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How to Become a History Teacher in Oklahoma

Prospective history teachers in Oklahoma must complete approved educational programs and pass certification exams. Read on for specific steps on beginning a career as a history teacher.

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Oklahoma's State Department of Education maintains education standards for kindergarten through twelfth grade students in state, national, and world history along with government and economics. Those with an interest in history who wish to teach in these areas can become certified by completing an approved teacher education program, passing state-sponsored exams, and completing an application and background check.

Oklahoma History Teacher Requirements

Average Salary for Teachers in Oklahoma (2017)* $40,530 (Elementary)
$42,040 (Middle School)
$41,880 (Secondary School)
Required Degree Bachelor's degree
Degree Field History education
Testing Requirements OGET, OPTE, OSAT

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Step 1: Earn Your Degree and Complete Teacher Education

History teachers in Oklahoma must hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university and must complete a teacher education program approved by Oklahoma's Office of Educational Quality and Accountability. Such degree programs typically require that students complete core courses in the liberal arts including English, math, and social science.

In addition to the completion of core courses, these programs require classes on education methods and theories, student assessment, research methods, classroom management, educational psychology, and special issues in education. They also include extensive coursework in particular aspects of history such as U. S. history and world history. This intensive focus on history also includes classes on specific time periods or conflicts like the Civil War and facets of the field like military or diplomatic history. The depth of these programs prepares students to teach a wide range of topics within history.

In the later semesters of coursework, teacher education programs include internships and student teaching experiences. They also sometimes require minimum GPAs for admission to the program, and some require that students maintain a minimum GPA within the program's classes. Additional requirements may include proficiency in a foreign language.

Step 2: Pass Exams

Prospective history teachers in Oklahoma must pass three computer-based exams. The Oklahoma General Education Test (OGET) requires a passing score of 240. The Oklahoma Professional Teaching Examination (OPTE) has two versions: one for grades K-8 and one for grades 6-12. For both versions, the passing score is 240. The state also requires a subject area test for certification. In history, the Oklahoma Subject Area Test (OSAT) is available in a version covering U. S. history, Oklahoma history, government, and economics. A second version covers world history and geography. For each test, students must score 240 or higher to pass.

Step 3: Apply and Get Certified

Once the exams have been completed, future history teachers in Oklahoma must apply for certification. This process requires fingerprinting in order to pass criminal history checks with Oklahoma's State Bureau of Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Applicants must submit transcripts showing completed degrees and teacher education programs. The state also requires an application and payment of a processing fee.

Oklahoma History Teacher Certification Resources

Educators preparing for certification exams may find the following guides helpful.

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