Find an Education Path For Teaching in Delaware, DE
If you decide that you want to be a teacher, there are certain steps to follow. The first step depends on where you are now on the path toward reaching your goal. Please choose the highest level of education that you have achieved and we will guide you through the steps to take as you advance towards a teaching career in Delaware.
- I have graduated from High School or a GED…
- I have had some college or an Associate’s Degree…
- Earned a Bachelor’s Degree…
- Earned a Master’s Degree…
The information below will help you discover the steps you should take to become a teacher in Delaware.
If You Have a High School Diploma or a GED
Delaware high school graduates or students with GED certificates can choose to apply directly to a four-year university to study education, or they can enter a two-year or community college to earn an Associate degree or certificate in a field such as Early Childhood Education. Two-year education degrees or certificates are primarily for career preparation and will qualify graduates to enter the workforce as childcare professionals. Other Associate degrees are designed for students transferring to a four-year college for a bachelor’s degree in education
- Learn about accredited schools that offer Associate degrees or Bachelor’s degrees focusing on education, specific academic content areas or student populations.
- Decide what grade level and subject area you are interested in teaching. Aspiring teachers can enroll at a community college and earn an Associate degree. Some two-year colleges offer programs that lead to certification in the field of Early Childhood Education.
- Contact colleges that fit your needs, and request information to help you make a decision about what school to attend and what degree program to pursue.
If You Have Completed Some College or Earned an Associate’s Degree
Earning an Associate degree at a two-year college can be a major step toward acceptance into a Bachelor’s degree program at a four-year university. A Bachelor’s degree is essential for students who are seeking official certification or licensing to teach in Delaware. The steps you must take to reach your goal will depend on your interests, finances, academic record and the specific career in education you plan to pursue. The steps below can help you make the right choices.
- Some two-year college degrees, such as an Associate in Arts (AA) degree in Education or Early Childhood Education may provide you with the coursework and credits you need to enroll in a Bachelor’s degree program at a four-year college. If you plan to use the Associate degree as a stepping-stone to a higher degree, be certain the prerequisite classes you need to complete are available at the two-year college you choose.
- Investigate various state-approved Bachelor’s degree programs to find out which ones will accept transfer credits from the college you attended. Contact the schools that interest you to request more information.
- For some universities, certain Associate in Arts degrees represent confirmation that a student has completed approximately half of a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree program. Completing a certificate or degree program at a two-year college may qualify you to enter a four-year college as a Junior. Continuing on to earn a Bachelor’s degree in an education-related major, may lead you to the next level required to become a teacher in Delaware.
- Some aspiring teachers, who have earned Associate Degrees or Credentials in Early Childhood Education, choose to seek employment and begin working with infants, toddlers and pre-school children. An Early Childhood Education certificate may qualify you for employment as a teaching assistant, paraeducator, or teacher in Delaware Early Childhood Education programs.
If You Have a Bachelor’s Degree …
To be eligible to apply for a regular teaching certificate, you must first complete a program culminating in a Bachelor’s or Masters degree program. Some prospective educators who want to teach in Delaware, have already earned a Bachelor’s degree, so the next steps toward teacher certification will often depend on the undergraduate major you chose. The steps below offer suggestions for some of the different routes leading to licensure and may help you discover which option meets your career goals.
- If you have earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Education that included an accredited Teacher Preparation Program, you have fulfilled the essential academic and teacher preparation requirements. Teacher Preparation Programs include classroom observations, fieldwork, and student teaching. Successful completion of all degree and teacher preparation requirements will qualify you to apply for a teaching certificate or license.
- The Delaware Department of Education requires all teaching candidates to take and pass the Praxis I Pre-Professional Skills Tests (PPST) in reading, writing and math. Prospective secondary school teachers will also be required to take and pass the Praxis II exam in your chosen area of certification,
- Receiving a Bachelor’s degree with a major in liberal studies can be an important step toward certification as an Elementary level teacher. Some certification programs recommend the Liberal Arts major, because it prepares educators to teach in the many different subject areas taught in Elementary school classrooms.
- If you received your Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree in the specific subject you wish to teach, you may have satisfied many academic requirements recommended by credential programs. Majoring in a specific subject taught at the secondary school level prepares individuals to become endorsed or qualified to teach high school and middle school classes in that content area.
- Delaware teaching candidates who earn a Bachelor’s degree in a major other than Education, or who have not finished a Teacher Preparation requirement, must complete a Teacher Preparation Program at a regionally accredited institution. Some of these are Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Preparation programs and some are combined with Master’s in Education degree programs. . Gather information and decide which route works best for you.
- When you have earned or higher, completed a Teacher Preparation Program, including mandatory student teaching hours, and passed the Praxis Basic Skills and Content Area tests, you are qualified to submit the application for an Initial License to teach in Delaware. Applicants must also apply for a Standard Certificate in the particular area, subject, or category in which they hope to be employed.
If You Have a Master’s Degree or are in a Master’s Degree program
Master’s degrees in Education often include an approved Teacher Preparation program, student teaching and fieldwork, and the state-mandated tests required prior to applying for a Delaware Teaching License. If your Master’s degree major was not Education, you must enroll in and complete an accredited Teacher Preparation Program before you can apply for a teaching credential. Having a Master’s degree in Education may increase the likelihood of getting a teaching job, and the average salary is higher for educators with Master’s degrees. A few different options–including pursuing a Ph.D. in Education–are available as you near your goal of being issued a Delaware Initial Teaching License.
- Accredited universities with graduate programs in education offer a range of Master’s degrees that can lead you to a teaching license and a career as an educator. Master of Arts or Master of Science in Education, or Master of Education (M.Ed.) degrees may be offered concurrently with a Teacher Preparation program that is required for certification. You may also have the opportunity to focus on Elementary or Secondary Education, with an emphasis on the subject area you hope to teach.
- When you are ready to begin your teaching career, you must demonstrate that you have completed all requirements for certification or licensure. These steps include finishing required academic coursework, completing an approved Teacher Preparation Program, passing mandated tests, and fulfilling student teaching hours. The next step is to apply for your teaching certificate and begin searching for a job in the education field. Contact the Delaware Department of Education to request information and an application.
- Some people who have earned a Master’s degree in Education may decide to continue their education and pursue a doctorate degree. Delaware offers a variety of Educational Doctoral Programs. Gathering information about available doctorate degrees in your field or specialty will provide the information necessary to discover the best university and education program for you.