Science education, certification

University of Missouri-Columbia
Master of Education in learning, teaching and curriculum
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Master of education with certification

You’re passionate about reaching the next generation of learners and are keenly aware that excellent science education empowers young people for a lifetime. If you hold a STEM degree and/or have worked in a STEM field, your community needs dedicated professionals like you to take middle and secondary science teaching beyond the expected. Choose to further your career with the University of Missouri’s (Mizzou) 100% online master of education in learning, teaching and curriculum with an emphasis in science education certification. Get certified to teach science while you work or prepare to switch careers.

This 100% online program will equip you with everything you need to become a state-certified instructor in middle or secondary science. You’ll be immersed in the latest pedagogy throughout your course work. To complete your studies, you can intern in a school district that is convenient for you, or if you’ve been hired to teach under temporary authorization, then you can complete your internship at your home institution. Mizzou’s Department of Learning, Teaching & Curriculum will prepare you for this next chapter. In 30 credit hours, you can earn your degree online in a year and a half. Course work prepares students to sit for the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education exam. See state certification information for those outside Missouri.

Quick facts

Official name

Master of education in learning, teaching and curriculum with an emphasis in science education, certification


University of Missouri-Columbia

Program type

Master's degree

Academic home

College of Education & Human Development | Department of Learning, Teaching and Curriculum

Delivery mode

100% online


Higher Learning Commission

Credit hours


Estimated cost


*This cost is for illustrative purposes only. Your hours and costs will differ, depending on your transfer hours, your course choices and your academic progress. See more about tuition and financial aid.

An elementary school girl is indoors with her teacher. They are working together to set up a planet model during class.

Career prospects

Graduates will be prepared to teach science in middle or secondary education and be prepared to sit for the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) certification exam.

Average projected employment change over the next 10 years of the careers listed in Missouri. Sources include Lightcast industry data, staffing patterns, and OES data.
Employment outlook
Average median salary listed from the careers in Missouri. Lightcast earnings figures are based on OES data from the BLS and include base rate, cost of living allowances, guaranteed pay, hazardous-duty pay, incentive pay (including commissions and bonuses), on-call pay, and tips.
Average salary

Program structure

Delivery of this program is 100% online: no campus visits are required. Since this program does not include science content course work, program admission requires a passing score on the Missouri Educator Content Assessment for the science discipline in which you wish to obtain science teaching certification:

  • General science (for middle school only)
  • Biology 
  • Chemistry
  • Earth science 
  • Physics 

Courses are cohort and semester-based. Most students study part time, taking two to three classes each semester and finishing in a year and a half.

Course work includes

  • Teaching, learning, and research in middle and secondary science
  • Reading and writing in science content areas
  • Foundations of science teacher preparation
  • Teaching exceptional learners
  • Advanced internships in curriculum and instruction 


100% online

Calendar system


Typical program length

1.5 years

Typical course load

2–3 courses per semester


The University of Missouri is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, one of six regional institutional accreditors in the United States.

Faculty spotlight

Laura Zangori

Laura Zangori teaches and works with students and teachers from elementary through undergraduate classrooms. Her work focuses on how to support teachers and students’ in constructing scientific explanations to understand biological phenomena.

Laura Zangori, PhD
Associate Professor, Department of Learning, Teaching & Curriculum
Ayça Fackler, PhD

Ayça Fackler brings together concepts that inform teaching and learning practices from several different research disciplines, including science education, literacy and linguistics. Dr. Fackler’s research focuses on the reconceptualization of language, multimodality and science practices to support learners with different cultural and linguistic backgrounds in learning scientific ideas. Her research supports marginalized learners such as heritage language speakers, English language learners, multilingual learners and students with disabilities and special needs and aims to decentralize the (scientific) language-centric view in science education to make science accessible to all learners. She is a Jhumki Basu and Sandra Abell Fellow and has been recognized by the National Association for Research in Science Teaching for her commitment to pursuing equity issues in science teaching, learning and research.

She formerly taught science at the K–12 level and science teaching methods for preservice elementary teachers at the postsecondary level.

Ayça Fackler, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Learning, Teaching & Curriculum
Gary Wright III, PhD

Gary Wright III’s (he/him/his) research focuses on gender and sexual diversity (GSD)-inclusive pedagogies for science classrooms, with a particular focus on preparing pre-service science teachers to work with and learn from LGBTQ students in diverse classrooms. Using mixed methods, Dr. Wright explores how science teaching methods courses can be designed to foster supportive attitudes and beliefs about GSD-inclusive teaching. This work was recognized with the National Association for Research in Science Teaching 2023 Outstanding Doctoral Research Award. He is also interested in exploring best practices for supporting LGBTQ pre-service and in-service science teachers, as well as how LGBTQ teachers and students resist and challenge systems of oppression within science education settings. Dr. Wright is also involved in research exploring the impact of a distance near-peer mentoring model on STEM learning and engagement for underserved students living in rural communities in the United States and Botswana.

Gary Wright III, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Learning, Teaching & Curriculum

Learn more about this program

This program is administered by the Department of Learning, Teaching and Curriculum