Teaching in Maryland | Degrees, Licensing & Certification (2023)

Teachers help students learn fundamental skills like reading, writing, and mathematics, as well as foreign languages, technology, and art. Teaching in Maryland is both a rewarding and lucrative career path. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Maryland teachers earn well above the national average for teacher salaries, and teachers with a master's degree can increase their salary potential.

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The process for becoming a teacher varies by state, as each state creates its own licensing requirements. When it comes to teaching certification, Maryland provides a simple, straightforward process for candidates with a degree in teaching, including those with an online teaching degree. As long as teachers meet the state's preparation guidelines — which includes student teaching — and pass the required exams and a background check, they can work at the K-12 levels.

Teaching applicants must submit a transcript to show they meet the state's educator preparation requirements.

The Maryland State Department of Education issues teaching certificates and uses the same process for in-state and out-of-state educators. Teaching applicants must submit a transcript to show they meet the state's educator preparation requirements. Maryland sets high reading-coursework requirements, which is 12 credits for elementary teachers. Out-of-state graduates can use passing Praxis teaching reading exam scores to test out of the coursework requirements.

Online teaching programs offer flexibility and accessibility over traditional programs, which benefits current teachers earning a master's degree and students with work or family obligations. Maryland's certification process makes it easy for online degree holders to become teachers.

How to Become a Teacher in Maryland

Each state sets its own requirements for teacher certification, and licenses do not transfer between states. In Maryland, teachers must earn a bachelor's degree, complete an educator preparation program, pass Praxis exams, and pass a fingerprint and background check. Maryland also provides alternative pathways to the classroom for non-teaching degree holders. The state's department of education provides instructions for prospective teachers depending on their education and experience.

While teachers cannot automatically transfer a teaching certificate to another state, Maryland provides a simplified licensing process for out-of-state teachers. Experienced teachers licensed in other states can easily earn a teaching certificate in Maryland by submitting transcripts, a copy of their teaching license, and a form verifying their teaching experience. Licensed Maryland teachers planning a move should research the process of transferring their certification to a new state.

Educational Requirements

In Maryland, K-12 teachers must hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution. Teachers must also complete an educator preparation program, either as part of a bachelor's in teaching or through additional coursework for graduates with a non-teaching degree. Teachers with a master's degree earn higher salaries and qualify for Maryland's advanced professional certificate.

A bachelor's degree in teaching requires approximately 120 credits of coursework, and most students graduate after four years of full-time enrollment. Teachers interested in a master's degree complete an additional two years of coursework. Maryland's certification requirements include student teaching experience, which nearly all teaching programs incorporate into their graduation requirements.


Graduates from out-of-state teacher programs must complete a transcript review to receive a Maryland teaching license, in addition to the other requirements.

Maryland certifies teaching programs that meet the state guidelines, and the state department of education provides a list of Maryland-approved programs online. Certified teachers in Maryland must meet reading requirements. Elementary education teachers must complete 12 credits in reading, including methods of teaching reading and reading assessment. Secondary teachers must earn six credits in reading. Elementary teachers can test out of the requirements by passing the Praxis II teaching reading exam.

Graduates from out-of-state teacher programs must complete a transcript review to receive a Maryland teaching license, in addition to the other requirements. Prospective teachers who are non-teaching degree holders must complete an educator preparation program at a Maryland-approved program or complete an alternative preparation program. They may also submit transcripts for review in order to determine any additional preparation requirements.

Maryland requires a bachelor's degree to become an elementary or secondary teacher, but graduates with an associate degree can become Maryland early childhood education teachers. Associate degree holders can work as preschool teachers, daycare or child care center workers, or paraprofessionals at the K-12 level, also known as teacher's aides. An associate degree also prepares graduates for a bachelor's program, and many associate teaching programs design their degrees to meet bachelor's degree general education requirements.

Common Courses for Teaching Degrees in Maryland

Associate Degree in Teaching

Methods of Teaching Methods courses introduce students to teaching strategies, instructional methods, curriculum design, and the assessment process, which are key skills for teachers at all levels.
Childhood Development Many associate degree holders work in early childhood education. Coursework on childhood development focuses on birth through the elementary years and covers language, social, and emotional development.
Teaching Reading Reading classes present research-based instructional techniques and strategies for teaching reading, including specialized methods for different age levels. Reading classes meet the Maryland teaching certificate reading requirements.

