To become a teacher in Oregon, you will need to hold a bachelor’s degree, complete a TSPC-approved preparation program, and obtain a teaching license through TSPC. There are several types of programs available in Oregon, and choosing the program type depends on 1) what type of teaching you want to do and 2) how flexible your life circumstances are.
Undergraduate Teacher Preparation Programs
For individuals who do not yet have a bachelor's degree, but who are interested in teaching should look into undergraduate preparation programs.
If you are interested in teaching, but don't want to start a 4-year degree program, then the community college path may be right for you. The state of Oregon has a comprehensive Major Transfer Map for Elementary Education. This document outlines the course-taking path between an Oregon community college and Oregon public university. An individual interested in teaching can take a series of courses in Elementary Education at the identified community colleges, recieve their Associate of Arts Oregon Transfer degree (AAOT-Elementary Education) and apply as a junior at an Oregon public university to complete their bachelor's degree and finish licensure requirements.
Traditional Undergraduate Licensure Programs
A traditional undergraduate licensure program allows you to complete your teaching preparation, meet licensure requirements and earn your bachelor’s degree. Contact one of Oregon’s approved educator preparation providers listed on the TSPC website for more information.
Graduate Teacher Preparation Programs
For individuals who do have a bachelor's degree, but who have not yet completed an educator preparation program should look into graduate preparation programs.
Traditional Graduate Licensure Programs
A traditional graduate licensure program allows you to complete your teaching preparation, meet licensure requirements and may lead to a master's degree though its not required. Contact one of Oregon’s approved educator preparation providers listed on the TSPC website for more information.
Other Types of Teacher Preparation
Non-traditional Teacher Preparation Programs
A non-traditional program (sometimes called alternative program) is any program that deviates from the traditional model of university and degree-based teacher preparation. These programs may be offered by a non-profit or for-profit educator preparation provider rather than one housed in a college or university setting. A nontraditional program may also be provided by a university as a non-degree program alongside the university’s traditional degree-granting program. The TSPC is currently working to support partners in expanding nontraditional program opportunities. Please check back for updates!
Career and Technical Education (CTE)
CTE educators provide intentional programs in high wage, in-demand areas, preparing and supporting students in acquiring the technical skills, professional practices, and academic knowledge critical for success in highly-skilled careers. CTE comprises programs offered in six career areas: Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resource Systems; Arts, Information and Communications; Business and Management; Health Sciences; Human Resources; and Industrial and Engineering Systems.
There are a few ways to get started in CTE:
- Email the Oregon Department of Education Teacher Licensure Specialist Margaret Mahoney
- Contact the school district where you are hoping to work
- Contact the Regional Coordinator assigned to the region of the state in which you want to teach
- Contact the Teacher Licensure Program you want to attend
Out-of-State Preparation Programs
There are many educator preparation programs through colleges and universities in other states, or through for-profit organizations that provide opportunities for Oregon residents to gain the content knowledge they need to apply for a teaching license. Individuals who are prepared for licensure out of state need to apply for licensure in that state, and then follow the process for Out of State Applicants. Please work with your preferred school district to identify an appropriate training program.
Working in a School While Earning a Teaching License
There are traditional, nontraditional, graduate and undergraduate pathways to teacher licensure which may allow you to be hired by the school district as a teacher while you earn your license. Examples include the Internship model and the Residency model. Ask your preferred Educator Preparation Provider if these models are offered in their programs. The TSPC is currently working to support a nontraditional pathway that closely aligns with an Apprenticeship model. Please check back for updates on this new initiative.