Online Teaching Certification

Programs & Resources for Earning Teaching Certificates Online

Earning a teaching certificate online has become a popular option for aspiring educators. Not only does the online program offer in-depth education that can serve students in good stead upon graduation, the online teaching certification is a more flexible program that works well for those who are already dealing with a tight schedule. This guide offers information on teaching certificates that can be earned online, preparing aspiring students to pursue their education in a way that might be more advantageous to them.

Types of Online Teaching Certificates

Teaching certificates prove that a teacher has the knowledge and skills necessary to enter the professional teaching profession. In addition, certificates in a specific area of education can help teachers advance their knowledge, prepare them to move into another area of teaching, set them up for a promotion or pay raise, and expose them to new areas of the educational system.

The reasons for taking an online teaching certificate course are as varied as the individuals who sign up. However, there are some key points to remember when pondering earning teaching certifications online. Here’s why they are so popular:

Attain a Professional Teaching License Those who want to work in the educational field must have the proper certifications in order to do so. A teaching license is a necessity for those working in public education, and is preferred for those who work in private schools. Students will be prepared to teach in K-12 schools, day care centers, private academies, administration and similar roles.Career Advancement in the Education Field Earning a certificate beyond the most basic requirements can be a boon to those who want to move up in the field. By earning a certificate in a particular area of teaching, such as special education or technology education, students can open doors to advancement that would otherwise be closed. Over time, they can build on that knowledge with
even more targeted programs that help them achieve expert
status in their particular area.
Learn New Skills and Teaching Techniques Even teachers who are happy where they are in the system often want to brush up on new things, such as emerging technologies or intriguing teaching techniques. Earning a certification that focuses on those things can help them bring even more in-depth education to the classroom, which leads to better-prepared students. These new skills might
even prompt a teacher to look into lateral employment moves
within their school, where they can put their new education to
the test.
Get Advanced Training Those who want to hone in on one particular area of education and truly make themselves an expert in the field can use advanced training certificates to make it happen. Advanced training in one particular area, such as administration or special education, can provide more depth to their teaching approach, which can not only benefit students, but
the school system as a whole. Advanced training is also often a
selling point when it’s time to consider promotions or raise
requests.
Pursue Education on a Tight Schedule These are all good reasons to pursue a teaching certificate, but why an online program? Online education provides an enormous opportunity for those who are already in the workforce or handling a variety of responsibilities that makes it impossible to sit in a traditional classroom. The flexible nature of online learning allows busy teachers to pursue their additional certifications on their own time and their own terms.
This means they don’t have to take precious time away from their classrooms in order to pursue their own educational goals.

Spotlight: 15 Online Teaching Certificate Programs

There are numerous teaching certificate programs offered online. Each program focuses on a different area of education, beginning with the most basic, all-inclusive certificate for general teaching and working into more in-depth programs. Keep in mind that most programs require students to hold at least a bachelor’s degree, and are usually designed to advance the knowledge of those who are already working in the classroom.

