Information  Regarding COVID-19 Impacts on IC Teacher Education Programs 2019-2020:

Certification FAQs 

Certification Presentation Slideshow 

NYSED Instructions on Applying for the Emergency COVID-19 Certificate



Applying for Teacher Certification in New York State: If you have or will graduate from a college teacher education degree program, you should use the "Approved New York State Program" route to certification.  For more information visit  www.highered.nysed.gov/tcert/certificate/certprocess.html and www.highered.nysed.gov/tcert/certificate/certprocess.html#one

Applications for certification must be submitted online using the process outlined below.

Applicants should use full names and permanent addresses on all forms that you complete for certification including certification exams, fingerprinting, certification applications, and your TEACH account.


1.  Complete a New York State registered bachelor’s degree or master's degree that leads to certification.

2.  Attain passing scores on the required certification exams for your area. Only two tests can be taken on a single day. Test preparation guides and test registration information can be downloaded at www.nystce.nesinc.com .

3. DASA Workshop completion – required in order for Ithaca College to recommend graduates for Initial or Professional NY State Teacher Certification. www.nyit.edu/interdisciplinary/dasa

4. No later than your sophomore year, set up a TEACH account by going online to the following website: www.highered.nysed.gov/tcert  Your first step would be to create a NY.gov TEACH Account and to register with a username and password.  After registering applicants will be able to access the TEACH program and their account through the "TEACH on-line service" button at the above web address and within the purple box in the top right.  Once established, this account will house all of your certification information including test scores, fingerprint results, and certificates issued.  Note: If you forgot your password or username, DO NOT create a new account, go here www.highered.nysed.gov/tcert/teach/report.html

5.  Digital Fingerprinting/Criminal Background Clearance is required for NY State teacher certification.  You should have already registered for your TEACH account.  Individual appointments for fingerprinting can be made directly with IdentoGO by contacting them at their website:  www.identogo.com and entering your zip code to find the nearest location or by calling them at (877) 472-6915.  Please note that there is not a location in Ithaca and the closest locations to the main campus are in Cortland and Odessa. The fee must be paid on-site at the time of the fingerprinting appointment with a cash or check only.  As of January 1, 2019 the fee is $100.25 for fingerprints.  The NYSED Code is 14ZGQT.  For answers to detailed questions about this process, please see the Fingerprinting Instructions or contact us at teachered@ithaca.edu

6. COMPLETE THE ON-LINE CERTIFICATION APPLICATION AT www.highered.nysed.gov/tcert  This should be done in the final month of your studies and before you leave campus at the completion of your studies. Please see below for step-by-step instructions.


For an Initial Teaching Certificate:

Bachelor of Arts Degree
Art Education 27889
Biology (7-12) 23322
Chemistry (7-12) 23323
English (7-12) 23325
German (7-12) 23327
Math (7-12) 23329
Physics (7-12) 23331
Social Studies (7-12) 23330
Spanish (7-12) 23328

French (7-12) 23326

Bachelor of Music Degree
Music Education (K-12)  23333
Performance & Music Education 23334

Bachelor of Science Degree
Health Education Teaching 23319
Physical Education Teaching 23320

Master of Art in Teaching Degree - Initial and Professional Certification
Adolescence Education (7-12) 30925

Agricultural Education (K-12)  37534

Master of Music Degree - Professional Certification
Music Education (K-12) 29383

Master of Science Degree
Teaching Students with Speech & Lang. Disabilities or Speech Language Pathology with Teacher Certification 27719 (Initial and Professional Certification)
Childhood Education (1-6) 31463 (Initial and Professional Certification)


Thoroughly read these instructions before beginning the application process to avoid making costly mistakes in the process.


Step 1. Create/update personal profile.  This section contains your personal data and contact information.  Keep all information current.

The applicant should enter their education in the following format:
Click in the radio button that states “Approved New York State Certification Programs: Select this radio button if you completed an approved program at a New York State institution that leads to a recommended teaching certificate.” Once you click this button, do not click any other options.

