Computer science is an up and coming area of study in the country, as we continue to become an Internet-saturated world. If you'd like to teach the next generation about software engineering and coding, this article can help you prepare for certification as a computer science teacher in Texas.
Requirements for Computer Science Teachers in Texas
|Average Salary for Teachers in Texas (2017)*||$56,670 (middle school), $57,830 (high school)|
|Required Degree||Bachelor's Degree|
|Required Field||Computer Science|
|Testing Requirements||TExES Pedagogy and Professional Responsibilities EC-12 (160) and TExES Computer Science 8-12 (241)|
Source: *Bureau of Labor Statistics
Step 1: Complete Your Education
In Texas, a bachelor's degree is required to teach. You'll also find that an educator preparation program (EPP) is required for certification. These are sometimes combined, but you'll need to check with your university to see if it is a Texas-approved EPP program. If it is not, you'll need to complete a graduate-certificate EPP program separately. Either way, you'll need to study curriculum, technology, adolescent development, and complete a student teaching course. In these student teaching courses, you'll be put into real classrooms to apply the skills and knowledge that you have gained. This will allow you to find out where you need more preparation prior to getting a job. On top of that, you'll need to study computer science and all its applications, something that can be done while attaining your bachelor's degree. You'll likely take courses in software engineering, data structures, algorithms, programming, computer ethics, assembly language, and interface building.
Step 2: Complete TExES Exams
No matter what else you want to be certified in, you'll have to complete the TExES Pedagogy and Professional Responsibilities EC-12 assessment, as it is required for all teachers. This 100-question test looks at the basics of teaching, such as theories and techniques, and must be completed within five hours. It costs $131 to take this TExES exam.
As of Fall 2016, Computer Science certification requires passing the TExES Computer Science 8-12 (241) assessment. Like the PPR exam, you'll have five hours for 100 questions. The four domains this exam will test you on are technology applications, program design & development, programming language topics, and specialized topics.
Step 3: Be Fingerprinted
Background checks are required in many states for teachers. Those who work with children full-time need to be clear of any criminal background or misdeeds that could affect their teaching. Parents also want to be sure their children are safe with the teachers that work with them. Texas uses the Teacher Certification Online System (ECOS) to have prospective teachers upload their fingerprints and pay for the background check. This is a very thorough check, as the FBI, Texas, and the Department of Public Safety all run it.