How to Become a Teacher in New Mexico

The state of New Mexico employs about 54,696 teachers, with an annual mean wage of $48,040. New Mexico’s location in the Southwest contributes to its diverse student population, 73.7% of which is composed of minority students. Of this percentage, nearly 60% are Latino/a. New Mexico also has a needy student population, as 65.2% of students receive free or reduced lunches. Despite the challenges, becoming a teacher in New Mexico is a rewarding career move. Read on to find out how to obtain a New Mexico teaching license.

Education Requirements

The New Mexico Public Education Department governs licensure for all educators in the state. Educational requirements for licensure can be found in detail by clicking here. Generally, applicants for teacher certification in New Mexico should have a bachelor’s degree from an approved, accredited university. Certain specializations (for example, K-8) require specific coursework. Additionally, testing is required of all applicants.

New Mexico Teaching Certification

Becoming a certified teacher in New Mexico involves several requirements, which can be found in detail at New Mexico’s Public Education Department. Generally, prospective New Mexico teachers must hold a bachelor’s degree and meet certain coursework requirements, depending on grade level and specialization, if any. New Mexico teachers must also pass the required New Mexico Teacher Assessments, or possess a certificate issued by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.

Required Tests

All new applicants and prospective teachers in New Mexico are required to successfully complete the NMTA, which is comprised of the New Mexico Assessment of Teacher Basic Skills and the New Mexico Assessment of Teacher Competency (Elementary, Secondary, or Childhood). Additionally, prospective teachers in certain subject areas should prepare to complete required Content Knowledge Tests. The New Mexico Public Department of Education has its most updated information regarding required exams here.

State Certification Reciprocity

Teachers licensed in other states, especially those states that abide by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, may apply for a comparable teaching license in New Mexico. Generally, teachers from other states can legally obtain employment in New Mexico while applying for their comparable state licensure. More information can be found here, and at New Mexico’s Public Department of Education.

Helpful Resources

Central New Mexico Community College

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525 Buena Vista SE
Albuquerque, NM 87106
(505) 224-3000

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 2-year

Programs Offered:

  • Associates
  • Certificate

Eastern New Mexico University-Main Campus

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1500 S Ave K
Portales, NM 88130
(575) 562-1011

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Associates
  • Bachelors
  • Masters
  • Post-Bachelors

Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell Campus

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52 University Blvd
Roswell, NM 88202-6000
(575) 624-7000

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 2-year

Programs Offered:

  • Associates
  • Certificate

New Mexico Highlands University

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University Ave
Las Vegas, NM 87701
(505) 425-7511

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Associates
  • Bachelors
  • Masters
  • Post-Bachelors

New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology

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801 Leroy Place
Socorro, NM 87801
(800) 428-8324

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

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

Accrediting Agency:

  • North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission

New Mexico State University-Main Campus

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2850 Weddell Street
Las Cruces, NM 88003-8001
(575) 646-0111

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

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

Northern New Mexico College

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921 Paseo de Onate
Espanola, NM 87532
(505) 747-2100

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Associates
  • Bachelors
  • Certificate
  • Post-Bachelors

University of New Mexico-Main Campus

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1700 Lomas Blvd NE
Albuquerque, NM 87106
(505) 277-0111

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

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

University of New Mexico-Valencia County Campus

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280 La Entrada
Los Lunas, NM 87031-7633
(505) 925-8500

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 2-year

Programs Offered:

  • Associates
  • Certificate

Accrediting Agency:

  • North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission

University of the Southwest

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6610 North Lovington Hwy
Hobbs, NM 88240
(575) 392-6561

Type of School:

  • Private not-for-profit
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

  • Bachelors
  • Masters

Accrediting Agency:

  • North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission

Western New Mexico University

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1000 W. College Ave
Silver City, NM 88061
(505) 538-6336

Type of School:

  • Public
  • 4-year

Programs Offered:

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