3 Steps to Becoming a Teacher in Arkansas

Want to become a teacher in the great state of Arkansas? If so, you have come to the right place. Below you will find a short article that lists the steps to becoming a teacher in Arkansas.

Step 1: Complete an Approved Teacher Preparation Program

To teach in the U.S., educators must hold at least an undergraduate degree. The state of Arkansas also requires students to complete a state-approved teacher education program to receive certification. Arkansas does not list courses or semester-hour requirements, but every college or university teacher education program will have requirements of its own. Contact your teacher education program or the Department of Education for more information. 

Teacher education programs generally consist of two elements—curriculum and field experiences. The curriculum includes instruction on teaching foundational skills, pedagogy (the science of teaching), and preparing students to research, create and implement learning experiences in their field of study. Field experiences often include field observations, internships, student teaching, or a combination of all three.

Step 2: Complete the Required Exams

Arkansas compels educators to take the Praxis I/PPST (Pre-Professional Skills Test) for entry into a teacher education program, the Praxis II test in your subject area, and the Praxis II: Principles of Learning and Teaching exam.

Arkansas has two primary levels of licensure – Provisional, which allows qualified professionals to teach while finishing required coursework, and Standard, for educators who have completed the traditional requirements. Learn more about earning your Arkansas educator credential at the Arkansas Department of Education Educator Licensure Unit page.

Step 3: Complete an Arkansas Teaching Application

After you have satisfied the education, experience, and testing requirements and passed the background check and central registry check (see below), you may apply for your Initial Teaching License using the Application for Educator’s License. You will need to send the following documents along with your completed, signed application:

  • Official, unopened college transcript documenting completion of an undergraduate degree and of your educator preparation program
  • Copies of Praxis score reports (Praxis exam scores should be sent to the Department of Education upon completion)
  • Authentication that your Criminal History Check and Central Registry have been completed and are on file, or are being sent to the proper agencies
  • Application fees
  • Signature from a supervisor in your educator preparation program authenticating that you have finished the requirements for licensure
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