Dalton State Offers Teacher Certification Program For Non-Teachers

Monday, April 8, 2013

The University of North Georgia in partnership with Dalton State College will offer a one-year teacher certification program for individuals currently holding a bachelor’s degree or higher which will make them eligible to teach in their content area at the middle school or high school level.

The non-credit program is approved by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission and is projected to begin in late May on the Dalton State campus.

“This program provides the opportunity for those who have earned a bachelor’s degree or higher to teach in their content area,” said Dr. Sharon Hixon, Associate Professor of Education at Dalton State and campus coordinator for the program. “It can be an ideal solution for the adult learner looking to make a career change.”

“I am impressed with the level of interest people have shown in this concept,” said Hixon who added that classes  will be taught by faculty from Dalton State’s School of Education and University of North Georgia. 

“The career chemist can go back and teach high school chemistry; the public relations specialist who earned a degree in English will be qualified to teach English,” she said. “This is a terrific opportunity for those who have always wanted to teach but never earned a teaching degree.”

“There is especially high demand for science and math teachers, so this program could be a good fit for recent college graduates who have not found work yet in their content area,” she said. 

The program combines face to face instruction with online coursework. Students typically meet as a cohort for one evening every other week and are expected to complete assignments concurrently via interactive educational websites.

The last semester of the program consists of a three-week practicum and a 17-week internship in a classroom that corresponds to each participant’s chosen content area.

Based on guidelines of the GAPSC, participants must select a teaching field that correlates to the degree they hold.

No college credit is awarded; instead, non-credit Professional Learning Units are awarded for the completion of program courses. Hixon pointed out that PLUs are approved by the Georgia Department of Education. “Because this program is non-degree seeking and only allows individuals to obtain a teaching certificate, there is no government financial aid available,” she said.

Cost of the program is $7,000 which can be divided into three installments over the course of the participants first five months of enrollment. The fee covers courses earned for PLU credit, technology, the assessment management system, and books.

For more information, interested individuals are invited to contact Sharon Hixon at shixon@daltonstate.edu or 706/272-2044.

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