3 Steps to Becoming a Teacher in West Virginia
Want to become a teacher in the great state of West Virginia? If so, you have come to the right place. Below you will find a short article that lists the steps to becoming a teacher in West Virginia.
Step 1: Complete an Approved Teacher Preparation Program
To teach in the U.S., educators must hold at least an undergraduate degree. The state of West Virginia also requires students to complete a state-approved teacher education program to receive certification. West Virginia does not publish specific course or semester-hour requirements, but every college or university teacher education program will have requirements of its own. Contact your teacher education program or the West Virginia Department of Education for more information.
Teacher education programs usually are comprised of a combination of curriculum and field experiences. The curriculum often includes foundational skills and knowledge, creating learning experiences fields of study, and pedagogy. The field experiences component can include field observations, student teaching, and internships. A list of state-approved university teacher education programs in West Virginia can be found on the state Department of Education’s website.
Step 2: Complete the Required Exams
To become a teacher in West Virginia, you must complete the Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators suite of exams in reading, writing, and mathematics, as well as the Principles of Learning and Teaching test and the examinations for your particular licensure areas. The website of ETS, which administers all the Praxis exams, provides an explanation of the required exams by subject areas.
The West Virginia Department of Education sanctions four kinds of teaching licenses:
Temporary Teaching Licenses ( for one year and not renewable), for educators who have completed approved out-of-state teacher education programs, hold foreign licensure or hold out-of-state licenses.
Initial Professional Teaching Licenses (three years, renewable), for educators who have completed approved teacher education programs, obtained their program’s recommendations, and completed the necessary exams.
Professional Five-Year Teaching License (five years, renewable), for educators who have completed Beginning Educator Internships/Inductions, taken six semester hours of college courses, taught for two years and received their superintendent’s recommendations.
Permanent Professional Teaching License (good until surrendered, suspended, or revoked), for educators who have held Professional Five-Year Teaching Licenses, earned their master’s degrees, taught for at least five years, and received their superintendent’s recommendations.
Step 3: Submit a West Virginia Teaching Credential Application
After the successful completion of an educator preparation program in West Virginia, potential educators are ready to be the certification application process. The first step is to download and complete Form 20-T. This form verifies that you’ve graduated from a teacher education program, and meet all of the requirements for certification. All candidates must complete the applicant information page, include official transcripts, a $25 non-refundable processing fee, and an endorsement from their teacher education program.
In West Virginia, educator certification candidates must pass both state and FBI background checks. This is to verify that a potential educator is the best candidate for the position. During the application process, candidates must print and complete Form 7, where they submit to a background check. Candidates must also order and complete fingerprint cards to submit with Form 7. You may request fingerprint cards here. After finishing of all forms and requirements, candidates must send their application to the WVDOE office. Additional info can be found on the DOE website.