Certification Requirements to Become a Math Teacher in Florida

To become a certified math teacher in Florida, you must be prepared to complete the following steps:

Complete an Approved Math Educator Preparation Program
Pass the Required Florida Math Teacher Certification Examinations
Apply for and Maintain your Florida Math Educator Certification

The Florida State Board of Education approved the final version of the Mathematics Florida Standards (MAFS) in February 2014. These Florida-specific math standards represent a modification to the original Common Core Standards, which were adopted in July 2010.

The Mathematics Florida Standards were created in response to public concerns about the Common Core Standards. They are a result of public input given during open meetings with state policymakers. Based on the results of the public comment, the Department recommended that changes be made to the Original Common Core, with full implementation of MAFS due to take place in the 2014-15 school year.

The MAFS include K-8 grade level standards, 9-12 content standards, and more general K-12 Standards for Mathematical Practice.

 


 

Step 1. Complete an Approved Math Educator Preparation Program

To become a mathematics teacher in Florida, you must complete an approved math educator preparation program. Depending on your background and education, you may complete one of three different types of approved programs:

Initial Teacher Preparation Program – The traditional route to licensure in Florida involves the completion of a State-approved initial teacher preparation program (ITP), which results in either an undergraduate (bachelor) or graduate (M.A.T., M.Ed. or M.A.T.L.) degree and a 10-week field experience in a K-12 classroom setting. Upon completion of an ITP, you are eligible for a Florida Professional Educator’s Certification.

Alternative Certification Programs – You may also achieve teacher certification in Florida through a State-approved Educator Preparation Institute (EPI), which is designed specifically for baccalaureate degree holders.

EPI programs provide professional preparation and education competence for career changers or recent college grads that do not already possess a professional educator’s certificate in Florida.

Professional Development Certification Program (formerly known as a District Alternative Certification Program) – You may pursue certification through a Professional Development Certification Program if you can display competency in mathematics. This program consists of a cohesive, competency-based professional development certification program through approved Florida public school districts. Through this program, you will satisfy the mastery of professional preparation and education competence.

Course Requirements for all Certification Routes

Regardless of the teacher preparation route you choose, you must successfully complete the following to become certified to teach mathematics in Florida:

To become a middle grades mathematics teacher, you must:

  • Complete a bachelor’s degree or higher with a major in mathematics or middle-grade mathematics; OR
  • Complete a bachelor’s degree or higher with at least 18 semester hours in mathematics, along with credit in the following areas:
    • Calculus/ pre-calculus/trigonometry
    • Geometry
    • Probability or statistics

To become a mathematics teacher for grades 6-12, you must:

  • Complete a bachelor’s degree or higher with a major in mathematics; OR
  • Complete a bachelor’s degree or higher with at least 30 semester hours in mathematics, which must include the following areas:
    • Six semesters hours in calculus
    • Credit in geometry
    • Credit in probability and statistics
    • Credit in abstract or linear algebra; OR
  • Complete a bachelor’s degree or higher with specialization requirements completed for physics and at least 21 semester hours in mathematics, which include the following areas:
    • Six semesters hours in calculus
    • Credit in geometry
    • Credit in probability and statistics
    • Credit in abstract or linear algebra

 


 

Step 2. Pass the Required Florida Math Teacher Certification Examinations

All applicants must pass two Florida-specific certification examinations upon completion of an approved teacher preparation program:

Florida General Knowledge Test

The Florida General Knowledge test is a test of basic skills in English, reading, mathematics, and essay writing. General Knowledge tests are offered year-round, by appointment, through Pearson testing centers.

You can view nearby testing centers and schedule your Florida General Knowledge test here.

You may take the GK tests by appointment, year-round. You can locate test center sites, which are located at Pearson testing centers throughout Florida and nationwide, here. You must receive a scaled score of at least 200 per subset to pass the GK test.

You can view test preparation materials for the GK tests here.

Subject Area Knowledge Examination: Mathematics

Depending on the grade level for which you want to achieve certification, you must take and pass one of the following examinations:

  • Elementary Education (K-6): Consists of four subtests that cover content and content pedagogy in the following areas:
    • Language arts and reading
    • Social science
    • Science
    • Mathematics
  • Middle Grades Mathematics (5-9): Consists of the following assessment areas:
    • Knowledge of problem-solving and reasoning skills
    • Knowledge of mathematical manipulatives and model and instructional technology
    • Knowledge of assessment in mathematics
    • Knowledge of connections among mathematical concepts
    • Knowledge of number sense, operations, and proportionality
    • Knowledge of foundations of algebra
    • Knowledge of algebraic thinking
    • Knowledge of data analysis, statistics, and probability
    • Knowledge of two-dimensional geometry
    • Knowledge of measurement and spatial sense
  • Mathematics (6-12): Consists of the following assessment areas:
    • Knowledge of algebra
    • Knowledge of advanced algebra
    • Knowledge of functions
    • Knowledge of geometry
    • Knowledge of coordinate geometry
    • Knowledge of trigonometry
    • Knowledge of statistics and probability
    • Knowledge of calculus
    • Knowledge of mathematical reasoning
    • Knowledge of instruction and assessment

Like the General Knowledge Examination, Subject Area Knowledge Examinations are taken at Pearson testing centers located throughout the U.S.

 


 

Step 3. Apply for and Maintain your Florida Math Educator Certification

Once you have completed all requirements for educator certification in Florida, you must apply for certification through the Florida Department of Education’s online application system. Once you have received notice from the Department of Education regarding your eligibility for certification (Official Statement of Status of Eligibility), you must complete the fingerprinting process.

A Florida certification is valid for a period of 5 years, during which time you must complete at least 6 semester hours of college credit, much of which can be completed through Florida’s Educator Preparation Institutes (EPI).

Many of Florida’s EPIs offer advanced degree programs, thereby allowing teachers to pursue their master’s degrees while satisfying their professional development requirements.

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