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Become a Teacher in Georgia
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Teaching in Georgia Snapshot
All career and salary information pulled from the Bureau of Labor Statisticspupil expenditure information was provided by Governing
Explore Featured Degree Options in Education
|University Name||Type of Program||Learn More||Program Description|
|University of Southern California||Master of Arts in Teaching||Learn more about USC Rossier||The online Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) from the University of Southern California Rossier School of Education prepares you to become a transformative K–12 teacher. Through live online classes and enriching field experiences in your community, you can earn your MAT in less than 18 months without relocating.|
|Fordham University||Master of Science in Teaching||Learn more from Fordham University||Fordham University’s online Master of Science in Teaching program prepares aspiring teachers (grades 1-6) for initial teaching certification or dual certification in teaching and special education.|
|Vanderbilt University||Master of Education in School Counseling||Learn more about Vanderbilt Peabody||Vanderbilt University's Peabody College offers an online Master of Education in human development counseling with a specialization in school counseling for students interested in becoming school counselors and making a meaningful difference in K–12 settings.|
Steps to Becoming a Teacher in Georgia
Important Note: Education licensure requirements, statistics and other information are subject to change. Teach.com makes its best effort to keep content accurate; however, the official sources are the state education departments. Please confirm licensing requirements with your state before applying for licensure or renewal. (Last update: 02/02/2019)
Prerequisite Coursework in Georgia
All states require that prospective teachers have at least a Bachelor’s Degree to and complete a state-approved teacher preparation program to receive certification. Some states also have specific course and credit-hour requirements.
Teacher education programs generally consist of two elements—curricula and fieldwork. Curricula generally includes instruction on teaching fundamental skills, pedagogy (the science of teaching) and preparing students to research, design and implement learning experiences in their field of study. Fieldwork often includes field observations, internships, student teaching or a combination of all three.
Check with your teacher preparation program or the Department of Education for more information about specific requirements. Georgia does not list specific course or credit hour requirements, but every college or university teacher preparation program will have requirements of its own. Contact your teacher preparation program or the Department of Education for more information.
Georgia Teacher Certification Programs
Teacher Certification Programs can be taken online or on-site. They typically include an educational theory and classroom skills seminar and a fieldwork component of student teaching in the area. A list of accredited teacher preparation programs in Georgia can be found on the Georgia Professional Standards Commission website.
Required Tests for Georgia
Georgia requires the completion of the Georgia Assessments for the Certification of Educators (GACE) in your desired subject area to qualify to teach. Most states also require a basic skills examination, but Georgia does not.
You can learn more about the Praxis exams by visiting Teach.coms' Ultimate Guide to the Praxis Exams and read more about teacher certification tests on Teach.com.
Initial Teaching Certifications
To become certified as a teacher in Georgia, you will need to complete the appropriate number of college credit hours, a teacher preparation course, and the standardized tests specified below. If you have a teaching credential from another state, you may be able to use an interstate reciprocity program to become certified in Georgia. Visit the Georgia Professional Standards Commission to learn more about getting your Teaching Credential in Georgia. Georgia has two levels of certification – the Initial Certificate can be upgraded to a Clear Renewable Certificate after passing the Georgia Assessments for the Certification of Educators (GACE) test.
Learn more about getting your teaching credential on Teach.com.
Discover an 8-week Online Teaching Short Course from Harvard's Bok Center
Earn recognition of your ability to develop and deliver a memorable teaching experience when you receive a premier certificate from Harvard’s Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning, in association with HarvardX, upon successful course completion.
Alternative Certification in Georgia
The Georgia Teacher Alternative Preparation Program (GaTAPP) helps would-be teachers who did not complete a teacher certification program to join the profession. Each candidate receives the support of a group of mentors and coaches who help train them over a one- to three-year internship. A list of more alternate routes to certification in Georgia can be found at the Georgia Professional Standards Commission website. Members of the military may be eligible for Georgia’s Troops to Teachers Program.
Georgia Teacher Certification Information & Links
Transferring Your Certification
Certification Reciprocity in Georgia
Interstate reciprocity is a program that allows teachers certified in one state to teach in another state. To find out which other state teaching licenses can be used in Georgia, visit the Teach.com reciprocity page. For more specific questions about your situation, contact the Georgia Department of Education.
