Requirements for Certification through the Dartmouth Teacher Education Program


The Dartmouth College Teacher Education Program (TEP) offers an undergraduate course of study and student teaching that leads to certification to teach in public schools. The TEP is accredited by the State of New Hampshire to prepare students to teach in public elementary and secondary schools in New Hampshire. This certification is usually reciprocal with other states, although you may need to complete other state-specific requirements to supplement your New Hampshire certification before you can be certified to teach in another state. Certification to teach involves meeting a number of requirements, and the TEP is designed to provide students with the opportunity to meet those requirements. The requirements include taking and earning a passing score on national standardized tests. These tests include the Praxis exams, and for elementary teachers as of summer 2014, the Foundations of Reading exam. and completing coursework and in-classroom experiences that allow you to meet very specific competency standards. Note these tests (particularly the Praxis) are required for certification in most states. There are fees associated with both the tests and NH teaching licensure.

Most of you hope to teach in states other than NH when you graduate, however, your NH certification will be recognized by 44 other states. In addition, some states have a few additional requirements. For example, to obtain full certification in CA, you will need to pass the CTEL to demonstrate that you have the requisite skills to teach English Language Learners. As you figure out where you would like to teach, speak with us, and we will counsel you on how to meet certification requirements in the state of your choice.

The Program is organized according to key gateways in the certification process. Those gateways, with a suggested timeline, are outlined below.

Aly teaching High SchoolAccreditation to Certify in Specific Areas

The Dartmouth College Teacher Education Program is accredited to offer courses of study that lead to New Hampshire certification in the following areas:

  • Elementary Education (K-8)
  • Biology* (7-12)
  • Chemistry* (7-12)
  • Earth-Space Science* (7-12)
  • English* (5-12)
  • French* (5-12)
  • General Science (5-9)
  • Mathematics* (7-12)
  • Physics* (7-12)
  • Social Studies** (5-12)
  • Spanish* (5-12)

* For these fields, you must major or modify your major in the area in which you wish to teach.
** For Social Studies certification, you must major in History.

Standards and the Portfolio

The NH 610 standards (NH requirements for knowledge and skill in teaching) for initial licensure as a teacher require you to demonstrate your proficiency with respect to the following:

  • understanding of how typical and atypical learners develop, as well as the ability to create developmentally appropriate and effective learning opportunities that reflect your understanding of how each student learns;
  • understanding of the differences between learners, including cultural, socioeconomic, and individual diversity, and your capacity to design opportunities that are responsive to these differences and support high quality learning for all students;
  • ability to develop and maintain a classroom culture that supports self-directed individual and collaborative learning, and which takes advantage of resources outside your classroom (e.g., in the community or online) to extend the context in which students learn;
  • strong content preparation in the subject(s) you will teach, your specific knowledge of common misconceptions in your discipline, and knowledge about how to teach in ways that give students access to the critical concepts and skills of your discipline;
  • ability to draw on your knowledge of your discipline, as well as common misconceptions or challenges for students learning in your discipline, to plan lessons that support students and meet rigorous learning goals;
  • ability to use a range of evidence-based practices to develop students' deep understanding of content areas, as well as their skills in accessing, applying, and communicating information;
  • ability to engage – both individually and with others – in systematic, data-based reflection on and analysis of evidence related to your teaching practice, with the purpose of planning strategic improvements that lead to better student outcomes.

The Portfolio that you develop throughout your experiences in the TEP, and assemble and complete in EDUC 44 (elementary) and EDUC 48 (secondary), will include artifacts that address each of these 610 standards, as well as the 612 content standards (NH requirements for knowledge in the major) for your specific discipline.

Gateways to Certification

The purpose of the gateways is to help you plan your progress towards certification, and to help the TEP periodically assess your progress to ensure that you are on track for certification in NH. Altogether, the experiences and requirements listed in the gateways are designed to meet the guidelines for certification spelled out in the NH 610 standards for initial licensure.

Gateway 1:  Application and Acceptance to the Teacher Education Program (TEP)

Ideal timeline: by end of sophomore year

  • 3.0 GPA overall
  • 3.0 GPA in Education Department coursework
  • Demonstrated successful experience working with young people
  • High quality résumé submitted with application
  • Course plan that enables development of content understandings as outlined in the NH content standards (you will discuss suggested courses at your initial interview)

Gateway 2: Admittance to the Pre-practicum (EDUC 41 or EDUC 45)

Ideal timeline: junior Winter (fourth Fall candidates) or senior Winter (fifth Fall candidates)

  • Completion of most of the required foundational coursework
  • 3.0 GPA overall
  • 3.0 GPA in Education Department coursework
  • Submission of updated résumé and personal statement by 15 February
  • Identification of/agreement on an appropriate placement
  • Fingerprint check

Gateway 3: Recommendation to the Practicum (EDUC 42 or EDUC 46)

  • Review of coursework to ensure mastery of relevant content standards
  • Grade of B+ or better and clear engagement in the pre-practicum, including successful completion of all pre-practicum projects and a Summer work plan
  • Two completed observation forms (from pre-practicum experiences) from clinical faculty
  • Recommendation of the supervisor, observer, and director for continuation in the TEP
  • Revised draft of statement of purpose, cover letter, and résumé
  • Identification of/agreement on an appropriate placement
  • Successful completion of any required Praxis I and II tests (have your scores sent to Dartmouth College and the State of NH) before the start of the Practicum (Note: secondary 4th Fall candidates may wish to complete the Praxis II in their senior Spring, depending on when they complete coursework in their majors)
  • Successful completion of the work plan developed at the end of EDUC 41 or EDUC 45
  • As of July 14, 2014:  Elementary Candidates:  take “Foundations of Reading Exam

Gateway 4: Successful Completion of the Practicum and all Certification Requirements

  • Successful completion of all assignments in the practicum
  • Recommendation for certification from clinical faculty, based on 4 formal observations and frequent informal observations and feedback (EDUC 45 or 47)
  • Recommendation from mentor teacher (EDUC 45 or EDUC 47)
  • Successful completion of portfolio (EDUC 44 or EDUC 48)
  • Evidence of successful completion of the Praxis I and Praxis II tests required for your certification area (have your scores sent to Dartmouth College and the State of NH)
  • Receipt of diploma from Dartmouth College
  • For fourth Fall candidates: successful review of your transcript to confirm that course requirements for your area of certification have been met 


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