Teacher Education and Curriculum Studies


Jennifer Waddell, Ph.D.

(816) 235-2245


Education majors are expected to maintain a quality of achievement significantly above minimum UMKC standards for degree work. Individual student progress will be monitored throughout the program. Satisfactory progress is required of all students for retention in the teacher preparation program. Students are expected to maintain academic standards, perform satisfactorily in clinical courses, refrain from academic dishonesty, comply with the established University and teacher education timetables and requirements, and refrain from unethical or unprofessional behavior or behaviors that obstruct the training process or threaten the welfare of the student or others. Other circumstances involving student behavior will be addressed by the faculty on an individual basis.

Faculty Scholastic Activity and Research Interests

Faculty in the Department of Teacher Education and Curriculum Studies have a wide variety of experiences and interests. Several faculty members conduct research on achievement and pedagogy for historically underserved and marginalized populations, direct grant programs and work intensely and collaboratively in school settings. Faculty emphasize the importance of social justice, multicultural education, innovation, culturally relevant and responsive teaching, and technology in the classroom and incorporate this content into their work. They are active in national and regional professional associations, in which many hold offices. Faculty in Teacher Education and Curriculum Studies strive to facilitate high levels of professional development and leadership skills and help their students achieve their educational goals.

Graduation and Certification Requirements

All undergraduate students must abide by the School of Education, Social Work, and Psychological Sciences Policies and Procedures and by the Undergraduate Admission Policies and Procedures in this catalog as well as program and field experience handbooks.

All students completing an undergraduate teacher education baccalaureate degree or the MAT must meet the following conditions in order to graduate and be recommended for teacher certification:

  • 3.0 content GPA/3.0 Professional GPA.
  • "C" or higher in all Education courses.
  • Passing score on the certification exam(s) required by the State of Missouri 
  • Completion of all courses required for the student's degree

All students completing a baccalaureate degree program in the School of Education, Social Work, and Psychological Sciences must apply to graduate by the posted deadline during their final semester of enrollment. The deadline for making application to graduate is posted on each term's academic calendar and on each student's registration materials. See your academic advisor for questions about these requirements.

Admission to the Teacher Education Program

Students new to UMKC should send transcripts and applications for admission to:

UMKC Office of Admissions
5100 Rockhill Road
Kansas City, MO 64110-2499

Initial admission at the freshman or sophomore level will be as a pre-professional major to the School of Education, Social Work, and Psychological Sciences in accordance with regular UMKC admissions standards. For students interested in music education, admission will be to the Conservatory.

Due to program accreditation requirements all students (both first-year college and transfer) who have completed the ACT or SAT will need to submit the respective scores to UMKC for review.

Current UMKC students or transfer students seeking entry into professional teacher preparation programs should apply for admission to Teacher Education during the semester prior to when they anticipate completion of the majority of their pre-professional coursework.

Full Admission into the Profession-level Teacher Education Program requires:

  • Completion of Pre-professional requirements (prerequisites and subject/content area coursework) with a GPA of 3.0 or higher in content courses, 3.0 or higher in all TCH-ED courses and 3.0 or higher overall (cumulative).
  • Passing scores on the Missouri General Education Assessment (MoGEA) OR composite score of 20 or higher on the ACT.
  • Completion of all General Education classes.
  • Missouri State Police and FBI background check clearance.

Students admitted to the Teacher Education program are required to complete practicums within one of the School of Education's nine partner districts (Center School District, Kansas City MO Public Schools, Kansas City KS public schools, Grandview, Hickman Mills, Independence, North Kansas City, Raytown, Turner and public charter schools located within Kansas City MO Public School boundaries). All Teacher Education programs require students to complete at least a semester-long student teaching experience. During student teaching, students are under the guidance of cooperating mentor teachers and members of the University's education staff. Weekly seminars are a required part of the program.

Liability Insurance

The School of Education, Social Work, and Psychological Sciences requires all students to have current professional liability insurance during all field experiences and student teaching. Students must provide verification of current professional liability insurance to the Department of Teacher Education and Curriculum Studies. Students can obtain this insurance by becoming a “student member” of educational organizations (e.g., MSTA or NEA), both of which provide this insurance, or they may purchase coverage through an independent insurance agent.

Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT)

Students who have earned a baccalaureate degree in another field and wish to become certified teachers at the middle, secondary or K12 level while earning a master’s degree should apply to the School of Graduate Studies for the Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT). Academic work completed prior to admission will be reviewed on a course-by-course basis to determine applicability to teacher certification requirements. More information on the MAT and prerequisites can be found at https://education.umkc.edu/academics/masters-program/ma-in-teaching/.