How to Become a Teacher in Arizona

After deciding to become a teacher in Arizona, it is a good idea to look at the types of certificates and the requirements for the different areas of endorsement. The Arizona department of education currently has 17 types of endorsements such as music, mathematics, physical education and reading endorsements. There are ten types of certificates, with the majority based on the category of age. Deciding the type of certification and area(s)in which you want to become endorsed will ensure taking the correct educational pathway.

Basic Requirements

A Bachelor’s Degree or higher
Official Transcripts from the institution
Competed certification application
An Arizona Identity Verified Print (IVP)finger print card
Passing Scores on the Arizona Educator Proficiency Assessments

Education

Most of the certificates for teaching in Arizona require a Bachelor’s Degree or an advanced degree. Degree requirements can be met at traditional institutions or through online degree programs. It is most desirable that the Bachelor’s Degree or other degree is in education or a related field. Additionally, you will need to complete a teacher preparation program from an accredited institution. You will need 30-45 credits in the area of focus that you hope to become endorsed in, or certification in the area from another state.

Alternative Certification

From time to time, Arizona experiences teacher shortages in certain geographical areas and/or academic disciplines. The state has adopted a few programs to help address the shortages with emergency certification or service initiatives.

A Teaching Intern Certificate is valid for one year and is renewable for up to two consecutive years. Candidates must possess a Bachelor’s Degree or higher and be enrolled in either a state board approved alternative teaching program or approved teacher preparation program. This certificate can be held only once within a five year period.

The Teach for America Phoenix program selects candidates who apply for the program and provides training and career development. Applicants must have a record of good achievement and teach for two years in a low-income area.

Arizona Teaching Fellows accepts recent college graduates into this highly selective program and oversees their work in schools with disadvantaged students. Recent graduates must have a 3.0 GPA or higher and meet legal requirements to work in the United States. Candidates must also meet the testing requirements for their subject area.

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