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Alternative Routes to Certification Online

School districts have long sought out SPU-educated teachers for both their competence and character. The Alternative Routes to Certification Online program integrates Residency Teacher Certification with a Master of Arts in Teaching degree in a full-time one-year online program. Today, more than two-thirds of the candidates SPU recommends to the state of Washington for a Residency Teacher Certificate have completed a master's degree.

Who Should Pursue This Degree

If you hold an undergraduate degree and want to earn both teaching certification and a master's degree concurrently and you live outside the Puget Sound area, the ARC-Online program may be right for you. Although the ARC-Online program appeals to a wide variety of applicants, paraprofessionals, instructional assistants, and non-certified teachers in private schools find the format especially helpful, since these positions facilitate completion of internship requirements.

The ARC-Online program is designed for applicants residing in rural Washington. Those residing within the Puget Sound region with a one-way commute from their residence to the SPU campus, using private transportation, longer than 1.75 hours are also encouraged to apply. Applicants who do not meet the rural residence or commute requirement may appeal location and travel policies by including a statement describing unique employment or family circumstances they believe warrant consideration for an exception.


Teacher candidates in the ARC-Online program at SPU

  • earn a Washington Residency Teacher Certificate;
  • engage in a full-time year-long student teaching internship with diverse learners;
  • gain knowledge and skills to impact student learning;
  • explore tensions and possibilities for social justice teaching;
  • learn from experienced mentor teachers and field supervisors;
  • progress through the program with fellow students in a cohort;
  • experience personalized advising across the program, from admission to job search;
  • complete a graduate degree for higher placement on the salary schedule.

Program Outline

The program outline includes a description of program components, schedule, coursework, and internship. The official degree requirements for this program are shown in the SPU Graduate Catalog according to the year candidates are admitted.


What is required for admission to the ARC-Online program? Find information about admission requirements and procedures.

Did You Know?

Help Icon SPU also offers a two-year, part-time MAT program to earn teacher certification and a master’s degree concurrently.