2024 Best Online Post Baccalaureate Teacher Certification Programs [Graduate Certificate]

By Jason Collins
Updated on January 31, 2024
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If you want to become a teacher but have a bachelors in a non-teaching field, a post baccalaureate teacher certification program can help prepare you for teaching licensure.

Best Online Post Baccalaureate Teacher Certification Programs

States have specific licenses and certifications that must be received prior to teaching, and completing a post-bacc teacher certification online program can be a helpful step in acquiring these credentials.

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Through post-bachelor teaching programs, you can fulfill the educational and fieldwork certification requirements necessary for teaching at public or private schools.

Online Post Baccalaureate Teacher Certification Programs

Man taking Post Baccalaureate Teacher Certification online

Post-baccalaureate in education programs are designed for students who wish to pursue a career in teaching but have a bachelor’s degree in a field other than education.

A post baccalaureate teacher certification helps you fulfill the necessary requirements to pursue a teaching license. Some of the topics you’ll likely focus on in a post-bacc teacher certificate program include:

  • Maintaining professionalism as an educator
  • Creating and maintaining a classroom that is conducive to learning
  • Teaching styles and theories
  • Developing lesson plans for your classroom
  • Analyzing and gauging your success as a teacher

To qualify for licensure, your certificate program will also involve a certain amount of student teaching hours. Depending on the school system structure in your state, you may choose to earn certification for general education or for a particular subject.

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For many students, a post-bachelor teaching program provides them with the opportunity to teach in their chosen field. With the necessary state credentials, you may teach a variety of grades. Some teachers also pursue certifications for special education and English as a second language (ESL).

Many students pursue this certification to become teachers immediately, but some use it as a stepping stone to further education and advancement within a particular field. For instance, some schools allow you to transfer your post-bacc teacher certificate program credits into their education masters programs.

For students with bachelors degrees in fields other than education who wish to earn a masters, a growing number of universities offer combined masters and teaching credential programs.

Common Post Bachelor Teaching Certificate Online Programs

ESL Teachers having a meeting

When reviewing post-bachelor teaching programs, you may find that a variety of teaching certificate programs are available. This is due to the differences in teaching different ages or subjects.

A few common teaching certificate options include:

  • Elementary Education Teaching Certificate. Depending on the school you choose or the state in which you plan to teach, elementary or early education can include students in Pre-K through 5th or 6th grade.
  • Middle School Education Teaching Certificate. Middle school education usually refers to students between 6th and 8th grade, though this can vary by state. At this level, you can also decide what types of classes you wish to teach, such as math, science, or reading.
  • Secondary Education Teaching Certificate. The secondary, or high school, certification process often involves separate credentials for each subject you may wish to teach, such as biology, social studies, or math. Secondary education can also encompass 7th and 8th grades.
  • Special Education Teaching Certificate. Special education teachers focus on helping students with a variety of disabilities or behavioral challenges learn about all subjects.
  • English as a Second Language (ESL) Teaching Certificate. For children who are learning English for the first time, ESL teachers provide them with an opportunity to learn alongside their peers.

Since certifications can vary from state to state, you may wish to review your state’s licensure process to determine which school and program is best for you.

Teaching Careers & Salaries

Teaching Careers & Salaries

The main goal of many post baccalaureate teacher certification programs is to provide students with the credentials to teach within a specific state. As a result, most graduates continue into teaching roles. After getting some teaching experience, some will complete on-campus or online teacher leadership programs and enter into leadership positions.

There are many different teaching opportunities available, including teaching different age groups or subjects. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, here are the median salaries for common teaching positions.

Careers Annual Median Salaries
High School Teachers $61,820
Special Education Teachers $61,820
Kindergarten and Elementary School Teachers $61,350
Middle School Teachers $61,320
Career and Technical Education Teachers $61,160
Adult Basic and Secondary Education and ESL Teachers $59,720
Preschool and Childcare Center Directors $47,310
Preschool Teachers $30,210
Teacher Assistants $29,360
Childcare Workers $27,490

Teachers are essential for students of all ages in all areas of study in both private and public educational systems. As a result, the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts steady growth in employment for certified teachers.

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In fact, education, training, and library occupations overall are expected to see 10% job growth over the next ten years (Bureau of Labor Statistics).

Teacher Certification Post-Baccalaureate Curriculum

People taking Teacher Certification Post-Baccalaureate

Some post-bachelor teaching programs are structured differently than others, offering different courses, seminars, or student teaching experiences.

Here are a few areas of study that are commonly found among post-bachelor teaching programs:

  • Fundamentals of Education: In this course, you’ll learn about the commonalities in practices and procedures in educational roles.
  • Development of Literacy: This course allows you to explore how children of all ages learn to read.
  • Theory of Instruction: This course explores the various methods used to teach children different topics.
  • Digital Learning Methods: Technology can play an important role in how children obtain information, and this course explores learning types and methods.
  • Early Childhood Development: This course focuses on the physical, mental, emotional, and psychological development of children as they grow.
  • Creativity in the Classroom: In this course, you’ll learn how to encourage creativity in students through classroom activities.
  • Education Policy: This course covers the regulations and procedures surrounding education in your state.
  • International Education Practices: This course can be helpful in understanding the cultural expectations of international students.
  • Behavior Management: This course focuses on understanding how and why children behave the way they do in the classroom.
  • Lesson Planning: In this course, you’ll learn how to create and implement a full year of instruction.

