Certification Exams

New York State Teacher and Leader Certification Exams


To obtain certification to serve as a public school teacher, school building or school district leader, the New York State Education Department requires the following exams distinct from graduate course work and requisite workshops. See brief descriptions for each exam below.

Classroom Teacher

(all fields other than Education Technology Specialist, and Speech and Language Disabilities)

Education Technology Specialist

Speech and Language Disabilities

School Building Leader

School District Leader

Content Specialty Test (CST)

Content Specialty Exams are discipline-specific, computer-based exams consisting of selected-response items and constructed-response items. Depending on the specific exam, total testing time is between 3 hours, 15 minutes, and 5 hours, 30 minutes.  Content Specialty Exams are aligned with certification title, grade level, and address competencies in pedagogical content knowledge.  Those applying for multiple classroom teacher certifications are required to take all respective Content Specialty Tests.  Registration, requisite passing scores, and preparation materials are available through the New York State Teacher Certification Exams site.

Educating All Students (EAS)

EAS is a computer-based exam consisting of selected-response items and constructed-response items.  The total testing time is 135 minutes.  Sections of the exam address competencies in Diverse Student Populations, English Language Learners, Students with Disabilities and Other Special Learning Needs, Teacher Responsibilities, and School-Home Relationships. Registration, requisite passing scores, and preparation materials are available through the New York State Teacher Certification Exams site.  Candidates applying for multiple certifications are required to take and pass only a single EAS exam.

educative Teacher Performance Assessment (edTPA)

The edTPA is a requirement for most New York State Initial Teacher Certificates.  Through this national performance assessment, individuals demonstrate their readiness to teach by planning lessons that support their students’ strengths and needs, teaching the lessons in an educational setting, and assessing their students’ learning.  The assessment requires candidates to video-record their work with students and reflect on their teaching.  Individuals must pass the edTPA in the subject area of the certification sought. Individuals in a teacher preparation program should work with faculty and/or staff to determine which edTPA to complete before registering for the assessment.  Teachers College students register for national scoring at edtpa.com and submit completed portfolios via the Pearson ePortfolio system.  Passing scores required by the New York State Education Department are posted here.  Teacher candidates applying for multiple certifications or extensions must submit and pass the edTPA aligned with the first Initial Teacher Certification only.

The School Building Leader Assessment (107, 108)

The School Building Leader Assessment is a two-part computer based exam, four hours per part. Part One includes 41 selected-response items, 1 extended performance task, and 2 shorter performance tasks. Part Two includes 26 selected-response items, 2 extended performance tasks, and 1 shorter performance task. If both parts are taken together, total testing time is eight hours, 40 minutes with a 40 minute lunch break. Sections of the exam address competencies in Instructional Leadership, Teacher Observation and Evaluation, Educational Equity, Family and Community Engagement, School Culture and Learning Environment.  Registration, requisite passing scores, and preparation materials are available through the New York State Teacher Certification Exams site.

The School District Leader Assessment (103, 104)

The School District Leader Assessment is a two-part computer based exam, four hours per part. Each part includes 60 selected-response items and 2 written assignments. If both parts are taken together, total testing time is eight hours, 40 minutes with a 40 minute lunch break. Sections of the exam address Developing, Communicating, and Sustaining an Educational Vision; Supervising Districtwide Change and Accountability; Leading the District Educational Program; Managing District Resources and Compliance.  Registration, requisite passing scores, and preparation materials are available through the New York State Teacher Certification Exams site.

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