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Foreign Educated Teacher Certification Applicants

Those educated in a foreign country may be eligible for Pennsylvania public school educator certification provided they meet all of the following:
  1. Earned a degree that is the equivalent of a United States baccalaureate degree or higher;
  2. Completed an educator certification program that meets Pennsylvania standards;
  3. Obtained satisfactory scores on the Pennsylvania Teacher Certification assessment(s);
  4. Demonstrated proficiency in speaking the English language if required (See English Proficiency information below);
  5. Meets all other requirements. 


When applying for certification, you must:
  • Be a citizen of the United States; or
  • Hold a permanent resident visa that allows you to live and work in the U.S.; and
  • File a declaration of intent to become a citizen.
  • World language instructional certificate
  • Letter of Eligibility (LOE)
  • Commission
  • Commission Qualification Letter (CQL)

Application Process:

Complete an application for a Pennsylvania certificate online via the Teacher Information Management System (TIMS) and submit the following: 
  1. Foreign Evaluation Report - original or notarized photocopy of all foreign transcripts evaluated by a professional credential evaluation agency accredited by the Association of International Credentials Evaluators ( AICE); National Association of Credentials Evaluation Services (NACES); an agency approved by the federal department of education; or an agency approved by another U.S. state department of education. This evaluation must show the U.S. equivalent of foreign degrees plus a course-by-course evaluation showing semester hour college credit and cumulative GPA.
    Pennsylvania does not endorse or recommend any individual credential evaluation service. Please contact us if you wish to utilize the services of an agency that is not a member of AICE or NACES to make sure it is recognized.
  2. Transcripts – original transcripts in a college/university sealed envelope or the notarized English translation; 
  3. Supporting Documents– an original or notarized copy of the English translation of a foreign teaching license (both front and back) or work experience verification. 
  4. Test Scores – official scores must be received directly (electronically) from the test vendor. See Certification Testing for further information on the tests required.
  5. Citizenship – signed Affidavit of "Declaration of Intent to Become a U.S. Citizen" or U.S. citizenship and a photocopy of the front and back side of your Permanent Resident Visa.
  6. English Proficiency Test - Non-U.S. citizen applicants educated solely in a foreign country where the primary and official language is not English must demonstrate proficiency in understanding and speaking the English language. An advanced-mid score is required on the American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) English Language, Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI). Register for this test on the ACTFL website.

Updated 03/24/2017