Additionally, many schools ask that students complete courses specific to the areas in which they hope to be certified.

Admissions Requirements

Man preparing requirements for Post Baccalaureate Teacher Certification

Because of the structure of post-bachelor teaching programs, the admissions requirements may vary significantly. It’s helpful to review the admissions guidelines carefully before applying.

Some of the typical admission requirements for post-bachelor teaching programs include:

  • GRE or GMAT scores (only some schools require them)
  • Undergraduate transcripts
  • Statement of intent
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Writing sample

Some schools may request separate admissions for non-degree seekers. Additionally, you may be asked to complete an interview with faculty.

Teaching Programs Accreditation

University offering Post Baccalaureate Teacher Certification

When evaluating post-bachelor teaching programs, it’s essential to verify that they’re offered by regionally accredited schools.

Regional accreditation is awarded by accrediting agencies that are recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). Completing a program that has received appropriate accreditation for your state can be important when applying for teaching licensure.

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Some certification exams cannot be taken without completing a teacher program from an accredited institution. In addition, many employers place an emphasis on potential hires having reputable credentials from an accredited program.

Teaching Licensure and Certifications

People getting Teaching Licensure and Certifications

Following your completion of a postbaccalaureate teacher certification program, you will be eligible to pursue the credentials required by your state to begin teaching in a classroom setting.

The actual certification process varies from state to state, but most states require you to complete specified coursework and fieldwork. Most teacher certificate programs require you to complete a specific number of student teaching hours to qualify for state licensing or certification. It’s helpful to verify that your chosen certificate program meets the requirements of the state you wish to teach in.

To earn your license, you may also be asked to pass the Praxis examination with a certain score. Some states offer their own unique educator examination.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Financial Aid for Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Teaching

Those who are interested in needs-based financial aid may wish to complete the FAFSA, or the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. It’s helpful to note that due to the number of credit hours offered, some certificate programs may not qualify for federal financial assistance.          

Many schools offer their own grants or scholarships for students participating in specific programs, such as teacher certificate programs. You may want to check with faculty or admissions specialists to learn more about these opportunities.

What Is a Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Teaching?

A post-baccalaureate certificate in teaching is an opportunity for those who have earned a bachelor’s degree to pursue a teaching license. These programs are for those who did not earn either an on-campus or an online degree for teaching but would like to enter the profession.

Students who pursue their post-bacc teacher certification online frequently plan to teach in a subject related to their undergraduate major. For example, someone who earned their BS in Biology may wish to teach science to high school students. Your chosen teaching subject does not have to align with your bachelors, though. 

Earning your post-baccalaureate teacher certificate online can help you meet the coursework and fieldwork requirements for taking state certification exams.

What Can You Do with a Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Certification?

Kindergarten Teacher guiding kids on their lesson

Most students who receive their post-baccalaureate teacher certification go on to earn their teaching licensure and become teachers in K-12 schools.

There are many different types of teachers, all of whom are important figures in guiding the education of children of all ages. Licensed teachers are qualified to teach in both public and private schools. Most certification programs allow prospective educators to specify what grade levels and subjects they wish to become certified to teach. Special educators and ESL designations are also available.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Post-Baccalaureate Teaching Certificate Online?

The length of time it takes to receive your post-bachelor teacher certificate online can vary greatly. Most online programs are between 18 and 30 credit hours in length.

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In addition, you’ll likely be asked to complete a certain number of student teaching or classroom experience hours, as specified by your state’s certification board. These may or may not be included in your online credits. Students who maintain full-time enrollment can often complete their post-bacc teacher certification online in 1 to 2 years, depending on the length of their program. Part-time enrollment may extend the time it takes to finish.

What’s the Difference Between a Post Bacc vs. Masters in Teaching Program?

You may notice some schools only offer a postbaccalaureate teacher certification program, while others offer a masters in teaching program.

Here are some of the key differences between these programs.

Post-Bacc Teacher Certificate Masters in Teaching
  • Non-degree academic program
  • Allows bachelor degree holders the opportunity to become state certified teachers
  • Typically does not include a thesis
  • Graduate degree program
  • Provides in-depth study of teaching methods, theories, and practices
  • May offer a licensure track
  • Often includes comprehensive research project or thesis

The educational path that’s right for you will likely depend on your long-term goals. Some schools also let you transfer your post-bacc teacher certificate credits into an education masters program.

Is a Post-Baccalaureate Teaching Certification Worth It?

