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​CSPG 43 - Environmental Education

​Instructional Area Code 4820
Modified: August 1, 2023

Environmental Education is an interdisciplinary, integrative program of study that examines the function and effects of interactions between natural and man-made abiotic and biotic components within ecological systems with a scope that spans from local phenomena and ecological communities to global ecospheres. This area of certification requires educators to be able to guide students through the examination of the interrelationships across earth and space system spheres such as hydro-, bio-, litho-, and atmosphere, and effects and interactions with social systems and technologies, as well as identify and address issues that arise from these intersections. Through this lens, learners explore environmental and ecological principles and their essential roles in the life, earth system, chemical, and physical sciences and inform the development of environmental laws, regulations, and best management practices and regulatory guidance related to natural resource management, integrated pest management, agricultural process, and diversity, watersheds, land use, threatened and endangered species, and environmental health.

Grade Level Scope of Certificate

A person holding a valid PA Environmental Education certificate is qualified to teach environmental education in grades PK-12 and Environmental Science in grades 7-12.

Certification Assignment

  • An educator holding a valid PA certificate in Environmental Education is qualified to teach environmental education and Environmental Science courses that address the Environmental Literacy and Sustainability Domain in the Science Technology& Engineering, and/or exhibit explicit connections to other related academic domains. These topics may include but are not limited to subjects such as environmental science, earth systems science, ecology, ecological and human systems, environmental dynamics, resource management, watershed management, land use management, and environmental biology, environmental chemistry, or environmental engineering.
  • An educator with Agriculture PK-12 certification is also certified to teach Environmental Science courses.

Special Considerations

  • Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Earth and Space Science and General Science certified instructors are also qualified to teach Environmental Science.  
  • An educator certified in this field may provide: 
    • Professional development related to their collegial studies;
    • Serve in the role of mentor or advisor;
    • May assist students in understanding how to read content area materials.


Program Specific Guidelines for Certification

PA Public School Code: §1202, §1212, §1604

22 PA Code: Chapter 4: §4.22, §4.23, §4.31

Chapter 49: §49.11, §49.81, §49.142

This revision supersedes all earlier CSPG’s carrying this number and/or addressing this subject. Previous printing dates on this subject: 1973, 3/75, 3/78, 2/82, 1/87, 7/04, 3/17.

Summary of Changes

​Date of Revisions
​Major Changes to CSPG #43
​Updated terminology and formatting
​Updated grade scope for consistency and clarification.
​3/1/2017​Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Earth and Space Science and
General Science certified instructors are also qualified to teach
environmental science.