Post Baccalaureate Teacher Certification Program
Drexel University School of Education
What is the Post Baccalaureate Teacher Certification?
The Post Bachelor’s Baccalaureate Teaching Certification program in Elementary Education (grades PreK-4), Middle Level (grades 4-8), and Secondary Education (grades 7-12) are designed for professionals who hold a bachelor’s degree and who seek to qualify for Pennsylvania state teacher certification at the elementary, middle, or secondary level. Students take courses online that satisfy Pennsylvania teaching certificate requirements while completing the required number of weeks of students teaching. Pennsylvania has reciprocation agreements with nearly every state in the U.S. meaning you can transfer your teaching certificate to another state.
What Can You Do with a Post Baccalaureate Teacher Certification?
The curriculum for this teacher certificate program at Drexel University is designed for those changing careers into the education field, as well as those who already serve as temporary, emergency, or substitute teachers and wish to earn a formal teaching credential.
Students who wish to complete a master’s degree in Teaching, Learning and Curriculum have the opportunity to transfer the credits earned in the Post Bachelor’s Teaching Certificate into the MS in Teaching, Learning & Curriculum program.
The PA teacher certification program requirements at Drexel University’s School of Education prepares students for a Pennsylvania Instructional I Certificate.
How Long Does it Take to Get a Teaching Certification?
A commonly asked question regarding our programs, is "how long is the teacher certification program"? If you already have a bachelor's degree, the elementary, middle level and secondary education programs typically take two years to complete. Drexel also offers a dual certification option for secondary and special education. A bachelor's degree program typically takes up to 4 years to complete.
How to Get a Teaching Certification
1. Earn your bachelor's degree
The first step towards becoming a K-12 teacher is to earn a bachelor’s degree. If you earn a bachelor’s degree in a program that leads to teaching certification, such as elementary education or teacher education, you will graduate with all the requirements necessary to become a licensed teacher. If your bachelor’s degree is in a non-teaching program, you will need to follow the next steps on this list to complete your educator certification program..
2. Decide what subject and/or grade level you want to teach
If you already have a bachelor’s degree, you can become a teacher through our teacher certification program. The first step is to determine what subject you would like to teach. Some students choose a subject that reflects their bachelor’s degree experience while others may choose a new subject that they are passionate about.
3. Complete a certification program
Once you have decided on a subject, you should enroll in a teacher certification program and focus on your chosen subject. You will complete required coursework for certification and gain the knowledge needed to complete the required Praxis exams.
4. Gain student teaching experience
While you complete your required coursework, you will also gain the required hours of student teaching experience. Most teacher certification programs require 12 weeks of student teaching experience. The School of Education’s Field Placement Office assists students with identifying student teaching opportunities in school districts close to where they live, anywhere in the U.S. and other parts of the world.
5. Pass your certification exams
Once you have completed your required courses and student teaching experience, you will schedule and sit for your Praxis exams. Passing the required exams is a critical final step to become a certified teacher. Passing the exams will allow you to begin teaching in classrooms on your own. Some school districts may allow emergency certifications to allow teachers who have not completed their exams to teach in their schools for a certain period of time until they can pass the required exams.
6. Become licensed
Once you have passed the required exams, you will be issued an Instructional I teaching certificate in the state where you took the exams. As a certified teacher, you will be eligible for teaching positions in the subject in which you are certified. You can add additional certifications or complete requirements for an Instructional II teaching certificate as you advance in your career.
Post Baccalaureate Teacher Certification Program Options
Post Bachelor's Middle Level Teaching Certificate (Grades 4-8)
Drexel's Post Bachelor's Teaching Certificate in Middle Level (grades 4-8) is ideal for students who would like to teach middle school students in the areas of Math, Science, English, and Social Studies. In addition to gaining knowledge of effective teaching methods, students will also learn how to create culturally responsive pedagogy and create a safe, productive, and positive classroom environment that facilitates learning for all students.
The coursework for a certificate for middle level education consists of 33 credit hours (13 courses) and includes mandatory field-based experiences and 12 weeks of student teaching.
The Post Bachelor's Teaching Certificate for Middle Level (Grades 4-8) curriculum and course descriptions may be found in the Drexel Online Course Catalog.
Post Bachelor’s Secondary Education Teaching Certificate (Grades 7-12)
The Post Bachelor’s Teaching Certificate in Secondary Education (Grades 7-12) is designed for individuals who hold a bachelor’s degree and who seek to qualify for PA state teacher certification at the secondary level. The curriculum is designed for those changing careers as well as those who already serve as temporary, emergency, or substitute teachers and wish to earn a formal teaching credential.
The coursework for a general certificate of secondary education consists of 30 credit hours (11 courses) and includes mandatory field-based experiences and 12 weeks of student teaching.
The Post Bachelor's Teaching Certificate for Secondary Education (Grades 7-12) curriculum and course descriptions may be found in the Drexel Online Course Catalog.
Teacher Certification Specialties
The School of Education offers eight content-specific areas of study each leading to their own certifications with required courses and Praxis exams:
- Earth and Space Science
- General Science
- Social Studies
Pennsylvania Teaching Certification Requirements
Once a student has successfully completed their course of study and all exams required by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE), Drexel recommends the student to PDE for issuance of the appropriate teaching certificate.
Instructional I Teacher Certification Requirements
Pennsylvania’s initial state certification is known as “Instructional I” and is valid for a total of six years (the six years need not be continuous). To continue teaching after six years, teachers must receive an Instructional II Certification.
Instructional II Teacher Certification Requirements
The Instructional II Certification is considered a “permanent” certification. (It must, however, be renewed every five years through the fulfillment of continuing education requirements.) A teacher applying for Instructional II Certification must have:
- Instructional I Certification
- A minimum of three years and a maximum of six years of teaching experience on an Instructional I Teaching Certificate
- 24 semester-hour (or 36 quarter-hour) credits beyond a bachelor’s degree Completion of an induction program (generally provided by a teacher’s school of employment)
Required Exams for a Certificate of Elementary Education (Grades PreK–4)
The PA Educator Certification Tests (PECT) are required for Elementary Certification (Grades PreK–4). Students are required to take the appropriate exam for each area of certification sought.
For more information about examinations and registration, visit the PA Educator Certification Tests (PECT).
Required Exams for a Certificate of Secondary Education (Grades 7-12)
All Post Bachelor’s students seeking certification in Secondary Certification (Grades 7–12) are required to pass the Praxis II Series. Students must pass the appropriate Praxis II Content Knowledge test(s) for each area of certification they wish to obtain.
For more information about examination and registration, please visit the Praxis Series.
How to Maintain a Valid Teacher Certification through Act 48
To maintain Instructional I and Instructional II Certifications in Pennsylvania, the PDE requires a certified teacher to complete the minimal equivalent of six semester-hour (or nine quarter-hour) credits, 180 professional development hours, or a combination of credits and professional development hours every five years. College credits must be acquired from an accredited four-year, degree-granting college or university.
Note: For those working to acquire Instructional II Certification, the 24 semester credits or 36 quarter credits needed to apply for Instructional II may also count toward Act 48 requirements. Undergraduate credits from a community college may not be counted toward Act 48 credits for Instructional II Certification.
For more information and to apply credits to your state record, visit the PA Department of Education Act 48 Continuing Professional Education.
How to Apply to the Teacher Certification Program
Drexel University's Post-Bachelor's Teacher Certification courses are offered 100% online. You can get started by filling out the appropriate Drexel Online Application for an online Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Certification: