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Holds an Active/Valid Professional Level Certificate with Two Years of Successful Experience In the Area For Which I Am Applying

  • Identify the comparable Pennsylvania certificate for which you will be applying (see Types of Certificates).  Special Note:  PDE no longer issues the Special Education PK-8 or 7-12 certification areas. PDE began issuing the Special Education PK-12 certificate 1/1/22.  Refer to CSPG 61 (Grade-Level Scope of Certificates section) for more information.

  • Obtain all official transcripts (both bachelors and beyond). If submitting transcripts electronically, do not submit your transcript request until you have submitted your application in TIMS. A bachelor's or higher degree from a regionally/nationally accredited college/university is a base requirement for certification.

  • Obtain a photocopy of your current and valid professional level state certificate comparable to the PA certificate you are seeking.

  • Obtain proof of two (2) full years of experience in the area for which you are applying by having the Verification of Experience Form PDE338V completed by your current/previous employers. Submit one form for each non-PA PK-12 employer.

  • Confirm that the required content area test scores(s) have been reported to PDE directly from the test administrator – ETS, ACTFL or ES Pearson. For test information, refer to the Certification Test and Score Requirements (Excel) spreadsheet.

    • All applicants must take the PA required content test(s) and meet the PA passing score(s) unless applying for Instructional (teacher) certification AND providing proof that all of the following conditions are met within the preparing state:

      • Hold a current and valid professional level state certificate that is comparable in both content and grade scope to the PA certificate for which you are applying;

      • Completed a college/university educator preparation program approved for certification in the state in which the certificate is held; the program must include student teaching (verify with Education Preparation Program Verification Form, PDE338A);

      • Passed related content tests required by the certifying state (verify with Education Preparation Program Verification Form, PDE338A); and

      • Submit verification that satisfactory service for your two most recent years of experience are on the certifying state's certificate and in the subject area for which you are applying ​(verify with Verification of Experience Form PDE338V).

      All other applicants must take the PA required content test(s) and meet the PA qualifying score(s). The passing score(s) must be met under this route. The GPA method of scoring is not acceptable. The basic skills assessments and Fundamental Subjects test are not required under this route to certification. Waived tests may still be requested in your TIMS application as the determination to waive test requirements is not made by TIMS. It is determined by the certification specialist at the time the application is evaluated.

  • Complete and submit the application in TIMS.

    • All applicants for initial certification in PA must apply for a Level I credential type.
    • After completing the payment selection and successfully SUBMITTING your application in TIMS, you will be provided a link to the application cover sheet. First upload all applicable documents possible. Follow directions for submitting transcripts. If documents cannot be uploaded or sent electronically, include the cover sheet with the documents and mail to the address indicated on the cover sheet.
    • All certification requirements including testing should be met for all subject areas applied for before submitting the required documentation for review.
    • Electronic payment (see Application Fees) accepted in TIMS.