Frequently Asked Certification Questions

  • What type of certificates are available in Maryland?

    Type of Certificate

    Validity Period

    Limit

    Conditional Certificate

    2 years

    2

    Standard Professional I Certificate

    5 years

    1

    Standard Professional II Certificate

    5 years

    1

    Advanced Professional Certificate

    5 years

    unlimited

    How do I renew my Standard Professional I Certificate?
    Complete a total of 6 credits, reading credits if you have not satisfied your requirement, during the five-year validity period.  Since you will have a total of ten years to complete your master’s degree or master’s equivalency, you will probably want to take more than just the 6 required credits.  You also must have a minimum of three years of successful teaching experience during the validity period of your certificate.

    How do I renew my Standard Professional II Certificate?
    By the end of the five-year validity period of your Standard Professional II certificate, you must complete either a master’s degree or master’s equivalent (36 credits, 21 must be taken at the graduate level and the remaining 15 can be any combination of undergraduate, graduate, or MSDE credits). You also must have a minimum of three years of successful teaching experience during the validity period of your certificate.

    What must I do to renew my Advanced Professional Certificate?
    You must complete a total of 6 credits and/or equivalent credits during the five-year validity period of each Advanced Professional Certificate.  You also must have a minimum of three years of successful teaching experience during the validity period of each certificate.

    When am I eligible for my Advanced Professional Certificate?
    After you have three years of school level teaching, administrative, or specialist experience and a master’s degree or equivalent, you are eligible for the APC Certificate. There is a pay increase associated with the APC certificate so it is advantageous to apply for it as soon as you are eligible.

    How do I request the APC?
    You can request the APC by contacting the certification staff in writing. It is not automatically requested unless your current certificate is expiring. The pay increase will go into effect the first day of the month after the request is made and transcripts are received.

    When am I eligible for a Master’s plus pay increase?
    You are eligible for the Master’s plus 30 when you have a conferred master’s degree and 30 additional credits. A minimum of 27 credits must be taken at the graduate level and 3 credits can be MSDE credits. You are eligible for the Master’s plus 60 when you have a conferred master’s degree and 60 additional credits. A minimum of 54 credits must be taken at the graduate level and 6 credits can be MSDE credits.

    How do I request the Master’s plus 30/60 pay increase?
    You can request the Master’s plus 30/60 by contacting Human Resources in writing. It is not automatically requested. The pay increase will go into effect the first day of the month after the request is made and any accompanying transcripts are received.

    What courses are acceptable for certificate renewal?
    All coursework must be taken at a regionally accredited college or university or through MSDE and must be related to education in general or your certification area.

    What is Equivalent Credit?  Can anyone use these credits to renew a certificate?
    Equivalent credit is awarded for specified professional development experiences. APC certificate holders may renew their certificates with equivalent credit and/or undergraduate, graduate, or MSDE credits. Equivalent credits are specific to CCPS and can only be used to renew an Advanced Professional Certificate. A list of options and other pertinent information is available on the following websites:
    Professional Development Plan
    Professional Development Plan (writable)
    Professional Development Activities

    Who is responsible for renewing my certificate?
    You are responsible for keeping track of your current certificate and its validity period. You need to keep track of the coursework that you complete and be sure to send original transcripts/official grade reports to Human Resources for all coursework completed. MSDE credits are automatically sent to HR. College transcripts and grade reports must be requested by the employee. It is most efficient if you have the transcripts sent to you in a sealed envelope and you deliver them to HR.  That way, you know when the college has actually sent your transcript. Human Resources will make a request for your certificate to MSDE about two months before your certificate expires after all official documentation is received for your renewal credits.

    Is there a fee to renew my certificate?  How do I pay it?
    There is a $10 certification renewal fee, but the addition of a certification area costs nothing. Fees can be deducted from the teacher’s paycheck a month or two before the certificate expires if you have the following form on file: Certification Fee Authorization Form