Stony Brook University
School of Professional Development

Teacher Certification Information

Master of Arts in Liberal Studies Applicants

If you are a certified teacher and hold an initial license, you will need to earn a master's degree to obtain professional certification. The MA/LS serves this purpose, provided that:

The MA/LS is a functionally relevant master's degree for professional teaching certification. When applying for professional license, MA/LS students must file for certificate progression via an "Individual Evaluation" pathway.  If attempting to use course work included in the MA/LS for purposes of completing a first initial license (via alternate route filing with individual transcript evaluation), this pathway will cease to exist as of April 30, 2014.  Thereafter, all first initial certifications must be completed through an institutionally-based teacher preparation program.

NOTE: Be advised that this is strictly a basic guide and information must be adjusted according to your history, education and experience as appropriate. For further information, visit NYSED at


Content Areas

View our listing of professional certification content areas to see which SPD courses might be used for certification; however please note it is in the student's best interest to obtain approval for a given course from NYSED prior to course registration. Please note that CED 595 Project Seminar, may not to be used to meet the NYSED 12-credit content requirement for professional licensure.

Prior to applying to the MA/LS program, you should review the University's course offerings to ensure that they are relevant to your certification needs.

  • SPD Courses—Most of the courses you will take will be offered through the School of Professional Development. If you are applying for a professional teaching license, please note that SPD has separated our course listings into certification content areas for your convenience. »View all certification areas
  • University Courses—This link goes to the Registrar's website. MA/LS students may be eligible to take courses offered through academic departments in other colleges and schools within the University to meet their certification requirements. Students must contact these departments for eligibility and permission to enroll.
  • If it is not apparent how individual courses meet your particular certification needs, contact NYSED at the address listed below.

New York State Education Department Contact Information

Office of Teaching Initiatives
NYS Education Department (NYSED)
Albany, NY 12234
Telephone: 518.474.3901

School of Professional Development

School of Professional Development
N 201 Social and Behavioral Sciences Building
Stony Brook University
Stony Brook, NY 11794-4310
Tel. (631) 632-7050 (option 1)

Statement of Student Responsibility

Students themselves—whether new, returning, or continuing—are responsible for reviewing, understanding, and adhering to their degree and/or certificate program requirements. (SPD’s non-matriculating [non-degree] graduate students [GSP] are responsible for adhering to the guidelines related to non-matriculated status.) All SPD students are responsible for reviewing, understanding, and complying with University and SPD regulations, policies, and procedures, as described in all official publications, the University website, and the SPD website, including, but not limited to, SPD’s online references, the SPD Bulletin and SPD Academic Calendar.


Not Yet Certified?

SPD offers several Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) programs that lead to certification.

» Graduate Programs


© Copyright School of Professional Development at Stony Brook University.
Last modified on 03/31/2014.
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