Become a Teacher in South Carolina

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Teaching in South Carolina Snapshot

$54,400Secondary School Teacher Salary
$53,450Elementary School Teacher Salary
$10,590Public School Spending Per Student

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

SOUTH CAROLINA DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

1429 Senate Street
Columbia, SC 29201
803-734-8500

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Fordham University Master of Science in Teaching Learn more from Fordham University Fordham University’s online Master of Science in Teaching program prepares aspiring teachers (grades 1-6) for initial teaching certification or dual certification in teaching and special education.

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Steps to Becoming a Teacher in South Carolina

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: 04/26/2020)

1

Prerequisite Coursework in South Carolina

All states require at least a bachelor’s degree to teach. Some states require additional undergraduate coursework. South Carolina has fairly specific coursework requirements for teachers. Here are a few examples of prerequisite classes for undergraduate teaching majors at the University of South Carolina.

Early Childhood Education (Grades K-3)/Elementary Education 

The following courses fulfill the education core for a bachelor's degree in early childhood  or elementary education:

  • Classroom Inquiry with Technology
  • Learning Through Community Service
  • Schools In Communities
  • Learners and the Diversity of Learning
  • Practicum: Learners and the Diversity of Learning
  • Introduction to Classroom Assessment
  • Introduction to Exceptional Children

Middle-Level Education (Grades 5-8)

  • Classroom Inquiry with Technology
  • Learning Through Community Service
  • Schools In Communities
  • Learners and the Diversity of Learning
  • Practicum: Learners and the Diversity of Learning
  • Introduction to Classroom Assessment
  • Introduction to Exceptional Children

Secondary Education (Grades 9-12) – Contact the South Carolina State Department of Education or your teacher preparation program for more information.

South Carolina requires a period of supervised student teaching.

 

2

South Carolina 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 South Carolina can be found by visiting the South Carolina Department of Education’s Approved Educator Programs page.

 

3

Required Tests for South Carolina

Most states require tests to show competency in basic skills as well as in the desired Subject Area. South Carolina requires the Praxis II: Subject Tests as well as the Praxis II PLT (Principles of Learning and Teaching) Test for Subject Area competency.

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

Initial Teaching Certifications

To earn your South Carolina teaching credential you will have to complete the required amount of undergraduate coursework and pass standardized tests, as well participate in an accredited certification program.

South Carolina issues an initial certificate (valid for 3 years, can be renewed) to beginning teachers. In order to obtain an initial certificate. During that period, a teacher must pass the appropriate Praxis II PLT exams and participate in the state’s formal teacher evaluation system in order to advance to a professional certificate (renewable every 5 years).

Learn more about getting your South Carolina teaching credential.

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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.

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Alternative Certification in South Carolina

The South Carolina Program of Alternative Certification for Educators provides a route for eligible candidates who have not met regular certification requirements to teach in areas where there is a critical shortage of teachers. Candidates who have at least two years of postsecondary work experience and have obtained employment with a South Carolina public school in a content area with a teacher shortage complete periodic training in classroom instruction, complete at least three approved core courses and undergo a period of mentoring and evaluation.

South Carolina recognizes the ABCTE teaching certification route for teachers of biology, chemistry, English, mathematics, physics, or science. ABCTE is a self-paced, online teacher certification program.

South Carolina also has a Teaching Fellows program.

Finally, adjunct certification for part-time teaching is available to subject experts in certain specialties. An adjunct certificate cannot be converted to a professional teaching certification.

South Carolina Teacher Certification Information & Links

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Transferring Your Certification

Certification Reciprocity in South Carolina

Interstate reciprocity is a program that allows teachers who are certified in one state to teach in another. To find out what states have interstate reciprocity with South Carolina, visit the Teach.com reciprocity page. For specific questions about your situation, contact the South Carolina Department of Education.

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

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Jobs, Benefits, and Opportunities for Teachers in South Carolina

South Carolina Teaching Jobs

CERRA runs a Teacher Job Bank which teachers can use to submit a centralized application to a variety of postings. The job bank makes it easy to browse jobs by district, region, and specialty. CERRA also runs the South Carolina Teacher Expo, which can be a useful event for teachers seeking employment.

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

South Carolina Teacher Salary and Incentives

In South Carolina, teachers earn an average of $49,090 per year in 2019, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. South Carolina provides loan forgiveness for teachers in high needs schools and shortage subjects.

Learn more about teacher salaries on Teach.com.

South Carolina Teacher Benefits and Retirement

All retirement benefits for South Carolina teachers are handled by the South Carolina Public Employee Benefit Authority Retirement Systems.

Average final compensation is calculated by taking the average of an individual’s three 3 highest consecutive years of compensation.

Learn more about benefits for teachers on Teach.com.

South Carolina Teacher Shortage Areas

A teacher shortage occurs when there are not enough teachers in key subject areas, which has been partly caused by years of teacher layoffs during the Great Recession, a growing student population and fewer people entering teacher preparation programs, according to the Learning Policy Institute.

The following is a list of teacher shortage areas in South Carolina for the 2020-21 school year, according to the U.S. Department of Education.

  • Agriculture
  • Art
  • Career and Technical Education
  • Dance
  • Drivers Education
  • Gifted and Talented
  • Health & Physical Education
  • Literacy
  • Media Specialist
  • Middle Level Education
    • Language Arts
    • Mathematics
    • Science
    • Social Studies
  • Music
  • Secondary Education
    • Language Arts
    • English/Language Arts
    • Mathematics
    • Science
  • Special Education
  • Speech Language
  • Theatre
  • World Language

Financial Aid in South Carolina

South Carolina 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.

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

Career Advancement

Professional Development for South Carolina Teachers

The South Carolina Center for Educator Recruitment, Retention, and Advancement (CERRA) and administers the Teacher Cadet Teaching Fellows and ProTeam programs for mentoring and recruiting new teachers. The newly created Call Me MISTER program run through Clemson University also helps recruit and mentor new teachers in South Carolina. Additional professional development programs vary by district.

Benefits of a Master's Degree in South Carolina

It is no longer enough for educators to only have years of experience teaching to remain qualified. After No Child Left Behind and other academic quantification measures, teachers are almost entirely being evaluated by their results in the classroom.

A master's degree in the field of education can give you more educational theory and classroom skills, as well as more hands-on student teaching experience with a mentor. After completing a master's program, you will be able to achieve better results in the classroom and have more job security and earn higher pay.

A master’s degree in South Carolina may result in an over $4,000 increase in initial salary compared with those who only have a bachelor’s degree. Salary statistics can be found on the Department of Education website.

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.
Fordham University Master of Science in Teaching The online Master of Science in Teaching program prepares aspiring teachers (grades 1-6) for initial teaching certification or dual certification in teaching and special education.
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.

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Last Updated May 2020