What are the requirements to become a PE teacher?

Written by nicole crawford
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What are the requirements to become a PE teacher?
PE teachers teach students how to exercise safely and effectively. (gym image by Mat Hayward from Fotolia.com)

Physical education (PE) teachers specialise in training young children and teenagers in exercise, sports, fitness and nutrition. According to Education Portal, "nearly all schools from first grade through the end of high school employ physical education teachers." PE teachers can teach at the primary or secondary school levels, and as of April 2010, their average annual salary ranges from £21,866 to £33,443. Initial salary will usually increase with time and experience.

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Bachelor's Degree

Most schools require that PE teachers have at least a bachelor's degree. Popular degree majors include physical education or health or a general Bachelor of Science degree. Courses that may be helpful to prospective PE teachers include biology, field sports, kinesthetics, motor skill development, exercise planning, nutrition and sports medicine.

Licensing

Many schools require that PE teachers obtain a teaching license. License requirements vary by state. Many states also have tests that all public school teachers must complete in order to teach. In New York, one of the most popular PE teacher states according to Payscale, teachers must complete an initial certification program and pass a certification test in order to receive a license that is valid for five years. After the initial five-year period, they can go on to apply for a professional teaching certificate.

Master's Degree

Bachelor's degrees and teacher licenses are standard in most American states. Some schools may also require PE teachers to hold a master's degree in education, and sometimes this degree counts toward fulfilling the teaching license requirements, as noted at All Education. Other schools might require new PE teachers to begin a master's degree program during their employment.

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