Become a Teacher in Alaska
Alaska Department of Education & Early Developmenthttp://www.eed.state.ak.us/
P.O. Box 110500 Juneau, AK 99811
Become a teacher in Alaska
Alaska Teacher Shortage areas
To become certified as a teacher in Alaska, you will need to earn a Bachelor’s degree, complete or be enrolled in a teacher preparation course, and pass the standardized tests specified below. If you have a teaching credential from another state, you may be able to use an interstate reciprocity program to become certified in Alaska. Learn more here about getting your Alaska's requirements for teacher certification.
The two main types of teaching credentials used in Alaska are the Initial Certificate (valid for three (3) years, non-renewable) and the five-year, renewable, Professional Certificate. To advance from the Initial to the Professional Certificate, you must teach for at least two (2) years, complete your teacher education program, and take a few required courses as described below. There is also a Master Teacher Certificate (ten years, renewable) available for teachers who have earned National Board certification.
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All states require that prospective teachers have at least a Bachelor’s Degree and complete or be in the process of completing a state-approved teacher preparation program to receive certification. Some states also have specific course and credit-hour requirements.
Teacher education programs generally consist of two elements—curricula and fieldwork. Curricula generally includes instruction on teaching fundamental skills, pedagogy (the science of teaching) and preparing students to research, design and implement learning experiences in their field of study. Fieldwork often includes field observations, internships, student teaching or a combination of all three. Check with your teacher preparation program or the Department of Education for more information about specific requirements.
Alaska does not list specific course or credit hour requirements, but every college or university teacher preparation program will have requirements of its own. Contact your teacher preparation program or the Department of Education for more information. The state does require a period of student teaching or mentored/supervised teaching.
To qualify for a Professional Certificate in Alaska, you must also complete approved coursework in Alaska Studies AND Multicultural/Cross-cultural Communications.Return to the top
Becoming a certified teacher requires the completion of certain standardized tests. In addition, some states and teacher preparation programs require an exam for entry into the program. For an Initial certificate, Alaska requires that applicants pass the Praxis 1/PPST (Pre Professional Skills Test) or an equivalent basic competency exam from one of a number of other states. For information on which states’ exams can be submitted and what scores are required on the respective exams, check the Basic Competency Exam Information section of the Education Department website. For a Professional certificate, you must also pass a Praxis II Content Area Exam.
Read more about teacher certification tests.
You can learn more about the Praxis exams by visiting the Praxis information page provided by Teachers Test Prep, where you can also access free online Praxis Practice Tests and Praxis Study Guides, plus a variety of paid Praxis Test Prep options for those who need additional help, including live prep classes, one-on-one tutoring, and on-demand online prep.Return to the top
To earn your teaching credential you will have to complete the appropriate amount of undergraduate coursework and standardized tests, as well as an accredited certification program. A list of accredited teacher preparation programs in Alaska can be found here.Return to the top
Thanks to a recent grant from the U.S. Department of Education, Alaska now offers the Alaska Transition to Teaching (AKT2) program, which provides an expedited alternative to the traditional credential path. Selected candidates must complete an online, pre-service course and a four-week summer fieldwork program before joining a rural or high needs secondary school in the fall.
This program allows applicants to become teaching certified without leaving the workforce. However, a 2-year commitment to teaching in rural school districts is required. Candidates must have a Bachelor’s degree, pass the Praxis I basic skills test, and a Praxis II skills test in a desired subject area to qualify.
Alaska also participates in the Mountain Pacific Region Troops to Teachers Program , which helps military personnel transition to a teaching career.Return to the top
Interstate Reciprocity is a program that offers teachers certified in other states to get an Alaska teaching credential. Click here to see which states offer reciprocity for Alaska, or Contact the Alaska Department of Education & Early Development to inquire about your specific situation.Return to the top
A Master’s in Education will increase your classroom competency, give you a wider breadth of pedagogical skills to draw from in planning lessons, and give you more confidence in dealing with students. This increased competency can often lead to an increase in pay. Teachers with a Master’s degree in the Anchorage School District in 2011-2012 can expect to earn about $5,000 more per year than teachers with a Bachelor’s degree and the same level of experience.
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Applegate-Jackson-Parks Future Teacher Scholarships Horace Mann Educator Scholarships Learn more about how to finance your Master's degree. Return to the top
Alaska is one of the top-3 highest paying states for teachers, with elementary school teachers earning an average salary of $69,000 and secondary school teachers earning an average wage of $68,000. There is no state-wide payscale for Alaska, but you can find the district-level pay scales here. Almost all contain salary increases for years of experience and higher levels of education.
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Teachers in Alaska receive full health benifits, including full dental plans, long-term health insurance, and long-term disability aid. Retirement is handled through the Teachers’ Retirement System (TRS), where you can find out more about retirement benefits.
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Professional development in Alaska is handled by the Alaska Staff Development Network (ASDN), which offers a comprehensive development program executed primarily through online webinars, but also through on-site school workshops and summer programs. The program stresses increased use of technology in the classroom, collaboration between teachers, and community building.Return to the top
Alaska’s Department of Education along with the University of Alaska maintains a sleek Alaska teacher placement website with info on job openings and job fairs, and a forum where teachers can help each other find placements. The site includes a section on teaching in Alaska’s rural and bush school district, where teachers are needed most.
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Alaska Department of Education & Early Development Alaska Department of Education & Early Development – Teacher Certification Alaska Transition to Teaching (AKT2) Alaska Teacher Placement (job vacancies)