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Certification Requirements

To be eligible to be employed in the New York State's public schools as a teacher, individuals must hold a NYS Teacher certificate issued by the NY State Department of Education's Office of Teaching Initiatives. 

New York State teachers are required to hold a New York State Teaching certificate for employment in the State's public schools. The Office of Teaching Initiatives issues certificates to certify that an individual has met required degree, coursework, assessment, and experience requirements.  

Achieving certification in NYS requires several steps, including successful completion of coursework/degree, background check/fingerprinting, NYS Teacher Certification Exams, and application through the TEACH account. Candidates may find a searchable summary of requirements and procedures for certification application on the New York State Education Department website (NYSED).

Certification Information & Program Codes


Individuals must be fingerprinted and have a criminal history record check completed in order to be cleared for employment in the New York State's public schools. To sign up for a fingerprinting appointment visit IdentoGO and choose the location that is best for you.

The service codes needed to schedule an appointment are:

  • Certification, 14ZGQT

Additional information is available online: 

NYSED Fingerprint Process

Tests for Teacher Certification

There are two NYS Certification exams you will need to become a teacher in New York State:

  • Content Specialty Test (CST)
  • Educating All Students Test (EAS)

Content Specialty Test (CST)

Childhood Education 1-6 majors take the Multi-Subject Grades 1-6 CST. The multi-subject test is broken into three sections that can all be taken in one day, or can be broken down into multiple days.

Adolescence Education 7-12 and TESOL K-12 majors take the CST in their concentration area

Educating All Students Test (EAS)

The Educating All Students Test evaluates candidates on their ability to effectively teach and support all students while responding to diverse student needs. The five components addressed in this test include: Diverse Student Populations, English Language Learners, Students With Disabilities, Teacher Responsibilities, and School-Home Relations. 

NYSTCE Test Dates and Sites

Sign up for the tests online at NYSTCE. There are multiple testing sites throughout New York State. Many exams are offered through a computer-only testing system. Computer-based tests are offered Monday-Saturday at approved testing sites. Seating is limited and you must plan accordingly.

Preparing for the Tests
TEACH Account

The New York State Department of Education (NYSED) is the institution that grants NYS Teacher Certification. Upon graduation, the college registrar will recommend you to NYSED for teacher certification through a release form you receive with your diploma in the mail. You will then complete the certification process online using your TEACH account.


Applying for Teacher Certification

For detailed directions visit

  • You should not apply too early.  You should wait until SUNY has recommended you for the appropriate certificate. This takes approximately 3-4 weeks after graduation.  Waiting to apply, will place your pending application on the correct pathway; expediting the application process.   
Jobs Search

OLAS is a cloud-based application serving schools and districts throughout New York State and the surrounding areas. Employers can view applicant specific information: resumes, cover letters, transcripts, portfolios, and more. Job seekers are able to apply to multiple job openings using one unified application. OLAS is committed to providing schools, districts, and job seekers with personalized and responsive customer service.

OLAS Website

Jobs Board

SUNY Oswego Career Services

Obtaining Certification in Other States

Out of State Certification

Please review SUNY Oswego's Mandatory Certification Disclosure Document, which includes a full list of education departments for other states and territories. 

If you are applying for certification in another state, you may be requested to complete a form verifying your completion of an approved program leading to teacher, pupil-personnel, or administrative certification. You MUST complete your portion of the form and either mail or email the form to the Registrar's Office:

Registrar's Office
SUNY Oswego
301 Culkin Hall
Oswego, NY 13126
[email protected]

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