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Teacher Certification Requirements

LIU Riverhead offers degree programs in education: B.S. in Childhood Education (Grades 1 to 6), M.S. in Teaching Students with Disabilities (Grades 1 to 6 & 7 to 12), and the M.S. in Literacy (Birth to Grade 6), all of which lead to certification in New York State.

Requirements for teacher certification in New York includes successful completion of a bachelor's or master's degree; passing of certification tests (basic skills and subject-specific knowledge); completing workshops in child abuse identification and violence prevention; fingerprinting; field experience; and student teaching. Long Island University's undergraduate and graduate degrees programs are designed to prepare students to meet these certification requirements.

In their final semester, education majors at LIU Riverhead are eligible to apply for New York State certification through the New York State TEACH system. Upon completion of the degree and all other certification requirements, LIU at Riverhead will recommend (institutional recommendation) the student for the applicable teacher certification.
LIU at Riverhead prepares students for two levels of certification in New York State — Initial and Professional:

  • Initial Certification is the minimum certification required to teach in New York State. The entry-level certificate is valid for 5 years and is issued in a specific subject and/or grade level. Initial Certification leads to the Professional Certificate. After three years of professional teaching experience, you can apply for the Professional Certificate to continue to be certified in New York State. All teacher-training bachelor's and master's programs at LIU at Riverhead lead to Initial Certification.
  • Professional Certification is required to continue teaching in New York State. This advanced-level certificate is continuously valid with completion of New York State-required professional development hours on a 5-year cycle.

Current LIU at Riverhead students should contact the Education Program Office, 631-287-8214, for certification application instructions and requirements.

Requirements for New York State Certification (Institutional Recommendation)

B.S. in Childhood Education (Grades 1 to 6)

  • Completion of the approved degree program
  • Students must pass the following New York State Teacher Certification Examinations:

- Liberal Arts and Sciences Test (LAST)
- Elementary Assessment of Teaching Skills (AST-W)
- Content Specialty Test (CST) - Multi-Subject

For complete information about the New York State Teacher Certification Exams, visit the New York State Teacher Certification Examinations Web site.

  • Students must complete the following workshops:

- School Violence Prevention and Intervention Workshop (Project S.A.V.E.)
- Child Abuse Identification Workshop

  • In order to student teach or receive your New York State teaching certificate or apply for employment in a school district, charter school or boards of cooperative educational services (BOCES), New York State requires you to satisfy a Fingerprint Investigation for a criminal history background check. You must complete the fingerprinting process prior to student teaching. Visit the "Fingerprinting" section of the New York State Education Department Web site for more information and directions on how to apply.

M.S. in Childhood Education (Grades 1 to 6)

  • Completion of the approved degree program
  • Students must pass the following New York State Teacher Certification Examinations:

- Liberal Arts and Sciences Test (LAST)
- Elementary Assessment of Teaching Skills (AST-W)
- Content Specialty Test (CST) Multi-Subject


For complete information about the New York State Teacher Certification Exams, visit the New York State Teacher Certification Examinations Web site.

  • Students must complete the following workshops:

- School Violence Prevention and Intervention Workshop (Project S.A.V.E.)
- Child Abuse Identification Workshop

  • In order to student teach or receive your New York State teaching certificate or apply for employment in a school district, charter school or boards of cooperative educational services (BOCES), New York State requires you to satisfy a Fingerprint Investigation for a criminal history background check. You must complete the fingerprinting process prior to student teaching. Visit the "Fingerprinting" section of the New York State Education Department Web site for more information and directions on how to apply.

M.S. in Literacy Education (Birth to Grade 6)

M.S. in Teaching Students with Disabilities Education (Grades 1 to 6)

M.S. in Teaching Students with Disabilities Generalist (Grades 7 to 12)