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College of Education

Teacher Certification Frequently Asked Questions

Teacher Certification FAQs 

 

How do I become a teacher? I already have a bachelor’s degree.

Teacher certification in Washington is two-fold. Teacher candidates must complete the requirements for at least one endorsement, the area the candidate wants to teach, and a state-approved teacher preparation program. Washington State University offers more than twenty endorsement programs and offers teacher preparation programs at the undergraduate and graduate level. The number of credits required for each endorsement varies, but they are roughly equivalent to a major.

How long does it take to be a teacher if I have a bachelor’s degree?

The length of time it takes a teacher candidate to complete certification requirements vary person to person. If the candidate has a bachelor’s degree in an approved endorsement area they may only need to take a couple courses, pass the content exam to qualify for the endorsement, and complete a teacher preparation program. If a person wants to be endorsed in an area they do not have formal education in, it could take two years to complete the endorsement requirements plus a teacher preparation program.

What is the fastest route to be a teacher?

Typically WSU’s Master in Teaching (MIT) is the most efficient route to becoming a certified teacher for individuals who already hold a bachelor’s degree.

What if I do not want another master’s degree?

Traditionally the Master in Teaching (MIT) is still the most efficient route to teacher certification. However, the undergraduate program is an option; it will typically take more time and is not at the same rigor as the graduate courses.

Does WSU offer a post-baccalaureate program?

WSU does not have a specific post-baccalaureate program. However, our undergraduate program can be completed by those who already hold a bachelor’s degree.

Will it take me more than a year to complete?

WSU’s teacher preparation programs take 15 months to two years depending on the program.

Does WSU offer an online teacher certification program?

No. There are no approved online teacher preparation programs in Washington. Most educators believe the integrity of teacher preparation programs are compromised when offered online.

Thirty years ago I finished everything but student teaching at WSU. I would like to be a teacher. Can I come back and just student teach?

Students are given five years, from the admission date, to complete under the requirements in place when they were admitted.

If I complete WSU’s program can I teach in another state?

Teacher certification is regulated at the state-level. Candidates who want to teach in another state should contact the new state’s teacher certification governance agency and see what is required. Typically states will allow out-of-state candidates 1-3 years to meet any outstanding requirements as long as the teacher completed an accredited teacher preparation program.

Is WSU’s program accredited?

Yes, WSU’s teacher preparation program is state-approved by the Professional Educator Standards Board (PESB).

Washington State University