Jobs, Benefits, and Opportunities for Teachers in Georgia
Georgia Teaching Jobs
The Georgia Public School System runs Teach Georgia, a site where teachers can search for employment by school district and job title. Learn more about finding a teaching job.
Georgia Teacher Salary and Incentives
According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the average teacher in Georgia makes $54,602 per year, which is 118% of the state average income. A 2018 Georgia Department of Education study reported that teacher salaries ranged from $32,217 for first-year teachers with just a Bachelor’s degree to $73,980 for teachers with at least 21 years of experience and the highest level of Georgia teacher certification. Georgia provides additional pay incentives for those willing to teach in high needs school districts, or in shortage subjects. Learn more about teacher salaries at Teach.com.
Georgia Teacher Benefits and Retirement
Georgia teachers can retire at age 60 with 10 years of service, or at any age after 30 years of service. The Teachers Retirement System of Georgia (TRSG) serves teachers in Georgia looking for assistance with their retirement. There are multiple plans available depending on the coverage you’re looking for. Georgia also offers additional benefits to teachers, such as health care plans and an annual number of sick days. Learn more about benefits for teachers at Teach.com.
Georgia Teacher Shortage Areas
The United States Department of Education defines a Teacher Shortage Area (TSA) as a subject matter or grade level within a state in which there is an inadequate supply of elementary or secondary teachers. The shortage may be caused by teaching positions that are unfilled or are filled by teachers who have temporary certification or teach in in academic subject other than their area of preparation. According to a report by the USDE Office of Postsecondary Education (Pg 43), Georgia has the following Teacher Shortage Areas:
- Elementary Instruction
- English Language Arts
Financial Aid in Georgia
Georgia residents are eligible for the Applegate/Jackson/Parks Future Teacher Scholarship, as well as the TEACH Grant, which gives financial aid to students in return for an agreement to teach in a high-need school.
Learn more about how to finance your Master's degree on Teach.com.
Professional Development for Georgia Teachers
In 2017 Georgia adopted a professional learning system called Professional Learning Communities (PLC). A PLC consists of members of a school who follow agreed upon norms to focus collaborative work on teaching and learning. The cycle of work is described as,
- Examining evidence of student performance
- Analyzing possible instructional strategies that address student strengths and weaknesses
- Developing common assessments that will provided data as new strategies are used
- Implementation of agreed upon strategies
- Analyze changes in student learning
- Incorporating changes in student learning
More information on Professional Learning can be found at Georgia Professional Standards Commision.
Georgia also follows the Learning Forward standards for staff development. This Professional Learning Association council is widely recognized as a leader in the field of professional development. The standards are based on three questions: What are the students expected to know and be able to do? What are teachers expected to know and be able to do to ensure student success? Where must staff development focus to meet both of these goals? Teachers work in a cohort style method based on their subject areas and grade levels. Upon completion a Mentor Teacher distinction from the Department of Education.
Benefits of a Master's Degree in Georgia
It is no longer enough to just have years of experience for teaching. After No Child Left Behind and other academic quantification measures, the careers of teachers increasingly depend on their results in the classroom. A master's degree in the field of education will give you more educational theory and classroom skills, as well as more hands-on student teaching experience with a mentor. After a Master’s program, you will be able to achieve better results in the classroom and have more job security and higher pay.
Learn more about the benefits of a Master of Arts in Teaching vs. Master of Education on Teach.com.
Explore Featured Program Options in Education
|University Name||Type of Program||Program Description|
|University of Southern California||Master of Arts in Teaching||The online Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) from the USC Rossier School of Education prepares you to become a transformative K–12 teacher. Through live online classes and enriching field experiences in your community, you can earn your MAT in less than 18 months without relocating.|
|Fordham University||Master of Science in Teaching||The online Master of Science in Teaching program prepares aspiring teachers (grades 1-6) for initial teaching certification or dual certification in teaching and special education.|
|Harvard University||Advanced Certification in Teaching||The 8-week Teaching and Learning Strategies for Higher Education online short course is delivered by Harvard’s Bok Center for Teaching and Learning, in association with HarvardX. Students in this course will engage deeply with the most relevant research on effective teaching methods in the higher education context, while refining their own practices, portfolio, and teaching philosophy.|
|Vanderbilt University||Master of Education in School Counseling||Vanderbilt University's Peabody College offers an online Master of Education in human development counseling with a specialization in school counseling for students interested in becoming school counselors and making a meaningful difference in K–12 settings.|