admission to teacher certification programsteacher certification programs 

Students applying to any professional teacher education 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. These are:

1.    Complete the Liberal Education Program requirements, as specified by the individual programs, thereby exhibiting a strong liberal arts background in the arts and humanities, mathematics, science, social and behavioral sciences, and health and physical education.

2.    Pass the state-mandated Praxis Core skills examination in mathematics, reading, and writing or present a Connecticut Academic Skills Assessment Waiver from the Connecticut State Department of Education (CSDE). To submit the waiver online, the eligibility criteria and waiver information can be found on the CSDE website. To submit  the paper application via mail, download the application: ED 192 Form-Praxis 1 Waiver.

3.   Have a minimum 2.7 GPA for all undergraduate courses taken at the time of application.

4.    Submit an 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.

5.    Submit a letter of recommendation from each of two persons able to testify to the student's suitability to become a teacher. Attached to this recommendation, each person must include a completed recommendation form found in number 5 of the Application Materials listed below.

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


Any one of the requirements 3-6 above may be waived by the Dean of the School of Education upon the formal recommendation of the department and if justified by unusual circumstances. Please consult with the department within which you seek certification for additional information.  Students will not be accepted into a teacher certification program until all six of the above requirements are met or waived. Failure to meet all of the admission requirements in a timely manner will preclude registration for course work in teacher education. Also, due to Connecticut State Department of Education requirements, students applying for certification programs must not register for more than two courses in professional education before they have received official notification of admission as a candidate to the certification program. 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 certification program.

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


1. 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. 

2. Praxis Core passing score report or a copy of Praxis I waiver letter (if a score report is not available, proof of passing Praxis I score posted to Banner under 'Test Scores and Placements' is acceptable)

For more information regarding the Praxis I test and Connecticut state requirements, please visit the following website- Praxis: Connecticut Test Requirements

3. Transcripts: An official transcript must be submitted from every college/university attended by the applicant, excluding SCSU. These official transcripts must be submitted with the application and cannot be obtained either from the registrar or the admissions office here at Southern; they must be obtained directly from the college or university previously attended.

4. A 250-500 word essay demonstrating a command of the English language, setting out the reasons for wanting to enroll in the program.The essay should emphasize experiences that are relevant to teaching.

5. Recommendations: Each candidate must have two recommendation letters (with original signatures) accompanied by two completed rating forms. The required letters of recommendation and rating forms should be completed by professionals able to testify to the individual's suitability for admission to a teacher preparation program. You will need Adobe Reader to open the recommendation form.

Graduate Recommendation Form

Undergraduate Recommendation Forms
Art World Languages
Math   History Exercise Science

6. Department Interview

Testing Information


Students are required to pass state mandated tests specific to their subject area in order to become certified.

Praxis I- All students must pass all sections of the Praxis I test or obtain a Praxis I waiver based upon ACT, SAT, or GRE scores. Passing of Praxis I is a requirement for admission to the School of Education. An application for a Praxis 1 waiver can be downloaded here.

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) or Elementary Education Grades K-6 Endorsement (endorsement #013) 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:

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. As required by the Connecticut State Department of Education, all candidates must pass the content-specific examination, Praxis II (or ACTFL if receiving certification in foreign language) in order to be certified.