Educator Certification

The Brooklyn College Teacher Preparation Program leads to New York State teacher certification.

All students seeking New York State teacher certification must apply and pay a fee to be certified. Your program advisers and certification officer are available to support you with your questions on certification, testing, and other matters in your transition from student to teacher.

Refer to this website and to the Office of Teaching Initiatives for current information, as regulations may change over time. 

If you are not already receiving e-mail from Brooklyn College at your preferred e-mail address, you can update your address by going to the BC WebCentral Portal, then navigating to My Info > My Email and Text Message Subscriptions. Select the option for "news from institutional departments."

You must complete all of the following steps for certification. Complete the following steps in any order:

Before you graduate, you must file for a graduation audit.

To file for graduation, you can apply via your Self-Service area in CUNYfirst. Click here for instructions. Complete the instructions given in your degree audit letter. Follow the schedule below. Your graduation must be confirmed by the registrar and Faculty Council for the official graduation date listed in order to be eligible for the dates listed for New York State teacher certification.


Graduation Term: Official Graduation Date File for Graduation Earliest Date for Graduation to Be Verified and Recommendation for Certification to Be Entered by Brooklyn College New York State Teacher Certification Effective Date (Provided All Steps Are Completed)  (see below*)
Spring: June 1 On or before February 15 Early July You are eligible for employment in New York State under the certificate as of the date it is issued. 
Summer: September 1 On or before May 15 Late September You are eligible for employment in New York State under the certificate as of the date it is issued. 
Fall: February 1 On or before September 15  Early March You are eligible for employment in New York State under the certificate as of the date it is issued.

*Refer to new effective date information.

Teaching Fellows: Call 718.951.4800, and the Secondary Education office will advise you on the steps needed.

All other students: At least a month or two before you graduate, go to the New York State TEACH site and create an account or verify and update your existing TEACH account. Check that your required certification status is posted on your TEACH account.

If you do not receive confirmation that your recommendation for certification was entered by the timeline above, contact the Certification Officer. Note that your mandated workshops must be verified before your recommendation for certification can be sent by the college to the New York State Department of Education Office of Teaching Initiatives. 

Complete Your Certification Tests

Be sure you are completing the correct requirements for your certification area.

Your "pathway"/application type will be "Approved Teacher Preparation Program" if you are completing a bachelor's or master's program leading to New York State teacher certification. If you have questions, you can confirm your pathway with the Certification Officer.

Testing Resources and Information

  • Important new information: If you plan to submit your edTPA tasks before September 2016, be sure to download the 2015-16  handbook/templates now. The 2016–17 handbooks and templates will be posted in Tk20 in late June/early July, and at that point  the 2015–16 handbooks and the linked document templates within the portfolio will no longer be available in Tk20. If you are submitting your tasks using the 2015–16 handbooks before September 2016, your score will be based on 2015–16 criteria. Starting in September 2016, the 2016–17 handbook rubrics will be in effect. For portfolios that are scored starting in the fall 2016 scoring session, portfolios will be scored against the criteria of the new 2016–17 handbooks. If there is information missing or inaccurate based on changes, the rubric or rubrics will be scored appropriately or receive condition codes. 

Students who are applying for first initial certification are now required to complete the following tests:

If you already have your first initial New York State certification:

If your first initial certification is in effect (that is, it is valid, not expired, revoked, etc.) you will not need to complete the new certification tests unless you are applying for certification for a different subject. If you are applying for certification in a new subject, you will need to complete the CST examination for certification in that content area.

If you did not meet requirements for your first classroom teaching certificate prior to May 1, 2014:

For teaching candidates who need further information on how to proceed: click here. You can also contact the Certification Officer for further information.

Complete Your Mandated Workshops

Workshops are a required component of your program. If you have not taken the workshops, refer to the workshop link. Your workshops must be verified by the certification officer before your recommendation for teacher certification can be entered by Brooklyn College. It is not required to send the workshop certificates to the Office of Teaching Initiatives or for them to be posted on your TEACH account in most cases. If you need confirmation, you can ask the certification officer

Complete Your Fingerprint Clearance Documentation

Check that your fingerprint clearance has been posted on your TEACH account. Your TEACH account will only note if records were received, not if your records are cleared. If your records have not been recieved, refer to the link for fingerprint clearance for instructions. See step four if your clearance was already processed by the New York City Department of Education. 

Complete Your Application for New York State Teacher Certification

Complete and pay for your application using your New York State TEACH account:

School Psychologists and School Counselors: Select provisional/permanent certification as appropriate. Two years of experience are required for permanent certification. Click here to check your certification requirements. 

