Teacher Certification and Renewal

I need to apply for my first teaching certificate

How To Apply For Your Nebraska Teaching Certificate
  1. Apply on-line up to 30 days prior to degree/program completion to the Nebraska Department of Education (NDE) at: www.education.ne.gov/tcert and click on “Online Application” at the bottom of the page on the left.  Answer all questions as though your program is complete.  Payment can be made by credit/debit card, check or money order. 

  2. If you have not been a continuous Nebraska resident for the past 5 years, pick up fingerprint cards and instructions from 116 Henzlik, or contact the NDE at nde.tcertweb@nebraska.gov

  3. Once your student teaching grades/degree post, UNL will send your Institutional Recommendation to the NDE. (If you receive correspondence from the NDE that they are missing this item, please let them know WHEN your program will be complete and note that UNL will send it at that time.) YOU are responsible for ordering a UNL e-transcript (to be sent once grades/degrees post) through MyRed, current student, transcripts, choose server and have it sent to carolyn.hauser@nebraska.gov at the NDE.

I need to renew my teaching certificate

RENEWING YOUR NEBRASKA TEACHING CERTIFICATE Through the University of Nebraska-Lincoln

If your certificate has not expired or has expired less than five years, and you have not taught half time or more for one (1) school year during the past 5 years, the Nebraska Department of Education (NDE) will require that you complete 6 hours of approved coursework (graduate) to renew your certificate. For teachers whose certificates have expired more than 5 years, 15 hours of coursework (graduate) is required.

UNL’s College of Education & Human Sciences offers appropriate classes online as well as classes on campus that meet one night/week during the fall and spring semesters and daytime in the summer sessions. Please access the Schedule of Classes. If you wish to sort by only online classes, click on “additional search criteria” and under “location,” click on “Distance Delivery.”

*ADMISSION TO THE UNL GRADUATE COLLEGE*

You will need to apply as a non-degree student at www.unl.edu/gradstudies

The 6-credit hour program: Choose six graduate hours from 1) TEAC – Teaching, Learning & Teacher Education, EDPS – Educational Psychology, SPED – Special Education & Communication Disorders, SLPA – Speech Language Pathology, or CYAF – Child, Youth & Family Studies OR your endorsement area.

The 15-credit hour program: Contact Sara Skretta at 402-472-8626 to determine what courses you will take and how you will fulfill the practicum requirement. The NDE requires that you complete a course in Instructional Techniques; a Practicum consisting of 100 clock hours of contact with students in the classroom setting; a course which addresses Current Issues in Education – such as special education, gifted education, reading and writing in the content area, or school law; and Coursework Directly Related to the Applicant’s Area of Endorsement.

When you have completed the required coursework:

  • 6-hour renewals need to apply online to the NDE to renew their certificate, pay the fee and arrange to have an official transcript sent to the NDE via the UNL website or call 402-472-3544. (No institutional verification is required from UNL).
  • 15-hour renewals need to apply online to the NDE to renew their certificate, pay the fee and arrange to have an official transcript sent to the NDE via the UNL website or call 402-472-3544 and call 402-472-8626 and ask that an Institutional Verification be sent to the NDE for you.

Certification Requirements for Other States

Nebraska

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Approved course in human relations and special education
  • Nebraska has a recency requirement which stipulates that candidates for teacher certification must have taken six semester hours of teacher preparation course within the previous five years to applying for a certificate
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis and Praxis II
  • State and Federal background checks

Alabama

  • Bachelor’s degree w/a GPA of 2.5 or higher
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Alabama Educator Certification Testing program: Basic Skills Assessment, Praxis II
  • State and Federal background check

Alaska

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program -Complete two additional course; Alaska studies and Alaska multiculturalism (may be taken within the first 2 yrs. of initial license)
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis and Praxis II
  • Dept. of Public Safety and Federal background check -Mandatory trainings in Sexual abuse awareness, Alcohol or drug related disabilities, dating violence awareness & prevention, Suicide awareness and prevention and fees

Arizona

  • Fingerprints, Bachelors or more advanced degree from an accredited institution. Official transcripts required, Valid, comparable elementary education certificate from another state or completion of an approved teacher preparation program. If you do not obtain a Nebraska teaching certificate then you must take and receive a passing score on the NES or AEPA exam. Take the NES Subject Knowledge Elementary Education Test.

