Preparation for Teacher Certification
- Secondary and All-Level Teacher Certification
- Certification Requirements
- Minimum Scholastic Requirements
- Teaching Fields
- Education Career Engagement
- Criminal History Acknowledgement
Students seeking elementary teacher certification to teach in Texas public schools (early childhood through grade six) must earn the Bachelor of Science in Education in the College of Education and must meet the appropriate state certification requirements.
Students seeking certification to teach in Texas public schools for elementary (early childhood through grade six), secondary (grades six through 12, seven through 12, and eight through 12), or all-level (early childhood through grade 12) must earn a bachelor’s degree in the field they intend to teach and must meet the requirements for teacher certification. Students seeking teacher certification for secondary math or science must follow the curriculum prescribed by the UTeach-Natural Sciences program. Students seeking secondary teacher certification in English language arts and reading, social studies, or languages other than English must follow the curriculum prescribed by the UTeach-Urban Teachers or UTeach-Liberal Arts programs. Students seeking all-level teacher certification in art, music, or theatre or secondary teacher certification in dance must follow curriculum prescribed by the UTeach-Fine Arts program. Students seeking teacher certification for other areas should consult an advisor in the major department about degree requirements and a teacher certification advisor in the College of Education about certification requirements.
See General Information, Academic Policies and Procedures, Teaching Certification for additional information related to teacher certification.
Secondary and All-Level Teacher Certification
All secondary and all-level teacher certification programs are based on degrees with academic majors in the student’s chosen teaching field. Requirements for students seeking secondary or all-level teacher certification include all courses required for the student’s major in the College of Education, College of Fine Arts, Jackson School of Geosciences, College of Liberal Arts, or the College of Natural Sciences, as well as the preprofessional and professional education courses.
UTeach-Urban Teachers is a teacher preparation program for students seeking secondary teacher certification in English language arts and reading or social studies. Information is available on the UTeach-Urban Teachers website and from the College of Education advising office.
Program advising for students seeking all-level teacher certification in art, music, and theatre or secondary teacher certification in dance is provided in the College of Fine Arts. Information is available at https://finearts.utexas.edu/students.
UTeach-Liberal Arts is a professional teacher preparation program for liberal arts majors pursuing Arabic, Chinese, economics, English language arts and reading, French, history, geography, German, government, Japanese, Latin, and Spanish. Students may seek certification to teach secondary school.
UTeach-Liberal Arts offers a four-semester program for undergraduate students and a three-semester program for postbaccalaureate students. Admission into the program is required. Undergraduate students may enter the program as early as the second semester of their freshman year. More information about UTeach-Liberal Arts and the admission process is available at https://liberalarts.utexas.edu/uteach/.
Students seeking secondary teacher certification in mathematics, computer science, science, or engineering must follow the curriculum prescribed by the UTeach-Natural Sciences program, a collaborative partnership between the College of Education and the College of Natural Sciences. Program advising is housed in the College of Natural Sciences.
Information about legal requirements for certification to teach is available from the College of Education certification officer, George I. Sánchez Building 2.110, or from the Texas Education Agency.
State of Texas teacher certification requirements are governed by the Texas Education Agency and are subject to change. Students must adhere to current teacher certification requirements, even if they differ from those listed in the University catalogs.
In accordance with state law, the commissioner of education may suspend or revoke a teaching certificate or refuse to issue a teaching certificate for a person who has been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor for a crime that directly relates to the duties and responsibilities of the teaching profession.
Students who have completed all necessary academic requirements for teacher certification must also achieve a passing level of performance on the required state certification examinations and complete fingerprinting requirements. See State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) at http://www.tea.texas.gov for details. In addition, students seeking bilingual education certification or certification to teach French or Spanish in elementary, middle school, or secondary must earn a passing score at the advanced level on the appropriate language test. Field observations and practical classroom teaching in community and school environments are required of all students seeking teacher certification. Accountability information for the teacher preparation program is given in the General Information Catalog.
Minimum Scholastic Requirements
In addition to meeting the minimum coursework and scholastic requirements for the degree, students seeking teacher certification for middle school, secondary, and all-level must meet other requirements to take the prescribed work in professional development. Students seeking teacher certification must be approved by the College of Education for the Professional Development Sequence. Admission to the Professional Development Sequence is restricted; information about admission requirements is available in the College of Education, Office of the Dean, George I. Sánchez Building 2.110.
All secondary and all-level teacher certification candidates must earn a degree in their primary teaching field by meeting all of the requirements for the appropriate major. While completing these requirements, the student seeking teacher certification must take a core set of courses in the major that fulfill certification requirements. This certification core includes at least 24 semester hours in a single teaching field or 48 semester hours in a composite teaching field, and incorporates the state-specified essential knowledge and skills needed for successful teaching in the field. Often, the student’s major department requires more than these 24 semester hours, but the certification core in the major field must be taken.
Students seeking secondary teacher certification may choose from the following teaching fields:
- English language arts and reading
- social studies
- computer science
Students seeking all-level teacher certification may choose from the following teaching fields:
- languages other than English (Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Latin, or Spanish)
- special education
Areas for Teacher Certification recommendation:
College of Education
College of Fine Arts
College of Liberal Arts
College of Natural Sciences
- UTeach-Natural Sciences Program
- Bachelor of Science in Biology
- Bachelor of Science in Chemistry
- Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
- Bachelor of Science in Mathematics
- Bachelor of Science in Physics
- UTeach-Natural Sciences Certificate
Education Career Engagement
Education Career Engagement provides career services such as resume writing workshops and critiques, interview preparation workshops, individual mock interviews, school district panels, networking opportunities, and job fairs. Additional information is available on the Education Career Engagement website at https://education.utexas.edu/about/college-offices/career-services.
Criminal History Acknowledgement
As required by HB1508, teacher certification applicants need to be aware of the following:
- In order to earn a State of Texas teacher certification, you must pass a criminal history background check.
- If you have been convicted of an offense that is considered not appropriate for an educator, you could be ineligible to earn a teacher certification from the State of Texas. Details about potential eligibility of persons with a criminal history can be found in Texas Administrative Code, §249.16.
- You have a right to request a preliminary criminal history evaluation letter from the Texas Education Agency before admission into a program. The Texas Education Agency currently charges a fee for this criminal history evaluation. More information about the preliminary criminal history evaluation is online at https://tea.texas.gov/Texas_Educators/Investigations/Preliminary_Criminal_History_Evaluation-FAQs/.