The steps required to become a mathematics teacher in Indiana are detailed in this guide.
Indiana has 292 public school districts that hold 1,967 schools. Some 62,339 teachers serve 1,040,765 students in these schools where the average student-teacher ratio is approximately 17:1. Certified mathematics teachers in Indiana work with middle and high school students, as math at the elementary level is included in the general education curriculum.
Indiana offers two levels of teaching licenses issued through the Indiana Office of Educator Licensing and Development (Division of Professional Standards):
- Initial Practitioner – a renewable, two-year license for first-time teachers or those transferring from another state
- Proficient Practitioner – a renewable five-year license for working teachers who have successfully completed the mentoring program
Step 1. Earn a Bachelor’s Degree or Higher and Complete a Teacher Education Program
A bachelor’s degree or higher from a regionally-accredited college or university is the minimum education requirement for becoming a public school math teacher in Indiana.
There are various routes you can take to complete the education requirements:
- Bachelor’s degree with a double major in education and mathematics
- Bachelor’s in math plus completion of teacher education program
- Bachelor’s in education with between 18-24 semester hours of math courses
- Master’s degree or higher and completion of teacher education program
Here you can find a list of Indiana institutions of higher education that offer state-approved teacher preparation programs at the bachelor’s level and beyond. They consist of both student teaching (generally between 460 and 900 hours) and such classroom courses as:
- Foundations of Teaching
- Instructional Planning
- Classroom Presentation
- Mathematics Education
- Strategies for Teaching
Individuals with graduate degrees are often given preference and have a higher earning potential than those with only a bachelor’s degree. Mathematics teachers are currently in demand in Indiana.
Step 2. Pass All Required Exams and Training
You will be required to successfully pass the following exams and training:
- CORE Assessment Exams I and II
- Extended Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Training
- Child Suicide Intervention and Prevention Class
CORE Assessment Exams I and II
As of May 31, 2014, the Indiana Board of Education has completed the switch from requiring prospective teachers to pass the Praxis exams to the Pearson VUE CORE assessments, which consist of the Pearson ES Development/Pedagogy Exam and the Pearson CORE content exam.
Topics covered by the development/pedagogy exam include:
- Teaching Methodology
- Classroom Management
- Student Development and Diversity
- Learning Processes
- Learning Environments
- Instructional Planning
Like Praxis II, the CORE content exam covers the general content of math instruction for elementary, middle and high school, from learning numbers and measures to advanced calculus. You will not be unpleasantly surprised by anything in either exam that has not been covered by the teacher education program.
CORE assessment tests are based on REPA educational standards and aligned with Indiana Common Core standards and Indiana academic standards. You must register to schedule the date of your exams at the Pearson website.
Extended Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Training (CPR)
All Indiana teachers are required to have a valid certificate in both CPR and the Heimlich maneuver (for removing a foreign object that is obstructing a person’s airway). This requirement has recently been extended to include knowledge about the use of an automated external defibrillator as more Indiana schools have procured this life-saving device.
The American Red Cross, the American Heart Association and many fire departments offer classes in CPR and the other procedures.
Attend Child Suicide Intervention and Prevention Class
As of July 1, 2013, the Indiana State Board of Education requires that all public school teachers attend a class on the prevention and intervention of child suicide. The requirement was prompted by the national increase in youth suicides, especially among teens.
The Office of Emergency Preparedness and the Division of Mental Health offer classes. Go to the Indiana state suicide prevention website for the locations of classes near you.
Step 3. Apply for License and Complete Indiana Mentor and Assessment Program
Apply for Your Teacher License
The Indiana Licensing and Verification System’s website has an online application form for both an Initial Practitioner and Proficient Practitioner License. The site also has an application instructional manual and webinar as well as answers to FAQs.
Application must include proof of completion of all requirements described above. There is an application evaluation fee of $35.00 and another $35.00 for handing and transaction costs when your application is accepted.
Complete the Indiana Mentor and Assessment Program (IMAP)
All newly licensed Indiana public school teachers are required to complete this two-year work program. IMAP is NOT student teaching and refers only to holders of an “Initial Practitioner” license.
The newly hired teachers spend their first two years of teaching being mentored by a principal, administrator, supervisor or director. During the second year the mentor prepares an Individual Development Plan Summary form. IMAP concludes with the completion of a “specific assessment piece” that replaces the need for a portfolio.
After the two years participants are eligible to apply for a five-year Proficient Practitioner license. Licenses are renewal on the same date as issuance of a prior license. There is a $35.00 renewal fee.
Persons who received a license or renewal before issuance of the child suicide intervention and prevention class requirement must complete the class before renewal will be granted.
Step 4. Participate in Continuing Professional Education
Public school teachers in Indiana participate in a required Professional Growth Plan through which they gain “Professional Growth Points” that are awarded for attending conferences, workshops, relevant academic courses, etc. The goal is to collect 90 points.
In addition, teachers are required to complete the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards Certificate Program to renew their licenses. Requirements for earning certification are described at the Board‘s website.
Professional Associations/Societies for Mathematics Teachers
The following organizations are devoted to the advancement of mathematics teachers in Indiana:
- Hoosier Association of Mathematics Teachers
- Indiana Council of Teachers of Mathematics
- Indiana Section of the Mathematical Association of America