Pathways to Certification

In order to obtain an Initial Standard Classroom Certificate in Texas, one must go through an approved Educator Preparation Program.

Individuals seeking a Student Services certificate (Educational Diagnostician, School Counselor, or School Librarian) or Administrator certificate (Principal or Superintendent) cannot obtain these certificates through the Certification-by-Examination route offered by the state of Texas. Therefore, individuals must also complete an approved Educator Preparation Program leading to the desired Student Services or Administrator certificate.

State requirements can and do change. It is the student's responsibility to check with their program advisor for any changes in program and state certification requirements to ensure eligibility.

All individuals seeking an official educator certificate with the state of Texas must submit an online application directly to the Texas Education Agency (TEA). You can review the How to Apply section below for step-by-step instructions on this process.

The general steps to becoming certified in any area are:

1) Apply and be admitted to a UNT Educator Preparation Program
2) Pass all required state certification exams (coming soon - exam sequences for each certification area)
3) Complete all certification program requirements, including clinical practice (Student Teaching/Internship/Practicum)
4) Appropriate grades and degree posted to official UNT transcripts
5) Apply for a Standard Certificate through the Texas Education Agency website
a. Pay all applicable fees
b. Complete fingerprinting
6) Recommended to the state by UNT

When to Apply for Your Standard Certificate(s)

Students should apply for their Standard Certificate at the end of their final semester, after they have completed Student Teaching/Internship/Practicum, and passed all required state certification exams. Students should not apply if they have not completed all program requirements, including Student Teaching/Internship/Practicum requirements, or have not passed all required state certification exams. Students who apply early and have not passed all required certification exams will have their application removed. If you have not taken your TExES exams, please visit the UNT TExES Advising Office website for more information.

How to Apply for Your Standard Certificate(s)

Do not apply early - your application will be removed. If you are finishing your certification program in December 2017, do not apply before Friday, December 8th.

1. Review the Applying for Certification and Fingerprinting guide. This guide will walk you through the application process step-by-step.

2. Go to

3. Log into your educator (TEAL) account. If you have not set up your account, the system will prompt you to create one. For more information, please review the TEAL/ETS Registration Guide. This guide will help you set up your TEAL account, obtain your TEA ID#, create your ETS account, and register for your certification exams.

4. You will be asked to select your recommending entity from a drop-down menu when completing the application on the TEA website. You will find your appropriate recommending entity on page 6 of the Applying for Certification and Fingerprinting guide provided above. You must read and follow page 6 of the guide carefully. Incorrect applications will be removed and you will be required to reapply and complete a refund request directly through the TEA.

5. Pay all applicable fees and complete the fingerprinting process.

The Typical Process for Certification is as Follows:

  • Student applies to the Texas Education Agency (TEA), pays online, and completes fingerprinting process.
  • Student receives TEA system-generated email acknowledging submitted application.
  • Entity reviews application and submits recommendation for student after verifying all program and state certification requirements have been met.
  • Student receives TEA system-generated email stating they have been recommended by entity.
  • TEA runs criminal background check on applicant.
  • Applicant is certified if background check is clear.

Contact Information

College of Education Student Advising Office
Matthews Hall Room 105
Phone: (940) 565-2736
Fax: (940) 565-2728

TExES Advising Office
Matthews Hall Room 103
Phone: (940) 369-8601
Fax: (940) 565-2728