The routes to becoming a teacher in New Jersey is diverse as more non-traditional students seek a career change or college graduates with bachelors seek certification. Regardless of the route to content area certification, all prospective educators must have a bachelor degree. The road to certification also depends on the grade level that the prospective educator wishes to teach.

Traditional Route

The traditional route consists of a prospective educator obtaining their bachelors degree. Most students will have a dual concentration in education (which satisfies the teacher preparation requirements) and a discipline of their choice. Usually disciplines are chosen by the content area a prospective teacher would like to teach ie. History, English, math, science. They are required to maintain a 2.75 gpa in these courses. They are also required to take the Praxis I which consists of Reading, Writing and Mathematics and Praxis II which is subject specific. These are state exams to measure the aptitude of intended teachers. You must also complete a minimum of 60 student teaching hours to give you practical experience in the field.

Specific educational requirements are directly related to grade level one is interested in teaching. Future elementary school teachers are required to have a minimum of 60 college credits from an accredited college or university before they can apply for an elementary teaching certification. If credits were taken at a vocational or two-year school, the intended teacher must provide proof that those credits have been transfered to an accredited 4 year college/university. Elementary education requires a certification in education as well as 15 additional credits in a subject specialty.
Secondary education requires a minimum of 30 credits in a subject specialty of the prospective teacher’s choice. However, within each subject speciality there may be specific requirements. For example, a History major is required to complete one course in American history and one in World History.

Alternative Route

This route towards becoming an educator is for nontraditional bachelor degree holders who are interested did not take the necessary courses to satisfy the teacher preparation requirement. This option allows you the ability to participate in a Co-op program of sorts. Intended teachers are allowed to teach under a provisional licence while they complete the teacher prep courses and student teaching.

Online Programs

Below are some of the top online educational programs listed on to help future educators achieve their masters or doctorate in the content areas/discipline they love!
1. Concordia University – Online
2. Arkansas University – online
3. Phoenix University
4. Kaplan University

While there are specific requirements that the state of New Jersey has in place to insure that are educators are equipped to provide quality education, there are numerous ways to become a teacher in the state. The traditional route, while still highly effective, has given way to alternative roads that lead to educating America’s future. Professionals are flocking to programs that allows them to have a change of pace and career. With proper planning you, too, can impact on the minds of young people.