Online Teacher Certification and Certificate Program Information

Jan 02, 2019

Essential Information

Online teacher certification programs combine classroom instruction with supervised teaching. Programs can be found at several online colleges and state schools, at the postbaccalaureate certificate and master's degree levels.

Although requirements vary by state, many states recognize a teaching certification obtained in another state. Still, students should check the requirements for teaching in their state to make sure an online program provides the appropriate preparation for teacher certification.

Teacher Certification Curricula

Online teaching certificate programs are available for those interested in teaching various grade levels, from early childhood all the way through secondary school. Many schools offer a program in more than one grade level. Some schools also offer master's degree programs, and students can apply the coursework from the certificate to a master's degree.

These online programs are taught by qualified faculty, just like at an on-campus program. Many programs require students to spend about 15 hours per week on schoolwork. In addition to taking courses online, students complete a teaching practicum near their home. Additionally, students attend a cohort seminar and create a teaching portfolio.

Program Delivery

Coursework in distance-learning teacher certification programs makes use of various technologies, such as pre-recorded lectures, video conferencing and instant messaging. Fieldwork requirements for online teacher certification programs are performed in live classes under the supervision of program coordinators. Some distance-learning teacher certification programs have applicants take examinations at specific locations while others allow for online testing.

Course Topics

Though coursework varies, some common courses include:

  • Foundations of teaching practice
  • Elementary mathematics methods
  • Historical and contemporary perspectives in education
  • Instructional planning and presentation
  • Secondary teaching in inclusive environments
  • Adolescent psychology
  • Language arts instruction

Students who have already obtained a bachelor's or master's degree may complete an online teacher certification program. Students are generally required to attend a cohort seminar and complete a teaching practicum.

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