A&M-Commerce is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and our Educator Certification Programs are accredited by the Texas Education Agency. Professional certifications are available through several graduate programs administered by departments within the College of Education and Human Services.
Resources and Important Information
Updates and Notices
Pearson Mask Policy – Update provided by Texas Education Agency
Effective December 1, 2021, face masks are required at all company-owned Pearson Professional Centers (PPCs) in the United States and United States Territories regardless of vaccination status per the requirements set forth in Executive Order 14042 and in compliance with CDC guidelines for areas with high or substantial community spread. Unvaccinated individuals are always required to wear masks and distance. Candidates who do not comply may forfeit their ability to take current and future exams. Pearson will not issue refunds to candidates who do not comply. More information on how the Executive Order affects candidates can be found on the COVID-19 Update Page.
OFFICIAL NOTICE: TExES 291 Exam Phasing Out
Beginning January 1, 2022, the Core Subjects EC-6 TExES 291 exam will no longer be offered. Candidates will need to take and pass the TExES 291 exam prior to 2022 if they wish to use that exam for certification. Waivers for an attempt on the TExES 291 exam that are beyond the first five (5) tries are due to TEA no later than December 1, 2021. No waivers submitted late will be granted test approval for the TExES 291.
The TExES 391 Core Subjects EC-6 exam will be required for testers who have not passed the TExES 291 by January 1, 2022. Individuals have five (5) attempts to pass the 291 and five (5) separate attempts to pass the 391. Passed sections of the TExES 291 will not transfer to the TExES 391. To be certified, an individual will need to pass all sections of the 291 OR all sections of the 391.
Core Subjects EC-6 program completers need to complete all requirements and have their standard teaching certificate issued by the end of December 2022. Individuals who pass the required exams, but fail to be fully certified by the deadline will be required to take the TExES 391 for certification. In addition to passing the TExES 291 or 391 exam, program completers will also need passing scores on the PPR TExES 160, and the Science of Teaching Reading TExES 293 exams in order to be recommended for certification. Please contact the Office of Educator Certification and Academic Services at 903.886.5640 with any questions or concerns about this process or the TEA-established deadlines.
OFFICIAL NOTICE: Science of Teaching Reading Exam
Teacher certification candidates who have completed all educator preparation program requirements are encouraged to apply for their standard certificate before they will be required to take the new Science of Teaching Reading Exam. This exam begins on January 1, 2021. If you are a past graduate and still need to pass your required content exam and/or the PPR Exam, please reach out to our office for information on how to register for your exam. Certificates listed below must be issued before December 31, 2020 in order to avoid this new required exam.
- Core Subjects Early Childhood–Grade 6
- Core Subjects Grades 4–8
- English Language Arts and Reading Grades 4–8
- English Language Arts and Reading/Social Studies Grades 4–8
Learn more about the Science of Teaching Reading Exam.
Beginning Fall 2018
Educator Testing Transition
The Texas Educator Certification Examination Program will transition to a new vendor, Pearson, beginning September 1, 2018, for the following tests: TExES, TExMaT, TASC, and TASC-ASL. ETS will administer the new Performance Assessment for School Leaders (PASL) when it becomes effective in fall 2019.
Educator Certification Examination Retake Limit Change *NEW*
Candidates are limited to a total of five attempts to pass a certification examination under Texas Education Code §21.048. A subsection of the law, which currently counts all attempts of the same examination taken before September 1, 2015 as only one attempt, is set to expire. Beginning September 1, 2018, all attempts of the same examination will count toward the 5-attempt testing limit regardless of when the examination was first attempted.
Candidates, educators, and others who took certification examinations before September 1, 2015 and have not yet passed those examinations will find more information in the candidate guidance document. Testers impacted by the change must take their examination(s) by August 31, 2018 if the new test attempt counting method will make them ineligible on September 1, 2018. Candidates who reach the 5-time testing limit must apply for a test-limit waiver to retest.
Note: Individuals who did not test before September 1, 2015 are not affected by the change since all examination attempts have always been included in the attempt count for these testers.
Professional Certifications – Certification Office Admissions
The Certification Office requires additional application materials beyond what is collected by the Graduate School in order to be formally admitted to the following Educator Certification Programs:
- Educational Diagnostician Certification
- Educational Diagnostician with MEd-Special Education
- Reading Specialist Certification with MEd-Reading
- School Counselor Certification with MS-Counseling
- School Librarian Certification with MEd-Education Technology/Library Science
- School Librarian Certification
- Principal Certification
- Principal Certification with MEd-Educational Administration
- Superintendent Certification
All of the above applicants will need to submit the Certification Office Application for their certificate program, pay a $50 Certification Office Application Fee, and pay a $35 TEA Fee. Before submitting the completed application, please print, sign, and date a copy. This will need to be scanned and emailed to Leesa Cannon in the Certification Office.
