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The Oklahoma State Board of Education shall issue a certificate to teach to any person who:
Note: If you have not completed a teacher education degree program, refer to Oklahoma Teacher Certification Procedures (pdf).
Forms and applications are available online at www.ok.gov/sde, or you may direct your inquiries to:
Oklahoma State Department of Education
Teacher Certification Section
2500 North Lincoln Boulevard, #212
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105-4599
Oklahoma law requires applicants for initial teacher certification to have on file with the Oklahoma State Board of Education a current Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (OSBI) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) fingerprint-based criminal history record search (70 O.S. 6-190). It does not apply to renewals. For additional information refer to Fingerprint Information.
The cost is $59 for both the required OSBI and FBI criminal history record search. Submit fingerprint cards and the $59 fee for a criminal history record search or, for faster and more accurate results, you may have your fingerprints laser-scanned at the Oklahoma State Department of Education (OSDE), Room 212, 2500 North Lincoln Boulevard, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, for a $59 processing fee. Fingerprints are scanned at the OSDE between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. For additional information refer to Fingerprint Information.
The Oklahoma Commission for Teacher Preparation (OCTP), a separate agency of state government, is authorized by law to develop and administer the competency-based teacher tests. Three tests are currently required for Oklahoma teacher certification. The three tests are:
Inquiries regarding registration for teacher testing should be directed to the Oklahoma Commission for Teacher Preparation (OCTP), the agency with statutory authority for administering the teacher tests. You may contact the OCTP at:
Oklahoma Commission for Teacher Preparation
3545 Northwest 58th Street, Suite 200
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73112
Standard Certificate – valid for five years ................................................ $50
Provisional – valid for two years ............................................................. $50
Renewal of a Standard Certificate – valid for five years ........................... $50
You may submit an Online Renewal Application to expedite the renewal process or if you prefer, submit the Application for Renewal of Oklahoma Standard Certificate (pdf) form by mail to the Oklahoma State Department of Education along with a $50 processing fee (check, cashier's check or money order) made payable to the Oklahoma State Department of Education.
Retired teachers pay the same renewal fees as any other teacher. See question above for renewal fees.
Special Education teachers new to the profession after December 3, 2004, are required to have a Special Education certificate AND an appropriate certificate in Early Childhood OR Elementary Education OR Middle or Secondary Education in Math OR Science OR Language Arts.
If you have a Registered Nurse’s License and a bachelor’s degree in any area, you may be issued a five-year standard certificate.
If you do not have a bachelor’s degree, but have an associate’s degree or diploma from a school of nursing (3 years), you may be issued a five-year provisional certificate. You will have 10 years from the initial issuance to complete a bachelor’s degree.
Please submit the following:
Specialist certification (library-media specialist, school counselor, school psychometrist, school psychologist, speech-language pathologist, and reading specialist) requires a graduate degree and completion of a program approved by the Oklahoma Commission for Teacher Preparation. Application for certification in the specialist areas listed above should be initiated through the director of teacher education at the recommending higher education institution.
Contact the higher education certification office at your university for a certification recommendation. Refer to Higher Education Teacher Certification Office Contact List.
When the university recommendation is completed online, you will be prompted to add the area(s) tested, at no additional charge. This applies only to areas eligible to be added by test only with no additional program requirements.
If you hold a full teaching credential in any state, you are eligible for provisional certification in equivalent subject areas with the possibility of having to take Oklahoma tests.
Please submit the following materials to the Teacher Certification Section of the Oklahoma State Department of Education.
You will be issued a provisional certificate in order to complete the Oklahoma testing requirements (general education, subject area(s), and professional education competency examination). You will also be required to complete one year of successful employment in an Oklahoma accredited school, college or university.
If you have passed teacher test(s) in another state, you may request a review of these test(s) for comparability to Oklahoma tests by the Oklahoma Commission for Teacher Preparation (OCTP). They will determine if any of the out-of-state tests are comparable and inform the Teacher Certification Section which test(s) are acceptable. For more information you may contact the OCTP at http://www.ok.gov/octp and search for Teacher Certification.
Note: You will not be issued a five year standard until all test requirements have been met and one year of successful employment has been completed and verified.
A provisional certificate in the subject of the out of state certificate, not the National Board Subject, may be issued if you hold a full certificate issued by another state. See question 15 for information for out-of-state applicants.
Yes. A list of participating states/jurisdictions is available at http://www.NASDTEC.org/. Refer to the Status Report of States/Jurisdictions that have signed certification contracts with Oklahoma. The terms of these agreements are limited to educator preparation program requirements. Please contact individual states regarding ancillary requirements (minimum grade point average, standardized testing, mentoring experience, or graduation from an accredited institution).
Also, if you hold a full credential in any state, you are eligible for Oklahoma certification in equivalent subject areas. You must meet Oklahoma testing requirements and complete one year of successful employment at an Oklahoma accredited school, college or university for standard certification. For specific information regarding Oklahoma certification based on an out-of-state certificate, refer to Out-of-State Applicants.
To apply for an Oklahoma certificate if you graduated out-of-country or are not a United States citizen, submit the following documents:
Note: The expiration date of your teaching certificate will not exceed the expiration date of your employment authorization document.
No, additional areas are not added automatically. You must apply to have the additional area(s) added to your certification. When you pass a new subject area test (other than the exception area tests listed below) log-on to your teacher account or create a teacher account and apply to add the test you passed. (Click here to create an account or log on to your existing account.) The other option is to submit an Application for Adding Areas to Certificate by Testing (pdf) and a $25 processing fee (check, cashier’s check, or money order) made payable to the Oklahoma State Department of Education.
Exception: By law, Effective November 1, 2009, the areas of Early Childhood, Elementary Education, and Special Education may not be added by only testing. The applicant must complete a full university program, receive a recommendation from the certification officer at the university and pass the appropriate subject-area test.
Exception: Specialist certification (library-media specialist, school counselor, school psychometrist, school psychologist, speech-language pathologist, and reading specialist) may not be added by only testing. The applicant must complete a full university program, receive a recommendation from the certification officer at the university and pass the appropriate subject-area test.
Oklahoma has two options for obtaining certification as a principal or superintendent. Option one is Traditional Administrator Certification, and option two is Alternative Administrator Certification. To view a flow-chart explaining each program, refer to Administrator Certification Requirement Chart (pdf).
Submit a Request Form (pdf) and an official transcript to the Oklahoma State Department of Education. Transcript must denote degree earned and the date degree was conferred. If you want a new certificate printed reflecting the degree change, submit a $25 processing fee (check, cashier’s check, or money order) made payable to the Oklahoma State Department of Education.
Submit a Request Form (pdf) with the name/address change and a copy of your signed Social Security Card with the correct name. If you want a new certificate printed reflecting the name change, submit a $25 processing fee (check, cashier’s check, or money order) made payable to the Oklahoma State Department of Education. You may also update your address by clicking Create or Log into your account. Name changes cannot be made online.
Submit a Request Form (pdf) and a $25 processing fee (check, cashier’s check, or money order) made payable to the Oklahoma State Department of Education. You can also request a duplicate by clicking Create or Log into your account.
Yes. In order to renew an Oklahoma credential, Oklahoma law requires the educator to be in compliance with the Oklahoma tax laws. The Oklahoma Tax Commission will notify the Oklahoma State Department of Education of noncompliance with Oklahoma income tax laws. (68 O.S. 6-190)
Note: The effective date of the renewed credential will be the date the Oklahoma Tax Commission notifies the Oklahoma State Department of Education of your compliance.
The Oklahoma Tax Commission can be reached at (405) 522-6800.