JumpStart Pathway

JumpStart is a licensure pathway for current University of Southern Mississippi undergraduate students. A junior or senior may apply to enter as a non-degree graduate student and take the three teacher licensure courses during the summer while completing his/her bachelor’s degree. 

Important Note: Students complete the JumpStart pathway as an undergraduate student. Upon completion of the 9 hours associated with the JumpStart pathway and completion of the undergraduate degree, students must apply through the Graduate School for the Teach Mississippi Institute Program or the Master of Arts in Teaching Program.  The JumpStart pathway does not result in licensure by itself but allows undergraduates to get a "jump" on completing licensure requirements.

Admissions Information

Step 1

  • 2.75 GPA on all pre-major coursework based on 44-hour core
  • Passing Praxis CORE Academic Skills for Educators test results, ACT scores with a 21+ composite score, or SAT equivalent to a 21+ ACT score.  
  • 1 Letter of Recommendation from faculty or administration mailed to the Department (see Dr. Jay Howell's contact information below)
  • Submit to a background check

Step 2

Schedule an in-person or video conference advisement appointment with Dr. Howell. During this meeting, you will discuss the following:

  • "Out of Career" Coursework Form requirements through the Graduate School
  • Plans and timeline for taking and passing Praxis II in an approved subject area
  • Plans and timeline for completing undergraduate degree
  • TMI or MAT admission and application process following completion of the undergraduate degree
  • TMI or MAT plan of study for completion after the undergraduate degree
  • Upon admission, a subscription to the Tk20 Assessment System is required. Tk20 provides an electronic portfolio and storage system for students as well as tracks, stores, retrieves, and analyzes data for accreditation purposes. Subscriptions can be purchased here.

The GRE is not required. 

The deadline for applying to summer enrollment for the 2019 JumpStart Pathway program has not been officially set but will be around May 18, 2019. 


Program Information

The three licensure courses to be taken during the summer while enrolled in your Bachelor's program are: CIS 603, Management and Organization of Diverse Classrooms; CIS 570, Curriculum in the Secondary School; and REF 632, Measuring Student Success. Upon undergraduate graduation, and if the student has met all requirements of JumpStart (completed the required 9 hours of alternate route coursework with a "B" or better), the student must apply to the TMI program. Once admitted into the TMI program, the student will secure a teaching position and register for the last TMI class, CIS 694/794, as well as follow the remaining steps and requirements for the certificate program. 

Please note that USM's alternate route programs lead to initial licensure in Mississippi.  We do not guarantee to meet the licensure requirements of other states.  You will be responsible for verifying that your program of study meets your desired state’s licensure requirements.

USM-approved licensure areas and information about Teach Mississippi Institute and Master of Arts in Teaching information can be found here: About our Alternate Route Programs.

Contact for More Information:

Dr. Jay Howell, Program Coordinator & Faculty Member - Hattiesburg Campus
Phone: 601-266-6570
Email:  james.b.howell@usm.edu
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