Become a Teacher in New Mexico

Choose the statement that best describes you to jump to applicable information.

I AM...

Teaching in New Mexico Snapshot

$57,410Secondary School Teacher Salary
$57,330Elementary School Teacher Salary
$11,886Public School Spending Per Student

All career and salary information pulled from the Bureau of Labor Statistics 2019 pupil expenditure information was provided by United States Census Bureau

NEW MEXICO PUBLIC DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

Jerry Apodaca Education Building
300 Don Gaspar
Santa Fe, NM 87501
505-827-5800

Explore Sponsored Degree Options in Education

Sponsored Online programs
University Name Type of Program Learn More Program Description
University of Southern California Master of Arts in Teaching Learn more about USC Rossier The online Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) from the University of Southern California Rossier School of Education prepares you to become a transformative K–12 teacher. Through live online classes and enriching field experiences in your community, you can earn your MAT in less than 18 months without relocating.

Sponsored

Steps to Becoming a Teacher in New Mexico

Important Note: Education licensure requirements, statistics and other information are subject to change. Teach.com 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 update: 04/08/2020)

1

Prerequisite Coursework in New Mexico

All states require at least a bachelor’s degree to teach. New Mexico has the following additional requirements:

  • Elementary Education:
    • 30 credit hours in Elementary Education including student teaching
    • 6 credit hours of reading education
    • 24 credit hours in a specific content area
  • Middle-Level Education (Grades 5–9):
    • 30–36 credit hours in Middle-Level Education including student teaching
    • 3 credit hours of reading education
    • 24 credit hours in a specific content area
  • Secondary Education (Grades 7–12):
    • 24 credit hours in a Secondary Education program including student teaching
    • 3 credit hours of reading education
    • 24 credit hours in a specific content area, 12 of which must be upper-level classes

For more information on coursework requirements, visit the New Mexico Public Education Department homepage.

 

2

New Mexico 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.

3

Required Tests for New Mexico

Most states require tests to show competency in basic skills as well as in the desired subject area. New Mexico requires the National Evaluation Series (NES) Essential Academic Skills Subtests I, II, and II: Reading, Writing, and Mathematics for basic skills, and the appropriate NES grade level tests, including the Assessment of Professional knowledge, to show subject area proficiency.

Praxis exams may be taken instead, including CORE academic skills tests and grade level/subject related exams.

You can learn more about the Praxis exams by visiting Teach.coms' Ultimate Guide to the Praxis Exams and read more about teacher certification tests on Teach.com.

Initial Teaching Certifications

To earn your New Mexico teaching credential you will have to complete the appropriate amount of undergraduate coursework and standardized tests, as well as an accredited teacher certification program. Learn more about getting your teaching credential on Teach.com.

Discover an 8-week Online Teaching Short Course from Harvard's Bok Center

Learn more about an 8-week short course from Harvard's Bok Center

Earn recognition of your ability to develop and deliver a memorable teaching experience when you receive a premier certificate from Harvard’s Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning, in association with HarvardX, upon successful course completion.

Sponsored

Alternative Certification in New Mexico

The New Mexico Public Education Department offers a 2-year Alternative License to allow for the completion of a program and required testing. To obtain the Alternative License you must have a bachelor’s degree, a letter of acceptance into an approved alternative teacher education program, and proof of registration for the NES Essential Academic Skills exam. New Mexico offers other alternative licensure programs as well, which are listed at TeachNM.

New Mexico Teacher Certification Information & Links

Return to the top

Transferring Your Certification

Certification Reciprocity in New Mexico

Interstate reciprocity is a program that allows teachers certified in one state to teach in another state. New Mexico has policies in place regarding out-of-state reciprocity. To find out which other state’s teaching licenses can be used in New Mexico, visit the Teach.com reciprocity page. Or, for more specific questions about your situation, contact the New Mexico Department of Education.

To find out what other state teaching licenses can be used in New Mexico, check out our Teacher Certification Reciprocity page on Teach.com.

Return to the top

Jobs, Benefits, and Opportunities for Teachers in New Mexico

New Mexico Teaching Jobs

New Mexico participates in the REAP program, a teacher recruitment website that makes it easy for teachers to find opportunities and job fairs.

Learn more about finding a teaching job on Teach.com.

New Mexico Teacher Salary and Incentives

The average school teacher in New Mexico makes about $50,390 per year, according to 2019 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. New Mexico does not provide any additional pay for teaching in high-needs schools or shortage subjects.

Learn more about teacher salaries on Teach.com.

New Mexico Teacher Benefits and Retirement

The New Mexico Educational Retirement Board (NMERB) provides retirement benefits to teachers whose years of teaching service and age total 80 (for example, teachers with 20 years of experience at age 60), teachers aged 67 with at least 5 years of service, and all teachers with at least 30 years of teaching service. Specific benefits, which depend on years of service, are explained in detail in the NMERB Member Handbook.

Learn more about benefits for teachers on Teach.com.

New Mexico Teacher Shortage Areas

Teacher Shortage information was provided by the U.S. Department of Education’s Teacher Shortage Areas Nationwide Listings for 2020-2021, and was determined by examining the most recent data about unfilled teaching positions; positions filled by teachers certified by irregular, provisional, temporary, or emergency certification; and teachers teaching in subject areas other than their area of preparation.

  • Early Childhood Education
  • English as a Second Language
  • Math
  • Science
  • Special Education
  • World Languages

Financial Aid in New Mexico

New Mexico residents are eligible for the Applegate/Jackson/Parks Future Teacher Scholarship as well as the TEACH Grant, a grant that gives financial aid to students in return for an agreement to teach in a high-need field in a low-income area.

Learn more about how to finance your Master's degree on Teach.com.

Career Advancement

Professional Development for New Mexico Teachers

You can find a list of New Mexico professional learning opportunities for teachers on the New Mexico Public Education Department site.

Benefits of a Master's Degree in New Mexico

It is no longer enough to just have years of experience in 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 degree in the field of education 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 may be able to achieve better results in the classroom and may have more job security, as well as the potential for higher pay.

Learn more about the benefits of a Master of Arts in Teaching vs. Master of Education on Teach.com.

Explore Sponsored Program Options in Education

Sponsored Online programs
University Name Type of Program Program Description
University of Southern California Master of Arts in Teaching The online Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) from the USC Rossier School of Education prepares you to become a transformative K–12 teacher. Through live online classes and enriching field experiences in your community, you can earn your MAT in less than 18 months without relocating.
Harvard University's Bok Center Advanced Certification in Teaching The 8-week Teaching and Learning Strategies for Higher Education online short course is delivered by Harvard’s Bok Center for Teaching and Learning, in association with HarvardX. Students in this course will engage deeply with the most relevant research on effective teaching methods in the higher education context, while refining their own practices, portfolio, and teaching philosophy.

Sponsored

Last Updated May 2020