Graduate FAQs | Springfield College

What do I need to do to become a teacher or counselor?

You need to have a bachelor’s degree, complete an Approved Educator Preparation Program, and pass the Communication and Literacy Skills MTEL along with the appropriate subject matter test.

What is the MTEL test?

Any candidate seeking an educator’s license in Massachusetts must pass both parts of the Communication and Literacy Skills MTEL. The test is designed to assess effective communication and literacy skills. It consists of two subtests: reading and writing. In addition, the teacher candidate will take a subject test in their prospective license area. (There is not a subject test for counselors.)

When should I take the MTEL Communication and Literacy Skills test?

You should take the MTEL Communication and Literacy Skills test immediately. The expectation is that you will pass these tests by the end of your first semester in the program. In order to continue to make satisfactory progress and be allowed to stay in a graduate licensure program, you must pass the MTEL Communication and Literacy Skills test by a program-specific date.

Candidates for the initial licensure Working Teacher Program must pass all required MTELs before entering the program. Exceptions must be approved by the Director of Educator Preparation and the Department Chair. This includes the MTEL Communication and Literacy Skills test, as well as the required content knowledge MTELs (dependent on licensure area). 

I have a bachelor’s degree and want to get a master’s in education. What do I need to do?

First, decide if you wish to pursue teacher licensure or not. If pursuing a teaching license, take and pass the appropriate MTELs. If interested in a non-licensure MEd, design your course of study with the Education Graduate Coordinator.

I already have a master’s degree; do I need to get another master’s?

No, the master’s degree is optional. You can just take the courses required for graduate-level initial licensure. (Note: If you already have an MEd, you can also complete the licensure program and then complete a CAGS in Special Education.)

What do I major in?

Your major is Educational Studies and often includes a concentration (e.g. special education, etc).

How long will it take to complete the program?

Generally, it takes a student about two years. However, your time may be shortened or lengthened based on the number of prerequisites you need and whether you attend full-time or part-time. The initial licensure residency program (special education, secondary and elementary education) begins each June and concludes the following May. Additional coursework is required for graduate students who wish to pursue a Master of Education (MEd) or Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study (CAGS) (Special Education).

Are GREs required? If so, where can I take them?

GREs are not required for applicants in the Education programs.

What is the first step I need to take in order to start the Educator Preparation Program?

After you apply to the graduate school, you can set up an appointment with the Graduate Coordinator, Eileen Cyr, at or (413) 748-3312, to review your transcript. This will be a good indicator of how many prerequisites you will need to complete the program, as well as how long the program may take.