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The Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) has revised the course standards and program guidelines for Teacher Certification in the State of Pennsylvania.
New Pennsylvania Teacher Certificates will be issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Education starting on January 1, 2013. New certificates will be issued for all programs in Pre K‑4 and Middle Level 4‑8. All other K‑12 and Secondary Education 7‑12 certifications have been revised to include additional coursework in Special Education and the Teaching of English Language Learners. The Special Education Pre K-8 and Special Education 7-12 certifications must be coupled with either a Pre K-4, a Middle Level 4-8, a K-12, or a secondary certification area.
Upon completing one of the state-approved teacher Education programs, a student is eligible to apply through the Teacher Information Management System (TIMS) for an Instructional I certificate to teach at the designated level in public schools in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
Effective September 1, 1980, all persons who qualify for or who hold a valid Instructional I certificate shall have six service years to complete an additional 24 hours of post-baccalaureate credit in an accredited four-year college or university in order to receive the Level II certificate. Certificates can be converted to Level II status after a minimum of three years of satisfactory teaching experience in Pennsylvania, completion of an additional 24 post-baccalaureate degree credits, and demonstrated participation in an induction program provided the certificate holder satisfies the academic and experience requirements established for the Level II certification.
Since certification requirements vary from state to state, it is the responsibility of the students to ascertain the requirements of the state in which they plan to teach and to consult with their faculty advisor early in their university career.
Holders of a Pennsylvania teaching certificate may also qualify for certification in other states that are party to the Interstate Certification Compact. A listing of these states may be obtained from the School of Education, along with information concerning the specific procedures to be followed in order to become certified in a different state.