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Pennsylvania Teacher Certification

This page is sponsored by Rossier Online, a master level teaching degree program delivered online that enables you to earn a Master’s degree and teaching credential. Learn more about how the University of Southern California can help you become a transformative teacher in Pennsylvania.


To become a certified teacher in Pennsylvania, you will need to fulfill all prerequisite coursework, teacher preparation, and testing requirements.

Our goal is to make this process as easy as possible, and we are dedicated to updating the site with new information on a regular basis. To stay up-to-date with the latest in teacher certification, please complete the form in the right sidebar.

Certification Requirements

Important Note: Education licensure requirements and salary statistics (for teachers and administrators) are subject to change. CertificationMap.com makes its best effort to keep content accurate; however, the official sources are the state education departments. Please confirm licensing requirements with your state before applying for licensure or renewal. Last updated: 1/06/2015


Applicants seeking Pennsylvania teaching certification must meet the following requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree (or higher) from an accredited institution
  • Completion of state-approved teacher education program, including a supervised student-teaching component and recommendation from institution’s certification officer
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA
  • Successful completion of Pennsylvania-required teacher certification tests

Pennsylvania Teacher Prerequisite Coursework

Pennsylvania requires that certified teachers at a minimum have a bachelor’s degree and have completed an approved program of teacher education.

Pennsylvania Teacher Preparation

There are over 90 different Pennsylvania-based teacher preparation programs that can recommend candidates directly for PA certification.

Other programs, including those from universities based outside of Pennsylvania or online, may also qualify you for a PA credential.

Alternative Certification

Graduates of accredited colleges or universities whose bachelor’s degree was not in education, and who have not yet earned a traditional teaching certificate, can still receive an alternative teaching certificate by satisfying certain requirements. The state of Pennsylvania officially recognizes ABCTE certification as a route to earning your Pennsylvania teacher certification. Click here to find out more about Pennsylvania Alternative Certification programs.

Typically teacher education programs consist of a combination of curricula and fieldwork. The curricula often includes instruction on foundational knowledge and skills, pedagogy (or the art and science of teaching), and preparing students to research, design and implement learning experiences in their field of study. The fieldwork component can include field observations, student teaching, and an internship.

While the involvement in an education program may seem financially daunting, a number of financial resources specifically for teachers exist around the country. For more information on this, visit our page on scholarships for teachers. For more scholarships for teachers exclusive to the State of Pennsylvania, visit our Pennsylvania Teacher Scholarships page.

Pennsylvania Required Tests

Required Tests


PAPA: Reading, Writing, Mathematics
PECT tests for certificates

Special Education PreK-8
Special Education K-12

PAPA: Reading, Writing, Mathematics
Praxis CORE Assessment Grades 4-8
Praxis Concertration Tests Grades 4-8

Grades 4-8

PAPA: Reading, Writing, Mathematics
Praxis Content Area tests for appropriate subject areas

Secondary Certificates 7-12

Pennsylvania Certification Reciprocity

Pennsylvania will accept some teaching credentials from all but the following states: Alaska, Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota, and Oregon. Contact the Pennsylvania Department of Education to inquire about your specific situation. Please see our interstate reciprocity disclaimer for more information.

Pennsylvania Teacher Salary

  • Incentives to teach in high-needs schools or shortage subject areas: Pennsylvania provides loan forgiveness support for teachers teaching in high needs schools and loan forgiveness and differential pay for teachers teaching in shortage subject areas
  • Policies in place that articulate elements of effective induction: Pennsylvania has strong induction policies in place
  • Average Elementary Teacher Salary: $53,960
  • Average Secondary Teacher Salary: $56,740
  • Teacher Salary vs. State Average Salary: The average teacher in Pennsylvania makes 132% of the salary of the average worker in Pennsylvania
  • Average Number of Vacation Weeks Per Year: 15

Applying for Certification

Teaching in PA

Teaching in PA provides potential educators with access to teaching vacancies throughout Pennsylvania’s 500+ public school districts. Individuals are able to register, search and apply online for teaching vacancies in the state of Pennsylvania.

Background Check

Visit Pennsylvania’s Cogent ID services for information regarding how to apply for a state and federal background check

Pennsylvania Substitute Teacher Requirements

Please click here to learn more about how to become a substitute teacher in Pennsylvania.

Contact Information

      Pennsylvania Department of Education

      School of Leadership and Teacher Quality

      333 Market Street

      Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17126

      717-728-3224 – Contact

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