How to Become a Teacher in Alabama

This is a difficult time to work as an Alabama certified teacher, especially as their numbers have dropped during recent years, by as many as 3,290 public school teachers between 2007 and 2011 alone. According to the National Education Association, Alabama employed just more than 54,000 public school teachers during the 2010-2011 school year, which makes it the 25th highest employer of teachers in the United States. The Alabama teaching license is regulated by the Alabama State Department of Education (ALSDE), a state agency that allows a few different paths towards earning an Alabama teacher certification.

Educational Requirements

Individuals wishing to teach kindergarten, elementary, middle, and high school students in the public school system in Alabama must complete a bachelor’s degree or higher from a regionally accredited senior institution.

A four-year college education is the typical pathway to becoming a teacher in Alabama. The state of Alabama has three different levels of certification for teachers practicing within the state. Class B certification is extended to individuals who have completed their bachelor’s degrees. Class A certification is for master’s degree graduates, and Class AA is extended to specialists such as doctoral degree holders.

Teacher certifications are typically awarded to individuals who complete bachelor’s degree programs in education from accredited traditional colleges or online teaching schools in Alabama. Applicants may also be eligible for alternative teaching certification programs if they complete a bachelor’s degree in a subject other than education, like math or English. These individuals often have to take some course work in education within their major field to make up for any undergraduate deficiencies.

Alabama Teaching Certification

Alabama has three different levels of certifications for teaching within the state. Class B requires a bachelor’s degree and Class A requires a master’s degree. Class AA is for specialists or individuals holding a doctorate degree.

Required Tests

In order to receive an Alabama Professional Educator certificate or an alternative or preliminary certificate, candidates must take and pass the Alabama Educator Certification Testing Program (AECTP) (formerly known as the Alabama Prospective Teacher Testing Program).

Candidates for certification must also pass the Praxis II tests required in the AECTP for their certification area.

State Certification Reciprocity

Out of state candidates applying for teaching certification in Alabama reciprocally must hold a valid professional certificate issued by another state, U.S. territory, the District of Columbia, or the Department of Defense Education Activity.

Helpful Resources

Alabama A & M University

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4900 Meridian Street
Normal, AL 35762
(256) 372-5000

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors
  • Doctoral
  • Masters
  • Post-Masters

Alabama State University

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915 S Jackson Street
Montgomery, AL 36104-0271
(334) 229-4100

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors
  • Doctoral
  • Masters
  • Post-Masters

Athens State University

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300 N Beaty St
Athens, AL 35611
(256) 233-8100

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors

Accrediting Agency:

  • National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education

Auburn University

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Auburn, Alabama
Auburn University, AL 36849
(334) 844-4000

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors
  • Doctoral
  • Masters
  • Post-Bachelors
  • Post-Masters

Birmingham Southern College

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900 Arkadelphia Road
Birmingham, AL 35254
(205) 226-4600

Type of School:

  • Private not-for-profit
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors

Faulkner University

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5345 Atlanta Hwy
Montgomery, AL 36109-3390
(334) 272-5820

Type of School:

  • Private not-for-profit
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Associates
  • Bachelors
  • Doctoral
  • Masters

Huntingdon College

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1500 East Fairview Avenue
Montgomery, AL 36106-2148
(334) 833-4222

Type of School:

  • Private not-for-profit
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors

Jacksonville State University

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700 Pelham Road North
Jacksonville, AL 36265
(256) 782-5781

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors
  • Doctoral
  • Masters
  • Post-Bachelors
  • Post-Masters

Judson College

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302 Bibb St
Marion, AL 36756
(334) 683-5100

Type of School:

  • Private not-for-profit
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Associates
  • Bachelors

Miles College

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5500 Myron Massey Blvd
Fairfield, AL 35064-2621
(205) 929-1000 Ext: 1645

Type of School:

  • Private not-for-profit
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors

Accrediting Agency:

  • National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education

Oakwood University

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7000 Adventist Blvd NW
Huntsville, AL 35896
(256) 726-7000

Type of School:

  • Private not-for-profit
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Associates
  • Bachelors
  • Masters
  • Post-Bachelors

Samford University

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800 Lakeshore Drive
Birmingham, AL 35229-2240
(205) 726-2011

Type of School:

  • Private not-for-profit
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors
  • Certificate
  • Doctoral
  • Masters
  • Post-Bachelors
  • Post-Masters

Spring Hill College

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4000 Dauphin St
Mobile, AL 36608-1791
(251) 380-4000

Type of School:

  • Private not-for-profit
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors
  • Certificate
  • Masters
  • Post-Bachelors
  • Post-Masters

Talladega College

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627 W Battle St
Talladega, AL 35160
(256) 761-6100

Type of School:

  • Private not-for-profit
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors

Accrediting Agency:

  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges

The University of Alabama

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739 University Blvd
Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0166
(205) 348-6010

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors
  • Doctoral
  • Masters
  • Post-Masters

Tuskegee University

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Kresge Center, 3rd Floor
Tuskegee, AL 36088-1920
(334) 727-8011

Type of School:

  • Private not-for-profit
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors
  • Doctoral
  • Masters

United States Sports Academy

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One Academy Drive
Daphne, AL 36526-7055
(251) 626-3303 Ext: 7141

Type of School:

  • Private not-for-profit
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors
  • Doctoral
  • Masters

Accrediting Agency:

  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges

University of Alabama at Birmingham

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Administration Bldg Suite 1070
Birmingham, AL 35294-0110
(205) 934-4011

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors
  • Certificate
  • Doctoral
  • Masters
  • Post-Bachelors
  • Post-Masters

University of Mobile

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5735 College Parkway Drive
Mobile, AL 36613-2842
(251) 675-5990

Type of School:

  • Private not-for-profit
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Associates
  • Bachelors
  • Masters

University of South Alabama

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307 N University Blvd
Mobile, AL 36688-0002
(251) 460-6101

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors
  • Certificate
  • Doctoral
  • Masters
  • Post-Bachelors
  • Post-Masters
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