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PA Teacher Certification

Swarthmore offers a competency-based teacher preparation program for both special majors and minors (Honors or course). Certification for elementary, middle, and/or high school teaching is transferable to all 50 states; after PA certification, some states may require additional exams or content.  If PA certification candidates are not US citizens, for state certification, they must present a resident alien visa card and file a "declaration of intent" to become citizens within a six-year time frame. Students with questions about various options for non-US citizens should speak to their advisors. It is advisable to verify current requirements by reviewing the appropriate state's department of education website. A guide to PA certification reciprocity is available through this Certification Map, and also through State Specific Requirements.  

Swarthmore's programs for secondary certification are designed with guidance from faculty members in the discipline in which the student is being certified as well as members of the Educational Studies Department. Students preparing for elementary certification, and/or ESL Specialist certification, design their course of study with advising from the Swarthmore Educational Studies Department and Eastern University. 

Swarthmore's certification program is limited to undergraduates at the College and to Swarthmore faculty and partners interested in certification.

Swarthmore College belongs to the Consortium for Excellence in Teacher Preparation, an organization of liberal arts colleges and universities that believe in the value of teacher education for social justice embedded within a liberal arts context. Watch this video and view this document for an explanation of these ideas.

Principal welcomes students to school.

Alumnus and principal greet students. 

student teachers at institute

Jennifer Lee presents at the Student Teacher Institute 

Alumnus and principal greet students. 

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Why teach?

Christina Keller '14  examines the intersection between her academic work at Swarthmore and teaching experience at the Philadelphia Montessori Charter School.
Read Christina's essay