Please note the information and requirements on this page have recently been updated to align with the Labour Mobility Act. Applicants are encouraged to review this content carefully to ensure they are following the most up-to-date instructions.

Overview

To teach in Alberta, you are required to hold a valid Alberta teaching certificate. Your first step is to apply for Interim Professional Certification (IPC) so that Alberta Education can assess your educational and professional qualifications. It is important to note Alberta Education is the only body that can assess credentials for teaching authority in Alberta.

If you meet the requirements, you will be issued the IPC, which allows you to teach in an Alberta accredited school and is valid for 3 years. When you meet all the requirements for Permanent Professional Certification (PPC), your school authority must recommend you for a permanent certificate.

A PPC does not expire, even if you leave the profession.

Renewing an IPC or qualifying for a PPC

IPC extensions or re-issuance

If your IPC has expired or will expire soon and you haven’t met the requirements for a PPC, your school authority may recommend you for an extension or re-issuance. Among other documents, you will be required to submit a new criminal record check that includes a vulnerable sector check.

A self-disclosure form must be completed online through TWINS. There is a $25.00 fee.

Qualifying for a Permanent Professional Certificate (PPC)

Teachers cannot apply to receive a Permanent Professional Certificate (PPC) – they must be recommended by their employing school authority. A school authority is required to recommend a teacher for a PPC if a teacher working for them has successfully met requirements in the Certification of Teachers and Teacher Leaders Regulation.

To be eligible for a PPC, you must:

  • have 2 years of full time teaching (approximately 400 days equivalent) in an Alberta accredited school while holding a valid IPC
  • received 2 successful, formal evaluations based on the knowledge, skills and attributes for permanent certification outlined in the Teaching Quality Standard
  • pay the $50.00 processing fee through TWINS after your school authority has recommended you for the PPC

Application fees

Application fees are non-refundable and must be paid at the time you submit your application for teacher certification. Application fees are based on where you completed your teacher preparation program:

  • At an Alberta university: $200.00
  • At a Canadian university (outside Alberta): $225.00
  • Outside of Canada: $250.00

Please note:

  • Applications cannot be processed until the fee is paid.
  • If paying with a credit card, please pay when you submit your application.

Fees can be paid online through the Teacher Workforce Information System (TWINS) using VISA, VISA Debit, MasterCard, or American Express, or by mail.

To pay by mail, send a Canadian money order payable to “Government of Alberta” with your certificate or reference number to the Office of the Registrar:

The Registrar at Alberta Education
2nd floor, 44 Capital Boulevard
10044 108 Street
Edmonton, Alberta  T5J 5E6

Cash, cheques and international money orders are not accepted.

Temporary teaching authority

Graduates from an Alberta Bachelor of Education program with an employment offer are eligible for a 90-day temporary teaching authority.

  1. Submit your Interim Professional Certificate (IPC) application, including all required documentation, and submit your fee at least 8 weeks before the end of your degree program.
  2. We will process your application for a pre-certification letter in approximately 20 business days.
  3. Request an offer letter from your prospective employing school authority.
  4. Take the pre-certification letter and the offer letter from your employer to the Dean of your Education faculty and request an early clearance letter stating you have successfully completed your program and will be recommended for teacher certification.

With these 3 letters, you are authorized to teach for 90 days.

When the university dean’s recommendation list is received by Teacher and Leadership Certification at Alberta Education, an IPC will be issued and mailed to you.

Cross-Canada Labour Mobility

Under the Canadian Free Trade Agreement (CFTA), teachers who hold a valid teaching certificate from another Canadian jurisdiction are eligible for certification in Alberta without requiring additional education, training, or examination. Teachers certificated in another jurisdiction in Canada may be asked to demonstrate language proficiency in the language of practice in Alberta.

Individuals must still apply for Alberta teacher certification and will be eligible for either an Interim Professional Certificate or a Letter of Authority (LoA) with the same scope of practice as authorized by your valid teaching certificate from the other Canadian jurisdiction.

Apply for initial certification

Step 1: Check your credentials

All teachers in Alberta require a minimum of 16 years of formal education, which includes a 4 year university degree with a pre-service teacher preparation program from an approved institution. The teacher preparation program must lead to teacher certification in the jurisdiction where the program was completed. It must also include:

  • 48 semester hour credits of coursework in professional teacher education courses within a structured teacher preparation program
  • 10 weeks of supervised student teaching (practicum) at the elementary or secondary level

Elementary

Elementary teachers must complete a minimum of 24 semester hour credits in coursework that includes:

  • 3 semester hour credits in Canadian Studies
  • 3 semester hour credits in Mathematics
  • 3 semester hour credits in Science
  • 6 semester hour credits in English or French Literature and Composition

Secondary

Secondary teachers must complete:

  • 24 semester hour credits in a teachable subject area
  • 6 semester hour credits in English or French Literature and Composition

Internationally educated applicants

All applicants for certification must meet the above criteria and academic credentials will be assessed on a course-by-course basis. If your program is not acceptable to the Minister of Education, you may need to take additional courses to qualify for an Interim Professional Certificate.

