Path to Certification

We have been certifying, supporting, and training teachers for the classroom since 1992. Our program has been nationally recognized by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Innovation and Improvement as being successful and innovative.


Future teachers will complete the application process. Upon acceptance, participants will begin pre-service training to help prepare them for the classroom during their internship year. After successful completion of program requirements, state requirements and their internship year, participants will earn a standard teaching certificate in their certification area.

Application Process

Choose Your Program

Our five distinct programs accommodate different subject areas, grade levels, schedules, and requirements. Your decision on which certification area to pursue determines the program you should enroll in and the certification tests you must take. Explore our programs to see which is the best fit for you, check the application deadlines and minimum qualifications required. 

Program Benefits

Explore Programs

Learn more about our program options

Complete the Online Application

Our online application will guide you through the required information and documentation. All applications and transcripts will be reviewed for eligibility. Once all application materials are received you will receive a response regarding your admission status within three business days.
To begin the online application, you will need the following information:
  • A valid email address.
  • Social Security Number or Resident Alien number (this will serve as your application reference number).
  • Education history including institutions attended, and dates.
  • Employment history including the supervisor’s name and contact information and dates of employment.
  • Visa, Master Card, or check routing information for $100 application fee (non-refundable).
  • Please see additional certification program requirements.
Program Benefits


Create an account and begin your online application.

Required Documents:

  • Three Professional References

    Your three professional references must email a completed Recommendation Form to the Certification Department office on your behalf. The forms should be sent directly to

  • Official College Transcripts

    Submit Official College Transcripts from ALL colleges. Official transcripts must be received in an unopened envelope sealed by the college or university. If the university or college uses an electronic transcript system such as Transcripts Network or eSCRIP-SAFE, this would be acceptable. The university must send an email with login or download instructions for the transcript to the ECP Registrar at

If your degree is from outside of the United States please submit your Foregin Credential Review of your transcripts, or use the Span Tran service to have your transcripts reviwed. You can find more information regarding this in our FAQs.

If your degree is from outside of the United States, from a country not identified on the TEA-approved list, you will need to complete the TOEFL, the Test of English as a Foreign Language. A candidate who needs the TOEFL cannot begin an Educator Preparation Prgoram until they have pseed all sections of the TOEFL using TEA’s required cut score. Official TOEFL scores are only valid for two years after you test date. You can find more information regarding this in our FAQs.

  • Background Check

    Per TAC 227.1.(b) Educator preparation programs should inform all applicants that: (1) Pursuant to the Texas Education Code (TEC), § 22.083, all candidates must undergo a criminal history background check prior to employment as an educator. If you feel this is a concern and you have questions about eligibility for a Texas educator certificate, TEA staff may perform an evaluation for a non-refundable fee of $50.

  • PACT Scores

    If you do not meet the minimum credit hour and GPA requirements you will need to pass the Pre-Admission Content Test (PACT) for your certification area. You can register and find more information about the PACT here.

  • Language Proficiency Screening

    Participants must demonstrate a near-native proficiency level in speaking, reading, writing, and listening in Spanish to qualify for Bilingual certifications. Applicants must pass a bilingual screener to be conducted during the application process. If language proficiency is not determined applicants will be encouraged to pursue the ESL certification pathway.

  • Optional Test Scores

    Submit documentation scores from;  ACT, SAT, GRE, TASP/THEA, Compass or Accuplacer.

  • For those with Military Service

    Applicants who currently or previously served in the military can provide a Joint Services Transcript or equivalent as part of their application materials for review by the Cohort Specialist.

Have documents sent to Educator Certification Program Assistant, Education Service Center Region 13, 5701 Springdale Road, Austin, TX 78723 or Please read above for specific document submission requirements. Once all application materials are received you will receive a response regarding your admission status within three business days.

Pre-Service Training

All participants will be required to attend pre-service training prior to their internship year.  Our certification program curriculum is aligned with Texas Education Agency standards and educational best practices.  All curriculum is taught by certified staff and content area experts. Training Topics include:

  • preparing for first days/weeks of school
  • establishing a positive and productive classroom environment
  • managing student/classroom procedures and behaviors
  • planning and creating developmentally appropriate instruction (curriculum and lesson plans)
  • using a variety of instructional strategies to increase engagement, rigor, and relevance
  • developing and using student assessments
  • content specific topics
  • professional responsibilities of a teacher

Our program curriculum also embeds technology from day one to ensure that future teachers are able to integrate technology effectively into their own classroom. Training Topics include:

  • demonstrating knowledge of basic terms and concepts of current technology
  • understanding and applying the guidelines for the legal and ethical use of technology and digital information
  • using productivity tools to communicate information in various formats
  • participating in electronic communities as a learner, initiator, and contributor; sharing information through online communication

Field-Based Experience

All candidates participating in an alternative certification program within Texas are mandated to fulfill 30* hours of Field-Based Experiences (FBE) as outlined in the Texas Administrative Code prior to beginning their internships. These FBEs constitute introductory experiences for candidates, involving interactive and reflective observations of certified teachers in the classroom.

*After 09/01/2024 TEA/SBEC has changed this requirement to be 50 hours of Field-Based Experience

Internship Year

Our future teachers receive full benefits and full-time salary with an employing school district as they go through their internship year. During this time Region 13 will provide support systems through a cohort model, coaching, and mentoring. Participants will be required to attend training that will continue to build on instruction learned during pre-service training. About 2/3 of our classes are face-to-face and 1/3 of our classes are online, see your certification program’s specific schedule for dates.

Program Schedule

Check program specific schedule for dates

Standard Certification

Upon successful completion of the certification program requirements,  internship year, and state required tests participants will be a fully certified teacher in Texas!

State Testing

Find out more about state required tests