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Teacher Certification in Oklahoma

Information about Oklahoma Teacher Certification:

Tests:

  • Oklahoma General Education Test (OGET)
  • Oklahoma Subject Area Tests (OSAT)
  • Praxis Performance Assessment for Teachers (PPAT)

Test Registration

Test preparation materials

For more information about the teacher certification process please contact the Undergraduate Advising Office (phone: (405) 325-2238, email: jrcoe.advising@ou.edu; location: Collings Hall Room 137) or Jamie Aldridge, Certification Officer, (phone: (405) 325-2108, email: jaldridge@ou.edu; location: Collings Hall Room 100).

The College has a small emergency fund to help students experiencing financial difficulty cover the cost of these exams. Please see your advisor to inquire about eligibility.

   

Alternative Paths to Teacher Certification

The Oklahoma State Department of Education provides alternative pathways to Oklahoma teacher certification through the Alternative Placement Program and the Paraprofessional Career Development Program. Note: Unlike traditional teaching endorsements, endorsements earned through alternative teacher certification may not be recognized outside of the State of Oklahoma.

The Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education offers individualized plans of study for the OSDE Alternative Placement Program in Mathematics – Advanced Mathematics (111); Science – Biological (010), Chemistry (004), Earth Science (008), Physical Science (013), Physics (014); World Languages – Chinese (080), French (120), German (021), Latin (123), Russian (122), Spanish (119); and Language Arts – English (107). JRCoE also offers coursework to meet requirements in the Paraprofessional Career Development Program.

Note that the individualized plans of study for the Alternative Placement Program and the Paraprofessional Career Development Program will meet State coursework requirements and may include additional coursework as deemed appropriate by program area faculty.

Alternative Placement Program and Paraprofessional Career Development Program students will be advised by program faculty with support from the Undergraduate Advising Office.

Application Requirements

Students seeking to apply to JRCoE to complete coursework required in the Alternative Placement Program or the Paraprofessional Career Development Program must:

  • Meet the OU Graduate College GPA requirement (minimum 3.0 GPA).
  • Pass the Oklahoma General Education Test (OGET) and all relevant Oklahoma Subject Area Tests (OSATs) and, for world languages (not Latin), pass the relevant Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI).
  • Submit transcripts.
  • Submit a cover letter explaining motivation for and qualifications to teach.
  • Interview with program area faculty.
  • Agree to a contract that outlines requirements for the alternative certification program of study.

ODSE Alternative Certification Process: Step by Step

  1. Register with the Oklahoma State Department of Education.
  2. Pass the Certification Examinations for Oklahoma Educators (click here)
    • Oklahoma General Education test (OGET)
    • Oklahoma Subject Area Test(s) (OSATs) – you must pass the exam(s) that corresponds to the subject area for which you have been approved to alternatively certify, including all relevant subject sub-areas you will teach in. OSAT exam numbers are indicated above.
      • NOTE: Midlevel subject area exams will not be accepted.
    • Oklahoma Professional Teaching Exam (OPTE)
      • NOTE: The OGET and OSAT(s) must be taking prior to application to OU. The OPTE can be taken before or after admission into the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education.
  3. Submit fingerprints for FBI/OSBI clearance
  4. After you (a) receive the OSDE letter indicating the program area for which you have been approved for alternative certification, and (b) have passed the OGET and all required OSAT exams, you will begin the OU Application.
  5. Apply for admission into (a) the OU Graduate College AND (b) the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education
    • Apply to the OU Graduate College: Alternative Certification X031-Q160
      • Submit all transcripts- undergraduate and graduate.
      • Receive Admission letter from the OU Graduate College.
    • Apply to the OU Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education teacher certification program:
      • Submit all transcripts – undergraduate and graduate.
      • Submit OGET and all OSAT exam scores.
      • Submit OSDE letter admitting you to the Oklahoma Alternative Certification Teacher Program and indicating the approved subject area.
      • Submit an essay (approx. 750 words) response to the following prompt: Discuss your desire to enter the teaching profession and provide information regarding previous experiences working with children and youth in educational settings. Please include the schools or sites, length of time, job title and description of duties and grade(s) level taught. In addition, note qualities and attributes that will positively contribute to your success in the teaching environment.
  6. Complete admission interview
    • Once you have been accepted to the OU Graduate College and completed the JRCoE application process you will be notified of the date and time of your interview.
  7. Meet with program faculty or the Associate Dean for Professional Education to develop a plan of study.
    • After acceptance into the alternative certification pathway, you will sign a contract detailing the required program of study.
    • NOTE: Course enrollment permissions are issued through the Undergraduate Advising Office.
  8. Upon successful completion of the plan of study and passing the Oklahoma Professional Teaching Examination (OPTE), the College will notify the Oklahoma State Department of Education of your completion of the OSDE Professional Education Component.

