A teacher endorsement is an ad-on statement that appears on a teacher certification. Before obtaining a teaching endorsement, individuals must complete a teacher certification and obtain a license. From there, teachers may choose to take additional education courses to complete a teaching endorsement. Each endorsement qualifies you to teach in a specialized area which adds value to a teaching career. When you go to apply for a teaching position through your state’s department of education or county, you will notice a little number next to the certification. That little number is likely the number of the endorsement required to obtain that teaching position. For example you may apply to become a physics teacher were the initial certification for K-12 and a physics endorsement are required to land that job. Some common reasons to obtain an add-on endorsement include: getting a raise in pay, specializing in smaller subjects, changing careers, and job security.
Common Teacher Endorsements
- English as a Second Language (ESL)
- Early Childhood Special Education
- Foreign Language
- Physical Education
In fact, nearly all specialty subject areas require an endorsement.
If you are looking to transfer your teaching credentials to another state, you must apply for a teacher certification in the “destination state.” The NASDTEC has an interstate contract with 44 states and the District of Columbia. The six states that do not participate in this teacher reciprocity agreement are as follows: Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. However, endorsements may be a bit trickier to transfer as each state has a different requirement for certifications. Generally what the process of transferring an endorsement from the state received to the destination state includes a set of additional courses one must take to match the requirements in both states. Before making your big move, we highly recommend doing your research: check with your destination state’s department of education, and head to the Praxis Web Page to make sure you know which tests to take for your next state. Additionally, if you have a specific position in mind, it won’t hurt to ask the supervisor about their requirements. Doing so may help you to streamline your process.
You will know when you feel ready to add an endorsement to your already existing teacher certification. The best time to add an endorsement is likely after a couple of years teaching but may become apparent sooner or later. Many people make the choice based on their career and their professional development needs. Are you looking for more in-depth knowledge in curriculum and instruction? It may be time to start looking into a curriculum and instruction endorsement. Do you feel like your skills as a teacher will better serve exceptional students? It may be time to obtain your special education endorsement. Use your career as a compass and be practical. While getting an endorsement may not be as time-consuming as degree, this process will require your time and money resources. Keep in mind that time to completion will vary depending on which endorsement you seek. We have seen endorsement programs that require 3 courses and others that require 8.
Steps to Obtaining A Teaching Endorsement
1.) Check that your state requires the desired endorsement
2.) Apply to a program
3.) Complete with a passing grade all program course material
4.) Fulfill your university’s field experience requirements
5.) Take the necessary tests if any as designated by your state’s department of education.
6.) Apply for your endorsement.
Early-Childhood-Education-Degrees.com’s Coverage of Teacher Endorsements
We’ve surveyed several subject matter areas to discover some of the best online endorsement program in the nation. Check out our endorsement rankings below.