Arkansas

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete an approved teacher preparation program Passing of required exams; Praxis II.
  • State and Federal background checks

California

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher preparation program
  • Passing or required exams; California Basic Educational Skills Test (CBEST), California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET), California State University Early Assessment Program or the CSU Placement Exam. These exams have replaced the Praxis series. Praxis tests scores that less than five years old will still be accepted.
  • Live Scan fingerprinting application.

Colorado

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher preparation program.
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis II or PLACE assessments scores will continue to be accepted through 20222 if taken before May 6, 2017.
  • State background check

Connecticut

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher preparation program
  • Pass required exams; Praxis and Praxis II
  • Submit a Connecticut teaching credential application.
  • Candidate who wish to teach Early Childhood or Elementary Education must also take the Connecticut Foundations of reading test, administered by Pearson and must also pass the Connecticut teacher Certification Examinations (CTCE) Early Childhood exam.
  • State and Federal background check

Delaware

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher preparation program
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis and Praxis II
  • School district may require a background upon employment. However, a background check is not usually required to licensure unless a candidate has previously been convicted of a misdemeanor or felony offense.

Florida

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing scores on required test; Florida Teaching Certification Examinations
  • State and Federal background checks
Temporary certificate:
  • Hold at least a bachelor’s degree
  • Obtain a position within a Florida school
  • Submit fingerprints for a background check
  • Prove content knowledge through degree and course requirements and pass the appropriate subject area examination.
Professional Florida Certificate:
  • Hold at least a bachelor’s degree
  • Prove content knowledge through degree and course requirements and pass the appropriate subject area examination.
  • Submit fingerprints for a background check
  • Prove mastery of Professional Preparation and Education Competence, which can be done by completing an approved teacher preparation program or other approved professional training program, such as the Professional Development Certification Program

Georgia

  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Georgia Assessments for the Certification of Educators (GACE) and the Georgia Educator Ethics Exam
  • State and Federal background checks. Georgia also employs an additional screening method call the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification (NASDTEC) National Clearinghouse

Hawaii

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis II.
  • Candidates who have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution are not typically required to take the Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators exam
  • State and Federal background checks

Idaho

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Comprehensive Literacy Assessment, state’s Technology Assessment exam, Praxis II
  • State and Federal background checks

Illinois

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exam; The assessments required for licensure after completing a preparation program include applicable content-area tests, the Basic Skills Test, and the edTPA Content-area test are typically require prior to student teaching.
  • State and Federal background checks

Indiana

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Pearson ES Developmental/Pedagogy Exam, Indiana CORE Academic Skills Assessment(CASA)
  • Earn CPT/AED/Heimlich certification
  • Complete suicide prevention training
  • State and Federal background checks

Iowa

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis and Praxis II
  • State and Federal background checks

Kansas

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis, Praxis II and Praxis Principle of Learning and Teaching (PLT)
  • State and Federal background checks

Kentucky

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis, Praxis II and Praxis Principle of Learning and Teaching (PLT)
  • State and Federal background checks

Louisiana

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program with a minimum of 2.5 GPA
  • Written recommendation from the teacher preparation program
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis and Praxis II
  • No background check is required but the individual school and/or district reserves the right to conduct their own.

Maine

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis, Praxis II and Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching (PLT)
  • State background check by approved processing company, IdentoGO.

Maryland

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Those seeking certificates in Pre-K through the elementary grades must complete 12 semester hours in reading.
  • Those who are certifying in a secondary content area or in the middle to secondary grades must complete 6 semester hours in reading.
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis, and Praxis II. For those who wish to teach foreign languages, Maryland used the American Council on Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) proficiency test.
  • State and Federal background checks

Massachusetts

  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • The level of education required for certification varies based upon the type of licensure sought.
  • Preliminary license: Bachelor degree, passing score on the appropriate Massachusetts test for Educator Licensure (MTEL)
  • Initial license: Meet requirements for a Preliminary license, plus completion of an approved teacher preparation program
  • Professional license: Meet the requirements for an Initial license, plus: Completion of an approved master’s degree program; or, completion of an approved alternative program; or, earning National Board Certification; or 3 years of teaching combined with completion of one-year induction program.
  • Passing the required exams; Massachusetts Tests for Educator Licensure (MTEL). Typically will need to pass the Communication and Literacy Skills Test as well as a Subject test.
  • State and Federal background checks

