Physical Education Teacher Requirements in Ohio

Oct 20, 2021

Students of all ages require physical education teachers, so the state of Ohio certifies teachers to instruct PK-12th grade. Once teachers have completed all requirements, they will be endorsed to teach every grade level in a given school.

Ohio Salary Information and Requirements

Average Salary for Teachers in Ohio (2019)* $30,240 (Preschool), $58,960 (Kindergarten) $64,090 (Elementary), $63,510 (Middle), $64,410 (Secondary)
Required Degree Bachelor's degree
Degree Field Physical Education
Testing Requirements OAE Assessment of Professional Knowledge PK-12, Physical Education subject exam

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Step 1: Earn a Bachelor's Degree

The first step for students interested in becoming physical education teachers in the state of Ohio is to enroll in an approved, accredited teacher preparation program. There are dozens of programs that meet these qualifications, and a full list can be found on the Ohio Department of Higher Education's website. Each program will have different course specifications and program requirements, so students should look through all options to find one that best fits their needs. Regardless of the chosen program, most will include classes similar to:

  • Sports science
  • Teaching physical education at specific grade levels
  • Concepts of fitness and wellness
  • Adapted physical fitness

Students will finish their education with a student-teaching internship program in order to gain experience teaching physical education in a school setting.

Step 2: Take All Required OAE Tests

Physical education teachers will need to take all required Ohio Assessments for Educators (OAE) exams. The first exam to take is the Assessment of Professional Knowledge: Multi-Age (PK-12). This test is designed to check teachers' understanding of basic educational principles, like student development and assessment strategies. The test is made up of 100 multiple-choice questions, 1 case study written assignment, and 1 work product assignment. The exam costs $105 and takes 3 hours to complete. Test-takers need to score at least 220, but any OAE can be retaken if needed.

Next, physical education teachers will need to take the Physical Education exam. This test is 3 hours long and made up of 150 multiple-choice questions. It is taken on the computer at testing centers around the state, costs $105, and requires a score of at least 220.

Step 3: Complete a Background Check

Teachers then need to pass a background check. The state of Ohio requires both an FBI background check (which will need to be re-submitted after 5 years) and an Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation check (which is valid indefinitely unless the teacher leaves the state). It is important to make sure the testing agency you use notes that your results need to be sent to the Ohio Department of Education. Teacher licenses cannot be issued if background testing is older than one year from the licensing date.

Step 4: Submit the Certification Application

The last step for future physical education teachers is to submit an application online at Ohio's Department of Education website. Teachers will specify they are applying for the initial teaching license, which is called the Resident Educator License. The fee is $160 and can be paid online. The application submission requires all transcripts and test scores be complete and background check passed. Once all criteria has been approved, teachers will be eligible for their Resident Educator License.

Study Resources for Future Ohio Teachers

It's never too early for physical education teachers to start studying for the OAE Multi-Age (PK-12) and Physical Education assessments, especially with online resources available. Check out the OAE Multi-Age (PK-12) study guide below for practice and guidance.

  • OAE Assessments for Educators - PK-12: Study Guide & Practice
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