Connecticut Alternative Teacher Certification

Alternative teacher preparation programs, also known as non-traditional programs, are designed for those who have a bachelor’s degree outside of education and typically lead to the award of a certificate or master’s degree. If you don’t have a bachelor’s degree, see our guide to traditional route certification in Connecticut. For those who do have a bachelor’s degree and are now looking to switch careers into teaching, the Connecticut State Department of Education offers various pathways designed for those with differing backgrounds in education and experience, which are outlined below. Continue reading to learn more about how you can earn an alternative teaching license in Connecticut.

Requirements for Alternative Certification

The basic requirement for alternative teacher certification in Connecticut is a bachelor’s degree. Those who meet this requirement may complete an alternative teacher preparation program, which may lead to a post-graduate certificate or a master’s degree. You may also need to pass skills tests or content-area exams prior to receiving your certificate.

Types of Alternative Teaching Licenses in Connecticut

Alternative teacher certification programs are usually designed for those with a bachelor’s degree outside of education, preferably in a teachable subject. Alternative preparation programs may allow you to begin teaching while you study, providing an accelerated pathway to your new career while providing an income. Such programs generally take one to two years to complete, and must be approved by the state in order to qualify for a license. Connecticut offers several non-traditional options for those who are looking to change careers to teaching.

Alternative Route to Certification Program (ARC)

Individuals who hold a degree in a teachable subject area with a GPA of at least 3.0 and have passed the Praxis Core Academic Skills Test and Praxis subject-area tests may apply to the Alternate Route to Teacher Certification (ARC). The ARC program is offered twice a year in Hartford as a 10-week summer program or two-semester weekend program from September to May. The program curriculum includes teaching methods classes and training in basic skills for educators. Upon successful completion of the program, prospective teachers may be eligible for licensure. Note that ARC training only prepares teachers in a limited range of subjects.

Charter Oak Alternate Route to Certification in Early Childhood Education

While the standard Alternative Route to Certification Program (ARC) does not lead to certification eligibility in Early Childhood, alternate route candidates who wish to teach Early Childhood may have the option of pursuing Charter Oak State College’s Alternate Route to Certification in Early Childhood Education. Candidates must meet specific requirements before applying, including 15 credits in human growth and development and at least three years of experience as an early childhood educator or home visitor. For more information on this program, contact Charter Oak State College.

Vocational Education Certification

Connecticut offers certification in Vocational Education (career and technical education) subjects including health, business, marketing, and other trade-related subjects. In most cases, candidates for this type of certification must have at least a high school diploma and three years of practical experience in the subject to be taught. For certain occupations, industry certification and/or college experience is required. For more information, consult the Connecticut State Department of Education.

Transferring Teaching Licenses from Another State

Applicants who hold a teaching certificate in another state may be eligible for certification in the state of Connecticut pending a review of their credentials and experience. Candidates who hold an out-of-state license may be eligible for a testing waiver provided they have at least three years of teaching experience. In addition, candidates who have at least two years of experience teaching in the content area and grade level in which they are pursuing certification can receive a license without completing an approved teacher preparation program provided their teaching period was deemed successful and they have passed the required Praxis tests. For more information, see our teacher certification reciprocity resource or visit the Connecticut State Department of Education.

Schools with Alternative and Master’s Programs in Connecticut

Completing a state-approved preparation program is an important step in earning teacher certification through a non-traditional route. For those who already have a bachelor’s degree, the following schools offer teacher preparation programs that typically lead to certification through a certificate or master’s degree and have been approved by the Connecticut Department of Education (CDE):

  • Albertus Magnus College* (Certificate, Master’s)
  • Charter Oak State College* (Alternative, Certificate)
  • Fairfield University* (Master’s)
  • Quinnipiac University* (Master’s)
  • Sacred Heart University* (Master’s)
  • University of Bridgeport* (Certificate, Master’s)
  • University of Saint Joseph (Master’s)

*Schools with an asterisk offer programs that can include paid classroom placements, subject to qualifications and experience. The student may be responsible for securing their own placement. Contact program(s) of interest for further information.

Additional Resources

1. Connecticut State Department of Education: https://portal.ct.gov/SDE