Certification at a Glance

Certification in New York State is not an automatic process. You must complete all of your Bank Street master’s degree requirements and submit a Graduation Application to the Registrar’s Office for degree completion. After you graduate, you will apply for your certification online, and Bank Street will recommend you.

Liberal arts and science prerequisites

  • Complete any liberal arts and science prerequisites as soon as possible. Contact Melissa Nathanson in the Office of Graduate Admissions at 212-875-4403 or mnathanson@bankstreet.edu if you have questions about these requirements.


  • Since fingerprinting is required for fieldwork, you must be sure that fingerprint clearance is sent to the state. Fill out the OSPRA 104 form (available at https://www.highered.nysed.gov/tcert/pdf/ospra104.pdf) and submit it to the address at the bottom of the form.

Mandated workshops

  • Complete the two state mandated courses listed below. These two-hour state mandated workshops are offered to matriculated students (that is, those accepted into programs) at no cost.

    • Child Abuse Identification and Reporting
    • School Violence Prevention and Intervention Training (SAVE)
    • Dignity for All Students Act (DASA)

New York State Certification tests

  • Candidates who do not complete all requirements and apply for certification by April 30, 2014 will be required to pass the new teacher performance assessments. Please visit our New York State Certification Exams webpage for complete information regarding the new exams.

Applying for Certification

  • After you officially graduate, the Registrar’s Office will send you an important document (your Student Application Information Form) with all the exact personal information you need to help you step by step when you apply for certification online. When you graduate, Bank Street will automatically recommend you for both initial and professional certification for the certification(s) that your Bank Street program leads to. Bank Street is unable to recommend you for professional certification for certifications which you held prior to your matriculation at Bank Street. Contact your prior college’s Certification Officer.

Initial certification requires no teaching experience. The initial certification is valid for five years. For the certification to remain valid after that time, the individual must apply for professional certification.

Professional certification requires three years of paid, full time, head teaching experience. It is valid continuously, as long as the holder of the professional teaching certificate completes the professional development described below. To earn a professional certification, complete the requirements for the initial certification, and, for those working in public schools, complete one year of mentored teaching beyond fieldwork experience. The school where you teach assigns a mentor to you during the mentored year in the initial certificate. Individuals may also meet this requirement by successfully completing two years of teaching experience under an initial certificate in independent or public schools. To get credit for your mentored year, you must complete and submit this form.

Private school teachers are not required to have the mentor experience but must contact the state after applying online for professional certification to get the requirement. Send an email to tcert@mail.nysed.gov.

To maintain Professional certification, individuals must complete 175 hours of professional development every five years. This work maintains the validity of the professional certificate in good standing and allows the certificate holder to continue to teach.

Can I be certified before completing my program? New York State does offer the two-year Internship Certificate Credential to students who are halfway through their programs and have jobs in schools. Flyers are available in the Registrar’s Office and in the Office of Graduate Admissions. Teach for America students who came to Bank Street through a Trans B certification are not eligible for this credential.

Reciprocity with Other States

New York has reciprocity with many other states. Individuals wishing to be certified in other states should investigate the process in the desired state since each state has different procedures. Exams are not reciprocal so you will need to meet any exam requirements required by the state in which you wish to be certified. Obtaining certification in New York using a certificate from another state requires an application via the state’s TEACH database. You can access TEACH at www.nysed.gov .


For more information contact Ann Cox, Bank Street’s Certification Officer at acox@bankstreet.edu.