Education Certification Program Information

Alternative Certification Program

This program is designed for individuals who are in possession of an undergraduate degree and their degree is not in the field of education, but they want to enter the teaching profession. It is our goal to prepare individuals for State Certification in the State of Texas by means of online and field-based delivery systems.

The State Board of Educator Certification (SBEC) establishes the teacher certification standards and grants the certification once students have passed the necessary certification tests as stipulated by said body. This Alternative Certification Program (ACP) prepares and recommends students for certification when they have completed all requirements as stipulated by the Teacher Education Department at Southwestern Adventist University.

Admission Requirements

There are certain general admission requirements for all applicants and other requirements that are specific to your level and area of certification. General admission requirements for all applicants are as follows:

  1. Bachelor's degree from an accredited university. Note: Applicants who are currently completing degree requirements will not be admitted to (ACP) until degree is confirmed. All applicants with degrees outside of the United States must have these degrees evaluated from an accredited evaluation service and admission to the alternative certification program will be determined by the results of the evaluation. You can obtain an approved list of accredited evaluators from our office or the university registrar (Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc., P O Box 514070, Milwaukee, WI. 53203-3470. Tel: 414-289-3400). If you have already completed this evaluation process, please submit your transcripts and evaluation to The Office of Admissions for further evaluation.

  2. GPA Requirement. GPA of 2.50 from all post-secondary coursework from accredited institutions will be taken into consideration (i.e., community college and college/university) Maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.75 in all courses in the ACP at Southwestern.

  3. A Pre-Admission Content Exam (PACT) will be required in the following circumstances.

  4. Prospective student is responsible for the following. Completing application for admittance to the ACP (download application form from department website:

    • A statement of purpose - one page, typed essay describing reasons for desiring a profession in the teaching field
    • Two letters of recommendation from individuals other than relatives. Preferably, these recommendations should come from work experience supervisors or former professors
    • Before acceptance to the program all students must submit to and pay for a criminal background check.
  5. Cost of Program.

    • Application: $75
    • A package price of $5,000.00 will be charged for this program. A portion of this fee is designated as a training fee ($200.00 for exam preparation and $400.00 for the internship) Students will be responsible for purchasing their textbooks.
    • Financial aid will be available to qualifying students. All fees related to TExES exam fees and SBEC certification fees are not included as part of the program costs – students pay for their probationary and standard certificates
  6. Length of Program. 12 - 18 months

    1. All coursework must be completed within 30 months of beginning the Alternative Certification program or students will be required to re-apply and possibly repeat course work according to current changes required by the Department or TEA.

    2. In order to support student success, ACP students are required to complete TEA state testing within 12 months of completing all coursework. Students who fail to meet this deadline must complete an approved remediation program prior to testing approval. Remediation costs are the responsibility of the graduate.

  7. To maintain Program status students must:

    • Give evidence of satisfactory professional growth
    • Show promising development during internship period
    • Demonstrate behaviors that are ethically and morally responsible

See current Bulletin under the Education section for additional information regarding student teaching and recommendation to SBEC for certification.

Course of Study for Certification Areas:

Certification Areas

Early Childhood

Secondary Areas

All Level Areas

All classes are online.