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Transitional Certification Program

Certification Track Two


UNK offers this online program for primarily secondary education (high school) teacher certification to Nebraska residents who have earned a baccalaureate (bachelor's) degree or higher. This program is designed to allow participants the opportunity to pursue and hold a teaching position under a Transitional Certificate while completing the coursework needed to obtain an initial Nebraska Teaching Certificate.

Available Endorsements

The following endorsements are available through Track Two of UNK’s Transitional Certification Program:

  • Agricultural Education 6-12 Field Endorsement
  • Art K-12 Field Endorsement
  • Biology 7-12 Subject Endorsement
  • BMIT (Business, Marketing, Information Technology) 6-12 Field Endorsement
  • Chemistry 7-12 Subject Endorsement
  • Earth and Space Science 7-12 Subject Endorsement
  • English Language Arts 7-12 Field Endorsement
  • Family and Consumer Sciences 6-12 Field Endorsement
  • French 7-12 Subject Endorsement
  • Geography 7-12 Subject Endorsement
  • German 7-12 Subject Endorsement
  • Health 7-12 Subject Endorsement
  • Health & PE K-12 Field Endorsement
  • History 7-12 Subject Endorsement
  • Industrial Technology Education Field Endorsement
  • Mathematics 7-12 Field Endorsement
  • Music K-12 Field Endorsement
  • Physical Education 7-12 Subject Endorsement (PE K-6 Subject Endorsement may be earned with PE 7-12) 
  • Physics 7-12 Subject Endorsement
  • Political Science 7-12 Subject Endorsement
  • Psychology  7-12 Subject Endorsement
  • Science 7-12 Field Endorsement
  • Secondary English 7-12 Subject Endorsement
  • Social Science 7-12 Field Endorsement
  • Sociology 7-12 Subject Endorsement
  • Spanish 7-12 Subject Endorsement


The online program consists of:

  • Three 6-credit hour classes, taken in sequence one per semester, for a total of 18 graduate credit hours of online study
  • Two 3-credit hour semesters of student teaching
  • Total equals 24 graduate credit hours of professional education coursework*

*The online professional education coursework sequence consists of the following:

  • TE831: Professional Knowledge and Skills I - 6 credit hours
  • TE832: Professional Knowledge and Skills II - 6 credit hours
  • TE833: Context of Education - 6 credit hours
  • TE834: Transitional Student Teaching I - 3 credit hours
  • TE835: Transitional Student Teaching II - 3 credit hours

*Depending on previous academic work completed, there may be additional coursework required in the specific endorsement area of choice.  Additional courses required will be indicated on the Rule 24 review completed by the TCP Director

Because the Transitional Teaching Certificate is valid only in Nebraska Schools that hire Transitionally-Certified teachers, UNK’s Transitional Certification Program is available only to participants who physically reside in Nebraska or who are commuting to Nebraska schools in which they are employed.  


Test Requirements

1.  Praxis Core - Passing score on the Praxis Core exam (a basic skills test of Reading, Writing and Math) need to be submitted to UNK for full acceptance into Teacher Education.  While this exam is not required prior to enrolling in the Transitional Certification Program. it is strongly recommended prior to program entry.

2.  Praxis II Subject Assessment - a content test taken at the end of an endorsement program just before student teaching.

3.  Request the scores be sent to UNK (score recipient code 6467).  You will not be able to obtain full teaching certification without these passing scores.  Official testing centers are located across the state.  More information about the Praxis exam and testing guidelines can be found at www.ets.org or call the UNK Testing Center at 308-865-8054.

Steps to Complete

Potential candidates for this program should complete the following steps in this order:

STEP ONE:Submit the ONLINE INFORMATION REQUEST FORM and CONSENT FORM to initiate a review of your transcripts. Request that your transcripts be evaluated to determine your eligibility for the program and for holding a Transitional Certificate to teach.  (Completion of these forms does not admit you to the program.  This is a request for information only.)

Note: Please be aware that some misdemeanor and felony convictions can prevent applicants from participating in a UNK Teacher Education program and obtaining a Nebraska teaching certificate. If you have a misdemeanor or felony conviction, even if it occurred many years ago or has been set aside, please contact Jenny Jansky, Assistant Director, Educator Certification Office (308) 865-8266 for more information.

STEP TWO: Have your official transcripts sent by each institution from which you have received college credit, to:

Chilene Black, Coordinator
Transitional Certification Program
College of Education Building, B117
University of Nebraska - Kearney
1615 W. 24th Street
Kearney, NE 68849
Phone: (308) 865-8056
Fax: (308) 865-8097
Email: blackc@unk.edu

Seventy-five percent of the content coursework required for the selected teaching endorsement area(s) must be completed prior to beginning the professional education coursework sequence, along with a 2.75 minimum GPA in that coursework. 
Once you qualify, you would be eligible to enroll in the next available section of TE831 and you would be eligible to teach in the endorsement area(s) for which you qualify, should a school district wish to hire you under a Transitional Certificate. 

STEP THREE: Confirm the status of your qualification with the program coordinator. Do not apply at UNK until you have spoken with the program coordinator to confirm the status of your application.  When your qualification has been confirmed, proceed to Step Four.

STEP FOUR: Apply to UNK through the Graduate Admissions website. When applying choose Initial Certification as your program. This is a certificate program, so you do not need to take the GRE. However, the program is post-baccalaureate so it qualifies as graduate school. The credit hours earned in TCP may be applied to the requirements for a Masters Degree in Curriculum and Instruction; contact the program director (contact information below) to discuss this option.

STEP FIVE: After you have been notified of full admission to UNK, send an email to the TCP Director with your NUID number so that a permit can be requested for you to enroll in the first class.

Contact information for the Transitional Certification Office:

Chilene Black, Coordinator
Transitional Certification Program 

College of Education Building, B117 

University of Nebraska – Kearney 

Kearney, NE 68849 

Office Telephone:  (308) 865-8056 

Office Fax: (308) 865-8097 

Email:  blackc@unk.ed;

Dr. Wendy McCarty, Ed.D, Director 

Transitional Certification Program 

College of Education Building, B159 

University of Nebraska – Kearney 

Kearney, NE 68849 

Office Telephone: (308) 865-8074 

Office Fax: (308) 865-8097 

Email: mccartywl@unk.edu