What Questions do you have about Obtaining a PA Teaching Certification?

Education Department Certification Q & A’s

Question #1: Why should I get the Pennsylvania certificate?

Answer: Even if you never plan to teach in Pennsylvania, it makes certification in other states easier to obtain. Please refer to the NASDTEC Interstate Agreement.


Question #2: Is certification automatic?

Answer: Certification is not automatic. As students near graduation, they are to complete a formal application for certification. Certification is not a University of Scranton function. It is a state (Commonwealth of PA) function that requires an application.


Question #3: When do I apply for certification?

Answer: As students are approaching graduation, their next step is to apply to the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) for their Pennsylvania Professional Educator Certification.


Question #4: How do I apply for Pennsylvania certification?

Answer: There are two processes required when applying for a Pennsylvania professional educator certificate. Students must

a) complete the required University of Scranton paperwork and
b) complete the Pennsylvania Department of Education Teacher Information Management System (TIMS) online application process.


Question #5: How do I access the Pennsylvania Department of Education Teacher Information Management System (TIMS) online application?

Answer: Students can access TIMS through the following web address.


Question #6: How do I use the TIMS system?

Answer: Students must register with TIMS by indicating their name, physical address, email address, username, password, and answers to security questions. It is strongly recommended that students view the TIMS online users guide for applicants, which can be viewed here.

Additionally, a certification information seminar is held once per semester by the certification officer at the University of Scranton. This seminar provides students with detailed directions on how to submit the online application as well as pertinent paperwork for the process. The certification officer is also available for one-on-one appointments to answer student questions and assist with the certification process.


Question #7: What about certification in other states?

Answer: There are two processes for pursuing certification in other states. They are the following:

  1. a)  Credentials review which involves a virtual checklist of required courses. This could mean trouble unless you planned carefully.
  2. b)  NASDTEC Interstate Agreement which is an agreement between states that
    1. covers only curricular requirements
    2. accepts Pennsylvania Curriculum as meeting theirs
    3. non-curricular requirements not covered- Workshops
      – Tests

Question #8: Whose responsibility is it to apply for certification in states other than Pennsylvania?

Answer: Students need to obtain the application and complete the forms. The certification officer will complete only those forms required as part of the interstate certification compact by the other states. It is strongly recommended that students who wish to obtain certification in a state other than Pennsylvania remain abreast of the certification requirements for the state(s) in which they wish to pursue certification. They can begin by reviewing the respective state department ofeducation’s website(s). Although the certification officer at the University ofScranton is happy to assist with this process, state certification requirements change frequently, and it is not possible for the certification officer at the Universityof Scranton to be aware of each state’s requirements.


Question #9: Who is responsible for certification at the University of Scranton and how may I contact the certification officer?
Dr. Vanessa Talarico is the certification officer at the University of Scranton. Her contact information is:
Dr. Vanessa Talarico
141 McGurrin Hall University of Scranton
800 Linden Street
Scranton, PA 18510
vanessa.talarico@scranton.edu
570-941-5810

PT and Primary Care: Should they be Linked?

Take it from Bill Boissonnault, PT, DPT, DHSc, FAPTA, executive vice president of professional affairs at APTA – Physical Therapists could make a very strong career in primary care. See some of what he has to say below:

“That ‘primary care culture’ starts in DPT programs, where students are being trained to provide that necessary broad level of service,” he says. “Students get academic grounding in differential diagnosis and medical screening necessary for patient triaging responsibilities.” Boissonnault adds, however, that “the more exposure students can get to primary care models during their clinical rotations—as in the VA model—the better, so they can see this type of care delivery in action and be fully appreciative of the possibilities and opportunities that exist for PTs in primary care.”

The bottom line, Boissonnault says, is that primary care presents “a huge opportunity for physical therapists, the profession, and the health system in terms of producing better care outcomes, ensuring optimal utilization of resources, and decreasing costs. There’s a gap in the provision of primary care that PTs are the best-trained providers to fill.”

Check out the full story from the American Physical Therapy Association’s PT in Motion.

APTA is an individual membership professional organization representing more than 100,000 member physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, and students.

Visit our website to learn more about the DPT program at The University of Scranton!

Award Winning Professor of Education!

Dr. Julie Cerrito, Director of the Graduate Program in School Counseling at the University of Scranton, received the Partner in Education Award by the Pennsylvania Association for College Admission Counseling (PACAC).  This award was presented at the annual PACAC conference at the Kalahari Resort in Pocono Manor, Pennsylvania.

The PACAC Partner in Education Award was created to enhance awareness about the association by recognizing someone outside the membership for outstanding contribution to, and support of, post-secondary education. This award represents the collaborative spirit needed to foster a commitment to educational equity and access for all. Individuals, institutions, and organizations may be nominated to receive this award.

As the Director of the School Counseling Graduate Program, Dr. Cerrito regularly works with school counseling graduate students in finding innovative ways to assist school-aged students, particularly high school students, in reaching their postsecondary education and career goals. Drs. Julie Cerrito and LeeAnn Eschbach, faculty members in the Department of Counseling and Human Services at the University of Scranton, have collaborated with local high school administrators and practicing school counselors to create special district-wide and multi-district events such as “Post-Secondary Education Readiness Night”, “College Application Night”, and “College Signing Day”. These events invite both high school students and their parents to their respective neighborhood schools, where graduate students in the field of school counseling share vital information (ex. how to select a major, how to apply to college, how to visit a college, etc.).

These topics are important when it comes to navigating what comes next after high school and the steps one should take in planning successfully for college and a future career. Research has indicated that first-generation college students, racially and ethnically diverse students, and students from lower-socioeconomic backgrounds often lack the resources and support needed to navigate the many unknowns of the future. These events attempt to reach out to those student populations, level the playing field, and help them gain the confidence they need to be proactive in planning for the future. Graduate school counseling students frequently comment on the direct benefit of increased “learning through doing” as well as the opportunity to impact youth positively in the local area. They see how their future work as school counselors connects to really making a difference in the lives of school-aged students and their families.

To learn more about the School Counseling Program, click here.