New York State Teacher Certification

New York State Initial Certification - Initial certification is the first certification one receives, and is effective for 5 years from the issuance date. Requirements:

  • Complete School of Education undergraduate or graduate teacher preparation program.
  • Pass New York State teacher exams.
  • Complete fingerprinting process prior to graduation.
  • Apply for certification before graduation and no later than two years after graduation to be eligible for School of Education’s recommendation through the TEACH Online Services.
  • Submit an authorization recommendation form to the Coordinator of Career Services and Certification to receive an institutional recommendation.

New York State Professional Certification - Professional certification is permanent certification. Professional certificate holders must register with the department of education every five years to maintain certification and teach in New York State. Further detail can be found here: Registration Memorandum.

  • Must be earned before initial certificate expires
  • Completion of a master’s degree*
  • Three years full-time teaching employment.
  • Mentorship experience

*Master's degree for professional certification must meet one of the following:

  • Master’s degree leading to professional certification in area of initial certification.
  • Master’s degree in a new certification area.
  • Master’s degree in an unrelated area of study with at least 12 graduate semester hours of content related to the initial certificate. Semester hours can be part of the Master’s or in addition to it.

Links & Forms (Current Students & Alumni)

Required New York State Teacher Certification Exams

The NYS Teacher Certification Examinations website has information on test framework, prep and study materials, and registration. Visit the Office of Teaching Initiatives to see which exams you are required to take, which will generally include the edTPA, the Educating All Students test (EAS), and a Content Specialty Test (CST) or School Building Leader assessment (SBL). 

Applying for Certification

What is an Institutional Recommendation for Certification?

An institutional recommendation is required for students that apply for New York State certification. The School of Education can upload an institutional recommendation for candidates once they submit a recommendation authorization form to the coordinator of career services and certification and their degree is cleared by the Registrar's office. Speak with your academic advisor to ensure your degree will be cleared on time.

Out-of-State Teacher Certification

Each state has specific teacher certification requirements for people applying for certification that already hold certification in New York State. Students seeking out-of-state teacher certification are encouraged to research the state's requirements and contact Eveny Parker at edparker@syr.edu for additional assistance throughout the process. Any out-of-state college program verification forms must also be sent to Eveny.

Certifications by Program

Undergraduate Programs
Program Name Certification Title
Art Education Visual Art (All Grades)
English Education English Language Arts (7-12)
Health and Physical Education Health Education (All Grades)
and Physical Education (All Grades)
Inclusive Early Childhood
Special Education
Early Childhood (Birth-2)
and Students with Disabilities (Birth-2)
Inclusive Elementary
& Special Education
Childhood Education (1-6)
and Special Education/Students with Disabilities (1-6)
Mathematics Education Mathematics (7-12)
Music Education Music (All Grades)
Physical Education Physical Education (All Grades)
Science Education/Biology Biology (7-12)
Science Education/Chemistry Chemistry (7-12)
Science Education/Earth Science Earth Science (7-12)
Science Education/Physics Physics (7-12)
Social Studies Education Social Studies (7-12)
Spanish Education Spanish (7-12)


Graduate Programs
Program Name Certification Title
Art Education Prep Visual Arts (All Grades)
Art Education Professional Certification Visual Arts (All Grades)
Childhood Education Prep (1-6)
(not accepting new applicants)
Childhood Education (1-6)
Early Childhood Special Education Early Childhood Education (Birth-2)
and Students with Disabilities (Birth-2)
Educational Leadership School Building Leader
School District Leader
English Education Prep (7-12) English Language Arts (7-12)
Inclusive Special Education Prep
Students with Disabilities (1-6)
Inclusive Special Education Prep
(7-12 Generalist)
Students with Disabilities (7-12)
Inclusive Special Education: Severe/Multiple Disabilities Severe/Multiple Disabilities Annotation
Instructional Technology Educational Technology Specialist (All Grades)
* Library & Info Science: School Media Library Media Specialist (All Grades)
Literacy Education (Birth-12) Literacy (Birth-6) and Literacy (5-12)
Mathematics Education Prep (7-12) Mathematics (7-12)
Music Education Prep Music (All Grades)
Music Education Professional Certification - MS/MMus Music (All Grades)
Science/Biology Prep (7-12) Biology (7-12)
Science/Chemistry Prep (7-12) Chemistry (7-12)
Science/Earth Science Prep (7-12) Earth Science (7-12)
Science/Physics Prep (7-12) Physics (7-12)
School Counseling (M.S.) School Counselor (Provisional K-12)
School Counseling(C.A.S.) School Counselor (Permanent K-12)
Social Studies Prep (7-12) Social Studies (7-12)
** Speech-Language Pathology (NYT) Speech & Language Disabilities (All Grades)
Teaching English Language Learners English to Speakers of Other Languages (All Grades)

* Program offered through School of Information Studies
** Program offered through College of Arts & Sciences