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Program Description

The UNF Educator Preparation Institute is a 10- month competency-based educator certification program that offers a state-approved pathway to a renewable, five-year Florida Professional Educator Certificate. Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree in any discipline from a regionally-accredited college or university.


The UNF Educator Preparation Institute offers two tracks that will learn together as a cohort:

  • Novice teachers who have a four-year degree outside of education. (Novice Teachers)
  • Professionals who have a four-year degree outside of education, and are not currently teaching. (Teacher Candidates)

This program will satisfy professional preparation and professional education competence (PEC) for the Florida Professional Certificate. This requirement can be found on your Statement of Status of Eligibility. Through the Institute, teacher candidates with teaching aspirations and bachelors' degrees in any discipline (from a regionally-accredited college or university) can receive teacher certification, giving them the skills to become highly-qualified teachers in a fraction of the time and cost required for a traditional education degree.


Our EPI is housed at the Center for Urban Education and Policy (CUEP) in the College of Education and Human Services (COEHS). The EPI curriculum has a strong focus on urban education and teaching for social justice. The goal is to prepare teachers for assignments in critical shortage areas and to work with marginalized youth and their families. Embedded themes include: social justice, equity, cultural responsiveness and diversity. Program instructors are highly-qualified, education professionals who have unwavering devotion to teaching and learning.


EPI participants will receive an EPI Completion Certificate and Reading Competency 2 Certificate after program completion.


The EPI program at the University of North Florida is delivered face-to-face. Most sessions are held at UNF. There is a community component that may require some travel in and around the Jacksonville area. The cohort meets twice a month, usually on Wednesday evenings from 6-9 pm beginning at the end of August and going to the beginning of June. The schedule is available in the summer, during orientation.


The EPI program is cohort-based and has participants ranging from K-12 in various subject areas. Each session is tailored to meet individual and group needs.


The General Knowledge Exam, Subject Area Exam(s) and Professional Exam need to be passed in order to complete the program as the goal of the program is to become eligible for a five-year professional certificate that is renewable.


Application Process