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Looking to renew your teacher certification? Have you never been certified to teach, and need to know where to start? Or, are you studying for a non-teaching degree such as school psychology, school library media, and speech-language pathology and are looking for service certification? We can help you sort out what you need to do.

For specific course requirements for an approved program, contact the appropriate department within the College of Education. The department will determine requirements for entry into the program, the course work required to meet the approved teacher education program, and the procedures for obtaining a professional recommendation.

Note: If you are studying school counseling, school psychology, school library media, and speech/language pathology at the graduate level, you may apply for a service certification.

Certification Information

Graduation and Certification Dates

Additional Certification Info

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get a MyID?

If you do not have a UGA MyID, or if you are new to the campus, information on acquiring a MyID as well as resources available to you, visit the UGA New Student Technology Guide.

What is Pre-Service Certification?

The Georgia Professional Standards Commission (GaPSC) requires all candidates in initial educator preparation programs to obtain a Pre-Service Certificate. A Pre-Service certificate assists the state and its teacher education programs to (1) assure the safety of school children; (2) provide opportunities for Pre-Service candidates to practice/demonstrate knowledge and skills; (3) standardize the criminal history background check process across Georgia; and (4) assist Pre-Service candidates in understanding the Georgia Code of Ethics for Educators and provide them with the information to hold them accountable under the Code.

Who needs a Pre-Service Certificate?

All teacher education candidates who have been officially accepted into their initial preparation programs are required to have a Pre-Service certificate. Those who hold a Paraprofessional Certificate or a Certificate of Eligibility will need to obtain the Pre-Service Certificate. A few exceptions to this policy are listed in the next question.

Who should not apply for a Preservice Certificate?

  • Those individuals who are taking pre-requisite courses prior to entering a teacher education program (e.g. "Area F" courses) need not apply for the Pre-Service Certificate;
  • Master's degree or certification-only candidates who have already obtained an Induction Certificate (Pathway 4) issued by GaPSC;
  • Those who hold any type of professional certificate or permit in the state of Georgia would not need a Pre-Service Certificate.
  • Candidates who are enrolled in the Georgia TAPP program as these candidates have an induction certificate.

When will my Pre-Service Certification orientation be held?

Your program will schedule this with Office of Academic Programs (OAP).

Does the Pre-Service Certificate cost anything?

No, the application for the Pre-Service Certificate is free.

Who turns in the information for the Pre-Service Certificate to the GaPSC?

The College of Education's Office of Academic Programs submits the paperwork for the Pre-Service certificate for the candidate. There are no exceptions to this.

Can I engage in any field experience before I have my Pre-Service Certificate?

No, a teacher candidate who is in their professional courses cannot be in any course or field experience if the candidate does not have the Pre-Service Certificate.

What are the required elements for a Preservice Certificate?

  • Georgia Educator Entry Ethics Program Entry Examination
  • GACE Program Admission Assessment Test scores or exemption by scores on the ACT, SAT, GRE, or Praxis I
  • A completed application that will be provided by the Certification Official during an orientation with the Office of Academic Programs
  • Copies of identification materials (unexpired driver's license, passport, or permanent resident card)
  • Criminal Background Check
  • Verification of Lawful Presence (VLP). This must be notarized by OAP staff during the orientation. For your VLP, you will need an unexpired driver's license, passport, or permanent resident card. OAP staff will make a copy of your identification.

Your pre-service application can only be obtained from the Certification Official who will have the most up-to-date copy issued by GaPSC. And it must be submitted to GaPSC by the Certification Official.

What are the exemption scores for the GACE Program Admissions Assessment?

Candidates can exempt the program admissions assessment if they submit scores from other standardized tests that document their competencies in reading, writing, and mathematics. The thresholds for the assessment are listed here:

SAT:

Combined minimum SAT score
For SAT score reports dated prior to July 1, 2019:

  • 1,000 on Verbal/Critical Reading and Math, OR
  • 1,000 on Evidence-based Reading/Writing and Math

For SAT score reports dated on or after July 1, 2019

  • 1,080 on Evidence-based Reading/Writing AND Math

ACT:

Combined minimum ACT score of 43 (English and Math scores)

GRE:

Combined GRE Verbal and Quantitative minimum score:

  • Prior to Fall 2011 = 1030
  • Fall 2011 to present = 297

How will I share that my test scores satisfy the exemption?

If you exempt the GACE, check Athena to see if you test scores are listed under "View Test Scores". If your scores are listed, the Certification Official will print your scores, and you do not need to do anything further.

What should I do if my test scores are not listed in Athena?

