, 55th best value school, and 108th for best online business programs. The university offers student support by way of academic counseling, career counseling, and even credit for life experiences. The university offers robust academic programming including in health, foreign languages, education, and journalism among others. There are 57 online degrees available including their online MBA, online bachelor’s in audiovisual communications, online master’s in education, and online master’s in cyber/ electronic operations and warfare.

Webster University has truly honed in on the new and now when it comes to education. There are dozens of online master’s degrees in education as well as online graduate certifications. The university offers a number of certificates in areas of high need. Check out the department of education’s definition of gainful employment. Some of those programs include graduate certifications in Applied Behavior Analysis, Education for Global Sustainability, Mobile Technology in Education, Online Teaching and Learning and Teaching English As a Foreign Language. There are many more programs available including 7 online Master’s degrees in education- all of which require about 33 credit hours of coursework for completion. The two bachelor’s degrees programs focus on educational studies as well as general studies. No matter what stage in your education career, Webster has something for you.

Lindenwood University
In-State Tuition: $17,305
Online Ed Degrees: 9

Lindenwood University is a private 4-year institution located in Saint Charles, Missouri. There are 10,750 students enrolled, and the student-to-faculty ratio is 13:1. The Higher Learning Commission accredits Lindenwood University to award bachelor’s, master’s, and doctor’s degrees as well as professional certifications. According to U.S. News Lindenwood University ranks among the top 300 universities in the nation, and currently ranks 115th for best online bachelor’s programs, and 157th for best online graduate education programs. The university focuses its academics on career-ready fields such as health, business, education. The support student success, Lindenwood offers remedial support, academic counseling, career counseling, and credit for life experiences. There are currently 13 degree programs available online.

Lindenwood University offers a Master of Arts in Education with a number of emphases. The following are available online: Character Education, Educational Technology, Higher Education, and Library Media. The program that stands out for its uniqueness is certainly the MA in Character Education. What is this? It’s a course designed for continuing practitioners who are looking to teach character building in class. This umbrella term refers to ethics, morales, and other essentials that help children learn to become respectful and positive citizens of the world. Teaching character is nothing new, and is often currently taught by school counselors. Not anymore. Teachers are currently getting onboard to include this in their practice. The Master of Arts programs require 33 credit hours for completion. In addition to a number of online MAs, student may also pursue online graduate certifications in Autism, Gifted Education, ESOL, and Educational Technology.

Central Methodist University-College of Graduate and Extended Studies
In-State Tuition: $10,850
Online Ed Degrees: 6

Central Methodist University is a private institution located in Fayette, Missouri. There are 4,298 students enrolled, and the student-to-faculty ratio is 18:1. The Higher Learning Commission accredits Central Methodist to award associate’s, bachelor’s, and master’s degrees. According to U.S. News Central Methodist ranks as the 27th best school in the region, and 37th best value school. The university supports their students with academic counseling, career counseling, and employment for their students. The university focuses their academic offerings on a small number of career-ready degrees in fields like education, health, homeland security, and family and consumer sciences. There are 26 online degrees available including their online associate in accounting, online bachelor’s in elementary education and teaching, and online master’s in nursing education.

Central Methodist has a College of Graduate and Extended Studies (CGES) that offers a number of online bachelor’s degrees in education as well as master’s degrees in education. The Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education is an opportunity to learn online methods of teaching, child development and psychology and ways to grow and develop as an effective elementary school professional. You will learn through theory as well as through hands-on projects. Students may also pursue the Early Childhood Education, Educational Studies, Physical Education, Middle School Education, Secondary Education, and Special Education bachelor’s degree. The two Master’s degrees focus on education and music education.

University of Missouri-St Louis
In-State Tuition: $9,150
Online Ed Degrees: 13

University of Missouri St. Louis (UMSL) is a public 4-year institution located in Saint Louis, Missouri. There are 16,989 students enrolled, and the student-to-faculty ratio is 18:1. The Higher Learning Commission accredits UMSL to award bachelor’s, master’s, and doctor’s degrees as well as professional certifications. U.S. News ranks UMSL among the top 300 universities in the nation, and 23rd for best online bachelor’s programs. The university supports its students with academic and career counseling. This research institution offers a number of fantastic academic options for interests that range from accounting to visual Arts. The most robust programs are in the fields of business, education, and health. Currently UMSL offers 24 online programs for bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral candidates like their master’s in elementary education, doctor’s in nursing practice, and bachelor’s in criminology.

UMSL offers three online Master’s of Education (M.Ed) degrees: M.Ed. in Secondary Education, M.Ed. in Elementary Education with a focus on Special Education, and a M.Ed. in Elementary Education. All three of these programs are “Teach in 12” master’s degrees. The teach in 12 is a 12 month post-baccalaureate certification in education appropriate for candidates who do not have an undergraduate degree in education and are looking to get certified. The M.Ed. Teach in 12 programs are for individuals looking to obtain teacher certification while pursuing their Master’s in Education. Each program requires clinical experience including student teacher training. If you are looking for an affordable route towards a new career as an educator, this program is right for you.