Certification Requirements

About Certification

Teachers, counselors and other educational personnel must be certified by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission to be employed in the state’s elementary, middle and secondary public schools. Private elementary and secondary schools may also require state certification for employment.

A requirement for initial certification in Georgia is completion of teacher education requirements. This may be accomplished in one of the following ways at Georgia State University (options vary by program). In all cases, “Entry into Teacher Education” criteria apply.

  • Students may complete an approved educator preparation degree program as described in the College of Arts and Sciences or the College of Education chapter of the Georgia State University Undergraduate Catalog.
  • Students may complete or present a non-educator preparation bachelor’s degree and all additional components of an approved educator preparation degree program.

Initial certification programs in Behavior/Learning Disabilities, Communication Disorders, Educational Leadership, English Education, Health and Physical Education, Mathematics Education, Multiple and Severe Disabilities, Reading, School Counseling, School Psychology, Science Education, and Social Studies Education are available only at the graduate level.

The College of Education offers six Master of Arts in Teaching programs which prepare students for initial certification in the following fields: English Education, Mathematics Education, Middle Level Education, Reading, Language and Literacy Education (ESOL), Science Education, and Social Studies Education. See the current Georgia State University Graduate Catalog for more information on the university’s master’s level programs.

Students who complete a Georgia State University educator preparation program by one of the methods above and who present a passing score or scores on the appropriate GACE Content Assessments may be eligible for the Georgia State recommendation for teacher certification. The College of Education’s Office of Academic Assistance and Graduate Admissions can issue the recommendation to the prospective teacher shortly after Commencement following the term of completion of requirements.

Undergraduate candidates for certification may not take GACE content assessments prior to meeting eligibility requirements for their program. Remember, those students in undergraduate teaching fields, or in Educational Leadership, Media, School Psychology, or Counseling, must select Reason for Testing #2 when establishing their PSC account prior to registering for the test. In addition, candidate’s program providers must also grant eligibility to test before ETS will allow registration for the assessment. For more information, contact your program coordinator.

Students wishing to teach in other states can contact the office at any point in their career for this verification for any other state’s certification board that accepts Georgia standards.

If you have recently completed an approved certification program at Georgia State, following are instructions for applying for your certificate. There are three ways to apply for certification in Georgia: either you are seeking initial certification, adding a new field or endorsement to an existing certification, or upgrading an existing certificate. When filling out the Georgia Professional Standards Commission application, you should be aware that the guidelines for certifying students who are receiving their initial certification or adding a field/endorsement are somewhat different than for those who are upgrading their certification.

  • If you are seeking an initial certificate or adding a new field or endorsement to an existing certificate, follow these steps.
  • If you are upgrading an existing certificate, follow these steps.
  • Find more information on the GACE here.
If you have either completed or are nearing completion of a program that leads to certification (in the College of Education or the College of Arts & Sciences), and you have a question about your recommendation for certification, you may contact the University certification officer:

Basja Tibbs
Fax: 404-413-8003

Our @atlantaasas program was highlighted in GSU President Mark Becker's State of the University address: via @gsucoe 21 hours ago