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Teacher Certification FAQs

1. When should I apply for certification?


You should apply for certification around the same time you apply for graduation. NYSED will review your application once Hunter recommends you for certification.

2. When will Hunter recommend me for certification?


Hunter will recommend you once your graduation is posted by the Office of the Registrar. Recommendation cannot be sent before the official graduation date. You can follow up with Degree Audit on the status of your graduation application.

3. When will I get my certificate?


Generally, if you have all other requirements met for the initial certificate (i.e., fingerprint clearance, exams), the initial certificate will be issued within a day or two after Hunter gives its recommendation. Professional certificates take longer to be issued because your information has to be reviewed by a NYSED certification officer.

4. What if I haven’t processed my fingerprints yet?


You may have already had your fingerprints processed and cleared. Many students were advised at orientation to send their fingerprints NYSED early in their program for fingerprint clearance. Some have already had their fingerprints cleared with a Teacher Assistant or Substitute Teacher position with the NYCDOE. Others have attended fingerprinting sessions for student teachers or have gone to 65 Court Street to process their fingerprints. Fingerprint clearance is shared between NYSED and NYCDOE. If you were fingerprinted by CUNY or a City department, that is not the Dept of Education, and you will likely need your fingerprints processed. If you have not been fingerprinted, you can apply for fingerprinting online after registering with NYSED's TEACH Online System. You can pick up a fingerprint packet at the School of Education

5. What do I do if my current teaching certificate is expiring (has expired) and I have not finished my master’s program?


If you are in one of our graduate programs that requires prior certification, you must have a valid NYS teaching certification at the time of graduation. If you are a TOP scholar or a Teaching Fellow, you must have a valid Trans B certificate when you finish your program. If your certificate is expiring (or has expired), you must apply for an extension to the time validity of your trans B or initial certificate. Instructions can be found in our Teacher Certification page.

6. I haven’t completed my program but I want to be certified so I can start teaching. What are my options?


You may be eligible for an internship certificate. There are other options for applying via Individual Evaluation pathway or supplemental certificates. The Office of Educational Services does not advise on other pathways or certificate types. You can find more information on NYSED’s TEACH.

7. I have an initial certificate prior to starting my master's degree program at Hunter College. How do I get the professional certificate?


If you currently hold a valid initial certificate, you are eligible for the professional certificate in that certificate area after:
a)    earning a master’s degree; and
b)    teaching 3 years full-time (one of which is mentored), paid in public or private setting.

You cannot use your Hunter College program code to apply for a professional certificate that is not part of your Hunter College program. Instructions are available on how to apply.

8. Do I need to be a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident for certification with NYS?


You do not need to show proof of citizenship or residency for initial certificates. NYSED does require proof of citizenship or permanent residency for professional certificates.

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