Certificate in College Teaching

The Graduate Certification in College Teaching (CCT), an initiative of the Graduate School at Michigan State University, in partnership with various MSU Colleges, helps graduate students organize, develop, and document their teaching experiences. This program prepares graduate students in the College of Social Science for careers in post-secondary education while enhancing the quality of their teaching at Michigan State University. The certificate program is designed to help graduate students reflect upon their teaching experiences in a systematic and comprehensive way.

Through a series of focused workshops, a class on disciplinary teaching methods, and a mentored teaching experience, participants will enhance their preparation for college and university teaching. The certificate program culminates in an e-portfolio that will help students prepare for academic job interviews and plan for their professional development as early career faculty.

The certificate program is designed to complement the student's degree program, and it may be tailored to meet the needs and goals of individual participants. The program provides an opportunity for systematic reflection on the varied teaching experiences TAs gain as part of their careers as graduate students.

Upon completion of the program, students receive an MSU Certificate in College Teaching and the accomplishment is noted on the transcript.


The Certificate in College Teaching is available to students enrolled in any masters or doctoral program within the College of Social Science. Students must obtain the support of their principal faculty advisor and must identify one or more teaching mentors from the College of Social Science faculty. The same individual may serve as both research advisor and teaching mentor, or students may select different faculty members for these roles.

Core Competencies

As part of the Certificate in College Teaching program, students will develop competency in five areas:

  • Developing Disciplinary Teaching Strategies
  • Creating Effective Learning Environments
  • Incorporating Technology in Your Teaching
  • Understanding the University Context
  • Assessing Student Learning


The requirements of the certificate program include:

  1. Application
    1. Graduate Student
    2. Postdoctoral
  2. Course Work
  3. Core Competencies
  4. Mentored Teaching Experience
    1. Mentored Teaching Project Worksheet
    2. Mentored Teaching Project Evaluation Template
  5. Teaching Portfolio
    1. Portfolio Checklist - Post-doc
    2. Portfolio Checklist - Graduate Student
    3. E-Portfolio Evaluation Template
  6. Moving through the Program Chart
    1. Graduate Student
    2. Postdoctoral

Additional Information

For additional information about the Certificate in College Teaching program, please visit the program website provided by The Graduate School.

General inquiries may be directed to Dr. Melissa McDaniels, Assistant Dean, The Graduate School, at mcdani73(at)msu.edu, while inquiries specific to the College of Social Science may be directed to Angela Hall, Associate Professor, School of Human Resources and Labor Relations at athall(at)msu.edu.