Bachelor's Degree in Teaching

Curriculum and Instruction Students examine theoretical and practical aspects of curriculum design, including instructional methods and assessment techniques. The course may incorporate a curriculum design project.
Introduction to Special Education This course prepares students to teach children with disabilities. Prospective teachers develop an understanding of the teacher's educational impact on students with diverse abilities and the special education learning experience.
Educational Assessment Assessment courses prepare students to evaluate student performance related to instruction and curriculum goals. Coursework may cover theoretical and practical models for assessment.
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Master's Degree in Teaching

Teaching Writing Educators at all levels teach writing skills, and this course covers the theories and techniques of writing instruction, with a focus on theoretical approaches and research-based methods.
Instructional Strategies Strategies courses may focus on particular skills, such as reading, mathematics, or science by exploring theoretical approaches and practical methods for teaching core skills in the classroom.
Teaching With Technology Master's students analyze the effectiveness of technology in the classroom, including using software and instructional materials as teaching tools as well as technology-based assessment and feedback models.

Certification & Licensing Needed to Become a Teacher in Maryland

Maryland's certification process verifies that educators have the qualifications and training necessary to teach students at the K-12 level. The Maryland State Department of Education provides several different types of certification. In general, Maryland teaching certification requires a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution, passing Praxis exam scores, and a background check.

As part of the state's educational standards, teachers must meet Maryland's reading requirements. At the elementary level, teachers need 12 credits in reading, while secondary teachers need six credits. Maryland created the requirement to ensure teachers possess core skills in teaching reading. Prospective teachers may be able to test out of the requirement.

Most teaching licenses are valid for five years, and teachers can renew the license by showing six credits of professional development coursework.

Maryland requires passing scores on the Praxis basic skills exam. Applicants can meet this requirement with SAT, GRE, or ACT scores. Teachers may also need to pass Praxis subject tests in their content area. After meeting the testing and educational requirements, including student teaching experience, applicants must undergo a fingerprint and background check before receiving the state's teaching certificate.

Graduates from an educator preparation program apply for a professional eligibility certificate or a standard professional certificate. Both are valid for five years, but teachers must be currently employed in a Maryland public school to receive the standard certificate. Maryland issues teaching certificates to non-teaching degree holders while they complete the teacher preparation requirements. Most teaching licenses are valid for five years, and teachers can renew the license by showing six credits of professional development coursework.

Teachers licensed in other states can receive a Maryland teaching certificate by submitting transcripts, a copy of a valid out-of-state license, a copy of the test scores for the out-of-state license, and a verification of experience form for teachers who have one or more years of teaching experience. Maryland charges a $10 processing fee for an initial certificate and for each certificate renewal.

Choosing a Degree Program in Maryland

Elementary and secondary teachers must first complete a bachelor's degree with an educator preparation program. However, prospective students may feel overwhelmed when choosing a program, particularly when assessing online teacher programs from across the country. Considering several key factors, such as cost, location, time to degree, and specializations can help students find a program that fits their interests and career goals.

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Some teaching programs are more affordable than others. In-state programs may offer lower tuition rates, and some online programs provide discounts for out-of-state students. In order to determine a program's cost, prospective students should consider the per-semester fees and the cost per credit. Students with transfer credits or an associate degree can also decrease the cost of a bachelor's in teaching.

Some learners prefer a local option, while others need the flexibility of an online program. Consider access to support resources and placement for student teaching, as well as whether the program meets Maryland's requirements for certification. Some programs may allow accelerated paths, and specializations can add time to the degree. Prospective teachers may prefer online programs for their accessibility and flexibility.

Can You Earn a Teaching Degree Online in Maryland?

According to the Maryland State Department of Education, online courses and degrees meet the state's requirements for teacher certification. An online teaching degree provides more flexibility than a traditional, on-campus program, allowing learners to work at their own pace and arrange their schedule around other obligations. Many online students work full-time or part-time, and online programs appeal to current teachers seeking a graduate degree in order to increase their salary or job opportunities.

While Maryland accepts online teaching degrees, online learners must still meet the requirements for an educator preparation program, including the reading requirements and three credits in special education. During the certification process, applicants submit official transcripts for review, which the state uses to determine whether candidates meet educational requirements. Maryland teachers must also demonstrate student teaching experience, which online students can arrange locally.

Maryland's teacher license requirements are the same for graduates from online teaching programs and traditional programs. However, Maryland requires that teachers hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally-accredited college or university, so it's important for prospective online learners to avoid unaccredited institutions.

Directory of Teaching Schools in Maryland

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In order to teach at the K-12 level in Maryland, teachers must complete a bachelor's degree. While the cost of a degree may seem intimidating, Maryland teaching students have many options to pay for their degree. Prospective students need to research their options, which may include scholarships and grants, and file the proper paperwork before enrolling in a teaching program.

