Becoming an Educator

Rhode Island has eight (8) institutions of higher education with approved educator preparation programs. The New Teacher Project and Teach for America also offer approved educator preparation programs. Graduates of approved programs are automatically eligible for certification in Rhode Island provided they have achieved a passing score on the appropriate licensure test.

Elementary school students raise their hands during group reading timeAll approved programs in Rhode Island are required, under the Rhode Island Program Approval Standards, to assess candidate performance to standards of the profession from point of admission through recommendation for certification. Approved programs are reviewed at least once every five (5) years by a team of educators assembled by the Department of Education. Educators selected to serve on program approval teams are knowledgeable in the standards of the profession and on performance assessment systems. Institutions of higher education with approved programs can also choose to seek national accreditation from the National Council on Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).

Title II of the Higher Education Opportunity Act requires institutions of higher education to submit annual reports to the RI Department of Education that provide basic information on the programs offered at the institution, how well students perform on initial state certification test requirements, and whether the institution has been classified as "low performing". The Rhode Island 2009 state report can be found at Title II Higher Education Act . Licensure test pass rates are included in this report.

 Pre-professional Skills tests for all teacher candidates is now required. Pre-professional Skills Test Score Requirements  [PDF, 192KB].

The state has set minimum student teaching requirements at 12 weeks. Student Teaching [PDF, 38KB].