PK-12 Teacher of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Certification (Pennsylvania Issued)

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Time to completion:

5 Semesters

The Pennsylvania Department of Education, Bureau of School Leadership and Teacher Quality, has granted approval of Saint Joseph’s University’s Online Teacher of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing PK-12 certification program.

The curriculum is specifically designed to strengthen and expand your teaching capabilities, prepare you for certification, and to develop the competencies specifically needed to support learning and development in children with hearing loss. As such, it is ideally suited for:

  • Special education teachers seeking an additional certification
  • General education teachers with an interest in becoming a teacher of students who are deaf and hard of hearing
  • General education teachers with deaf or hard of hearing students in their classrooms
  • Bachelor’s level professionals or paraprofessionals who are seeking initial certification and certification as a teacher of students who are deaf and hard of hearing*
  • Related service personnel (e.g. speech/language pathologists, occupational therapists, physical therapists) who wish to become teachers of students who are deaf and hard of hearing*
  • Sign Language interpreters who wish to become teachers of students who are deaf and hard of hearing*

Learn more about the career outlook for deaf education.

*These individuals’ credentials will be individually evaluated and additional pedagogy coursework may be required.

Between 30 and 40 percent of deaf and hard-of-hearing students are diagnosed with an additional disability.1

Earn a deaf and hard of hearing education master’s at SJU by taking just 6 more credit hours.

PA Deaf and Hard of Hearing PK-12 Certification Options

The certification may be completed as a stand-alone option (30 credits) or combined with a master’s degree, allowing you to earn a Master of Science in Education – Teacher of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing PK-12 certification (36 credits).

Our deaf and hard of hearing certification courses offer in-depth analyses regarding education of deaf and hard of hearing students. You can learn how to make a difference in students’ lives by learning and engaging in our hearing loss research.

Our progressive certification courses are taught by our expert faculty, who are very involved throughout your education journey at Saint Joseph’s University. Taking online courses does not take away our faculty’s dedication to your learning.

Program Requirements

Candidates for the online Teacher of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing PK-12 certification are required to hold a bachelor’s degree and are expected to have basic Sign Language competency. Additionally, this program is intended for individuals who have earned at least initial Standard/Level 1 certification or have equivalent education and experience working with deaf/hard of hearing students.

This certificate qualifies speech pathologists, occupational therapists, physical therapists, current teachers, and sign language interpreters to teach deaf and hard of hearing students.

Student Teaching and Field Experience

The PA Department of Education requires all teacher candidates to complete field experience competencies in certification programs. The Special Education Department at Saint Joseph’s University has designated activities in each course in the required curriculum to meet the state standards. The last course in this program is the student teaching experience.

From the student teaching experience, you can truly understand what it takes to work with deaf and hard of hearing students. This necessary step to complete our curriculum prepares you for your jump into the workforce as soon as you graduate.

For more on student teaching or a complete list of admissions criteria, call (215) 473-2695 to speak with a Program Manager, or request more information.


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