Michigan

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Michigan Test for Teacher Certification (MTTC). Professional Readiness Examination
  • State and Federal background checks

Minnesota

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Approved course in human relations form a Minnesota college or university.
  • Passing of required exams; National Evaluation Series (NES) Essential Academic Skills Test, Minnesota Teacher Licensure Examinations (MTLE).
  • State and Federal background checks

Mississippi

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program with a minimum of a 2.75 GPA
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis, Praxis II and Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching (PLT)
  • No background check is required but individual school districts may require prior to employment

Missouri

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Missouri Educator Gateway Assessments (MEGA). Missouri General Education (MoGEA)
  • State and Federal background checks

Montana

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis and Praxis II
  • State and Federal background checks

Nebraska

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Approved course in human relations and special education
  • Nebraska has a recency requirement which stipulates that candidates for teacher certification must have taken six semester hours of teacher preparation course within the previous five years to applying for a certificate.
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis and Praxis II
  • State and Federal background checks

Nevada

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program -Specific coursework is also required, including at least three semester hours of credit in education for students with disabilities and at least three semester hours of credit in parental involvement and family engagement.
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis, Praxis II, Principles of Learning and Teaching (PLT), State testing is required in the areas of Nevada School Law, the Nevada Constitution, and the US Constitution with a minimum score of 70%. These are taken through University of Nevada-Reno. Candidates may waive the requirement for testing in these areas by taking coursework from a state-approved provider.
  • State and Federal background checks

New Hampshire

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis, Praxis II and for candidates in Elementary Education, Early Childhood, or Reading and Writing must take the Pearson Education Foundations of Reading test.
  • State and Federal background checks

New Jersey

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program with a minimum of 3.00 GPA
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis and Praxis II. There is some flexibility in the passing test score; test score cut-offs for passing eligibility are lower if a candidate has a GPA better than a 3.5
  • State and Federal background checks

New Mexico

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; New Mexico Teacher Assessments (NMTA). Individuals applying for initial New Mexico teaching certification or adding certain endorsements must also take the Content Knowledge Assessments in the area of the subjects they wish to teach.
  • State and Federal background checks

New York

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Educating All Students (EAS), edTPA and Content Specialty Test (CST). Additional tests, such as the Liberal Arts and Science Test (LAST), the Bilingual Education Assessments (BEAs) or the Communication and Quantitative Skills Test )CQST) may be required depending on the candidate’s educational background and content area and grade level(s) to be taught.
  • State and Federal background checks

North Carolina

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis Subject Assessments for middle, secondary and K-12 licensure areas. Those seeking certification under Exceptional Children: General Curriculum must take the Pearson Test for North Carolina: Foundations of Reading and General Curriculum. Candidates must have already met the minimum passing score on the appropriate exams at the time of application.
  • No background checks are required but some individual school districts may require the process as part of their employment.

North Dakota

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program with a minimum of 2.5 GPA and consist of 32 credit hours.
  • Approved course in Native-American Studies
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis and Praxis II
  • State and Federal background checks

Ohio

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program; The coursework required depends on the type of initial license sought.
  • State Certification Requirements State Requirements
  • Passing of required exams; Ohio Assessments for Educators (OAE), Praxis tests are only required for select specialties in education, and candidates wishing to teach a foreign language must also pass the Tests in World Languages provided by ACTFL, including the Oral Proficiency Interview and Written Proficiency Test.
  • State and Federal background checks

Oklahoma

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Oklahoma General Education Test (OGET), Oklahoma Subject Area Test (OSAT), and the Oklahoma Professional Teaching Examination (OPTE). Oklahoma does not accept Praxis scores in lieu of its own examinations.
  • State and Federal background checks

Oregon

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; National Evaluation Series (NES), Oregon Civil Rights exam, Protecting Students and Civil Rights in the Education Environment
  • State and Federal background checks

Pennsylvania

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Recommendation from the institution attended for teaching certificate
  • Passing of required exams; PAPA and Praxis, Praxis II
  • State and Federal background checks

Rhode Island

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program Candidates must have graduated from the program completed no more than five years prior to the submission of the application for a teaching credential.
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching (PLT), Praxis II
  • No background check required, however, individual school districts may require state and federal checks as condition of employment.

