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Teaching Certification Program

Join us for your studies to not only earn certification, but to truly learn what it means to be a teacher.
Colgate student working on a craft with a small child

Joining the Program

We offer teaching certification programs in the following areas:
Completing teaching certification requirements is not the same as “majoring in education.” When you complete our program, you will have a strong background in teacher education and a major in any one of the departments on campus.

We also offer a small master of arts in teaching program, Colgate's only graduate program.

To enter the teaching certification program you must submit an application to the department secretary as soon as possible during your first year at Colgate, but no later than November 1st of your sophomore year. You must have an overall Colgate GPA of at least 2.5 at the time of your application.

The following must be included with your application:
  • Completed application form (available from the Educational Studies Office)
  • Your letter of intention
  • Letter of recommendation from a Colgate faculty member

Our Emphasis

Our program encompasses liberal studies in education as well as studies and experiences designed to develop teaching effectiveness and professional leadership. We emphasize developing your ability to relate knowledge and theory to skillful teaching in the interest of promoting greater social justice and environmental sustainability.

Student Teaching

Acceptance into the teaching certification program means you are tentatively approved for student teaching in the fall of your senior year, but does not guarantee your final acceptance.

A decision is made by the department to approve a candidate for student teaching based on previous academic performance at Colgate as well as the apparent suitability of the candidate for the teaching profession. In addition, the student must submit to the program a letter of recommendation written by an individual who has observed the student in some teaching/learning capacity in a school setting.

Final approval depends on the completion of all prerequisite courses in their program and performance in those courses by the end of the fall term. In general, the following grade point average requirements will apply.

For the secondary teaching program:
  • 2.7 GPA in education courses
  • 2.7 GPA in the teaching field
  • 2.7 GPA overall
For the elementary teaching program
  • 2.7 GPA in education courses
  • 2.7 GPA overall
We make every effort to accommodate all students who wish to teach, but the size of the department and its geographic location limit the number of students who can be served in any one year. If more students apply for student teaching than the program and the local schools can handle, admission will be determined on a competitive basis.

More Information

Candidates for teacher certification in New York State must pass competency examinations prepared by the state education department.

Certification is available to U.S. citizens and to non-citizens who have completed a letter of intent to become a U.S. citizen.

Contact Information

Margery (Meg) Gardner
Department of Educational Studies
Colgate University
13 Oak Drive
Hamilton, NY 13346-1398