Become a Teacher in Ohio


Ohio Ohio Department of Education

25 South Front Street Columbus, Ohio 43215

1 877-644-6338

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    Become a teacher in Ohio

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            Earn Your Ohio Teaching Credential

            Important Note: Education licensure requirements and salary statistics (for teachers and administrators) are subject to change. makes its best effort to keep content accurate; however, the official sources are the state education departments. Please confirm licensing requirements with your state before applying for licensure or renewal. Last updated: 1/06/2015

            To earn your Ohio teaching credential you will have to complete the appropriate amount of undergraduate coursework and standardized tests, as well as an accredited certification program. If you already possess a valid teaching credential from another state, you may be able to earn your Ohio teaching credential through interstate reciprocity. Click here to learn more about earning your Ohio teaching credential. Ohio has a four-tiered licensing system. The state issues the 4-Year Resident License to new teachers who are graduates of an in-state accredited teacher preparation program and the Alternative 4-Year Resident license to individuals pursuing an alternative certification route. When either of the 4-Year Resident programs is completed successfully, the teacher receives a Professional Educator license (5 years, renewable).   The Senior Professional Educator License (5 years, renewable) is issued to teachers who have earned an advanced degree, taught successfully for 9 years (at least 5 of those years under a Professional Educator License and completed a Master Teacher Portfolio. The Lead Professional Educator license is issued to teachers who have met the requirements for the Senior license AND earned a Teacher Leader Endorsement. National Board Certification may be substitute for the portfolio and endorsement.  Other license types are available for teachers educated and/or licensed out-of-state, and for other unusual situations. Learn more here about earning your Ohio teaching credential. Learn more about getting your teaching credential. Return to the top

            Prerequisite Coursework in Ohio

            All states require that certified teachers at a minimum have a Bachelor’s degree. There are some states that have requirements for coursework in particular subjects, or undergraduate credit hour requirements in order to be certified in specialty areas. In Ohio, each state-approved teacher preparation program has its own curriculum and coursework, but most curricula incorporate subject mastery and basic pedagogical theory and practice. Ohio teachers can obtain several different types of licensure, and the Ohio Department of Education outlines its requirements in its 4 Tiered Licensure Structure. Return to the top

            Required Tests for Ohio

            In order to become certified to teach in a state, you must satisfactorily complete the Basic Skill Test and any Subject Area Competence assessments required for your state. Ohio does not require a basic skills test for student teaching or certification (although some teacher preparation programs in the state may require the Praxis I exam for entry into the program). Ohio does require the Praxis II Subject Assessment in your content area and also the Praxis II Principles of Teaching and Learning (PLT) exam. The following American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages tests are required for foreign language teachers: 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. Read more about teacher certification tests. Return to the top

            Ohio Teacher Certification Programs

            Teacher education programs from accredited colleges or universities prepare students to become teachers through a rigorous curriculum as well as practical fieldwork. Curricula most commonly emphasize foundational knowledge and skill, pedagogy, and educational technology. In addition, curricula seek to prepare students to research, design, and implement learning experiences in their field of study. Practical fieldwork allows students to apply what they have learned to a classroom setting through field observations, student teaching, and internships. Teacher education programs must be approved by the Ohio Department of Education. A list of approved teacher preparation programs in Ohio can be found here. Return to the top

            Alternative Certification in Ohio

            For those who have graduated from an accredited college or university with a bachelor’s degree that is not in education, the Alternative Residential Educator license is available for those who satisfy the state’s requirements. The Ohio Department of Education offers alternative pathways to become a teacher as well as a principal or superintendent. For the Alternative Resident Educator License, candidates must have a Bachelor’s degree meeting the following requirements: 30 semester (45 quarter) hours in the subject area to be taught with a 2.5 GPA or higher (integrated science, integrated language arts, and integrated social studies require 60 semester or 90 quarter hours) consisting of coursework well distributed across the subject area, showing increasing depth and complexity and with sufficient advanced coursework to constitute a major field of study; or extensive work experience directly related to the area to be taught as determined by the Ohio Credential Review Board; Candidates must also take the Praxis II Subject Assessment for the area they plan to teach, plus the OPI and WPT for those planning to teach a foreign language, along with a state-approved Intensive Pedagogical Training Institute (IPTI). Teachers holding the Alternative license must complete 12 semester hours of professional education coursework at an accredited college or university and also pass the Praxis II PLT exam in their second year of teaching. Ohio Troops to Teachers program Return to the top

