Certification Testing and Registration Information
Pennsylvania requires assessment of all candidates in basic skills, general knowledge, professional knowledge and subject area knowledge before a certificate may be issued.
New Special Education PK-12 Certification
Information can be found on PDE's website here: Certification Testing (pa.gov)
Basic Skills or Pre-Service Tests
Needed for APS
Visit the APS Home Page for the most current information regarding testing requirements.
- Basic Skills or Pre-Service Tests and Score Requirements
- If you are unable to use your SAT or ACT scores, you will need to take the PAPA or the Praxis tests.
- Both companies offer a free practice test as well as a guidebook for what types of questions are on the test. If you need additional practice, they also supply tests for a fee.
- Both companies offer a fee wavier, but there are conditions and deadlines.
Content Area Tests
Needed For Certification
Certification Tests and Score Requirements are available on the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) website. The link below will re-direct you to the PDE Certification Testing Requirements website. Select #3 in the list. Select the appropriate tab within the document for your particular certification area.
- A minimum GPA of 2.8 or greater is required - higher test scores are needed when the GPA is a 2.8 - 2.99. Lower test scores are accepted with a GPA of 3.01 or higher. For GPA equaling 3.0 see PDE's document above.
- If you pass by GPA, score reports will always reflect 'Not Passed'. PDE will review your GPA and score report after you are recommended for certification by MU.
- The GPA sliding scale does not apply to add-ons.
- For information regarding Qualifying Test Scores as related to GPA, view the appropriate column in the document above (PDE Certification Tests and Score Requirements and GPA Sliding Scale).
Registration information and instructions for the following are available on the Registration Instructions Home Page.
- General Registration Instructions for ALL Tests
- Specific Information relating to the following:
- Persons Receiving their FIRST PA Instructional Certificate
- Persons being Certified in MORE THAN ONE Certification Area
- Persons ADDING an Area of Certification to a Current Certificate
For Praxis tests-Go to the Preparation Materials web page. There is a free study companion and an interactive test available for $19.95.
Mometrix also offers a short free practice test for the Praxis tests.
In addition, Khan Academy offers free test preparation materials for the Praxis Core tests.
For PAPA tests-Go to the Practice Tests web page. There is a free practice test and an interactive test available for $17.50.