Graduate Secondary Education Certificate

Graduate Certificate of Completion Canyon L.E.A.P. to Teach, Secondary EducationInitial Program – Leads to Initial Teacher Licensure

Offered By: College of Education

The secondary education certificate offered through Grand Canyon University’s Canyon L.E.A.P. to Teach program is intended for those looking to becoming a certified teacher of sixth through 12th grade who already hold a bachelor’s degree but do not currently hold a teacher’s license. The pathway equips candidates to work as a teacher of record in a middle or high school classroom by pursuing a non-traditional route to teacher licensure with the support of their school district.

Earn Your Secondary Teaching Certificate for Grades 6-12

This post-baccalaureate certificate serves as an alternative route for obtaining a teaching license, incorporating observation requirements, mentorship, hands-on teaching experience and theoretical knowledge of pedagogy.

By following this pathway, you can qualify yourself to make a significant impact on middle and secondary school students. Coursework in the program prepares students with skills and knowledge in:

  • Planning, delivery and evaluation of standards-based instruction for secondary students
  • Typical and atypical development of middle and high school students
  • Realistic discipline plans for managing student and classroom behavior
  • Research-based reading methodologies to enhance students’ learning strategies
  • Creating culturally and socially diverse classrooms
  • Strategies for English language learning students through Structured English Immersion and other instructional programs

This graduate-level coursework within GCU’s secondary teaching certificate program is focused on strategies that fit within the modern classroom, preparing you to serve the types of students who will actually be in your classroom.

What Is Canyon L.E.A.P. to Teach?

The Canyon L.E.A.P. to Teach pathway is an innovative, non-traditional approach to earning a teaching certificate. This structured L.E.A.P. program prepares teacher candidates to earn their secondary education certificate through an immersive learning experience that includes daytime teaching, professional development, mentor support and graduate coursework.

The secondary education program’s requirements include:

  • Experience with formal and informal evaluations
  • Four online GCU teacher education courses
  • Six in-person Saturday workshops
  • Culminating hands-on capstone project
  • Professional development and mentoring

This comprehensive approach ensures that candidates are well-supported during every step of the pathway and are able to sufficiently develop their pedagogical skills.

Flexible Online Format and Evening Class Options Available

Programs following the Canyon L.E.A.P. to Teach path are designed to be accessible both for full-time students and for working professionals. Online and evening classes are offered.

Prepare yourself to make an impact as a certified teacher. Earn your Canyon L.E.A.P. to Teach secondary education certificate online or in-person from Grand Canyon University.

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Total Credits: 16
Online: 6 weeks
[More Info]
The University will accept one course of the total certificate requirements in transfer.
Online: $580 per credit [More Info]

Course List

16 credits
Total Degree Requirements:
16 credits

Core Courses

Course Description

Candidates will identify effective classroom management techniques that foster a sense of community and promote student growth. Candidates will reflect on the importance of building a strong connection between home and school. All candidates will examine research-based strategies that engage learners in collaborative and self-directed learning. Throughout this course candidates will evaluate the logical progression of effective lessons, leveraging critical thinking skills and preferred learning styles. Candidates will engage in reflective practices, including a variety of self-assessments, to reflect on their practices and plan for necessary adjustments. Practicum/field experience hours: 1. Fingerprint clearance required.

Course Description

This course is designed to allow the teacher candidate the opportunity to learn techniques involved in the successful engagement and management of a learning environment. Major emphasis is placed to the establishment of a realistic discipline plan to manage student behavior, as well as engagement and management techniques and strategies to maximize instructional time, classroom procedures, and physical space. Practicum/field experience hours: 15. Fingerprint clearance required. Prerequisite: SEC-501 or SEC-502.

Course Description

This course is designed to develop a broad range of research-based reading methodologies to enhance the learning strategies of middle and secondary school students. Major emphasis is placed on the use of reading strategies for culturally and socially diverse classrooms, including the use of literacy-based instruction in all content areas and understanding, evaluating, and promoting effective pedagogy in adolescent literacy. The development and use of integrated and thematic approaches of instruction are addressed. Teacher candidates are expected to observe and assist in a grade 5-12 classroom while taking this course. Practicum/field experience hours: 15. Fingerprint clearance required.

Course Description

In this course, teacher candidates examine the fundamentals of the legal, historical, and educational foundations of Structured English Immersion (SEI) and other instructional programs for English language learners. Theoretical principles of language acquisition and the role of culture in learning are examined. Methods of assessment are identified and analyzed. Teacher candidates identify strategies to promote English language development and improve student achievement. Through Universal Design for Learning they plan, deliver, and evaluate standards based instruction for English language learners. Practicum/field experience hours: 15. Fingerprint clearance required.

Course Description

Teacher candidates are introduced to the educational needs of students with mild to moderate disabilities and their families, including the definitions, characteristics, prevalence, causes and educational approaches to these disabilities and disorders. Teacher candidates will identify cognitive, linguistic, social and emotional patterns of learning and development for students with mild to moderate disabilities. Teacher candidates also survey the special education process involving the application of various laws and regulations. Practicum/field experience hours: 6. Fingerprint clearance not required.

Course Description

The goal of this culminating experience is to allow candidates to refine their skills in the identified InTASC standards. Teacher candidates will move to higher levels on the InTASC progressions through in-class discussions, video reflection, in-class progression of essential skills, and peer and coach mentoring. Candidates will create and evaluate appropriate learning experiences to move learners toward their next levels of development. They will dive deeper into the analysis of data to identify patterns and gaps in learning to guide instruction and provide meaningful feedback. Candidates will reevaluate plans in relation to short- and long-range goals and systematically adjust plans to meet each student’s learning needs and enhance learning. Practicum/field experience hours: 1. Fingerprint clearance required.


GCU Online Student

Pursue a next-generation education with an online degree from Grand Canyon University. Earn your degree with convenience and flexibility with online courses that let you study anytime, anywhere.

GCU Evening Student

Grand Canyon University’s evening programs cater to the demands of working professionals who prefer an in-person learning environment. Our night classes meet just once per week and offer the interaction and discussion of a typical college classroom.

* Please note that this list may contain programs and courses not presently offered, as availability may vary depending on class size, enrollment and other contributing factors. If you are interested in a program or course listed herein please first contact your University Counselor for the most current information regarding availability.

* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Programs or courses subject to change.

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