When your assessment is complete, you will receive a letter of assessment in the mail that details the outcome of your application.

Programs not recognized

Your teacher preparation program must be a university course-based program (academic) and not an employment-based training program.

  • It must be completed at an accredited post-secondary institution, and
  • It must lead to certification to teach in the jurisdiction where the institution is located and where you completed the degree and teacher preparation program.

Programs not recognized include but are not limited to:

  • School-centered Initial Teacher Training
  • School Direct, or Graduate Teacher Programs
  • Teach America
  • TEACH-NOW
  • Teacher Ready

Other programs and courses that may not be recognized include:

  • denominational or doctrinal courses
  • audit courses
  • self-directed teacher education programs
  • distance delivered education programs
  • alternative certification programs

Step 2: Create a Teacher Workforce Information System (TWINS) account

You must complete an online application through the Teacher Workforce Information System (TWINS).

  1. Click “Sign up for an Alberta Education Account”. The Alberta Education Account “Sign In” page will display.
  2. Sign up for an Alberta Education account using your personal email account. An email will be sent to the email address you used to create the account to confirm your enrolment.
  3. Go to the TWINS Teacher Self-Service website and click the “Apply for Alberta Teacher Certification” button from the left-hand menu.

Step 3: Complete the application through TWINS

  1. Complete all sections of the application.
  2. Review your application carefully and “Submit Application” on the last page.
  3. Once completed, you will be automatically directed to the “Application Submission Success” screen. Do not navigate away from the page until the PDF copy of your application is displayed.
  4. Print the PDF copy for your records. It may take up to several minutes to generate. Do not mail a copy of your application unless requested.
  5. Submit all supporting documents and fees.
  6. Track the status of your application online.

If you find an error or omission in your application after it is submitted, please email [email protected]. You will be contacted with further instructions if necessary.

Alberta Education will accept consent in electronic form for the purposes of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.

After you apply

Applications will not be processed until all documents and fees are received. You have one year to complete your application, after which time your application will be closed.

Please review your application checklist on TWINS to identify what documents are required. It may take at least 20 business days for documents to be processed and status updates to be posted to your account. Application status is not available by phone, email or walk-in - you must log into your TWINS account to check the status of your application. You will be notified in writing when your file is complete and in the queue for assessment.

Processing time for applications is based on the date the application was considered complete:

  • Alberta graduates: within 14 business days
  • Canadian graduates: within 20 business days
  • Out-of-Country applicants: within 120 business days

Supporting documents

Your application will not be processed until all supporting documents and fees are received. Please review your application’s checklist on TWINS to identify what documents are required.

Any documents in a language other than English or French must be accompanied by a translation from an official translator.

Document Alberta graduates Canadian graduates Out-of-country graduates How to submit Original required?
Identity documents Required Required Required Online or postal mail No
Criminal Record Check and Vulnerable Sector Check Required Required Required See Criminal record check section below Yes
Evidence of language proficiency Not required Not required Required By postal mail Yes
Statement of Professional Standing May be required Required Required Email where available, or by postal mail directly from all certificating jurisdictions Yes
Official transcripts May be required May be required Required Email where available, or by postal mail directly from all post-secondary institutions Yes
Secondary School Leaving Certificate Not required Not required Required By postal mail Require a notarized colour copy of the original high school credential with record of courses completed
Evidence of all name changes Required if applicable Required if applicable Required if applicable Online, email or postal mail No

Identity documents

All applicants are required to provide evidence of their legal names and right to work in Canada. Acceptable documents include a photocopy of:

  • a government-issued Canadian birth certificate
  • a valid Canadian passport
  • Canadian Citizenship Card or Certificate (front and back)
  • a valid Permanent Resident Card (front and back)
  • a Canadian Certificate of Registration of Birth Abroad
  • a valid Canadian work permit issued without restriction

For evidence of a change of name:

  • a copy of a government-issued marriage certificate(s), which includes only name, location and date of marriage (marriage registration, civil marriage statements or church marriage certificates are not acceptable); or
  • Vital Statistics name change certificate

Criminal record check

A criminal record check must be obtained through one of the agencies as deemed appropriate by the Registrar. It must:

  • be current (within the last 6 months)
  • be original *
  • include a Vulnerable Sector Check
  • include all names you have used for legal purposes
  • be from the jurisdiction where you previously resided if less than 6 months in Alberta

* If you obtained your criminal record check through an approved online ePIC system in Canada, please:

  • request that the official results be shared with the Alberta Government Department of Education Office of the Registrar

OR

  • Contact our office at [email protected] for further information on how to submit your criminal record check.

