Vocational Teaching Certification and Certificate Programs

Find out how to become a teacher for a vocational training program, and explore various vocational areas that you could teach. Get information on career options, and see what you'll need to do to earn state certification. Schools offering Early Childhood Education degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

Vocational teaching certificates allow people who have been working in a skilled trade to teach that trade in a high school, trade school, or community college. While certification requirements vary from state to state, most programs will require a combination of years of experience, an internship in a teaching environment, and a passing score on an examination. Some states require that vocational teachers have certain college credits or a bachelor's degree.

Prerequisites High school or GED, some college or a bachelor's degree may be required
Training Experience in a vocational field, internship
Certification Varies by state, often requires passing score on an exam

How Does Vocational Teaching Certification Differ From State to State?

To become a vocational teacher you will need to earn Career and Technical Education (CTE) Certification. Each state has a different certification program and therefore different requirements for, and means of obtaining that certification. Often you must obtain an intern or preliminary certification before getting the permanent one. Sometimes multiple certifications are involved. You'll have to check with your state and even your area requirements.

What are Some Areas I Could Teach?

CTE certification allows you to teach areas of trade or vocation that are in demand from local employers. Because of this, the areas that you can teach may change depending upon job availability and certification program. Some of the vocational areas include, but are not limited to:

  • Building trades
  • Business
  • Health sciences
  • Information technology
  • Agriculture
  • Family services

What Will I Need to Have before Signing Up for a Certification Program?

To begin the certification process, a high school diploma or GED is required, as well as vocational experience in the field you want to teach. Most often, there is a time-specific requirement for the vocational experience, which is usually two to five years and obtained within the past five or ten years. Through some certification programs, this is the extent of the requirements. Some college education is typically required, though, which may include only a few courses or up to earning a bachelor's degree. Sometimes previous education, internships or teaching experience may be substituted for some of your required vocational experience.

What Do Some of the Certification Programs Entail?

You may have to take and pass certain exams, usually regarding either the field in which you will teach or general education information. Some other requirements may include taking a class, passing an exam or having the knowledge of computer science, classroom management and first aid, including CPR. Some programs have their own vocational teacher preparation programs, which will be a step in earning your certification.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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