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admission to teacher certification programsteacher certification programs 


Students applying to any professional teacher preparation program in order to become candidates for an initial educator certificate in Connecticut must meet six academic and non-academic requirements established by the School of Education, which are consistent with certification requirements of the Connecticut State Department of Education (CSDE). These are:

  1. Have a minimum of 39 semester hours of credit in general academic courses in five of the following six areas, including a survey course in United States history that is at least three semester hours of credit:
(1) Natural sciences
(2) Social studies;
(3) Fine arts;
(4) English;
(5) Mathematics; and
(6) Foreign language;

 2.    Take the state reading, writing and mathematics competency examination prescribed by and administered under the direction of the State Board of Education, currently Praxis Core, or present a Connecticut Academic Skills Assessment Waiver from the Connecticut State Department of Education (CSDE). Students who do not achieve a satisfactory score on Praxis Core will be required to participate in remediation that conforms to forthcoming guidelines from the CSDE.

 Waiver eligibility criteria and directions for submitting an online waiver request are available at the CSDE website.  For those unable to submit an online waiver request a paper application is still available:  ED 192 Form-Praxis 1 Waiver.

 3.   Have a minimum 2.7 cumulative GPA (aka Quality Point Ratio or QPR) for all undergraduate courses taken at the time of application.

An official transcript must be submitted from every college/university attended by the applicant, excluding SCSU. The official transcripts must be obtained directly from the colleges/universities at which the courses were taken.  The registrar or admissions offices here at Southern are unable to provide these transcripts.

4.    Submit a 250-500 word essay demonstrating a proficiency in English, articulating the reasons for wanting to become a teacher and emphasizing one's experiences relevant to teaching and learning, or conforming to essay requirements of their specific program.

 5.    Submit two letters of recommendation from individuals able to testify to the student's suitability to become a teacher. Each letter of recommendation must be accompanied by a completed recommendation form, which can be downloaded below.

 Undergraduate recommendations are submitted directly to the program coordinator identified on the recommendation form. Graduate recommendations are mailed directly to he application processing center at:
Southern Connecticut State University
School of Graduate Studies
Application Processing Center
PO Box 8057 Portsmouth, NH 03802

  6.    Pass an interview by a Departmental Admissions Committee, which will assess the student's personal attributes and dispositions that will shape his or her teaching performance.

 Students must meet, or have waived, all six of the above requirements for acceptance into teacher a preparation program. Upon the formal recommendation of the department and if justified by unusual circumstances, requirements 3-6 may be waived by the Dean of the School of Education. On a case-by-case basis, students who are close to meeting Requirement 1 may be approved by the Dean for conditional acceptance. If granted conditional acceptance students must fulfill this requirement by a specified date or they will be dismissed from the School of Education. Please consult with the department within which you seek certification for additional information. 

  Aligned with Connecticut State Department of Education requirements, students seeking admission to any professional teacher education program may take no more than two professional education courses before they are accepted. Therefore, it is necessary to meet all admission requirements in a timely manner in order to continue taking certification-related course work. Failure to comply with this policy may invalidate the courses taken outside of this policy. These requirements apply to all students seeking admission to any teacher preparation program.

 All students applying to any professional teacher preparation program are required to answer the following background questions as part of the application process:

1.  Have you ever been convicted of a crime, excluding minor traffic violation?
2.  Have you ever been dismissed for cause for a position in a public or nonpublic school or childcare facility?
3.  Have you ever had a teaching credential revoked suspended, or annulled in any state, territory, or foreign country?
4.  Have you ever surrendered a teaching credential in any state, territory, or foreign country?

 A ‘YES’ answer does not preclude admission to a teacher preparation program. If you anticipate answering yes to any of the above questions, please seek guidance from Mr. Ken Bungert, Certification Officer, at or 203-392-6295.

 Candidates must maintain good standing throughout the teacher education program in order to qualify for our recommendation for certification to the State Department of Education. Students are responsible for familiarizing themselves with Connecticut's teacher certification regulations and keeping abreast of changes to those regulations. If state regulations change before completion of a certification program, students will be required to meet these new regulations in order to receive the University's recommendation for certification to the State Department of Education.

Applicants to any certification program should allow a minimum of six months from receipt of application to admission into the certification program. Thus, students interested in becoming certified as a teacher should contact the department within which the certification is sought by the end of their freshman year.

application materials


Download and Complete Background Questions- You are required to complete the background questionnaire for admittance to the School of Education. You will need Adobe Reader to open the application. 

Graduate Recommendation Form

Undergraduate Recommendation Forms
Art World Languages
Math   History Exercise Science

Testing Information

To qualify for a recommendation for certification to the Connecticut State Department of Education at the end of their programs candidates must pass the following tests

Praxis II- Students must pass the appropriate test(s) in their subject area. Connecticut Praxis II requirements and passing scores are listed on the Praxis website.

Connecticut Foundations of Reading- Any student applying for an Integrated Early Childhood, NK-3 Endorsement (endorsement #113), Elementary Education Grades K-6 Endorsement (endorsement #013), or Comprehensive Special Education (endorsement code #165) will be required to take and pass the Connecticut Foundations of Reading test. Information regarding the Foundations of Reading test can be found here. 

ACTFL- Students applying for certification in French, German, Italian, and Spanish at the elementary and/or secondary levels must pass the Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI) and Writing Proficiency Test (WPT) tests in target language with the minimum passing standard of Advanced Low on both tests.

ongoing assessment of candidates in teacher education programs

Teacher candidates must maintain good standing in the program in order to qualify for student teaching and recommendation from Southern Connecticut State University for State of Connecticut initial teacher certification. They also must demonstrate the following:

1.       Personal attitudes and dispositions that will affect her of his performance as a teacher;

2.       Professional behavior appropriate to the context which demonstrates that actions reflect directly upon the status and substance of the profession;

3.       Confidentiality of all information concerning colleagues and students obtained in the educational process; and

4.       Integrity and honesty in written and verbal communication and in all coursework related to the professional programs for teacher certification.

5.       An undergraduate academic performance of at least a 2.7 GPA average. A candidate, who after acceptance into a teacher education program completes 9 or more credits with a cumulative GPA of less than 2.7, will be placed on School of Education academic probation. The student will have one semester to raise the GPA to 2.7 or higher. Failure to do so will result in dismissal from the School of Education. 

revocation for admission to teacher certification programs 

Students may be dismissed from professional education courses for any of the following reasons:

  • Demonstrated unprofessional behavior or an inability to respond appropriately in various contexts which affects her or his performance as a teacher;
  • Falsify or misrepresent any documentation or information provided for programmatic, academic, or professional qualification/competency purposes;
  • Does not achieve acceptable standard on the performance assessments by the School of Education;
  • Been convicted in a court of law of a crime involving moral turpitude or of any crime of such nature that in the opinion of the University would impair the standing of the School of Education professional program; or
  • Other due and sufficient cause.

program completion of undergraduate degree and teacher certification

 Satisfactory performance on all aspects of the undergraduate program, including the expected performance on all Gate assessments, are requirements for completion of any teacher education program at Southern. In order to be recommended for certification by the Connecticut State Department of Education students must pass the appropriate tests (identified above).