New Jersey Department of Education

Teacher Candidate Basic Skills Requirement

Regulations for certification include a basic skills requirement for teacher preparation program entry and certification issuance.

  • Candidates in a Certificate of Eligibility with Advanced Standing (CEAS) educator preparation program must meet the basic skills requirement prior to starting coursework in a program.
  • Candidates applying for an initial Certificate of Eligibility (CE) must meet the basic skills requirement prior to issuance. Candidates applying for a CE with a career and technical education (CTE) endorsement, other than agriculture, business-related or family and consumer science endorsements, must meet this requirement prior to issuance of the standard certificate

Meeting the Basic Skills Requirement

  1. Pass a New Jersey Department of Education (NJDOE) approved test of basic skills. Currently, the only approved test* is the Praxis Core Academic Skills with passing scores as follows: Reading: 156, Math: 150, Writing: 162;
  2. Demonstrate proficiency in the use of the English language and in mathematics by achieving a minimum score established by the Commissioner on the SAT, ACT, or GRE. The scores must be in the top-half percentile for all test takers in the year the respective test was taken, for each year such data is available;
  3. Hold a master’s or terminal degree with a minimum GPA of 3.00 from an accredited institution of higher education.

*If a candidate completed and passed the Pre-Professional Skills Test (PPST/Praxis I) prior to June 2014, the NJDOE will accept passing scores on those exams to satisfy the basic skills requirement (passing scores on the PPST are as follows: Reading: 175, Math: 174, Writing: 173).

Acceptable Test Sections to Satisfy Requirement

The NJDOE will accept the highest score on each test section, regardless of test date.

Candidates must demonstrate competency in Math, Reading, and Writing utilizing the appropriate sections of either Praxis CORE, SAT, ACT, or GRE. The required scores must be met on each of the assessments and/or sections used to meet the requirement.

Reading Writing Math
Praxis Core Reading Praxis Core Writing Praxis Core Math
SAT Verbal or SAT Reading SAT Verbal or SAT Reading SAT Math
Evidence-Based Reading and Writing Evidence-Based Reading and Writing  
ACT English ACT English ACT Math
GRE Verbal GRE Verbal GRE Quantitative


Report Scoring

    • A CEAS educator preparation program may determine the evidence required to demonstrate a candidate’s score on an exam.
    • CE candidates are responsible for ensuring official test scores are sent to the NJDOE. Official Praxis Core, SAT, ACT, and GRE scores must be reported directly to the NJDOE using the Designated Institution (DI) code assigned to the NJDOE, as listed in the chart below. Please note that if you choose to have your score(s) expedited to the NJDOE, it does not mean the evaluation of your credentials will be expedited as well.                   
    DI Codes For NJDOE
    Assessment DI Code
    Praxis Core Academic Skills R7666
    ACT 1881
    GRE 2337
    SAT 9059

    Please review the Test Requirements for Certification in New Jersey for additional educator assessment guidance.

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