Become an English Teacher in New Jersey
For anyone who wants to teach English in New Jersey, there are several decisions to make before starting a degree program. Find out what you can study, which exams you need to take, and how long you will spend as a supervised teacher before earning a full certificate.
Career Information for English Teachers in New Jersey
The first thing you need to do when starting a career in teaching English in New Jersey is determine what grades you want to teach. You'll choose the appropriate major when entering a degree program, complete a student teaching experience, and pass your required Praxis exams before you earn a teaching certificate.
|Education/Experience Required||Bachelor's degree in elementary, middle, or secondary education with concentration subject area, teacher preparation program|
|Exams Required||Basic skills assessment; Praxis Content Exams in degree area|
|Certificate Validity||Certificate of Eligibility with Advanced Standing issued after completing exams and teacher education program; no extension required in New Jersey|
|Certificate Extension||Standard Certificate issued after finishing two years of training in the Provisional Teacher Program (PTP)|
|Average New Jersey Salary (2018)||$76,390 for high school, $72,290 for middle school, and $70,660 for elementary school teachers|
|National Job Growth (2016-2026)||8% for middle and high school, 7% for elementary school teachers*|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
English teachers have many responsibilities when instructing students in the language and literature of English. You will teach sentence structure, grammar, and linguistics depending on the grade of your students. You can teach in different styles to help your students learn in their preferred style and change your lesson plans to reflect the best approach. After you assign homework and give exams, you can give your students feedback and explain the best areas where they can improve. You will likely teach more than just English to younger students, spending most of your time in one classroom, while many different sections of older students can find you as a teacher.
Education and Training Requirements
When you choose to study English and education, you need a degree program that combines the best elements from both fields. You'll find this in a bachelor's degree in one of several areas: elementary education, which can come with a middle school endorsement, or secondary education. Regardless of the grade you end up teaching, you'll pick English as your certification area. During the second half of your degree, you'll get to teach with a supervisor, ensuring that you gain some exposure to a live classroom before you start teaching on your own.
If you have not completed the SAT or ACT, you will need to pass a basic skills assessment first - the Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators exam. This bulk test consists of individual sections in math, reading, and writing which you can elect to take them all at once or schedule separate appointments. Then, you'll need to determine which exam to pass based on your concentration area. High school teachers only need one test: the Praxis English: Content Knowledge exam. Middle school teachers can take the Middle School English Language Arts exam, although you may need others if you're teaching multiple subjects to an earlier grade. Elementary school teachers need to take the Elementary Education: Multiple Subjects exam, a four-part test in science, reading and language arts, math, and social studies.
You can apply for a Certificate of Eligibility with Advanced Standing after you have finished your bachelor's degree and passed all your exams. Once you gain this certificate, you are eligible to become a Provisional teacher, which will last for two years during your initial hiring as a full-time educator. Your progress as a teacher will be evaluated closely throughout this period, and your employing school district will make a recommendation for you if they are satisfied. This approval results in a Standard Certificate, a lifetime credential that solidifies you as a top-tier educator in New Jersey.