More information can be found at Oklahoma State Department of Education: Oklahoma Alternative Placement Program for Teacher Certification (click here)

Those seeking alternative teacher certification through the Oklahoma State Department of Education may be required to obtain a Letter of Concentration.  Eligibility to request a letter of concentration from OU requires meeting each of the following criteria.

You are eligible to request a letter of concentration in a content area if you:

  • graduated from OU with a bachelors degree,
  • completed 45-60 credit hours of course work, including both lower and upper division courses, in a content area for which JRCoE is authorized to recommend certification,
  • maintained an OU retention GPA of 2.5, AND
  • have not been denied admittance to an approved teacher education program, or enrolled in and subsequently failed required teacher education courses necessary to meet the minimum requirements of a teacher education program.

You are eligible to request a letter of concentration in school counseling if you:

  • graduated from OU with a masters degree,
  • completed at least 12 credit hours of graduate coursework specific to working with children and families in a school setting, AND
  • have a valid Oklahoma teaching certificate and classroom experience.

NOTE:  Masters degrees in Human Relations or Social Work do not provide preparation for school counseling in the absence of meeting the requirements noted above.

NOTE: if you are a Licensed Professional Counselor recognized by the State of Oklahoma, you may apply directly to OSDE for certification in school counseling.

Please contact the Undergraduate Advising Office (phone: 405.325.2238, email: jrcoe.advising@ou.edu; location: 137 Ellsworth Collings Hall) for information about how to request a letter of concentration.

   

Principal Certification

In Oklahoma, administrative certificates are issued by the Oklahoma State Department of Education (OSDE).  Individuals are strongly recommended to check with the State Department for specific certification requirements.  Additionally you could directly view the OSDE website at sde.ok.gov/education-profession-enhancements
 

The University of Oklahoma has an accredited program for the preparation of school principals who are part of the state alternative certification program.  Alternatively certified candidates must complete an approved administrator preparation program of study in not more than three years (Oklahoma Statutes, 70-6-189(C)).  The preparation program at OU consists of a minimum 27 graduate credit hours PLUS the successful completion of an EACS Comprehensive Portfolio.

Learn More about Principal Certification

   

Superintendent Certification

In Oklahoma, administrative certificates are issued by the Oklahoma State Department of Education (OSDE).  Individuals are strongly recommended to check with the State Department for specific certification requirements.  Additionally you could directly view the OSDE website at sde.ok.gov/education-profession-enhancements.

The University of Oklahoma has a program for the preparation of school superintendents (Oklahoma Statutes, 70-6-189(C)) that focuses on district level educational leadership competencies.  The preparation program at OU consists of a minimum 25 graduate credit hours.

