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Eligibility for Educator Preparation Programs in Connecticut

45 minutes
45 minutes

Eligibility for Educator Preparation Programs in Connecticut

This guide describes the application requirements to apply for an educator preparation program, from academic history to the exams you’ll need to take.

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If you have any questions about this process, reach out to a TEACH Connecticut application coach or educator preparation program staff for support. We’re here for you.

For links to all state-approved educator preparation programs, head over to the state’s webpage for Educator Preparation Providers (EPPs) and Programs in Connecticut. For a side-by-side comparison of programs and the endorsements they offer, check out the Connecticut State Department of Education’s Guide To Approved Educator Preparation Programs In Connecticut.


To become an educator in Connecticut, you’ll need to meet specific coursework requirements, show your mastery of basic skills and prove knowledge of your subject area. Depending on whether you’re an undergraduate student or already have a college degree, you may need to meet one or more of these requirements before you apply to an Educator Preparation Program (EPP). This Guide will help you sort it out.

If you’re a high school student, you must first be accepted to or enrolled in a college or university with an EPP. You can apply to the EPP once you’re already attending and have completed the necessary coursework, usually in your sophomore year.

Academic History

When applying for your Educator Preparation Program, be prepared to provide your:

  • Transcript and GPA
  • Proof of basic skills mastery (Test scores such as SAT/ACT; we’ll explain this below.)
  • Proof of content mastery in the subject you want to teach (We’ll explain this too.)

Most programs require at least a 2.75 overall GPA, and some require a 3.0. In some cases, you might be able to apply for a waiver. Check with your EPP if you have questions.

International Applicant Requirements

If your previous academic records are from outside of the U.S., you will need to have your transcripts reviewed by a state-approved agency to determine if they meet the requirements. You may also need to take the ESLAT, TOEFL or another language exam to demonstrate competency in the English language. Check with your program for details.

The Core Academic Skills Requirement

To apply to your EPP, you will need to provide test scores for the core academic skills of reading, writing and math. Your SAT, ACT or GRE scores can satisfy this requirement. You can also sign up for the Praxis Core Academic Skills test for educators. There’s no minimum score requirement on any of the tests for the purpose of the core academic skills requirement. Your program staff uses your scores as a diagnostic tool to make sure you take the right sequence of courses.

Check out the Testing Guide for more about the Praxis Core Academic Skills test.

Ask your EPP staff about the core academic skills requirement—you likely have already met it. If you do need to take the Praxis Core Academic test, some programs only require you show that you’re registered for the test before you can apply.

Subject Area Competency: Coursework & Testing

Whether you have a degree or you’re still in school, you’ll need to keep coursework requirements and content area mastery in mind as you apply for EPPs. We’ve outlined the most common requirements at the undergraduate and post-baccalaureate levels.

If you’re considering a five-year program to earn your bachelor’s and master’s degrees, review the requirements for undergraduates, below.

Subject Area Competency for Undergraduate Programs

With your bachelor’s degree still in progress, now is the time to understand coursework requirements for the grade levels and subject you want to teach. If you're majoring in a specific subject, you’re likely on the right track.

In some cases, you will officially apply to the EPP in your second or third year of coursework, and some EPPs want you to have significant courses completed towards your certification endorsement area (the subject you want to teach). They may also require you to take one or more courses in education before you apply.

To make sure you have the courses you need before you apply:

  • Identify an undergraduate EPP for the teaching endorsement you hope to earn. You can use the Guide to Educator Preparation Programs in Connecticut or our Programs page to explore your options.  
  • Contact the EPP to learn more about their coursework requirements for applicants, or use our Application Checklists to get a head start.

The takeaway for undergraduates? Identify the grade levels and subject you want to teach as soon as possible, find an EPP that offers a course of study in the corresponding certification endorsement area, and have your coursework evaluated early so you can enroll in the courses you need.

Subject Area Competency for Graduate & Post-Baccalaureate Programs

If you have your bachelor’s degree (nice job!), then you can apply for EPPs that offer master’s degrees or non-degree post-baccalaureate programs. Either way, you’ll likely find similar eligibility requirements.

Coursework Requirements

For most graduate and post-baccalaureate level EPPs, you’ll need to show that you have completed all or most of the coursework required by the state for your endorsement field. That typically means you’ll have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university with a major or significant coursework in the subject matter you want to teach.

Subject-specific Tests

College graduates also need to prove subject area competency through scores on one or more tests based on their specific certification endorsement area. Most certification endorsements require passing scores on Praxis II subject tests. Some may require additional tests, such as the ACTFL tests for world languages, the Pearson Foundations of Reading test for elementary and special education and the Pearson Early Childhood Test for integrated early childhood/special education.

Some programs require subject area competency tests scores prior to applying. Others may offer conditional admissions until you have passed the test or include testing as part of the program. Check with EPP staff if you’re not sure when you need to take and pass the relevant subject competency tests for your certification endorsement area.  

In state-designated shortage areas, you may be able to substitute “achievement of excellence” scores on subject-matter tests for some of the required subject-matter coursework. You can read more about the subjects that count and the required scores on CSDE’s September 2016 Certification Alert.

For more information about the Praxis II test, check out our Testing Guide. You can also check out the CSDE’s Guide to Assessments for Educator Certification in Connecticut to get a leg up on which assessments are required for the subject area you wish to teach.  

Additional Requirements to Keep in Mind

Some EPPs have additional eligibility requirements. For example, you may need:

  • Documentation of prior field experience in K-12 education, especially for some graduate-level programs
  • Additional testing in English writing proficiency
  • Fingerprint clearance (a background check)
of 4 Guides
Guide to Required Assessments in Connecticut
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