Student Resources

Below you will find several categories of resources and frequently asked questions. Some of the answers apply to more than one question or section so search all the questions or topics for information. The sections below are loosely organized chronologically as you move closer to certification; applications toward the top and certification process toward the bottom.

Teacher Certification Program Admittance Status

  • Who advises education students

    There is A LOT to understand and navigate in order to become a teacher in Washington. Your Staff Advisor is going to be your best resource to help you plan your courses and keep you on track. They have been trained by the Teacher Certification Program on our requirements and can help guide you through the academic side of education courses as well as when to contact the Teacher Certification Program for help. If you need help identifying your staff advisor you can e-mail or call 509-963-2077 for assistance.

  • Do I have to pass the WEST-B tests before I can apply?

    Nope! As long as you have 45 graded quarter credits and intend to become a teacher please apply to the Teacher Certification Program. The earlier you apply the earlier you get consistent communication from our program. Being on the program roster helps us keep you on track for your non-academic certification requirements so that you get the support you need to make it through to certification!

    If you want to sign up for a TCP 101: I have 45 credits! Now What?! Zoom session, we would be happy to answer any of your questions!

  • I sent my ACT/SAT scores to CWU, why do I have to take the WEST-B?

    The state requires all candidates for certification to attempt a basic skills test in three subject areas. It is possible that you did not attempt a subject from the specific codes we get from College Board

    Option 1 to meet Basic Skills Requirement

    • Subject-Math240+
    • WEST-B-515 (prior to 3/4/2016)
    • SAT-27.5 (after 3/5/2016)
    • ACT-22
    • Subject-Reading240+
    • WEST-B-500 (prior to 3/4/2016)
    • SAT-27 (after 3/5/2016)
    • ACT-22
    • Subject-Writing
    • WEST-B-235+
    • SAT-490 (prior to 3/4/2016), 28 (after 3/5/2016),Did not exist before 2006
    • ACT-8 (prior to 8/31/2015), 23 (9/2015-8/2016), 8 (after 9/1/2016)


  • Do I have to email my WEST-B scores to the teacher certification program?

    No! When you completed your registration through the WEST site you should have been prompted to send your scores to CWU. If you did, then we will get them in the official score report sent to us from Pearson.

  • I got my passing WEST-B scores, but the "Basic Skills requirement" item is still on my do list?

    We appreciate your patience. The Teacher Certification program is staffed by two people who maintain records for over 1000 active students in any given quarter. These results and updates are done by hand and it could take up to a week to get the system updated for all changes. If it has been more than a couple weeks you can e-mail with your full name and student ID number and ask for help.

  • What happens if I don't pass the WEST-B?

    There are additional test + course options to provide multiple ways to demonstrate your understanding in reading, writing and math. Please review the Program Admission webpage. You can schedule an TCP 201 zoom session with one of our program staff to ask any questions you have about the Basic Skills Requirements.

Field Experience Requirements

  • How do I get fingerprints for my practicum course?

    Check out our Fingerprinting page for information. Fingerprint clearance is valid for two calendar years.

  • How do I purchase liability insurance?

    Check out our Liability Insurance page for information and a link to purchase this requirement annually.

  • How do I make an e-cert account for OSPI?

    You need to make an account on OSPI to be a certified teacher in Washington. It is ideal to make this account when you apply to the Teacher Certification Program. It is free and will be your account for as long as you are a teacher in Washington. It is best practice to use a personal email address for your account as it is yours indefinitely.

    Directions can be found starting on page 5 of the E-Cert User Guide (PDF)

    You can also watch the tutorial video on YouTube.

    video tutorial
  • How do I complete the Pre-Residency clearance application?

    Pre-Residency clearance is one way OSPI requires you to demonstrate good moral character. This is a student teaching application pre-requisite but more school districts are requiring this early for all practicum. The application is FREE and valid for two years so it doesn't hurt to complete it early! Please do not send the Teacher Certification Program notification or confirmation that you have completed this task. We are the people who clear it in OSPI and therefore know when it is done!

    Directions can be found starting on page 7 of the E-Cert User Guide (PDF) or you can follow along with the tutorial video on YouTube.

    Helpful hints!

    • It is unlikely you can complete this the same day you create your eCERT account. The eCert User Guide provided by OSPI says you can do it 15 minutes after you create your account but students have not found this to be consistently reliable, so it is best to wait overnight.
    • Practicum courses ARE NOT work experience in this context. Page 12 question 7 should be NO.
    • You can put whatever you want in Page 12 question 12 about your fingerprint clearance status.
    tutorial video
  • I don't know how or where to log my hours

    Please review the Office of Field Experiences website for a detailed guide on where to log your hours in MyCWU. You can also watch the Field Experience Log Tutorial Video below for directions and common troubleshooting issues.

    field experience log tutorial
  • The Field Experience Log is not working?

    There are dozens of reasons this could be the case. Most of the common issues are discussed in the Field Experience Log tutorial video below.

    Please e-mail for additional assistance. Please include a detailed description of the problem, and a screen shot of any error messages you are getting.

    field experience log tutorial
  • My school and/ or mentor teacher is missing from the Field Experience Log

    Please e-mail for assistance.

    Please include the following information in your e-mail

    • Last Name of Mentor
    • First Name of Mentor
    • Name of School District
    • Name of School


Recommendation to OSPI

  • Should I e-mail Teacher Certification right after graduation to process my information?

    We know this is an exciting step in your journey and you are eager to have your own classroom, but please be patient. Degree Checkout could take up to 6-8 weeks for your degree to be awarded. When the Teacher Certification Program sees your degree has been awarded, we manually review your file for recommendation. If you have met all of the certification requirements, we will recommend you to OSPI and send you an e-mail with instructions on how to claim your certificate.

    We monitor this process daily at the end of every quarter and process recommendations in batches a few times a week.

  • Can I look for jobs before my Teaching Certificate is issued?
  • My e-cert account says I am missing my WEST-B tests

    If you used SAT scores or the WEST-B remediation courses to satisfy your basic skills requirements, those tests have been loaded into OSPI. After you have been recommended to OSPI it can take up to 6-8 weeks for your certificate to be awarded.

    As long as your application status in OSPI reads PENDING then the error you are given about missing WEST-B results has not been verified by a Certification Officer at OSPI. If you receive an e-mail from OSPI saying your application is deficient then please reach out so we can help with any questions.

  • Adding minor or second major endorsement later

    Have you recently passed the NES/WEST-E test for your minor or second major and want to add that endorsement to your teaching certificate? Complete the Finishing Original Endorsements form to notify us of your request.

Undocumented students

  • Where do I go for help at CWU?

    The Diversity Center is your go to place to get questions answered and for support! The CWU Undocumented Student Resource Guide can be found through their website. If you have questions you can reach out to or by calling (509) 963-2127.

  • Can be a certified teacher in Washington?

    There is no citizenship requirement to be certified in Washington.

    Things to know and plan for:

    • When you make an OSPI eCERT account, you will need to call OSPI 360.725.6400 to get a generated social security number place holder. When you get that number assigned please relay that information to so we have the information to match you to the correct account.


  • Endorsement vs. Major/Minor

    Endorsement: An endorsement is the specific subject matter or content area listed on your teaching certificate in Washington State. All certificates must have at least one endorsement, and some endorsement areas cannot stand alone and require dual endorsements. ​

    Major/Minor: Academic course work that covers the competencies required by the state that will lead to an endorsement

  • Graduation vs. Certification

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