ESL Teacher Certification in Oklahoma

Jan 02, 2019

Economic globalization and increased migration into the U.S. has resulted in a substantial increase of ELLs (English language learners) in Oklahoma. This has subsequently led to a surge in demand for ESL (English as a Second Language) teachers in the state. In order to become an ESL teacher in Oklahoma, teachers must obtain ESL teaching licensure. Here, the steps that need to be followed to qualify for an Oklahoma ESL teaching license are described.

ESL Teaching Certification Requirements in Oklahoma

Average Salary for Teachers in Oklahoma (2016)* $41,150 (Elementary), $42,380 (Middle), $42,460 (Secondary)
Required Degree Bachelor's degree
Degree Field Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)
Testing Requirements Oklahoma General Education Test (OGET) (074), Oklahoma Professional Teaching Examination (OPTE) (075 or 076), Oklahoma Subject Area Test (OSAT) (ESL - 177)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Step 1: Earn a Degree

The first thing an aspiring ESL teacher needs to do is to complete a bachelor's degree in TESOL from an accredited college or university and an Office of Educational Quality and Accountability (OEQA)-approved higher education teacher education program.

Typical courses offered by approved TESOL program providers in Oklahoma include the following:

  • Second language acquisition
  • TESOL grammar
  • TESOL practicum

Oklahoma TESOL programs require candidates to complete a student teaching practicum. The duration of the practicum will depend on the program provider but can range from as little as two hours to as many as 30 hours.

Step 2: Pass All Required Testing

The OEQA develops and administers the competency-based teacher tests. At present, prospective teachers are required to pass three computer-based tests in order to obtain certification:

  • The Oklahoma General Education Test (OGET) (074)
    • Examination covering the core general education knowledge
    • 100 multiple-choice questions
    • One writing assessment
    • The minimum passing grade for this test is 240
    • Test fee - $65
    • CBT fee - $25
    • Registration fee - $30 (paid once per program year)
  • The Oklahoma Professional Teaching Examination (OPTE)
    • Examination covering professional knowledge
    • 75 multiple-choice questions
    • Three written assessments
    • The minimum passing grad for this test is 240
    • Test fee - $140
    • CBT fee - $25

There are two versions of this next test, PK-8 (075) and 6-12 (076), and the one candidates will take will depend on the grade levels they wish to teach.

  • The Oklahoma Subject Area Test (OSAT) (ESL - 177)
    • 80 selected-response questions
    • One constructed-response assignment
    • The minimum pass score is 240
    • Exam fee - $80
    • CBT fee - $25
    • Registration fee - $30 (paid once per program year)

Step 3: Apply for an Initial Teaching License with Endorsement

Once the required testing has been successfully completed, candidates may apply for their ESL teacher's certification from the Oklahoma State Department of Education (OSDE). The application can be made via the OSDE website or by way of a paper application. The following steps must be adhered to when applying for certification:

  • File a criminal background check to the OSDE.
  • You must submit a $50 application fee
  • You must submit your official transcripts to the State Board of Education

Certification is valid for 5 years. All certification application materials may be sent to the following address:

Oklahoma State Department of Education

Professional Standards Section, Room 212

2500 North Lincoln Boulevard

Oklahoma City, OK 73105-4599

ESL Teacher Certification Resources

Please follow the link below to access our resources for helping ESL teacher candidates study for their teacher certification exams in Oklahoma:

OGET Oklahoma General Education Test (CEOE) (074): Practice & Study Guide

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