  1. Enter education information - If you are in a graduate program leading to initial certification, enter only the degree program leading to the certificate you are applying for; do not enter your undergraduate, non teaching degree.
  2. Institution: drop down list of New York State higher education institutions with teacher preparation programs - select Ithaca College from the list.
  3. Award Title: drop down list of awards associated with the chosen institution; select proper award title.
  4. Program: drop down list of programs available at the chosen institution and with the chosen award title; select appropriate program.
  5. Major: this is a generic list of common majors; identify the correct major
  6. Date Degree Received: enter date of graduation. Be exact here. This date must be accurate.
  7. Attended From: enter date education began (use 1st day of month you began studies)
  8. Attended To: enter graduation date
  9. Number of Credits: A close estimate will be adequate
  10. The teaching/employment section should only be completed when applying for Professional certification.  Applicants should enter only paid teaching experience in schools. Do not enter work associated with courses, paid coaching, or volunteer experiences This category is primarily for those seeking professional certification after having taught successfully.

Step 2 - Fingerprinting - This is where you will actually apply and pay for NY State Department of Education fingerprinting & criminal background clearance.  Refer to INITIAL CERTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS-Fingerprinting (#5) above for instructions about how to be fingerprinted if you haven't already completed this requirement.

Step 3 - Account Information - This section shows you the contents of your TEACH file.  By using Ctrl or Command key you can select all areas of information to see everything that is within your file.

Step 4 – Select Certificate(s)

This is where you choose your certificate type and title.  You will choose from a series of 5 dynamically filtered drop downs to arrive at the appropriate certificate for the program you completed.  These drop down menus are exactly the same as in Search Certification Requirements.

  • You  must select a certificate that is appropriate to the program you indicate in the self-reported education portion of the applicant profile.
  • Select the radio button Pathway: Approved Teacher Preparation Program
  • If you have completed a dual degree program, you may apply for more than one certificate in the same session

Step 5 – Sign Affidavit
Answer the child support and moral character questions here and then sign the affidavit.  If you answer “yes” to any of the moral character questions, you must enter an explanation in the text box provided.  Sign the affidavit by clicking on the button “Sign Affidavit.”

Step 6 – Sign Application
You will sign the application by clicking on the button “Sign Application” attesting that all statements and information provided in the application are true.  Please note, up to this point (signing the application), the applicant may back-out of the application process – no certificate or affidavit information will be saved.  After the application is signed, the application is saved and submitted.

Step 7 – Make Payment
In order to receive your teaching certificate quickly, it is recommended that a credit card be used for payment.  Each certificate costs $50.00.  Upon completing the payment process, TEACH will perform an automated evaluation and return a list of unmet requirements.  You can print this out and use it to track your completion of unmet requirements.
We hope you find these ‘tips’ helpful and that you use them to assist you as you submit your recommendations.  In the event you experience problems or have technical difficulties, TEACH provides technical support via email at TeachHelp@mail.nysed.gov and telephone at (518) 486-6041.

COLLEGE RECOMMENDATION: Once your degree has been posted by the Office of the Registrar at Ithaca College, we will submit the college recommendation. You can check the status of your application by going to the NYSED website at www.highered.nysed.gov/tcert

If you have job interviews before your certificate arrives, the Teacher Certification Specialist is happy to provide you with an official letter stating that you have applied and been recommended for certification. Contact our Teacher Certification Specialist at teachered@ithaca.edu.

The initial certificate is valid for five years and may not be renewed.  However, a three year extension is possible if you have completed 24 semester hours of approved graduate study.

 Professional Certification:

  • Complete three years of teaching, with the first year mentored.
  • Complete a registered master’s degree (check with NYSED to make sure the program is applicable towards a professional certificate.)
  • Apply for your professional certificate using the same online process outlined above.

All candidates for teaching certification are encouraged to be informed and to educate themselves regarding policies, procedures, and deadlines for certification.  Information on certification in other states can be obtained from each state’s Department of Education website.

Office of Teaching and Certification

**New Service Code Needed When Scheduling Fingerprinting Appointment**

Service Code: 14ZGQT

Questions? Please contact us at

Information about NYS teacher certification exams

Office of Teaching and Certification

**New Service Code Needed When Scheduling Fingerprinting Appointment**

Service Code:  14ZGQT

Questions?  Please contact us at

Information about NYS teacher certification exams