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How to Become a Math Teacher in North Carolina

Find out how to become a math teacher in North Carolina. Learn more about the education and licensing requirements needed to begin teaching math in North Carolina.

According to the Nation's Report Card, math scores among North Carolina 4th grade students have been declining from 2015 to 2017, with only 44% scoring proficient or better on standardized tests, while scores among 8th graders remain stagnant. To improve students' knowledge of math, the state adopted the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics, and needs well-qualified educators to teach this subject. As a math teacher, you will have a chance to improve your students' understanding of mathematics and prepare them to become contributors to an increasingly technological society.

North Carolina Math Teacher Requirements

Average Salary for Teachers in North Carolina (2017)* $45,690 (Middle School); $46,370 (High School)
Required Degree Bachelor's degree
Degree Field Education with a math focus
Testing Requirements Praxis Core; Praxis II subject (in some cases)

Step 1: Earn Your Degree

All prospective teachers in the North Carolina public school system must obtain a bachelor's degree and complete a teacher preparation program approved by the state from a regionally accredited college or university. The teaching preparation program includes coursework on educational theory and practical classroom skills. It also includes student teaching fieldwork at a local school, so you can gain real-world experience as a teacher. The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction maintains a list of approved teacher certification programs.

Since math is considered a core subject, NC math teachers must be Highly Qualified, which means they must demonstrate competency in the subject they plan to teach. Most do so by having either a major in math education or have completed additional coursework equivalent to the math major. Prospective math teachers without undergraduate coursework in math may wish to complete those courses to fulfill the education requirements before becoming licensed, or can choose to take the Praxis subject exams.

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Step 2: Pass the Required Tests

All teachers must pass the three Core Academic Skills for Educators exams prior to becoming licensed, which cover reading, writing, and mathematics. In addition, math teachers who have not completed undergraduate or graduate level coursework in math must also pass Praxis math subject exams. To teach middle school, you must pass the Praxis Middle School Mathematics exam. If you wish to become a high school math teacher, you must pass the Praxis Mathematics: Content Knowledge exam. As of July 1, 2017, some schools may still also require Principles of Learning and Teaching: Grades 7-12.

Step 3: Acquire the Standard Professional 1 License

Once prospective teachers have completed their degree and passed the required exams, they are ready to apply for the Standard Professional 1 (SP1) License. To do so, submit a completed application and an approved education verification form to the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. This license is good for three years and is nonrenewable.

Step 4: Acquire the Standard Professional 2 License

After completing three years of teaching, apply for the full Standard Professional 2 (SP2) License. This license is valid for five years and can be renewed.

Certification Resources for North Carolina Math Teachers

We have resources to help you study for your teaching certification in North Carolina. Here are some links to help you prepare.


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