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Messiah University is in session this fall with flexible in-person and remote learning options, health and safety protocols and student care and support.


Health & Physical Education


Important Information about HPE Teacher Certification

The following outline is meant to inform HPE teacher certification majors about meeting the requirements from the PA Department of Education and the Messiah College Teacher Education Program in order to be admitted into the Teacher Education Program. This is only an outline.  Review the specific links below to obtain details about what, why, how and when as applied to undergrad, transfer and Post-Bacc students.  Students should contact their advisor as needed for additional information and/or assistance.

Teacher Education Program  Clearances  Testing  Teacher Education Program Handbook

When admitted to the College, all students who intend to pursue a teacher preparation program are identified by major and the certification area in which they are interested.  However, they are not yet admitted to the Teacher Education Program.

All students with at least sophomore status who plan to pursue teacher certification should apply to the Teacher Education Program when they have met the requirements for admission.
Sophomores identified by the Registrar as teacher certification students will receive information about the application process from the Teacher Education Program office in the late fall or early spring of the sophomore year, but students can request an application be sent at any time by sending an email to the Teacher Education Program (

Four major criteria are reviewed when a student applies for admission to the Teacher Education Program:

  1. PA Act 34 (PA Criminal Record Check)
    • PA Act 33/151 (PA Child Abuse Check)
    • FBI Background Check processed through the Cogent System as per Pennsylvania Department of Education requirements
  2. PAPA Examination Scores -  Effective immediately the HHP department will enforce the following policy:  students MUST pass the PAPA (Pre-service Academic Performance Assessment) exam by August 15 prior to their Junior year (or for non-traditional students the fall in which they enroll in TEP 310 and HPED 326).  This enables students to enter the TEP and enroll in their Junior Field Experience and HPED 326 (Curriculum and Instruction in Health Education).  If a student fails to complete the PAPA requirement by August 15, that student will be required to either 1) change majors or 2) stay at Messiah an additional year to complete the curriculum as it is designed.  There will be NO exceptions
  3. Course Completion (Students must earn at least a "C-" in:
    • First year seminar (or equivalent course)
    • COMM 105 Fundamentals of Oral Communication (or equivalent course)
    • Two college level math courses
    • English literature course
    • All courses required for the major or teacher certification program
    Any course listed above in which students earn a grade lower than "C-" must be repeated.
  4. GPA/Academic Performance

Minimum GPA of 3.0 overall after 48 completed credits is required for admission.  Students can check GPA on their own degree audit.