How to Become a Teacher Assistant

There are three levels to become a Teacher Assistant.

The Level 1 certificate is valid for 3 years. After that, you must complete 9 credit hours of college and have at least 1 year of licensed Teaching Assistant experience before applying for the Level 2 certificate. In order to qualify for Level 3, you must have a total of 18 credit hours of college and at least 1 year licensed experience as a Teaching Assistant.

Upon obtaining Level 3 certification, Teaching Assistants will complete 100 clock hours of professional development every 5 years to keep their certificate valid.

Requirement -- Level 1 Teacher Assistant (good for 3 years)

  • Copy of High School Diploma or High School Transcripts (must write your ss# and date of birth on the copy of your high school diploma – if your high school diploma has a last name different than your current one, must include a photocopy of name change, i.e. marriage certificate, etc)

  • Child Abuse Workshop Certificate (NYS Mandated Reporter)-Free- NOTE: Make sure to request the State Education Department Form for certification.

  • School Violence Workshop Certificate - available online through the Jefferson Lewis BOCES – click here to register

  • Dignity for All Students Act Workshop (DASA) – available through the Jefferson Lewis BOCES – click here to register

  • Teacher Assistant Certification Exam (ATAS) – (NYS TCE) to register

  • You must register and pay before you can choose a time and location.

  • Fingerprint Clearance – Applicants can register online here to be fingerprinted. (Approximately $102.00)

After completing requirements above:

Create TEACH Account – TCERT

  • Log on and apply for Level 1 certificate – ($35)

  • Choose BOCES to do the evaluation – you will find us under the COUNTY button NOT the DISTRICT button (Jefferson County) send documents noted above to:Teacher Certification Office, Jefferson Lewis BOCES, 20104 St. Rt. 3, Watertown, NY 13601.

For more information or questions you can contact our office at or by calling (315) 779-7020 or (315) 779-7019.


Applicants working on the requirements for the Level 1 Teaching Assistant certification can receive the three workshops noted above at a reduced cost by taking the Substitute Teacher / Teacher Assistant training offered by the Jefferson Lewis BOCES.

For more information, click here