            Certification Reciprocity in Ohio

            Ohio participates in the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification’s (NASDTEC) Interstate Agreement. The state of Ohio will accept some teaching credentials from 46 other states. Certification reciprocity is somewhat complicated, so its best to contact the Ohio Department of Education to inquire about specific details. Return to the top

            Benefits of a Masters in Education in Ohio

            Public school teachers are generally not required to have a Masters in Education in the United States, but educators across the country are realizing more and more the value of an advanced degree. It’s never a bad idea to go to graduate school, whether you’re pursuing a Master’s in Education or in another area. Since the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, greater emphasis is placed on teacher performance, teacher qualification, and the results of teachers in the classroom. A Master’s degree carries a lot of weight in the teaching job market and those who have their Master’s are regarded as experts in their field. Teachers with a Master’s are more likely to be hired, promoted, and compensated for their work. In the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, teachers holding a Master’s degree can earn anywhere from roughly $2,000 (for beginning teachers) to $10,000 (after 36 years) more per year than teachers with the same length of experience but lacking an advanced degree. Learn more about the Benefits of a Master's in Education. Return to the top

            Master's in Education Financial Aid

            The state of Ohio does not provide any financial aid to prospective teachers through its Department of Education, however, many prospective teachers are eligible for several forms of federal aid. The TEACH Grant, for example, gives financial aid in return for teaching in a high-need school. The Applegate-Jackson-Parks Future Teacher Scholarships may be another option. The school where you plan to attain your degree may also offer its own aid. Learn more about how to finance your Master's degree. Return to the top

            Ohio Teacher Salary and Incentives

            In 2007, Ohio ranked 13th in the nation with an average teacher salary of $53,536, which is 151% of the state average for all jobs in Ohio. The average salary for a public elementary school teacher in Ohio is $51,880, and $53,420 for secondary school teachers. Ohio school districts follow a salary schedule for minimum teacher pay that starts at $17,300 for 1st year teachers with no college degree, and culminating at $32,460 for teachers with more than 11 years of experience and a master’s degree. The actual salary for teachers are often much higher than these minimums. The Ohio Department of Education also rewards teachers with different monetary awards and recognitions, including the Ohio Teacher of the Year Award. Learn more about teacher salaries. Return to the top

            Ohio Teacher Benefits and Retirement

            The State Teachers Retirement System of Ohio (STRS) is responsible for all benefits and retirement plans for Ohio teachers. For teachers who are not yet retired, STRS provides counseling and planning services, as well as survivor protection for teachers after 1.5 years of service, and disability protection after 5 years. The Retirement Incentive Plan allows Ohio teachers to retire at any age with 30 years of service, at age 55 with 25 years of service, and at age 60 with 5 years of service. Ohio state teachers also receive 15 weeks of vacation, and tenure after three years for those on the tenure track. Learn more about benefits for teachers. Return to the top

            Professional Development for Ohio Teachers

            The Ohio Department of Education offers a variety of professional development programs for teachers to continue developing their skills and advancing their knowledge. Department offerings include the System to Achieve Results for Students (STARS) Program, the Professional Development for Early Childhood Teachers Program, professional development programs in math, science, literacy and social studies, and different mentoring programs for new teachers, as well as the standard National Board Certification. Return to the top

            Ohio Teaching Jobs

            The Ohio Department of Education features a searchable database of teaching jobs in Ohio. To access this feature, you must first register a free account, and once you do so, you can browse jobs by location and specialty, and submit applications to school recruiters. the Ohio Department of Education also has its own  list of available jobs. The Greater Cincinnati School Application System runs a similar online search tool for jobs in participating school districts. Learn more about finding a teaching job. Return to the top

            Ohio Teacher Certification Information & Links

            Ohio Department of Education Ohio Department of Education – Educator Licensure page Ohio Teacher Tenure Ohio Social Work License Information