According to the Computer Science Teachers Association, most computer science teachers must have an undergraduate degree in computer science, a teaching credential and potentially a graduate-level degree in computer science. A semester of student teaching is also usually required though this is typically completed within the bachelor's degree program.
These standards vary by state. Since computer science is still a new technology, some states have not created certificate requirements for each level of schooling. The Board of Education can clarify which states require specific teaching certifications and which states allow teachers to teach computer-related courses with a generalized teaching certificate.
Most states require a computer science teaching certificate for elementary school, middle school and high school. Public schools require the degree, teaching experience and the teaching certification while private schools do not have to follow the same regulations. Individuals who have a graduate degree but not a teaching license may be able to teach at a private school.
Those wanting to teach computer science to college students need to earn at least a master's degree, and most institutions require a doctoral degree. At the university level, most computer departments require teachers to have published significant scholarly work or to have several years of teaching experience.
All computer teachers must be able to handle minor technical issues and have patience with students who cannot grasp computer concepts easily.