School District Leader candidates only: You will need to send an official sealed transcript to the New York State Department of Education Office of Teaching Initiatives (OTI) to show completion of your Additional Education - Master's Degree. Note that transcripts are kept on file by OTI for about three years.

What's Next

Your recommendation for teacher certification will be entered by the certification officer according to the timeline above if possible, provided your mandated workshops have been verified and your graduation has been confirmed by the registrar. Monitor your TEACH account. There are two types of evaluations: automated and manual. Automated evaluations are posted when the automated system at the Office of Teaching Initiatives has completed an evaluation. Manual evaluations are posted when your transcripts and other documentation are examined by an officer at the Office of Teaching Initiatives. Click here for information on checking the status of your application.

Initial Certificates

Initial certificate effective dates are posted after your application is evaluated. The time this takes can vary. Please read this information about expedited service. You will not automatically receive a printed certificate, but you can refer to your effective dates on your account online. If you wish, you can order a printed certificate for $25. Refer to the information posted at the Office of Teaching Initiatives FAQ page. You can print out your account status by going to your New York State TEACH account and printing out your certificate information as you see it posted there. Certification can also be confirmed by going to the "Certificate Holder Lookup" link at Initial certificates are valid for five years. 

Be sure not to let your initial certification expire. If you do not complete a related master's degree that meets the requirements for certification, and the mentored experience requirement and/or if you do meet the work experience requirement, INS Permanent Residence or U.S. citizenship, or any other requirements needed before your certificate expires, you will need to apply for a time extension and/or initial reissuance certificate. You may need to complete new requirements if your certificate expires. Be sure to check the requirements for certification well before that time. 

For your professional certification requirements, refer to the current requirements posted on the New York State Department of Education Office of Teaching Initiatives (OTI) site, Also read this memo for information about the experience requirement. Please also refer to the detail in this link: Experience Requirements for Certification. 

Professional Certificates

You must allow about three months for your application to be evaluated. A printed certificate will be sent to you, and you can verify your effective dates on your TEACH account. Certification can also be confirmed by going to the "Certificate Holder Lookup" link at Once you have your professional certification, you must complete 175 hours of professional development every five years..Refer to this information about the professional development required for professional certificate holders. 

Registration required starting in school year 2016–17: Read this notice. Beginning in school year 2016–17, all holders of teaching certificates, teaching assistance certificates, and educational leadership certificates that are valid for life (Permanent, Professional and Teaching Assistant Level III) must register with the New York State Department of Education Office of Teaching Initiatives (OTI) every five years and that the holders of the Professional and Teaching Assistant Level III certificates must complete 100 hours of continuing teacher and leader education during the five-year registration period. 

All Certificate Holders

Any change of name or address for a certificate holder must be updated by the holder in the TEACH system within 30 days of any such change.

E-mail updates: You can subscribe to receive important certification from the New York State Department of Education Office of Teaching Initiatives (OTI). Click on the e-mail subscription link at the TEACH system site.

Effective Date

You must complete all certification requirements in order to be given an effective date. The date your certificate is issued is the date your certificate is effective. Refer to

Expiration Dates

As of December 4, 2013, if you are issued a time-limited certificate (e.g., Initial, Provisional, Temporary coaching, Teaching Assistant Level I and II etc.), the expiration date will be set based on the length of time the certificate is valid (e.g., five years, three years, etc.) and the next sequential September 1 or February 1.

A certificate issued between September 2 and February 1 will have an expiration date of January 31.

Certificates issued between February 2 and September 1 will have an expiration date of August 31.

Refer to 

If your certificate has expired, or is about to expire and you have not completed your certification requirements: 

You may need to apply for a time extension and/or initial reissuance certificate. You may need to complete the new certification tests if your certificate expires. Click here for the link to contact  the Office of Teaching Initiatives  or contact the Certification Officer

Expedited processing:

If you need written confirmation of your expected date of degree conferral for your employer before the timeline detailed above, you can request a statement of graduation as long as you have met all degree requirements. Refer to your degree audit letter. You may request a statement of graduation by e-mail about two weeks before your expected date of graduation. State that you are asking for a statement of graduation and provide your name, the last four digits of your Social Security number (it is very important that you do not send the entire Social Security number), phone number, and mailing addresses. The Degree Audit Office will mail the statements directly to the address provided, and you can supply the letter to the place of your employment and to the certification officer for expedited processing. You can instruct the Degree Audit Office to send the information to the certification officer by e-mail.  Please also read this information about expedited service.