  • High School Transcript – check with the high school to make sure your SAT or ACT scores will be listed on your transcript. This is usually the fastest and most economical way to obtain scores if you know they are posted on your high school transcript.
  • Other College Transcripts – check with the college before you request your transcript to make sure your SAT, ACT or GRE scores will be listed on your transcript. Some colleges charge the student for sending a transcript.
  • ACT Score Report – This must be an official score report from ACT. We cannot accept copies or documents that do not come sealed from the testing company.
  • GRE Score Report – Educational Testing Services (ETS). This must be an official score report from ETS. We cannot accept copies or documents that do not come sealed from the testing company.
  • SAT Score Report – The College Board – To have your scores sent directly to the College of Education's certification, you will have to contact the College Board at 866-756-7346. Please let them know that your score report is not for admission into UGA and should not be sent to the UGA Admissions office. The cost is approximately $70. Cost is subject to change. Documents should be sent to:
    Kate Character University of Georgia Office of Academic Programs 110 Carlton Street G4 Aderhold Hall Athens, Georgia, 30602

Who can notarize my Pre-Service application (VLP form)?

The OAP staff can notarize your Verification of Lawful Presence (VLP) form which is part of your Pre-Service application.

Who conducts the criminal background check?

The Georgia Professional Standards Commission conducts the background check.

Why do I need to sign up for a MyPSC Account and when do I sign up for that account?

You will sign up for the MyPSC account which allows you to complete all state-required assessments. This account will stay with you throughout your teaching career. You will be prompted by an email from the Office of Academic Programs to create your account.

How do I sign up for the Georgia Educator Entry Ethics Assessment? How do I know I can access the assessment?

  • Create or update your MyPSC account on the GaPSC website.
  • Click on the Assessments link at the top of your MyPSC homepage.
  • Select Reason #7, I am taking the Georgia Educator Ethics – Program Entry assessment, as your reason for testing.
  • Select Educator Ethics Assessment 350 from the drop down menu.
  • You will then receive an email from gace_inquiries@ets.org with a link to the Georgia Ethics assessment system. This is where you register to test.
  • Click on the link you received in the email to access the Educator Ethics System.
  • Select Test Takers under Registration, follow the instructions to create your account, and register and pay for the assessment. See fees.
  • You must add the institution you are seeking admission into as a score recipient. Your scores will automatically be sent to the GaPSC. You do not need to add them as a score recipient. The program code for UGA is 5080. You can add up to three institutions for reporting your score. Visit the GACE website for a list of codes for institutions.
  • Once your registration is complete, you can access the modules. You may want to bookmark the URL for the Georgia Ethics assessment system as you will return to it as you complete the assessment.

What is the Ethics Examination?

You can find out more about the Georgia Ethics assessments on the GACE website.

How will I know what items are missing for my Pre-Service Certificate?

OAP will notify you by phone or email. Make sure you check your UGA email regularly. The college only sends email to official UGA email addresses. We cannot send email to other email addresses (e.g., Gmail) as student information is considered confidential and official information sent to other email addresses violates FERPA restrictions.

How will I know my GaPSC Pre-Service Certificate has been issued?

You will receive an email from GaPSC. You can also check in your MyPSC account. On your MyPSC account:

  • Applications -This page will show you the status of your application under Case History.
  • Documents - This page will show you what documents have been submitted by the Certification Official and you.
  • Correspondence - If GaPSC needs additional information from you, you will find a Hold Letter on this page.
  • Credentials – This is where you can view and print your certificate once it has been issued.

How will my advisor and program know that my Pre-Service Certificate has been issued?

A Pre-Service status report is sent out to advisors and program faculty twice a week via email. If a student is not listed in the file, please have them contact our office.

Do I need a Pre-Service Certificate if I am a transfer student?

Yes. If you received a Pre-Service Certificate from your former school, you need to contact that school's college of education and have them withdraw your Pre-Service Certificate from GaPSC. Then, contact the UGA College of Education Certification Official.

What are the required content examinations for my program of study?

This is based on your certification field (area of emphasis). OAP Staff will visit your program to talk more in depth about these assessments. Your program coordinator will also inform you of the appropriate content examinations to take.

When do I find out about a Foliotek account?

It is issued the semester before your clinical practice or internship. You will receive an email when your account has been issued. Accounts are only issued by the Foliotek coordinator. Make sure to read your UGA email.

For endorsements, you will need to complete the COE Endorsement Application Form and be admitted by the program. Admissions decisions will be sent via email. If you are approved, you will receive an additional email concerning Foliotek.

When do I learn about what Is required for edTPA?

There are several ways that requirements for edTPA are communicated. Most importantly, overall preparation for edTPA is incorporated into coursework and field placements taken prior to clinical practice. There are also several ways that specific logistical information is communicated to teacher candidates. Typically, faculty invite the edTPA Coordinator to a class to introduce edTPA. The edTPA Coordinator will also email every teacher candidate about once a week during the clinical practice semester providing information and directions. And there are content-specific handbooks with all the guidelines available on the College of Education website. Email edtpa@uga.edu for access information or questions.

What if I want to change my major or withdraw from UGA?

You will need to complete the Change of Major/Withdrawal form.

I now have my Pre-Service Certificate, what is next?

Welcome! There will be several required assessments that you will complete during your program for certification and program completion. You will find information on our Educator Preparation Resources webpage.

Who should I contact if I have additional questions or any issues?

Should you have any questions or issues, contact the OAP staff. We are located in the G4 suite in Aderhold Hall on the ground floor.

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