Alternative Teaching Certification in Michigan


Michigan’s Alternative Routes to Teacher Certification, or MARTC, have been in place since 1993.

Interested in learning about the traditional approach? Contact schools offering teaching certification programs in Michigan.

Alternative certification routes were designed to address teacher shortages in certain grade levels and subject areas. Although they have not been used in a widespread manner across Michigan, under MARTC, you can work as a teacher while completing requirements for full certification. Three main alternative routes to certification currently exist in Michigan:

Alternative Certification Requirements


Education Requirements

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Accelerated Certification in Education:
  • You must have a bachelor’s degree with a major in the area in which you wish to teach and a 2.75 GPA in your last 60 credits for admission to the program
  • You must also pass a general psychology course with at least a C for admission
  • The program, conducted at Saginaw Valley State University, consists of a year of seminars and mentoring while teaching at a Michigan school district, usually one in a higher needs rural area. You will be issued a Provisional Teaching Certificate once you have completed the program.

Wayne State University Pathways:
  • You must have a bachelor’s degree with a 2.6 overall GPA to be accepted into the program.
  • Once enrolled, you will have three years to complete requirements for a Provisional Teaching Certificate while teaching in a Michigan school district
  • Currently, only those who wish to teach Bilingual Education or Special Education are being accepted into the program.

Troops to Teachers:
  • You must have a bachelor’s degree with a major in special education, bilingual education, science, math, or industrial education to be admitted into this program
  • Once enrolled, you will complete your education at a participating university (usually Ferris State University) under a Limited License to Instruct while teaching in a Michigan school. Once you have completed all requirements, you will be issued a Provisional Teaching Certificate at the end of the program.

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Accelerated Certification in Education:

Wayne State University Pathways:

Troops to Teachers:



No experience is necessary for the Accelerated Certification in Education or Wayne State University Pathways programs.

Troops to Teachers:
  • You must have six years of active or selected reserve military service before retirement, separation, or honorable discharge from the U.S. military


Criminal History Background Check

Before you can work in any Michigan school district, you must pass a criminal history background check. This will be conducted through the Michigan State Police (MSP) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). You must go to one of these LiveScan fingerprinting locations, pay the fees, and have your fingerprints taken. The Michigan Department of Education will receive the results of your background check and notify the school district of whether or not you should be hired.


Contact Information

For more information on the Accelerated Certification in Education program, call 989-964-4661.

For more information on Wayne State University’s Pathways program, call 313-577-0902.

For more information on Troops to Teachers, call 517-373-9732.

For general information on alternate routes to teacher certification in Michigan, contact Rajah Smart at the Department of Education at 517-335-6615 or email