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Post ​Baccalaureate ​Teacher ​Certification ​Program

Drexel University School of Education

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​ ​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​ teacher​ ​certification​ program​ requirements at​ ​Drexel​ ​University’s​ ​School​ ​of​ ​Education​ prepares ​students​ ​for​ ​a​ ​Pennsylvania​ ​Instructional​ ​I​ ​Certificate.

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.

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 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.

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.

Post ​Baccalaureate ​Teacher ​Certification ​Program Options

Post Bachelor’s Teaching Elementary Education Certificate (Grades PreK-4)

The Post Bachelor’s Teaching Certificate in Elementary Education (Grades PreK-4) is designed for individuals who hold a bachelor’s degree and who seek to qualify for PA state teacher certification at the elementary 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 certificate in Elementary Education consists of 42 credit hours (14 courses) and includes mandatory field-based experiences and 12 weeks of student teaching.

The Post Bachelor's Teaching Certificate for Elementary Education (Grades PreK-4) curriculum and course descriptions may be found in the Drexel Online Course Catalog.

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.

Certification Areas

The School of Education offers eight content-specific areas of study each leading to their own certifications with required courses and Praxis exams:

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Earth and Space Science
  • English
  • General Science
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • 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: