Become a Teacher in Mississippi

Mississippi Highlights

Avg. Elementary Teacher Salary: $44,230
Avg. Secondary Teacher Salary: $46,370
Vacation Weeks Per Year: 15

Teacher salaries were provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ May 2017 Occupational Employment Statistics External link  report.

Important Note: Education licensure requirements, statistics and other information are subject to change. makes its best effort to keep content accurate; however, the official sources are the state education departments. Please confirm licensing requirements with your state before applying for licensure or renewal. Last updated: 08/10/2018

This page is sponsored by our partner Rossier Online, a master level teaching degree program delivered online that enables you to earn a Master’s degree and teaching credential. Learn more about how the University of Southern California can help you become a transformative teacher in Mississippi.

To become a certified teacher in Mississippi, you will need to fulfill these requirements:

  • Step One: Complete a bachelor’s degree and other prerequisite coursework required.
  • Step Two: Complete a state-approved teacher preparation program
  • Step Three: Pass required exams.
  • Step Four: Submit a Mississippi teaching credential application.

Our goal is to make this process as easy as possible, and we are dedicated to updating with new information on a regular basis.

Step One: Mississippi Teacher Prerequisite Coursework

All states require that certified teachers have at least a bachelor’s degree. Additionally, some states have undergraduate credit hour requirements for certification in specialty areas. Mississippi, however, does not have any undergraduate credit hour requirements.

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Master’s Requirements

Many schools of education now offer online MAT programs that provide increased flexibility by allowing aspiring or working teachers to attend class and complete coursework from any location that has an Internet connection. Online MAT programs are a practical option for students who have professional and personal commitments that make it difficult to obtain teaching certification through a full-time program.

The best online programs offer the same curriculum as the school’s on-campus program and apply the same admission requirements. Providing students with the ability to communicate with instructors and classmates in a face-to-face online environment is another hallmark of a good online program. In addition, candidates in online MAT programs should be provided with the opportunity to complete student teaching fieldwork in the local community.

Learn more about getting your MAT online with our partner USC Rossier School of Education.

Step Two: Mississippi Teacher Preparation

Teacher preparation includes the completion of an accredited teacher education program. Typically teacher education programs consist of a combination of curricula and fieldwork. The curricula often includes instruction on foundational knowledge and skills, pedagogy (or the art and science of teaching) and preparing students to research, design and implement learning experiences in their field of study. The fieldwork component can include field observations, student teaching, and an internship.

While the involvement in an education program may seem financially daunting, a number of financial resources specifically for teachers exist around the country. For more information on this, visit our page on scholarships for teachers. For more scholarships for teachers exclusive to the Mississippi, visit our Mississippi Teacher Scholarships page.

Alternative Certification

Graduates of accredited colleges or universities whose bachelor’s degree was not in education, and who have not yet earned a traditional teaching certificate, can still receive an alternative teaching certificate by satisfying certain requirements. Mississippi officially recognizes ABCTE certification as a route to earning your Mississippi teacher certification. See our page on alternative teacher certification in Mississippi for more information.

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Step Three: Mississippi Required Tests

Basic Skills Test

The Mississippi Department of Education requires all teaching candidates to pass and complete the Praxis I: Pre-Professional Basic Skills Test (PPST) before graduating from an accredited, state-approved teacher preparation program. After January 2014, all applicants will be required to pass the Core Academic Skills for Educator assessment(s).

Mississippi Required Tests
Certification Required Test(s) Qualifying Score
Required for all areas of certification All 3 CORE subtests:


All 3 PPST tests:




All applicants are required to complete and pass their necessary Principles of Learning & Teaching (PLT) tests related to their grade level licensure before graduating from an accredited, state-approved teacher preparation program.

Principles of Learning
Certification Required Test(s) Qualifying Score
Child Development PreK-K PLT: Early Childhood 157
All K-3 and K-6 Areas PLT: Grades K-6 160
All 4-8 Areas PLT: Grades 5-9 160
All 7-12 Areas PLT: Grades 7-12 157
All K-12 Areas PLT: Grades K-6
PLT: Grades 5-9
PLT: Grades 7-12



Content Test Areas

The Mississippi Department of Education mandates that all teaching candidates complete and pass all Praxis II subject area tests in their approved subject area.

Praxis II Subject Area
Certification Required Test(s) Qualifying Score
Child Development PreK-K Education of Young Children 160
Elementary (K-3, K-6) Elementary Education: Curriculum, Instruction, & Assessment 153
Middle Grades 7-8 Supplement Endorsement

Social Studies

Middle School English Language Arts
Middle School Mathematics
Middle School Science
Middle School Social Studies

Secondary Education (7-12)

Physical Science
Social Studies
Speech Communications

Biology: Content Knowledge
Chemistry: Content Knowledge
English Language Arts: Content Knowledge
Mathematics: Content Knowledge
Physical Science: Content Knowledge
Physics: Content Knowledge
Social Studies: Content Knowledge
Speech Communication: Content Knowledge


Special Education (K-12)

Emotional Disability
Hearing Disability
Mild/Moderate Disability
Special Education
Special Education (Supplemental Endorsement)
Visually Impaired

Braille Proficiency
Special Education: Teaching Students with Behavior Disorders/Emotional Disturbances
Special Education: Education of Deaf & Hard of Hearing Students
Special Education: Core Knowledge & Applications
Fundamental Subjects: Content Knowledge
Special Education: Core Knowledge & Applications
Special Education: Teaching Students with Visual Impairments



Visit Mississippi’s Praxis Requirements for a complete list of available tests.

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Step Four: Mississippi Application Requirements

The Mississippi Board of Education requires that all teaching candidates meet the following requirements in order to obtain their initial teacher certification:

  • Have bachelor’s degree (or higher) from an accredited institution
  • Complete a state and nationally approved teacher education program or alternative certification program
  • Pass all required Praxis exams for their certification area(s)
  • Complete application (can be done through the MSDOE Online System) and any required supplemental forms

Background Check

The Mississippi Board of Education mandates that any applicant recommended for employment within any state school and/or departments must submit and pass a criminal records background check and fingerprint clearance. Background checks are submitted on both a state and federal level.

Mississippi Teaching Jobs

The Mississippi Department of Education provides applicants with a list of open positions within the respective school districts and application procedures. Visit the Mississippi Department of Education for more information.

Teachers and administrators seeking employment in a Mississippi public school district can enter and upload their personal and professional information to an employment database, allowing school district personnel to view and locate potential teaching candidates. For more information see the Mississippi Teacher Center’s Employment Data Sheet.

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Mississippi Certification Reciprocity

A five-year license is granted to applicants who hold a valid standard out-of-state license (K-12) in an area in which Mississippi issues an endorsement. Visit the Mississippi Department of Education’s Educator Licensure/Reciprocity Licensure page to learn more. Please see our interstate reciprocity disclaimer for more information.

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Mississippi Teacher Salary

  • Incentives to teach in high-needs schools or shortage subject areas: Mississippi provides differential pay support for teachers teaching in high-needs schools and teachers teaching in shortage subject areas
  • Policies in place that articulate elements of effective induction: Mississippi has strong induction policies in place which include professional development, training, and mentoring programs
  • Average Elementary Teacher Salary: $44,230
  • Average Secondary Teacher Salary: $46,370
  • Average Number of Vacation Weeks Per Year: 15

Teacher salaries were provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ May 2017 Occupational Employment Statistics report.

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Mississippi Certification Resources & Links

P.O. Box 771
Jackson, Mississippi 39205

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