Graduate Certificate in Higher Education Administration Offered by: Post University Online Cost: $570 per credit hour Length: 12 credit hours Format: Entirely online Outcome: Graduate Certificate in Higher Education Administration Those who want to work in the administration of colleges and universities can earn the education they need to open doors to new careers through this program. Courses include teaching the adult learner, the new post-secondary student, administration and leadership in higher education, and policy, politics and pressing issues. Graduates will be prepared to handle mid- to high-level responsibilities in higher education administration.
Online Accelerated Teacher Certification Program Offered by: Saint Joseph’s University Cost: $732 per credit hour Length: 30 credits Format: Online, but hands-on experience is also required Outcome: Pennsylvania Teaching Certification Designed for those who have not yet earned their initial certification, this program helps working professionals earn certification to teach secondary school students in math, science, English or social studies. The program includes several pertinent courses, including those in adolescent psychology, special education, assessment and monitoring, literacy, inclusive classroom practices and more. Students who opt for two additional electives will earn enough credits for their master’s degree.
Graduate Certificate in Educational Policy Offered by: UMass/Dartmouth Cost: $1,104 per course plus applicable fees Length: Four online courses (about one year) Format: Fully online Outcome: Graduate Certificate in Educational Policy Students will focus on educational policy, from both a historical and contemporary standpoint, as well as focus on emergent developments that could demand revision in accepted policies. The curriculum prepares students for management or analytical roles within local or state educational institutions, as well as prepares them to move into the master’s program if desired.
Gifted Education Endorsement Offered by: University of Nebraska Kearney Cost: 18 credit hours Length: Online only, making use of video lectures, chat rooms and more Format: Nebraska Supplementary Endorsement for Gifted Education Outcome: Great for those who want to work with gifted and talented students throughout the K-12 system, this graduate endorsement provides teachers with the knowledge base necessary to help those students. Courses focus on psychology, social and emotional development, assessment and evaluation, curriculum design and other points that are specifically targeted toward gifted students.
Graduate Certificate in Autism Education Offered by: Liberty University Online Cost: 3 to 6 classes (can be completed in one year) Length: Online only; includes online writing center and online tutors Format: Graduate Certificate in Autism Education Outcome: This program prepares students to work in special education, specifically with those who have the unique challenges of autism. Courses will focus on the needs of those on the autism spectrum, how to create the proper curriculum, fostering the emotional, educational and intellectual learning environment, and more.
School Principal Certification Offered by: Drexel University Cost: $1,192 per credit Length: 34 total credits required Format: Highly interactive online learning Outcome: PA Administrative Certificate, Principal K-12 Those who want to brush up on their administration skills and open doors to working as a principal can get the education necessary through this highly flexible online program. Courses focus on solving complex problems within a team atmosphere, mentoring and coaching teachers, and demonstrating pertinent competencies, such as conflict resolution, effective speaking and writing, and team building.
Graduate Certificate in Community College Administration and Leadership Offered by: Drexel University Cost: $1,192 per credit Length: 18 credits; can be completed in one year Format: Highly interactive online program Outcome: Graduate Certificate in Community College Administration and Leadership Focuses on skills and competencies put forth by the American Association for Community Colleges, preparing students to work in administration. Courses will teach students about higher education law, organizational leadership, college advocacy and professionalism; there are also numerous electives available to tailor the program to specific needs.
Advanced Analytics in Higher Education Offered by: Arizona State University Cost: $675 per credit Length: 15 credits (six courses) Format: Completely online Outcome: Graduate Certificate in Advanced Analytics in Higher Education Coursework for this certificate focuses on application of theory in practice, and touches on several ‘hot’ topics such as data mining, predictive analysis, sentiment analysis, data management and security, data visualization and data contextualization, all through the lens of higher education. Real-world projects will allow students to apply their knowledge to immediate practice.
STEM Teaching and Learning Offered by: University of Cincinnati Cost: $1,311 per credit Length: 15 credits Format: Core courses are taken online; field experience is required for the final credits Outcome: Graduate Certificate in STEM Teaching and Learning Students will focus on graduate courses in STEM education, including the use of STEM knowledge to increase teaching abilities at any educational level. Designed for those currently working in the school system, students will be expected to use their newfound knowledge to create a STEM project-based learning activity, implement and assess the outcomes of student learning, and learn to adapt activities if necessary.
PreK-12 Reading Instruction Offered by: University of Cincinnati Cost: $1,311 per credit Length: 15 credits Format: Core courses are taken online; field experience is required for the final credits Outcome: Graduate Certificate in STEM Teaching and Learning Students will focus on graduate courses in STEM education, including the use of STEM knowledge to increase teaching abilities at any educational level. Designed for those currently working in the school system, students will be expected to use their newfound knowledge to create a STEM project-based learning activity, implement and assess the outcomes of student learning, and learn to adapt activities if necessary.
PreK-12 Reading Instruction Offered by: University of Cincinnati Cost: University of Cincinnati Length: 18 credits Format: Online only Outcome: Graduate Certificate in PreK-12 Reading, which prepares students to sit for the Ohio Reading Endorsement examination Created for those who want to serve as reading specialists in the PreK-12 school system, this certificate program focuses on social, cultural and language factors that affect reading ability, as well as assessment and evaluation, development of reading behaviors, second language acquisition and more. Critical analysis of literature will also be a key component of the program.