Students often first seek out scholarships and grants, as they do not need to be repaid. The federal government and the state of Maryland offers several scholarships for teaching students, which can provide thousands of dollars toward a degree. And while teachers must repay loans, they can also benefit from loan forgiveness programs that cover the entire cost of a degree.

Teaching students should fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to qualify for federal grants, loans, and work-study opportunities. In addition to federal awards, students can also pursue financial aid support through their college or university. Current teachers or professionals considering a career change may qualify for tuition reimbursement programs through their school district or employer. A small amount of research before the semester starts can help students afford a teaching degree.

Loan forgiveness programs discharge all or part of a graduate's student loans based on their professional contributions. Teachers qualify for several loan forgiveness programs at the state and federal level, which may cover up to 100% of their loan amount. Most loan forgiveness programs require that recipients meet teaching requirements in order to receive support.

At the federal level, teachers qualify for the Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program and the Perkins Loan Teacher Cancellation program. The Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program offers up to $17,500 in loan forgiveness on direct loans and Stafford loans for teachers who work for five consecutive years in a low-income school. The Perkins Loan Teacher Cancellation program voids up to 100% of a Perkins loan for teachers who work in low-income schools or in high-need fields, including special education.

Maryland also offers a Loan Assistance Repayment Program for teachers. Certain certifications automatically qualify teachers for the program, and teachers at a low-income institution or a school targeted for improvement can also receive support. Maryland's Nancy Grasmick Teacher Award provides loan forgiveness for high-performance teachers in STEM or in low-income schools. Teachers may receive up to $10,000 per year in loan assistance.

Maryland teaching students qualify for thousands of dollars worth of scholarship opportunities. The state provides several grants for students majoring in teaching shortage areas, and the federal TEACH Grant also supports students who agree to teach in low-income areas. With so many options, teaching students may be able to cover the full cost of a degree through scholarships.

With nearly 170,000 teachers employed in the state, educators make up a significant segment of Maryland's workforce. The average teacher earns about $63,000, according to the BLS. Salaries for teachers in Maryland surpass the national average salary for all teachers throughout the country, which is $54,520; salaries vary depending on the job title, the teacher's educational level, and location.

Preschool teachers receive the lowest wages among Maryland's educators, earning just over $35,000 a year. However, Maryland does not require a teaching certificate for preschool teachers. At the K-12 level, kindergarten teachers earn just under $59,000 a year, while elementary, middle school, and high school teachers make around $65,000.

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In addition to job title, teacher salaries vary based on the teacher's highest level of education. In Maryland, as in other states, teachers with a master's degree often earn more than those with a bachelor's degree. Other factors contribute to salary differences, including the school district and the location. Many school districts publish their teacher salary schedules, meaning prospective educators can check their potential salary before earning a teaching degree.


Can you teach in Maryland without certification? ›

In Maryland, educators must hold teaching certification to work in public schools. The state offers four levels of certification depending on the candidate's qualifications and experience. Initial teacher certification requires a bachelor's degree and an educator preparation program.

What is needed for Maryland teacher certification? ›

Teacher Certification Process

The process is as follows: After receiving a Bachelor's or Master's degree, completing all requirements of the teacher preparation program, and meeting all MSDE guidelines, teacher candidates are eligible for certification through MSDE.

How long is a Maryland teaching certificate good for? ›

Resident Teacher Certificate (RTC)

Valid for two years. Issued to an applicant who has been selected by a MD local education agency to participate in an alternative teacher preparation program​.

How do I view my Maryland teaching certificate? ›

To access a current certificate, Maryland certificate holders may go on-line with the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) Educator Information System. If you have not yet done so, you must create an Educator account with MSDE.

Is it okay to teach without license? ›

A valid certificate of registration and a valid professional license from the Commission are required before any person is allowed to practice as a professional teacher in the Philippines, except as otherwise allowed under this Act. Sec.

Can you teach without being qualified? ›

So yes you can become a teacher without a degree and hold QTLS, which the government states has parity with QTS in maintained primary and secondary schools.

How long does it take to get tenure in Maryland? ›

In Maryland, tenure is granted to teachers who successfully complete a probationary period of three years with the same school system. During the probationary period, a teacher's contract may be non-renewed for any reason—or no reason—if notice is provided by May 1 of any of the first three years.

How long do I have to clear my teaching credential? ›

Once you receive your California Clear Credential, it is valid for five years. Although the Commission used to require 150 hours of professional growth to renew a clear credential, clear credentials may now be renewed without verifying any professional or continuing education requirements.

