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How to Choose a Teaching Program

Know your certification options, and learn what to consider in a teacher preparation program.

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Whether you’re in school, out of school or considering a career change, there’s a pathway for you to become a teacher.

Here, we’ll go over the types of teaching programs available in Texas, and how you might choose the right program for you. 

Attending a teaching program is one of several steps to get certified in Texas. Get a full explanation of certification with the TeachDFW certification guide.

On this page:

4 Ways to Complete Your Teacher Training

A teaching program will give you the skills and knowledge to teach your chosen grade and subject. Let's take a look at your teaching program options.

Make sure your program works for you

Once you have an idea of which pathway is right for you, you’ll want to make sure that your must-haves are covered. 

Your teaching program should:

  • Offer a credential in the grade and subject you want to teach.
  • Be approved for certification in Texas.
  • Work for you financially.
  • Work with your schedule. Program coursework can be mostly online, in-person or a mix of both, and all programs require fieldwork in schools. 

Once you have these logistics covered, you can look more closely at the values and focus of the programs you’re considering, to find the best fit. 

With TeachDFW's Program Explorer, you can find and compare teaching programs across the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Each program profile includes tuition costs, insider info from current students and more.

What to look for in a teaching program

Teaching programs vary in many ways, including size, duration, student demographics, admissions requirements and more. As you compare programs, consider how you learn best and what skills are important to you.

Current teachers, teacher preparation program officials and school district HR chiefs (you know, the experts) say that a strong teaching program should offer these hallmarks:

  • Lots of hands-on experience
  • Preparation to teach diverse populations
  • Mentoring and coaching
  • Commitment to continuous improvement

How do you know what teaching programs have to offer in each of these categories? We can help with that!

Understanding program hallmarks

When you visit a teaching program’s profile through the Program Explorer, you’ll see that most profiles include a “Program Hallmarks” section (toward the bottom of the profile). Program hallmarks explain how individual programs incorporate each of these categories.

In the next section, we’ll go over what each "program hallmark" category includes, why it matters and how to find out what it looks like at your prospective programs. Basically, this is a guide to help you understand the information on the TeachDFW program profiles — and dig deeper into why each program hallmark is meaningful.

Remember, you can always talk through your program options with free 1-on-1 coaching. Get advice from an experienced teaching professional, over phone, video chat or email.

Teaching Program Hallmarks

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