Becoming a Science Teacher in Texas

Aug 17, 2021

Schools are often understaffed with professionals who teach STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering, and math). If you would like to learn how to be one of the STEM teachers in Texas, this article will look at all education and testing requirements.

Requirements for Science Teachers in Texas

Average Salary for Teachers in Texas (2019)* $55,340 (Kindergarten), $56,280 (Elementary School), $56,290 (Middle School), $58,000 (Secondary School)
Required Degree Bachelor's Degree
Required Field Science or a Science Subject
Testing Requirements TExES Pedagogy and Professional Responsibilities EC-12 (160), AND Core Subjects EC-6 (291), Core Subjects 4-8 (211), Chemistry 7-12 (240), Life Science 7-12 (238), Physical Science 6-12 (237), Physics/Mathematics 7-12 (243), Science 4-8 (116), OR Science 7-12 (236)

Source: *Bureau of Labor Statistics

Step 1: Complete Education Requirements

Science teachers must have a bachelor's degree or higher to teach at a Texas public school. This subject is pretty generic, since there are several types of sciences taught in schools. There are colleges that offer science education programs, universities that offer just science programs, and of course there are several chemistry, physics, biology and other programs available. The important thing to remember is that you'll want to likely decide what subject and grade level you want to teach early on. Would you like to teach science to grade 3? Then you'll want to search for a program in elementary education with a concentration in science. A program in biology with teacher certification 7-12 would work best if you want to be a high school biology teacher.

If you choose a science program that has no focus on teaching, you'll need to complete an education preparation program (EPP). This program can culminate in a graduate degree or graduate certificate. In these programs, you'll take courses on teaching procedure and curriculum building while completing a student-teaching practicum (or two).

Step 2: Complete TExES Exam

The TExES Pedagogy and Professional Responsibilities EC-12 exam covers pedagogical and teaching skills that are needed for the classroom. All prospective teachers must take this exam. Over five hours, you'll need to answer all 100 multiple-choice questions.

Next, if you haven't already, you need to decide what and who you want to be endorsed to teach. There are several area exams that can allow you to be endorsed in a specific subject, such as chemistry or life science (biology). However, there are several generalist exams as well that will allow you to teach any science at several levels. Every exam costs $131 to take. The following exams must all be completed in five hours and all include multiple-choice questions:

  • Core Subjects EC-6 (267 questions)
  • Core Subjects 4-8 (200 questions)
  • Chemistry 7-12 (100 questions)
  • Life Science 7-12 (100 questions)
  • Physical Science 6-12 (100 questions)
  • Physics/Mathematics 7-12 (120 questions)
  • Science 4-8 (90 questions)
  • Science 7-12 (140 questions)

Step 3: Have a Background Check Run

Many states require prospective teachers to undergo a criminal check. This means that you will need to include a fingerprint card or fingerprint scan with your application. A fingerprint scan will be run much more quickly and can be completed at any MorphoTrust location for $10. After this, you will need to pay a $39 fee for an FBI and Texas Education Agency (TEA) background check.

Science Teacher Certification Resources for Texas

There are several options for Science enthusiasts. The TExES exams guarantee that you know the content you want to teach and that you are comfortable with the grade level you in which you want to be endorsed. Through the following links, you can find study guides and test prep resources for the above exams.

  • Prepare for the TExES Exam
  • TExES PPR EC-12 (160): Practice & Study Guide
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