How to Become a Science Teacher in Arkansas

Oct 20, 2021

When it comes to science in our school systems, the National Science Teachers Association stresses the importance of including it in the curriculum. The Arkansas Science Teachers Association underscores this and is dedicated to promoting science education in the state. If you'd like to provide children with the opportunity to learn about astronomy, chemistry, biology, and many other scientific topics in Arkansas, keep reading.

Arkansas Science Teachers Requirements

Average Salary for Teachers in Arkansas (2019)* $50,720 (Middle School Teachers, Except Special & Career/Technical Education)
$51,870 (Secondary School Teachers, Except Special & Career/Technical Education)
Required Degree Bachelor's degree
Degree Field Education or science
Testing Requirements Praxis CASE: Reading (5712), Writing (5722), and Mathematics (5732), and appropriate Praxis Science examinations (5440, 5623, 5571, 5245, 5235, & 5256) for their grade level

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

Step 1: Fulfill Educational Requirements

Individuals interested in become science teachers will need to obtain a bachelor's degree and complete an approved teacher training program, which includes a student teaching assignment. Individuals interested in teaching high school can pursue a bachelor's degree in disciplines like biology, physics, or chemistry. The teacher education component, which is often available as a minor, would include coursework in science and mathematics instructional techniques and perspectives. Aspiring middle school teachers take these courses as part of a bachelor's degree in education, in which they also choose a focus in science and one other area.

Step 2: Pass Certification Examinations

After individuals fulfill the educational requirements, they will need to take their state certification examinations. All teaching candidates in Arkansas must pass the Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators (CASE). Individuals will be scored on their reading, writing, and mathematics skills. The test can be taken one section at a time or simultaneously via the Core Academic Skills for Educators: Combined Test (5751). Individuals must earn 156 in reading, 162 in writing, and 150 in mathematics to pass this examination.

Science teaching candidates will also need to take science Praxis exams designed for their grade level:

  • Middle School Science: Grades 4-8 (5440): Passing score is 150
  • Principles of Learning and Teaching: Grades 5-9 (5623): Passing score is 160
  • High School Earth and Space Sciences: Content Knowledge (5571): Passing score is 145
  • High School Chemistry: Content Knowledge (5245): Passing score is 150
  • High School Physics: Content Knowledge (5256): Passing score is 135
  • High School Biology: Content Knowledge (5235): Passing score is 142
  • Principles of Learning and Teaching: Grades 7-12 (5624): Passing score is 157

Step 3: Obtain Teaching Credentials

After individuals meet all of the above testing requirements, they will be able to apply for their initial teaching license. They will need to complete an application and pay the required application fee as well as submit all transcripts. The final step is to receive a clear background check from the state of Arkansas, the Child Maltreatment Central Registry, as well as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). This license is valid for five years.

Certification Resources for Arkansas Science Teachers

Aspiring teachers interested in teaching science can utilize the study aids below to prepare for their certification examinations.

  • Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators - Combined Test: Practice & Study Guide
  • Praxis PLT - Grades 7-12: Practice & Study Guide
  • Praxis Middle School Science: Practice & Study Guide
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