Special Education Credential Offered by: University of Southern California Length: 15 units Format: Entirely online, with the exception of one term of guided practice Outcome: Educational Specialist Credential in Mild/Moderate Disabilities Students in this program will learn to deal with the special challenges presented by those with disabilities of various types. Courses focus on assessment of the curriculum, working with families, maintaining an effective classroom setting, case management, and the foundations of special education. One term of guided practice gives students an in-depth look at the special education classroom, allowing them to put their new knowledge into action.
Instructional Design Graduate Certificate Offered by: George Washington University Online Length: 18 credits; can be completed in 18 months Format: Completely online Outcome: Graduate Certificate in Instructional Design One of the first online graduate programs of its kind, this online teaching program provides students with the theories, principles, models, tools and techniques necessary to create actionable instructional design within various settings. From defining the issues to creating the solutions to implementation of new curriculums, students learn how to handle the hands-on design necessary to implement effective instruction.
K-12 Teaching with Technology Offered by: University of Florida Online Cost: $552 per credit hour Length: 12 hours Format: Fully online Outcome: K-12 Teaching with Technology Graduate Certificate This program is designed to help teachers integrate various technologies into the classroom setting. Courses include instructional computing, designing technology-rich curricula, Internet in K-12 instruction, and blended learning environments. Graduates will have a firm grasp of how to provide education through emerging technologies, including online and hybrid options, as well as using technology to assist in the traditional classroom.
Managing Distance Education Environments Offered by: University of Florida Online Cost: $552 per credit hour Length: 12 hours Format: Fully online Outcome: Graduate Certificate in Managing Distance Education Environments Created for those who want to teach online courses, students will look at both theoretical and practical issues surrounding the delivery of quality education. Courses include instructional design, managing educational projects, distance teaching and learning, and distance education leadership and management. Graduates will be prepared to work with online schools and programs to create a solid curriculum and offer a solid education through distance learning.
School Library Media Endorsement Offered by: University of Washington Cost: $11,520 (total cost) Length: 13 months Format: Offered fully online, but can also be taken in person in Seattle Outcome: Name of certification earned Designed for K-12 teachers, this endorsement prepares graduates to establish, maintain and sustain a top-notch school library, help students find information quickly, and introduce them to a variety of information-gathering techniques. The use of technology in the library is discussed, as well as proper cataloging and classifications, collection development, integration of instructional technology and more. The use of technology to complete the online program complements the technology that will be used by graduates in their K-12 endeavors.
Graduate Certificate in Higher Education Administration Offered by: Post University Online Cost: $570 per credit hour Length: 12 credit hours Format: Entirely online Outcome: Graduate Certificate in Higher Education Administration Those who want to work in the administration of colleges and universities can earn the education they need to open doors to new careers through this program. Courses include teaching the adult learner, the new post-secondary student, administration and leadership in higher education, and policy, politics and pressing issues. Graduates will be prepared to handle mid- to high-level responsibilities in higher education administration.
Online Accelerated Teacher Certification Program Offered by: Saint Joseph’s University Cost: $732 per credit hour Length: 30 credits Format: Online, but hands-on experience is also required Outcome: Pennsylvania Teaching Certification Designed for those who have not yet earned their initial certification, this program helps working professionals earn certification to teach secondary school students in math, science, English or social studies. The program includes several pertinent courses, including those in adolescent psychology, special education, assessment and monitoring, literacy, inclusive classroom practices and more. Students who opt for two additional electives will earn enough credits for their master’s degree.
Graduate Certificate in Educational Policy Offered by: UMass/Dartmouth Cost: $1,104 per course plus applicable fees Length: Four online courses (about one year) Format: Fully online Outcome: Graduate Certificate in Educational Policy Students will focus on educational policy, from both a historical and contemporary standpoint, as well as focus on emergent developments that could demand revision in accepted policies. The curriculum prepares students for management or analytical roles within local or state educational institutions, as well as prepares them to move into the master’s program if desired.
Gifted Education Endorsement Offered by: University of Nebraska Kearney Cost: 18 credit hours Length: Online only, making use of video lectures, chat rooms and more Format: Nebraska Supplementary Endorsement for Gifted Education Outcome: Great for those who want to work with gifted and talented students throughout the K-12 system, this graduate endorsement provides teachers with the knowledge base necessary to help those students. Courses focus on psychology, social and emotional development, assessment and evaluation, curriculum design and other points that are specifically targeted toward gifted students.
Graduate Certificate in Autism Education Offered by: Liberty University Online Cost: 3 to 6 classes (can be completed in one year) Length: Online only; includes online writing center and online tutors Format: Graduate Certificate in Autism Education Outcome: This program prepares students to work in special education, specifically with those who have the unique challenges of autism. Courses will focus on the needs of those on the autism spectrum, how to create the proper curriculum, fostering the emotional, educational and intellectual learning environment, and more.
School Principal Certification Offered by: Drexel University Cost: $1,192 per credit Length: 34 total credits required Format: Highly interactive online learning Outcome: PA Administrative Certificate, Principal K-12 Those who want to brush up on their administration skills and open doors to working as a principal can get the education necessary through this highly flexible online program. Courses focus on solving complex problems within a team atmosphere, mentoring and coaching teachers, and demonstrating pertinent competencies, such as conflict resolution, effective speaking and writing, and team building.