If you have a record of criminal conviction or charges, you will need to provide additional documentation, which will be determined after your file has been reviewed. After evaluating the details, the Registrar may refuse to issue certification.

Evidence of language proficiency for Alberta Teacher Certification

The Alberta Certification of Teachers and Teacher Leaders Regulation requires applicants applying for teacher certification to present evidence of proficiency in at least one of the 2 official languages of Canada, English or French.  Proof of language proficiency ensures that teachers are able to communicate effectively in all modes (speaking, reading, listening and writing) in English or French prior to entering the classroom.

An applicant for teacher certification can demonstrate proficiency in English or French by providing proof of meeting one of the acceptable requirements noted below:

  • A current (within 2 years) score report for the Test of English as a Foreign Language – internet based test (TOEFL-iBT) or TOEFL-iBT-Special Home Edition (Institution Code 7357) with a total score of 97 with a minimum score of 27 in Speaking, 24 in Writing, and 23 in the Listening and Reading categories.
    • To register for the TOEFL-iBT, please contact the Corporate Headquarters of the Educational Testing Services in Princeton, New Jersey at 1-609-921-9000; or visit their website at: www.ets.org./commun.html.
  •  A current (within 2 years) score report for the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic test with a score of 6.5 in Writing, Listening and Reading, and 7 in Speaking.
    • For information about the IELTS Academic test, please visit www.ielts.org
  • Completion of secondary school education, inclusive of Grade 12, in English or French.
  • A minimum score of B1 on the Diplôme d’études en langue française (DELF). 
  • A minimum score of C1 on the Diplôme approfondi de langue française (DALF).
  • Completion of a post-graduate degree program in English or French from an approved university.
  • Verified K-12 teaching experience in Canada, in English or French, of at least three years of full-time (or part-time equivalent) within five years from the application for Alberta teacher certification and upon presentation of an acceptable teacher evaluation report.
  • A letter or other evidence from a current employer (i.e., school authority) confirming whether the teacher applicant is competent to practise the regulated profession in the Alberta language of practice (English or French).
  • Proof an applicant completed their professional education in the Alberta language of practice (English or French).
  • Proof that the teacher applicant has completed a language proficiency assessment and met language proficiency requirements that are satisfactory to the relevant regulatory body.
  • Proof of practicing a minimum of one year in the Alberta language of practice (English or French).

Questions regarding language proficiency should be directed to the Teacher and Leadership Certification office at [email protected].

Statement of Standing

You will need to provide a Statement of Standing from every jurisdiction where you have held teacher certification, including the jurisdiction where you completed your teacher preparation program. Statements of Standing must be sent directly to the Registrar from each jurisdiction.

The Statement of Standing must show:

  • your certificate’s date of issue
  • whether your certificate has been suspended, cancelled or withdrawn
  • the type or level of the certificate
  • the scope of its authority

If a jurisdiction does not issue certification, a letter of reference is accepted in lieu of a Statement of Standing. Letters of reference must:

  • be on official school letterhead
  • be dated and signed by the head of the school
  • be sent directly to the Registrar at Alberta Education by the head of the school
  • detail the duration of employment as well as subjects and grades taught
  • attest that you left the school in good standing

Official transcripts

Transcripts are a detailed record of courses completed and grades received.

Transcripts are not accepted by fax or directly from applicants themselves (even if they are in sealed envelopes or notarized). Alberta Education requires official transcripts to be sent by the post-secondary and transfer institutions you attended. These documents must be either mailed directly from the post-secondary institution to the Registrar at Alberta Education or sent electronically via an institutional email address belonging to the appropriate office to [email protected] or by postal mail.

You may be asked to provide additional information, such as a course syllabus of program(s) of study and practicum reports detailing the hours/days/weeks of supervised student teaching.

Secondary school leaving certificate

Internationally educated applicants may need to provide an original notarized colour copy of the high school leaving certificate that includes a record of courses completed and grades received. Your application checklist will indicate if this document is required.

If a translator is required to translate the documents, the translator used must also work for, or be accredited by, a minimum of one of the following approved organizations:

Contact

Connect with the Office of the Registrar:

Hours: 8:15 am to 4:30 pm (Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)
Phone: 780-427-2045
Toll free: 310-0000 before the phone number (in Alberta)
Fax: 780-422-4199
Email: [email protected]

Address:
The Registrar at Alberta Education
2nd floor, 44 Capital Boulevard
10044 108 Street
Edmonton, Alberta  T5J 5E6

The office is currently closed to the public. Please email [email protected] if you have any questions about document submission.