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Arizona: Teacher Credentialing in Arizona

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To become a teacher in Arizona, individuals need to work through a set of requirements that the Arizona State Board of Education puts in place. This list of requirements can change over time and therefore individuals should take the time to obtain this information directly from the board of education before applying directly for certification. Teacher certifications are necessary for anyone who wishes to hold a teacher's position within any of the state's private or public schools.

Required Coursework

Most of the requirements to become a teacher in Arizona come from obtaining the necessary coursework. Individuals who are interested in becoming a teacher will first need to enroll in an accredited secondary level of education. You can find a list of approved schools through the state school board. Once you enroll in these courses, you will need to obtain the minimum level of a bachelor's degree in education studies. Unlike other states, Arizona does not have any specific undergraduate requirements for students. However, teachers may wish to specialize in one or more areas.

Preparation

Once you have completed the necessary coursework, the second phase of becoming a teacher in Arizona begins. Here, you will need to perform additional course curriculum while also demonstrating your skills within a school setting. In the first area, students will need to work to obtain instruction in foundational knowledge and skills, design, and then implementation of their learning experiences into the field of study.

The secondary portion of this requirement is fieldwork. Fieldwork usually includes both observation and student teaching, through an approved program. Students will need to demonstrate their ability to teach within a classroom setting before they can move on to the next level.

Teacher Certification

Once you have obtained this necessary level of education and study, the next part of the process is for the individual to sit for his or her necessary exams. There are potentially several tests that you will need to take. In the state of Arizona, there is not a Basic Skills Test. However, student teachers must take and pass the Arizona Education Proficiency Assessment. In addition, if you have any level of specific study, you will need to take the Praxis II Subject Test in that specialized area.

Alternative Certification

Those individuals who are graduates of approved colleges and universities who may not actually have a bachelor's degree in education (though they have a bachelor's degree or higher in another field of study) may qualify for an alternative teaching certificate. To do so, you must take the Alternative Certification testing required by the state.

Becoming a teacher in the state of Arizona is not difficult, but it does require a wide range of study and focus. Those who wish to become a teacher will need to work through this entire process. More so, some teachers on an ongoing basis require continuing education. Recertification may be necessary in some situations as well.

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