Technical Education Teachers discussing with her student

Yes, a post-baccalaureate teaching certification is worth it for many students. Those who complete post-bachelor teaching programs can become eligible for state licensing and certification so that they may teach professionally.

As a result, many graduates pursue careers as kindergarten and elementary school, middle school, or high school teachers. Some choose to earn their certification in special education as well, while others focus on teaching English as a second language.

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Teaching can be a rewarding career for many individuals, allowing them to share their expertise on a variety of subjects. Overall, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects 10% job growth for training, education, and library occupations over the next ten years.

Universities Offering Online Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Certification Program

Methodology: The following school list is in alphabetical order. To be included, a college or university must be regionally accredited and offer degree programs online or in a hybrid format.

Drexel University

Drexel University campus

At Drexel University, students can earn post-baccalaureate teacher certification in Pennsylvania at the elementary, middle, or secondary level. The program requires the completion of 12 weeks of student teaching. At the secondary level, students can earn certification in English, mathematics, general science, biology, chemistry, physics, earth and space science, or social studies.

Drexel University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

Franklin University

Franklin University campus

Franklin University’s post-baccalaureate teacher licensure program can enable students to gain initial licensure in the state of Ohio. Students can pursue certification to teach grades PreK-5, 4-9, or 7-12 or intervention specialist certification for students with mild to moderate disabilities in grades K-12.

Franklin University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Louisiana State University

Louisiana State University campus

Louisiana State University offers a flexible, online post-baccalaureate certificate practitioner teacher program. The program requires the completion of 24 credit hours and can potentially be finished in just 1 year. Coursework includes Educational Psychology, Methods for Literacy-Based Instructional Planning and Design, Meeting Diverse Instructional Needs in Today’s Classrooms, and more.

LSU is accredited by the Southern Associate of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Tennessee Tech University

Tennessee Technological University campus

Tennessee Tech University’s post-baccalaureate pathway to teacher licensure may be completed on a part-time or full-time basis. There are twenty different areas in which students can earn licensure, including early childhood education, elementary education, physical education, library information specialist, and more.

Tennessee Tech University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

University of Arizona

University of Arizona campus

The University of Arizona offers a post-baccalaureate teaching certificate online program. The program consists of courses that are 5 to 6 weeks long that are taken one at time alongside a cohort.

Courses include English Language Learners in the Classroom, Effective Classroom Management, Assessing Learners, and more. Certification can be earned in elementary education or secondary education in English, STEM, or history and social science.

The University of Arizona is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

University of Hawai’i – Manoa

University of Hawaii - Manoa campus

At the University of Hawai’i—Manoa, students can earn a post-baccalaureate certificate in teacher education in elementary education online. The program requires the completion of 31 credits and leads to licensure to teach grades K-6. It is intended for those transitioning into education careers, as well as paraprofessionals and substitute teachers. Students can usually finish the program in 18 months.

The University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa is accredited by the Senior College and University Commission of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

University of Houston – Victoria

University of Houston Victoria campus

The University of Houston—Victoria offers an on-campus post-baccalaureate teacher certification program. Some courses are also available online. Students must complete at least 12 semester hours of coursework and student teaching to graduate. Specializations are available in early childhood, middle grades, physical education, Spanish, ESOL and secondary-level language arts, mathematics, science, life science, and history.

The University of Houston-Victoria is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

University of Montana Western

University of Montana Western

At the University of Montana Western, students can earn a post-baccalaureate teacher certification. To graduate, students must complete 6 online courses and an internship. Certification is available in English, mathematics, history, biology, earth science, life science, physical science, biology, art, music, physical education and health, and more.

The University of Montana Western is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

University of North Georgia

University of North Georgia campus

The University of North Georgia offers an online post-baccalaureate initial teacher certification program. Coursework includes field placements and synchronous and asynchronous components. Students progress through the program with a cohort and can typically finish in 1 year. Coursework includes Curriculum and Assessment, Strategies for Effective Teaching, and Teaching Diverse Learners.

UNG is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

University of West Georgia

University of West Georgia campus

The University of West Georgia offers a post-baccalaureate certificate in online teaching. The certificate requires the completion of 12 semester hours of coursework. Courses include Instructional Technology, Media, and Design, Designing Technology Enhanced Instruction, Introduction to Distance Learning, and more.

The University of West Georgia is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Getting Your Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Certification Online

Woman getting Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Certification Online

If you’ve earned a bachelor’s degree and now wish to enter a teaching role within the field of education, you might consider getting a post-baccalaureate teacher certification online. This certificate program can help you qualify for your state’s teacher certification process.

Whether your focus is on early education, math for the middle grades, or history for high schoolers, finishing a post-bachelor teaching program could be your first step toward a career in the classroom.

You can take a look at some of the online post-baccalaureate teacher certification programs offered by accredited schools to start planning your next steps today.

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WRITTEN BY
Jason has a bachelor in English Literature from Loyola Marymount University with a minor in history. A life-long learner with a love of science, philosophy, and history, he works in career enrichment, professional development, and improved business practices.