What states have reciprocity with Maryland for teaching? ›

Maryland Teacher Reciprocity Agreements
AlabamaIndianaNew Hampshire
ArkansasKentuckyNew Mexico
CaliforniaLouisianaNew York
ColoradoMaineNorth Carolina
ConnecticutMassachusettsNorth Dakota
7 more rows

How do I get a qualified teacher status certificate? ›

To apply for iQTS you will need to have:
  1. a bachelor's degree from a UK or non-UK university (or other institution)
  2. a maths qualification of the same standard as GCSE (General Certificate of Secondary Education) grade 4.
  3. for teaching children aged 3 to 11, a science qualification of the same standard as GCSE grade 4.

How do I download my teaching credential? ›

The California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CTC) no longer issues paper copies of credential(s)/permit(s). You may obtain a copy of your valid credential(s)/permit(s) by logging in your CTC Educator Page at www.ctc.ca.gov.

What is a passing score on the Praxis in Maryland? ›

The combined, composite score for candidates who have taken the Praxis I is 527. Candidates who take the Praxis Core need to pass all three tests. Passing scores on the Praxis Core are Reading (5712) 156, Writing (5722) 162, and Mathematics (5732) 150.

What do you need to substitute teach in MD? ›


A minimum of 60 college credits from an accredited college or university is required; 6-12 months of experience working with children. Must be able to work forty-five (45) days during the school year.

How many teachers are needed in Maryland? ›

Teacher supply issues have long predated the COVID pandemic, and there were nearly 2,000 educator vacancies in Maryland in September of 2021.

Are all teachers required of a license? ›

The Department of Education-National Capital Region (NCR) issued Regional Memo 78, s. 2018 that requires all private schools in the region to strictly comply with the prescribed license for all its teaching personnel, subject to exceptions provided by law.

Are teachers with no license considered professional? ›

It is supported by Republic Act 7836: Philippine Teachers Professionalization Act of 1994 wherein it set regulations of the licensure examination and professionalization of the practice of teaching profession. It requires all teachers to take licensure examinations to be a professional teacher.

Can a teacher teach in private without license? ›

A license is necessary to teach in a private school in New York. This license is from the New York State Department of Education (NYSDOE). Private schools can only hire an unlicensed teacher if an application is filed before the teacher starts. Schools can have stronger license requirements for teachers.

What can an unqualified teacher teach? ›

Unqualified teachers undertake the same roles as their qualified counterparts, including:
  • Supporting teaching a class of pupils.
  • Ensuring that planning, preparation, recording, assessment and reporting meet pupils' needs.
  • Maintaining a positive ethos and core values of the school, both in and out of the classroom.

Is 40 too old to become a teacher? ›

Wherever you are in your journey to becoming a teacher, don't let your age be a factor. Students and schools need all kinds of teachers. Your experience will most likely be an asset: part of what makes your teaching and your classroom uniquely valuable to your school community. In short, it's never too late to teach!

Can you teach without a curriculum? ›

Curriculum is essential for teachers because without it, their teaching techniques would be disjointed and incongruous from one classroom to another.

Can you get tenure immediately? ›

Getting Early Tenure

How long it takes to get tenure isn't set in stone. As stated earlier, most schools require that you apply for tenure before your seventh year. Just because most people wait until their seventh year doesn't mean that you have to wait until then.

What happens if you are denied tenure? ›

Typically, after a tenure denial, faculty are granted a “terminal year,” where they wrap things up and look for another job.

Is tenure 6 or 7 years? ›

For those that are tenure track, it generally takes about seven years to earn tenure while working as an assistant professor. Tenure is determined by a combination of research, teaching, and service, with each factor weighted according to the values of a particular university, college or department.

What happens if you don't clear credential? ›

If requirements for the clear credential are not completed before the expiration of the preliminary, the holder will not be able to teach in California's public schools with that credential until those requirements are met and the document is renewed.

Can I clear my credential in one year? ›

Looking for a way to clear your teaching credential online? Now you can with the Teacher Induction Program from Cal State Fullerton. This online program lets you clear your teaching credential in 1–2 years and meets California's latest requirements for teacher credentialing.

What is the difference between a preliminary and clear credential? ›

California has a two-tier credential structure. A preliminary credential is the first document issued after an individual meets basic credential requirements. The preliminary credential is issued for a maximum of five years. A clear credential is issued when all credential requirements have been completed.