South Carolina

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Written recommendation for a teaching license for a teacher preparation program official
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching (PLT), Praxis II
  • State and Federal background checks

South Dakota

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Approved course in human relations and a course on South Dakota Indian studies.
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis Principles of Teaching and Learning (PLT) and Praxis II
  • State and Federal background checks

Tennessee

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching (PLT), Praxis and Praxis II
  • State and Federal background checks

Utah

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis, and Praxis II. Those who are completing the EYE requirement to upgrade from a level 1 to a level2 teaching license are often required to pass at least one of the Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching test.
  • State and Federal background checks

Vermont

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis and Praxis II
  • State and Federal background checks

Virginia

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Complete a child abuse recognition and intervention training course. The course is available online at no cost.
  • Passing of required exams; Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment (VCLA), Praxis II and Reading Assessment is required for those pursuing endorsements in Elementary and Special Education
  • Complete training in emergency first aid, CPR and AED certification.
  • State and Federal background checks

Washington

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Washington Educator Skills Test Basic (WEST-B). Candidates with high scores on the SAT, or ACT may have the WEST-B waived. The content area test that is required in Washington is called the WEST-E.
  • State and Federal background checks

West Virginia

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis, Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching (PLT), and Praxis II
  • State and Federal background checks

Wisconsin

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Complete coursework in the study of Wisconsin Indian tribes and environmental education. These course may be complete within the initial five year period.
  • Individuals pursuing certification in early childhood and elementary education must complete specific coursework in phonics.
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis, and Praxis II. Teachers seeking endorsements in early childhood, elementary education, special education, and reading must also take and pass the Wisconsin Foundations of Reading Test. Those who wish to teach world languages must additionally take the ACTFL World Language Tests.

Wyoming

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete a state-approved teacher education program
  • Institutional Recommendation for teaching license
  • Complete courses in the US and Wyoming Constitutions.
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis II for candidates seeking middle school teacher certification, Candidates seeking endorsement in Elementary Education must take the Praxis Elementary Education: Multiple Subjects assessment as well as the Social Studies Composite to a social studies endorsements. World language endorsements for all grade levels require taking an Oral Proficiency Interview exam.
  • State and Federal background checks

US Territories

America Samoa

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete required American Samoa teacher certification courses
  • Passing of required exams; Praxis, Praxis
  • Completion of the following courses in not included in teacher preparation program; Instructional technology, Bilingual education, Education in American Society, Psychological Foundations of Education, Introduction to Teaching

Guam

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete an accredited teacher education program w/ a 2.7 GPA
  • Passing of required exams: Praxis, one of the Praxis Principles of Learning and Teaching tests and Praxis II
  • Complete a 3 credit course in Guam history or culture shall complete one (1) such course during the first year after certification
  • Recency of study; All applicants seeking professional certification must satisfy recency of study
  • Must be a resident of the United States

Puerto Rico

(Due to Hurricane Irma, information was derived from multiple alternative websites.)

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete an accredited teacher education program w/a minimum of 2.5
  • Passing of required exams: Puerto Rico Basic Skills (PCMAS)
  • Obtain a certificate of good health within six months of applying for your license.
  • Complete a course on the history of Puerto Rico
  • Complete a course on the education of the exceptional child (if not included in the teacher prep program)
  • Complete a course on the integration of technology in teaching (if not included in the teacher prep program)
  • Complete a U.S. history course (if not included in the teacher prep program)

Virgin Islands

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Submit official transcripts for all accredited institutions
  • Elementary school teachers are required to have 36 general course credits and Secondary school teachers are required to have 26 course credits in the following areas: Foundations of Education, Education Psychology, Curriculum and Methods, Education technology, Special Education, and Student Teaching
  • Passing of required exams: Praxis II
  • Complete a course in Virgin Islands history with the first year of employment
  • Demonstrate proof of U.S. citizenship, permanent residency or other approved work status

Washington D.C.

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Complete an approved teacher education program
  • Passing of required exams: Praxis Core Academic Skills test, Praxis II for candidates seeking endorsements in specific teaching areas
  • Include a copy of arrest and criminal history record issued within the previous 12 months


Contact Us:

Sara Skretta Certification Officer & Field Experiences

Kendra Marker Office Associate