Additional documents are required and vary based on the program for which you are applying. Please email Leesa Cannon at [email protected] for a full list of required items that need to be submitted, as well as information on when you should begin completing steps with the Certification Office.
It is expected that all applicants complete the Certification Office process before beginning the first course in their educator certification program.
Background Check Information
Pursuant to the Texas Education Code (TEC) 22.083, candidates must undergo a criminal history background check prior to employment as an educator; and pursuant to the TEC, 22.0835, candidates must undergo a criminal history background check prior to clinical teaching.
Per TAC Title 19, Section 249.16 Pursuant to the Texas Occupations Code (TOC), Chapter 53, and the Texas Education Code (TEC), Chapter 21, Subchapter 8, the State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) may suspend or revoke an existing valid certificate, deny an applicant a certificate, bar a person from being assessed or examined for a certificate, or take other disciplinary action because of a person's conviction of a felony or misdemeanor or certain other criminal history.
If you have the potential to be ineligible because you have been convicted of an offense, it is in your best interest to request a preliminary criminal history evaluation.
For more information or to request a preliminary criminal history evaluation, please visit the TEA preliminary criminal history evaluation FAQs.
EPP Performance and Supply and Demand
The United States Department of Education (ED) has approved the 2020-2021 teacher shortage areas submitted by the Texas Education Agency (TEA).
The approved state-level shortage areas for the 2020-2021 school year are:
- Bilingual/English as a Second Language—Elementary and Secondary Levels
- Special Education– Elementary and Secondary Levels
- Career and Technical Education—Secondary Levels
- Technology Applications and Computer Science– Elementary and Secondary Levels
- Mathematics—Secondary Levels
The approved shortage areas help administrators support the recruitment and retention of qualified teachers.
Texas A&M University-Commerce is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and their Educator Certification Programs are accredited by the Texas Education Agency. You can view our performance data over the last five years.
Alternative Certification Program Cost
Pay Educator Certification Fees
Complaints, Appeals and Resolutions
The Student Complaint, Appeal and Concern Resolution Matrix is provided to assist students in understanding the procedures and process for addressing common issues. Procedures are usually different for Undergraduate and Graduate students.
- Find your complaint, appeal, or concern on the Student Complaint, Appeal, and Concern Resolution Matrix and follow the process for resolution.
- If your complaint, appeal, or concern is still not resolved, complete the Student Complaint, Appeal and Concern Form and return it to the Dean of Students.
- After all avenues have been exhausted and not resolved to your satisfaction through the EPP (Educational Prep Program) Institute then the final step would be to contact TEA (Texas Education Agency). You may view the Complaints and Investigations Procedures on the TAC (Texas Administrative Code) in Title 19, Part 7, Chapter 228, rule 228.70 and view the process the TEA website. NOTE: TEA may delay addressing the complaint until the proper sequence of complaints have been followed.
Registration for TExES exams is completed on the Pearson website.
Registration for the Performance Assessment for School Leaders (PASL) is completed on the ETS website.
Program approval is required before the exam website will allow you to register. Students should contact their academic advisor for questions about TExES exam approval.
Individuals who finished their certification program 5 or more years ago may be required to complete remediation before being given test approval for their certification exam. If applicable, contact Deborah Alford with your TEA ID or CWID to determine what is required to receive test approval.
Alternative Testing Arrangements
Students who need testing alternative testing arrangements for a Pearson administered exam are encouraged to review the information on the Pearson website. Select the exam you need to take, and select “Go” to learn more about the process required to receive alternative testing arrangements for your exam.
Applying for Your Standard Certificate
- First-time user Click on “New User? Create New Account”
Once you are logged in:
- Click on the tab APPLICATIONS
- Click on STANDARD CERTIFICATE
- Click APPLY FOR CERTIFICATION
- Fill in all sections of the application.
On the field that says “I request to be recommended by this Entity”
Undergraduate Teacher Certification Candidates Select: TEXAS A&M University-Commerce (University Based)
Post-Bach Teacher Certification Candidates (Earned a Master's Degree) Select: TEXAS A&M University-Commerce (University Based)
Alternative Teacher Certification Candidates (Cert-Only) Select: TEXAS A&M University-Commerce (Alternative)
Professional Certification Candidates (Certification-ONLY Programs) Select: TEXAS A&M University-Commerce (Alternative)
Professional Certification Candidates (Degree Seeking Programs) Select: TEXAS A&M University-Commerce (University Based)
When all information has been entered, click on APPLY.
