Teacher Certification Video: Earning a Teaching Certification or Teaching Credential

Teacher Certification Video: Earning a Teaching Certification or Teaching Credential Transcript

In addition to providing academic instruction, educators at the elementary school, junior high and high school levels are important role models for children and formative in their development. Opportunities within education are diverse in ways that extend beyond grade level or subject. Among many school staff members supporting regular teachers are special education professionals, administrators and others in education leadership roles. One common requirement for these positions is state licensure. Fortunately, teaching certification programs are widely available throughout the country.


Teachers play a hugely important role in preparing American school children for the future. These professionals instruct students in academic skills while also providing for their healthy social and emotional development. Educators generally specialize within a grade range or subject area, a fact often reflected in licensing requirements. Teachers may be licensed for primary grades (often designated as kindergarten through fifth grade), middle school or junior high (usually sixth through eight grade) and high school (ninth through twelfth grade). Alternatively, teachers may be licensed to provide instruction in a given subject area at any grade level. Regardless of grade level or subject area, regular teachers have largely similar duties in the classroom. Educators instruct students on academic skills they'll need to flourish including assigning class work, administering tests and evaluating student learning.

Typical Coursework

Most educators obtain a teaching license after completing a bachelor's degree from a teacher education program at a four-year college or university. Most education programs include courses in education philosophy, developmental psychology, instructional methods and other important preparation for the classroom. Additional required classes often include instruction in math, music, art, literature and the sciences. Student teaching may also be required before graduation. Upon completion of an education degree graduates go through the licensure process, which most often entails a series of tests for determining classroom readiness. A shortage of teaching professionals has led most states to also offer alternative routes to licensure for those who have four-year degrees but have not completed education programs. These certification programs, available at colleges, universities and community schools throughout the nation, incorporate pedagogy courses similar to those found in traditional teacher education settings.

Job Prospects

Millions of teachers work in public and private schools throughout the nation. Job prospects are favorable for growth in preschool and bilingual education, math and the sciences. Other high-demand employment areas can be found in urban districts where teacher shortages are prevalent. With specialized training, teachers may also become special education professionals, librarians, reading specialists, guidance counselors or administrators.


Next to parents or other family members, teachers are perhaps the most influential adults in the lives of youth. Many are drawn to teaching careers by this opportunity to play an integral role in children's healthy development. Adding to the attraction is the fact that opportunities within education are widespread and secure, particularly for experienced teachers.



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