Skip to main content

Search Bar Icon Close Menu

Next steps to obtaining your initial certificate with the state of Missouri

DESE certification completion checklist

Here is a quick-reference checklist for completion of the certification process through the State of Missouri. Students must follow these steps before Columbia College can recommend them for an Initial Certificate. 

The remaining steps are:

  • Verify through CougarTrack that the final grade for student teaching has been posted
  • Verify through CougarTrack that the undergraduate degree has been posted (this does not apply to post-baccalaureate students)
  • Submit the application for Initial Certificate on the DESE WebApplication site (using the same login used when applying for substitute certificate)
  • Have official transcripts sent to DESE for any college coursework completed after applying for sub-certificate (including Columbia College after you have verified grades and/or degree posting; be sure to request undergraduate and graduate transcripts if you have coursework at both academic levels)
  • Verify fingerprinting background clearance is still valid

Once all of the above listed tasks are completed, you must contact the Education Department office ( for review of final certification requirements. Failure to contact the department may result in delayed recommendation to DESE.

After Columbia College submits their recommendation to DESE for your certificate, you may check your application status through the DESE WebApplication site. Refer to this "application status" information sheet for clarification on what the status phrases mean.


Apply now