Become a Teacher in Oregon


Oregon Department of Education

255 Capitol Street NE Salem, OR 97310-0203


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    Become a teacher in Oregon

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            Earn Your Oregon 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 Oregon teaching credential you will have to complete the appropriate amount of undergraduate coursework and standardized tests, as well as an accredited certification program. Oregon issues an Initial I Teaching License (valid for 3 years, renewable twice) for beginning teachers. To be eligible for the next stage, the Initial II License (3 years, renewable), you must complete some graduate level coursework or the equivalent offered by your school district, or receive a professional assessment approved by the Teacher Standards and Practices Commission (TSPC). See the TSPC website for more information. The Initial II Teaching License can be renewed once you have had at least one year of full-time teaching experience and set up a professional development plan. You may be eligible for the optional Continuing Teaching License (5 years, renewable) if you have earned a Doctoral degree, advanced training offered by your school district, or received National Boards of Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) certification. Learn more here about earning your Oregon teaching credential. Learn more about getting your teaching credential. Return to the top

            Prerequisite Coursework in Oregon

            All states require at least a Bachelor’s degree to teach. Some states require additional undergraduate coursework, but Oregon does not. However, undergraduate coursework can be used to show subject competency for the  Initial Teaching Licenses. The TSPC’s publication, How to Become an Oregon Teacher contains advice on what coursework and majors to choose depending on the subject and grade level you want to teach. Oregon requires a student teaching experience and also advises prospective teachers to begin volunteering in classrooms or other educational settings as early as possible. Return to the top

            Required Tests for Oregon

            Most states require tests to show competency in Basic Skills as well as in the desired Subject Area. Oregon requires the National Evaluation Series (NES), CBEST or the Praxis I tests for Basic Skills and the NES Multiple Subjects Exam or the Praxis II for Subject Area knowledge. Consult the teacher preparation program in which you are enrolled to find out which test they require. 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

            Oregon Teacher Certification Programs

            Teacher Certification Programs can be taken online or on-site. They typically include an educational theory and classroom skills seminar and a fieldwork component of student teaching in the area. A list of approved teacher preparation programs in Oregon can be found here. Return to the top

            Alternate Teacher Certification in Oregon

            Oregon offers a number of alternative teaching licensure options for teachers including a transitional license for teachers to work while getting their full license, and specialized teaching area licenses for subjects such as Chinese and Jazz Dance. Mountain Pacific Region Troops to Teachers program Return to the top

            Certification Reciprocity in Oregon

            Interstate reciprocity is a program that allows teachers certified in one state to teach in another state. To find out which other state teaching licenses can be used in Oregon, visit the reciprocity page . Or, for more specific questions about your situation, contact the Oregon Department of Education. Return to the top

            Benefits of a Master's in Education in Oregon

            It is no longer enough to just have years of experience for teaching. After No Child Left Behind and other academic quantification measures, the careers of teachers increasingly depend on their results in the classroom. A Master’s in Teaching will give you more educational theory and classroom skills, as well as more hands-on student teaching experience with a mentor. After a Master’s program, you will be able to achieve better results in the classroom and have more job security and higher pay. Starting out as a teacher with a Master’s degree in Portland, you will earn around $6,900 more than a teacher starting out with only a Bachelor’s degree, and the differential will increase with your years of experience. Learn more about the Benefits of a Master's in Education. Return to the top

            Master's in Education Financial Aid

            Oregon residents are eligible for the  Applegate/Jackson/Parks Future Teacher Scholarship as well as the TEACH Grant, a grant which gives financial aid to students in return for an agreement to teach in a high-need school. Find out more about financing your education (Link to ‘Financing your education page’) Learn more about how to finance your Master's degree. Return to the top

            Oregon Teacher Salary and Incentives

            The average teacher in Oregon makes $52,000 per year, which is 140% of the state average income.  Oregon also provides loan forgiveness for teachers in high needs schools. Learn more about Teacher Salaries and Benefits (Link to Why Teach? page) Learn more about teacher salaries. Return to the top

            Oregon Teacher Benefits and Retirement

            Oregon public school teachers receive full benefits, including comprehensive medical and dental plans with premiums currently covered in full for employees and dependents, fully paid employee life insurance, group-based premiums for optional life, disability, and long-term care insurance, optional long-term care insurance for self, spouse, and parents, optional short-term disability plan, and an innovative employee assistance program. Teachers are also automatically qualified as members in the Oregon Public Service Retirement Plan (OPSRP), which includes 6% employer paid contribution, the option to enroll in a pre-tax flexible spending account for dependent day care, and the option to enroll in the Oregon Savings Growth Plan, a deferred compensation program offering a wide variety of investment options. Oregon teachers can retire at 65 with full benefits (45% of final average salary) regardless of how long they’ve taught, and at 58 with 30 years of service. Learn more about benefits for teachers. Return to the top

            Professional Development for Teachers in Oregon

            The Oregon Department of Education offers a constantly updated series of events which you can find with their professional development calendar. The Oregon Department of Education has also partnered with outside organizations in order to provide Oregon teachers with additional professional development opportunities, including the Oregon School Personnel Association (OSPA). Oregon requires a minimum number of Professional Development Units for license renewal. The number changes over time; check the Teacher Standards and Practices Commission website for current requirements. Return to the top

            Oregon Teaching Jobs

            Oregon participates in the EdZapp  teacher job database, and most teaching openings in the state are posted on the website. However, the Department of Education also maintains a list of additional teaching job resources. Learn more about finding a teaching job. Return to the top

            Oregon Teacher Certification Information & Links

            Oregon Department of Education Teacher Standards & Practices Commission of Oregon Oregon Public Service Retirement Plan (OPSRP) Oregon School Personnel Association (OSPA) Oregon Teaching Jobs