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Certification & Licensing: Exams, edTPA, Fingerprinting, and Workshops

Please note:   If you are not currently enrolled in a Stony Brook University Teacher or School Administrator Preparation  program, please refer to your respective NYSED website for specific certification and licensing requirements.    


Initial Certification

All students who have been formally admitted to and successfully complete an initial certification program at Stony Brook University (i.e., an undergraduate, combined, or graduate D-TALE program), are eligible for an initial certification with institutional recommendation.  In addition to completing the coursework, field experience, and student teaching within each initial certification program, pre-service teachers must complete relevant workshops and exams as well as successfully complete the EdTPA Portfolio and be fingerprinted by the state.  All information regarding a pre-service teacher's progress towards initial certification will be catalogued on their TEACH account.  Accepted students should create an account.   


All students will have to complete the Educating All Students Test and the  Revised CST (Content Specialty Test) in the area of the certificate.  It is the student's responsibility to monitor the TEACH website to ensure that they are taking the appropriate examinations. 

edTPA Portfolio

All students are required to complete and submit the edTPA Portfolio (Education - Teacher Performance Assessment Portfolio) in their content field.  Please check with your program director for specific requirements. The rigorous course of study and broad field experience of each Stony Brook teacher preparation program prepare students for this time-consuming but manageable project, which is described in the following terms on the edTPA site:  

"Aspiring teachers must prepare a portfolio of materials during their student teaching clinical experience. edTPA requires aspiring teachers to demonstrate readiness to teach through lesson plans designed to support their students' strengths and needs; engage real students in ambitious learning; analyze whether their students are learning, and adjust their instruction to become more effective. Teacher candidates submit unedited video recordings of themselves at work in a real classroom as part of a portfolio that is scored by highly trained educators. edTPA builds on decades of teacher performance assessment development and research regarding teaching skills and practices that improve student learning."


New York State law requires the Office of School Personnel Review and Accountability (OSPRA) to conduct fingerprint-supported criminal history background checks for applicants for certification and all prospective employees of school districts, charter schools and BOCES. After your fingerprints have been processed by OSPRA, your TEACH account will contain the following statement: "Your DCJS and FBI results have been received". You will not receive anything from OSPRA unless a school district requests a fingerprint clearance report for you.

The fingerprinting verification process is operated by   IdentoGO. The fingerprint application fee is $101.75 (effective August 1, 2019). When visiting the IdentoGO website to set up your appointment, you may be prompted for a service number. Follow the   website instructions  to find out the correct service code and which forms of identification to bring to the appointment with you. 


New York State Law requires many licensed professionals, teachers and school administrators applying for the renewal of a license, registration, certificate or limited permit to complete coursework regarding child abuse, DASA and school violence. To satisfy these requirements, SPD offers the following NYSED-approved workshops.  If you are not currently enrolled in a Stony Brook University Teacher or School Administrator Preparation  program, please refer to your respective NYSED website for specific certification and licensing requirements.    

View schedule and registration information


Professional Certification

All teachers in New York State must earn a functionally relevant master’s degree containing a minimum of twelve credits in the content area of initial license and teach at level (grade level range encompassed within initial certification) for a minimum of three years, the first of which must be mentored. All teachers in New York State must be U.S. citizens or non-U.S. citizens who have obtained lawful permanent resident status, otherwise they will not be licensed. 

International Students 

All international students who graduate from a “registered and approved” program at Stony Brook and obtain an initial certification may work in New York State with an appropriate visa. These individuals who hold an initial license must become naturalized citizens or obtain a permanent-resident green card within five years of receiving their initial certification or their license will expire.