Pay TEA electronically for $78.00 certification, $40.25 fingerprinting and $10.00 vendor fees.
If you have been an Educational Aide and hold an Aide Certificate with SBEC, or completed the process with a school district, or already hold a standard teaching certificate (Professional Certification Applicants) you will not be required to complete Fingerprinting again.
Use the tab labeled APPLICATION STATUS to make sure that your payment was processed.
Scheduling a Fingerprinting Appointment
The fingerprinting process is initiated once an applicant applies and makes the payment for certification through the Educator Certification Online System (ECOS). At the time the applicant pays for certification, he or she will also be prompted to pay for the fingerprint background check. Certificate applicants residing in Texas must submit their fingerprints electronically, Option 1, using the Texas Department of Public Safety’s (DPS) approved vendor, MorphoTrust/Identogo. Once payment for fingerprinting has been submitted in ECOS, the applicant will be “pre-enrolled” and MorphoTrust/Identogo will send the applicant an email that includes information to schedule an appointment. The email will be sent from the address: [email protected].
Please note that, once pre-enrolled, certificate applicants may also find the information necessary to schedule an appointment in the applicant’s ECOS account. After logging in, the certificate applicant should choose ‘Fingerprint Status’, and he or she will be taken to a screen that displays the UEID number, the service code and a link for appointment scheduling through MorphoTrust/IdentoGo.
The total fingerprinting background check fee for a certificate applicant in Texas is $50.25, $40.25 of which is paid in ECOS via credit card during the application process. An additional $10.00 is paid to MorphoTrust/IdentoGo at the time of appointment scheduling. A valid photo ID is required at the time of the appointment. Texas Education Agency (TEA) receives the fingerprinting results 5-7 business days after the fingerprint appointment.
K-12 Professional Development
Professional development for K-12 teachers offers you training and credit hours for license renewal or certification in another subject area.
Military Service Member and Veteran Candidates
Please contact the admissions offices for undergraduate or graduate degrees for specific criteria and procedures that may allow for military service member and military veteran candidates to credit verified military service, training or education toward the training, education, work experience or related requirements (other than certification examinations) for educator certification requirements, provided that the military service, training or education is directly related to the certificate being sought.
Credit for Previous Experience or Coursework
Please contact the admissions offices for undergraduate or graduate degrees as well as the appropriate faculty advisor for specific criteria and procedures that may allow candidates who are not military service members or military veterans to substitute prior or ongoing service, training or education, provided that the experience, education or training is not also counted as a part of the internship, clinical teaching or practicum requirements, was provided by an approved EPP or an accredited institution of higher education within the past five years and is directly related to the certificate being sought.
Learn about our professional educator certification programs
Are you a certified educator in the state of Texas ready to advance your career? We offer high-quality programs to develop your skills as a professional and add credentials to your certificate. Please note that different programs will require different years of verifiable teaching experience as shown by an official service record. You must also be able to complete your clinical practicum experience within the state of Texas.
School CounselingMake a difference in local schools
Learn to provide guidance and counseling to students of all ages. You must hold a valid teaching certificate and two years of full-time teaching experience to qualify for this program. When you graduate from our master of science program in school counseling, you'll be certified as a professional school counselor.
Reading SpecialistHelp improve children’s literacy skills
Contribute to student success by learning to assess, diagnose and instruct students’ reading and writing skills. You can earn your reading specialist certification through our Master of Education in Reading program.
Principal CertificationLead your school to success
Earn your principal certification while completing your master's degree in educational administration. If you already have a master's degree, you can earn your principal certification by completing our 21-hour program.
Superintendent CertificationLead at the district level
Become a respected leader in Texas school districts by earning your superintendent certification while completing your doctorate in educational administration. If you already have a doctorate degree, you can earn your superintendent certification through our 15-hour program.
Educational Diagnostician CertificationMake learning more accessible
Become an educational diagnostician while earning your Master of Education in Special Education. If you already have a master’s degree, you can earn your educational diagnostician certification through our 21-hour certification-only program.
School Librarian CertificationIntegrate literacy and technology
Earn your school librarian certification through our master of education program in educational technology library science. If you already have a master’s degree, you can earn your school librarian certification through our 21-hour certification-only program.
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