Project-Based Learning Teaching Credential

Students at Colleton County New Tech Entrepreneurial Academy work together to complete group projects as
they would in a work environment. Faciltators team-teach standards-based content relevant to students’ lives.

A three-course project-based learning teaching endorsement (add-on teaching credential), the first of its kind in the country, is now available in South Carolina. The endorsement was developed by the Riley Institute at Furman, Claflin University, College of Charleston, Furman University, Winthrop University and the South Carolina Department of Education (SCDE). Experts from New Tech Network and educators teaching in South Carolina PBL schools also participated in the process.

With support from the South Carolina Department of Education, the detailed three-course endorsement was approved by the State Board of Education in fall 2014 and the Legislature in spring 2015. The first of the courses was offered at Furman University in summer of 2015, and Claflin, College of Charleston and Winthrop began offering coursework in the 2015-16 academic year. The curriculum design, coursework, syllabi and resources are “open source” upon which any college of education may draw.

A growing interest in project-based learning (PBL) and incorporation of this methodology in schools across the South Carolina is driving an emerging need for teachers who know how to design, deliver, support and assess standards-driven project-based learning. The scarcity of such teachers has been emphatically identified by a number of the state’s education stakeholders as one of the leading obstacles to broad implementation of this innovative and proven methodology.

In the 2011 Investing in Innovation grant that brought New Tech Networks schools to South Carolina, written by KnowledgeWorks Foundation and the Riley Institute, key colleges of education throughout the state committed to helping build a growing corps of teachers with a solid theoretical and practical knowledge of how to use PBL in the classroom. 

To learn more about the endorsement and how to register, please see contact information below.

College of Charleston
The endorsement coursework will begin in summer 2016 as a graduate certificate in project-based learning as part of the existing M.Ed. program in Teaching, Learning, and Advocacy (MTLA).
Contact: Susan Hallatt, Director of Admissions, or the MTLA program director,

Francis Marion University
The endorsement coursework began in Spring 2016.  Course descriptions can be found at
Contact: Dr. Cindi Nixon, Graduate Coordinator,

Furman University
The endorsement coursework began in summer 2015, and courses are electives in the Master of Arts in Education degree program with a concentration in Curriculum and Instruction.
Contact: Troy Terry, PhD, Director of Graduate Studies,

For information about the PBL teaching endorsement, please call Cathy Stevens at 864.294.3265 or email at

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