If you want to become a mathematics teacher in Alabama, you must be prepared to complete the following steps:
The 2013 Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics was designed to set high standards for all students by incorporating Common Core State Standards for Mathematics. Developed by educators and business leaders, the Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics serves as a foundation upon which quality mathematics programs can be developed. The implementation of this content is designed to allow Alabama students to obtain the mathematical foundations necessary to succeed in entry-level, credit-bearing academic college courses and in workforce training programs.
This document details that mathematically proficient students in Alabama should be able to:
- Use appropriate tools strategically
- Reason quantitatively and abstractly
- Model with mathematics
- Make sense of problems be able to solve them
- Identify and make use of structure
- Identify and express regularity in repeated reasoning
- Construct viable arguments
- Attend to precision
Step 1. Complete a Bachelor’s Degree Program and Educator Preparation Program
There are a number of ways to complete an educator preparation program to become a math teacher in Alabama. You may first complete a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university and then complete a teacher preparation program, or you may complete your undergraduate education and teacher preparation program in one, blended program.
Educator preparation programs in Alabama, which are offered at both undergraduate and graduate levels and through public and private colleges and universities, always include a student teaching experience component.
Teacher preparation program options in Alabama include:
- Class B Bachelor’s Degree-Level Program: A Class B bachelor’s program is ideal for you if you do not already possess a bachelor’s degree, as it combines an undergraduate degree and an approved educator preparation program.
- Class A Master’s Degree-Level Program: If you have already obtained a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university but still need to complete the teacher preparation program, you may attend a Class A master’s program and not only complete the teacher preparation program requirements in Alabama, but also earn your master’s degree at the same time.
- Alternative Class A Program: You may qualify for this teacher preparation program if you already possess both your undergraduate and graduate degree from a regionally accredited college or university and you meet specific requirements regarding degree, grade point average, and prerequisite coursework.
- Class AA Planned Sixth-Year Program: The Class AA sixth-year program is designed for students that have completed a master’s degree and are interested in completing an approved six-year program of study, which includes about 30 semester hours beyond a master’s degree. This program is designed for individuals who want to earn the position of education specialist in mathematics.
Step 2. Successfully Complete the Alabama Educator Certification Testing Program (AECTP)
Before prospective teachers can begin the certification process, they must first take and pass the AECTP, a statewide testing program that is required for all prospective teachers. The AECTP consists of the following assessments:
Basic Skills Assessment
The Basic Skills Assessment consists of the following components:
- Applied Mathematics
- Reading for Information
This assessment looks to verify that prospective teachers possess the foundational skills necessary to perform critical tasks required of all Alabama educators. You must score at a Level 4 on the Applied Mathematics Assessment, at a Level 5 on the Reading for Information Assessment, and at a Level 3 for the Writing Assessment.
You must take and pass the Praxis II in one of the following grade designations to be considered for certification as a mathematics teacher in Alabama:
- Secondary mathematics (6-12): Mathematics: Content Knowledge
- Middle school mathematics (4-8): Middle School Mathematics
- Elementary mathematics: Elementary Education: Multiple Subjects
More information about Alabama’s testing requirement, as well as directions on how to register to take the Praxis II exam can be found here.
Step 3. Apply for Initial Certification as a Mathematics Teacher in Alabama
Upon the successful completion of Alabama’s pre-certification requirements, including the completion of an approved teacher preparation program and pre-certification examinations, you may apply for initial certification. This involves completing an application for certification and sending it with your official transcripts, documentation of compliance with the AECTP, and related documentation, to:
Alabama State Department of Education
Office of Teaching and Leading
5215 Gordon Persons Building
Montgomery, AL 36130
Step 4. Keep your Educator Certification Current through Continuing Education and License Renewal
You must keep your educator certification in Alabama valid by renewing it every 5 years. This will involve meeting ONE of the following experience/continuing education conditions for renewal:
- Complete at least three years of full-time teaching experience, as well as at least 3 semester credit hours
- Complete at least 50 clock hours of allowable professional development and at least 3 semester credit hours
Alabama Math, Science, and Technology Initiative
The overall goal of Alabama’s K-12 mathematics curriculum, which is called “Building Mathematical Foundations,” is to enhance students’ future opportunities and options for the workplace and for everyday life by preparing them to be college and career ready.
To further encourage the development of high quality, comprehensive math programs in Alabama, the Alabama Department of Education began the Alabama Math, Science, and Technology Initiative, which is designed to improve math and science teaching statewide. The initiative provides three basic services: professional development, on-site support, and equipment and materials. Schools can become official AMSTI schools by sending their mathematics teachers to a two-week summer institute for two, consecutive summers. About half of all schools in Alabama are now official AMSTI schools. To date, AMSTI has trained more than 20,000 teachers and administrators.