MOOCs & Free Teaching Certification Courses

Those who want to earn a great deal of knowledge but don’t want to spend a great deal of money to do so can look to MOOCs and other free teaching certification courses. These courses might end with a diploma or certificate, or simply a certificate of completion; some can be used to fulfill professional development requirements.

CourseOffered byLengthOutcome
Diploma in Teaching Skills for EducatorsALISON10-15 hoursOfficial ALISON diploma, certificate or PDF
Introduction to Teaching English as a Second LanguageALISON2-3 hoursOfficial ALISON diploma, certificate or PDF
The Learning Classroom: Theory into PracticeAnnenburg Foundation13 short sessionsThe ability to create a more structured and powerful learning environment
Teacher Development: Starter Kit for Teaching OnlineEdutopiaVaries; students are encouraged to take an online course of their choice in addition to completing resource materialPrepares teachers to handle education from the online perspective
Positive Behavior in Schools I: Introduction to Schoolwide Behavior SystemsPublic Broadcasting System4 hoursTeaches the use of behavioral supports and interventions suitable for classrooms or individual students; might be eligible for continuing education credit
Program Reviews: Arts and HumanitiesPublic Broadcasting System1 hourCertificate of completion
Classroom Video ProductionPublic Broadcasting System3 hoursCertificate of completion
Careers Education and GuidanceThe Open University8 hoursPrepares teachers to foster successful school-to-work transitions for their students
Secondary LearningThe Open University11 hoursThis advanced course provides teachers of secondary students with a broader wealth of knowledge from which to create their curriculum
Teaching PE & Health, Elementary EducationUniversity of California Irvine2-4 hoursDesigned for California teaching candidates, this course focuses on the fitness education of students in grades K-6
Early Education and Care in Inclusive SettingsUMass BostonEight modules, one per weekEarly childhood educators will demonstrate eight core competencies; might be eligible for professional development hours
Psychosocial Aspects of Visual ImpairmentUMass BostonFour hours per weekDesigned for special education teachers who need extra training in dealing with children who face vision loss or impairment
Intro to Instructional DesignUtah State UniversitySix instructional videosThis in-depth look at instructional design takes students from analysis and design to implementation and evaluation
Cooperative and Collaborative LearningThirteen Ed Online1-2 hours1-2 hours
Promising Practices in Online Teaching and LearningTexas Woman’s University/OpenStax CNXVariesPrepares students to move into online education
Introduction to Teaching with SkypeTeacher Training Videos1-2 hoursHelps educators understand the various tools that can be used with Skype in distance learning

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