Teaching Degrees in Mississippi

Individuals interested in pursuing a teaching degree in Mississippi need to know important information, such as:

  • The value of a master’s degree
  • Grant and scholarship programs
  • Mississippi teaching certification requirements

Also included here is a list of additional resources and a comprehensive directory of fully accredited teaching degrees in Mississippi.

Teaching Degrees in Mississippi

In order to become employed as a teacher in Mississippi, a bachelor’s degree is required. There are currently 11 colleges and universities throughout the state that offer teaching degrees in Mississippi. Currently, 37.2 percent of Mississippi teachers possess a master’s degree or better. This higher degree status can mean an average salary increase of $4,800 per year when compared to Mississippi teachers holding only a bachelor’s degree.

Teaching Scholarships and Grants in Mississippi

Teaching scholarships and grants are available for those pursing a teaching degree in Mississippi. These forms of financial assistance are funded by the state, organizations, schools, and by individuals. Some examples include:

Dr. R.G. Bigelow Scholarship
This University of Southern Mississippi scholarship is awarded to an exemplary student that plans to become a teacher.

Mississippi Critical Needs Alternate Route Teacher Loan/Scholarship Program (CNAR)
This program is designed to provide educational opportunities to students interested in pursuing teaching degrees in Mississippi and, at the same time, meet the employment needs of critical shortage areas throughout the state.

Mississippi Critical Needs Teacher Loan/Scholarship (CNTP)
This program was created in an effort to provide financial assistance to students pursuing degrees in education. The scholarship is awarded in exchange for the student’s agreement to become employed with a school in a critical shortage or subject area.

Mississippi TEACH Grant
This grant is available to students seeking a teaching degree in Mississippi. Those awarded the grant must agree to teach in a high-need field or school serving low-income students for a minimum period of four school years.

Mississippi William Winter Teacher Scholar/Loan (WWTS)
This program provides funds for students seeking a teaching degree at a Mississippi college or university.

Odessa Powell Beasley Elementary Education Endowment
This University of Southern Mississippi scholarship is available to junior year students majoring in elementary education who plan to become an elementary school teacher.

Ruby Litrell Carson Scholarship
This scholarship is available to students who are majoring in elementary or secondary education at the University of Southern Mississippi.

Thelma V. Bounds Memorial Scholarship Endowment
This scholarship is available to native Mississippi students currently enrolled at the University of Southern Mississippi who are majoring in elementary education, history, or literature.

Mississippi Teacher Certification

Mississippi offers the following six types of educator licenses:

  • Teacher Education Route License – For teachers who hold a bachelor’s degree or greater and meet all qualifications.
  • Alternate Route License – Available to teachers who hold a master’s degree, have completed additional state-approved programs and have obtained American Board Certification.
  • Special Five Year Educator License – Available to educators in other areas of education, such as Performing Arts, Special Education (birth – kindergarten), Speech, Audiologist and Library Media.
  • Vocational Educator License – Available to those who have a bachelor’s degree or lower in education or a non-education degree and teach vocational courses.
  • Administrator License – For entry-level, alternate route, career level or non-practicing teachers.
  • District Request Licenses – These are issued for special circumstances, such as JROTC and veteran teachers.

Mississippi teaching licenses have class levels. These levels are determined as follows:

  • Class A = Bachelor’s degree level
  • Class AA = Master’s degree level
  • Class AAA = Specialist degree level
  • Class AAAA = Doctorate degree level

Mississippi state certification requirements include:

  • A bachelor’s degree or higher
  • Successful completion of an accredited teacher certification program
  • Completion of an MDE Approved Competency-Based Training Program
  • Successful completion of Praxis II

Mississippi does offer reciprocity. Reciprocity licenses are available as two or five year licenses.

Mississippi requires teachers to complete ten Continuing Education Units per five year period. These units must be in approved courses in order to be eligible for license renewal.

Additional Resources about Teaching in Mississippi

The following resources provide additional information about earning a teaching degree and working as a teacher in Mississippi.

Mississippi Department of Education
This helpful resource provides a wealth of information about teaching degrees in Mississippi, as well as information for students and parents.

Mississippi Association of Educators
The official website of Mississippi’s professional teacher association.

National Center for Education Statistics – Mississippi State Educational Data Profile
Review the state of Mississippi’s education system through the statistical data presented in this profile.

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