What state pays teachers the most? ›

Highest pay for teachers by state
States 1-12Teacher SalaryStates 13-25
New York$87,738Illinois
District of Columbia$80,659Michigan
9 more rows
Jan 24, 2023

Is Maryland a good state to teach in? ›

In our study, the lower the score, the better the state is for teachers.
Overall ranking of best and worst states for teachers in 2022.
Overall score6.42
Overall cost of living rank44
Student/teacher ratio rank24
Average annual wage rank10
49 more columns
May 31, 2022

What is the difference between qualified teacher and trained teacher? ›

Trained and qualified teachers

A qualified teacher is one who receives an academic qualification, while a trained teacher is one who has completed the minimum organized teacher training requirements (whether during pre-service training or in-service).

How long does qualified teacher status last? ›

A. There is no time limit, following the award of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), by which NQTs have to start their induction. We do advise that they try to complete their induction as soon as possible after being awarded QTS, so as to build on and strengthen the skills gained during initial teacher training (ITT). Q.

What is new qualified teacher status? ›

NQT stands for 'newly qualified teacher'. This is someone who has completed their initial teacher training and gained qualified teacher status (QTS) in England and Wales. At this level, they won't have finished their mandatory induction programme.

What credentials are needed by teachers? ›

Requirements vary by state, but at the bare minimum, teachers need to have a bachelor's degree, have experience teaching (usually accomplished through student teaching), and hold a valid teaching certificate in their state (more on how to become certified below).

What qualifications do you need to be a teacher? ›

What are the minimum entry requirements?
  • degree: you need a degree for all postgraduate teacher training programmes. ...
  • GCSE English Language and Maths at Grade C / Grade 4.
  • GCSE Science at Grade C / Grade 4 applies only to those wanting to teach Primary or Key Stage 3.

What are the requirements for teaching? ›

You may follow one of two routes in becoming a teacher, namely: a four-year Bachelor of Education degree (B. Ed.); a three-or four-year Bachelor's degree, followed by a one-year Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE). Once completed, both routes lead to classification as a professionally qualified teacher.

How important is a teacher's license and the certificate of registration? ›

A professional teacher license or teacher certification is the highest mark of professional accomplishment that makes the teacher a member of a larger network of accomplished educators shaping the profession.

What is teaching license certificate? ›

The Professional Teaching Certification (PTC) program is a non-degree program designed for individuals who have completed a Bachelor's degree in any field and who intend to teach at the secondary education level.

How do I register myself as a teacher? ›

Apply Online through NCTE Portal:

Teacher Pupils Undergoing or already passed out from any National Council for Teacher Education (NCTE) recognized teacher education program in India except Jammu and Kashmir may visit the NCTE website at Online Teacher Registration Management System (OTRMS) for Registration.

Can I become a teacher without teacher training? ›

No. Contrary to popular belief, you do not need a PGCE to teach. All you need is QTS (Qualified Teacher Status) or the equivalent, QTLS (Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills). The PGCE is an additional qualification earned alongside QTS.

Can I teach online without a certificate? ›

While a degree isn't necessary to earn money teaching English online, most hiring companies do expect and require a TEFL certification. There are a LOT of full online TEFL courses that you can take and get certified in no time from home!

How much do public school teachers make in Maryland? ›

How much does a Public School Teacher make in Maryland? The average Public School Teacher salary in Maryland is $57,923 as of February 27, 2023, but the range typically falls between $48,373 and $70,637.

Can I teach at a school without Masters? ›

If you've earned a bachelor's degree in any subject you can enroll in an alternative teacher certification program to become a licensed teacher in the states.

Can you work as an unqualified teacher? ›

Unqualified teachers are permitted to work in some but not all schools. Independent schools and academies can hire teachers based on their specialist skills, regardless of whether they are qualified or not.

How do I become a teacher if I don't have a degree? ›

This could be by taking up a role as a cover supervisor or teaching assistant, volunteering in a school, or through our Level 3 Teaching Assistant Apprenticeship, where you can earn while you learn. This way you'll know that teaching is what you want to do before committing to a degree.

What qualifications do you need to teach in a private school? ›

It isn't a legal requirement to have a recognised teaching qualification to work in an independent school, but it is, generally speaking, preferable – it shows a clear commitment to a teaching career and means that you come into the job having learned the relevant subject knowledge and teaching skills.

Can teachers who failed the let be hired as teachers? ›

Those who have failed the licensure examination for professional teachers, with a rating of not lower than five percentage points from the passing general average rating, shall be eligible as para-teachers upon issuance by the Board of a two-year special permit, renewable for a non-extendible period of two (2) years ...


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