Learn More About Superintendent Certification

   

Reading Specialist Certification

  • Master's Degree
  • Successfully passing the Oklahoma Subject Area Test (OSAT) for Reading Specialist
  • Recommendation from an accredited program

Requirements

  • Master's Degree
  • Successfully passing the Oklahoma Subject Area Test (OSAT) for Reading Specialist
  • Recommendation from an accredited program

   

Certification / Accreditation Information

  • Master's Degree
  • Successfully passing the Oklahoma Subject Area Test (OSAT) for Reading Specialist
  • Recommendation from an accredited program

The College of Education is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) through 2026, with no identified Areas for Improvement, for its programs leading to initial teacher certification. Such programs include: B.S. Early Childhood Education; B.S. Elementary Education; B.S. Science Education (Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Earth Science, Physical Science, Physics); B.S. Language Arts Education; B.S. Mathematics Education; B.S. Social Studies Education; B.S. Special Education; and B.S. World Languages Education. Master’s programs leading to advanced levels of certification, which are still operating under an extension of accreditation from National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education(NCATE), will be up for review by CAEP in 2026. These include the Reading Specialist, M. Ed. and the Educational Administration, Curriculum and Supervision M.Ed., Ed.D., and Ph.D.

OU Teacher Education graduates are highly satisfied with their preparation and highly rated by their employers. (CAEP Measures 1, 2, 3 and 4)

  • What do OU teacher education graduates say about their preparation for teaching? (CAEP Measure #3)

Graduating Seniors: At the end of every semester, we ask our graduating seniors how prepared they feel in regard to ten important facets of teacher preparation. Ratings can range from 1 (not prepared) to 5 (very prepared). Here’s how they rate their preparation! Content Knowledge = 4.72/5.00, Pedagogical Knowledge = 4.69/5.00, Learning Environment = 4.74/5.00, Classroom Management = 4.56/5.00, Assessment = 4.69/5.00, Reflective Practice = 4.75/5.00, Professionalism = 4.77/5.00, Disposition = 4.79/5.00.

Alumni/First Year Teachers:

At the end of every school year, we ask our alumni who are completing their first year of teaching how satisfied they are with their teacher preparation in regard to five important facets of teacher preparation using a scale of 1 (not satisfied) to 4 (very satisfied). Here’s how they rate their satisfaction!  The Learner and Learning = 3.51/4.00, Content Knowledge = 3.24/4.00, Instructional Practice = 3.27/4.00, Professional Responsibility = 3.25/4.00, Use of Technology = 3.14/4.00.
 

  • What do principals say about OU teacher education graduates? (CAEP Measure #1 & #2)

At the end of every school year, we ask principals who employ our alumni how satisfied they are with OU teacher preparation graduates in regard to five important facets of teacher preparation using a scale of 1 (not satisfied) to 4 (very satisfied). Here’s how they rate their satisfaction! The Learner and Learning = 3.38/4.00, Content Knowledge = 3.30/4.00, Instructional Practice = 3.27/4.00, Professional Responsibility = 3.29/4.00, Use of Technology = 3.49/4.00.
 

  • What is the graduation rate for OU Teacher Education? (CAEP Measure #3)

Of students who are admitted to OU’s teacher education program, 95% complete their degree.
 

  • What is the pass rate of OU Teacher Education students on State Certification Tests? (CAEP Measure #3)

OU teacher education graduates have very high pass rates on Oklahoma Certification Tests. For the 2020-21 academic year, 89% passed their Oklahoma Subject Area Test (OSAT) and 99% passed their Oklahoma Professional Teaching Exam.
 

  • Are OU Teacher Education graduates successful in the classroom? (CAEP Measure #1 & #2)

Yes! The State of Oklahoma requires school principals to observe their teachers every year and rate them on teaching ability. OU Teacher Education graduates are highly rated whether principals choose to use the Marzano Teacher Evaluation (average score of 3.71 in spring 2021) or the Tulsa Teacher Leader Evaluation (average score of 3.68 in spring 2021, with scores above 3 indicating successful performance).
 

  • Do OU Teacher Education graduates have a positive impact on P-12 student learning? (CAEP Measure #1)

Yes! Case studies conducted in the classrooms of OU Teacher Education graduates consistently indicate a positive impact on P-12 learning and development.
 

  • What is the job placement rate for OU Teacher Education graduates? (CAEP Measure #4)

100%. All of our graduates who seek jobs as teachers are hired.