Occupational Competency Assessment

  • The Occupational Competency Assessment (OCA) verifies that a teacher certification candidate possesses the occupational competence required to be eligible for a vocational instructional certificate. It is a required step in the teacher certification process.

    An OCA is available for each secondary vocational education program approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

    Depending on the occupational area, the assessment will take one of three forms:

    • NOCTI Skilled Worker Test
      The NOCTI Skilled Worker Test is available for most occupational areas. It is a two-part test that consists of a written and a performance portion. The written test assesses a candidate’s knowledge of the occupational area. To complete the performance portion, the candidate performs tasks related to the occupational area using a hands-on demonstration of skills.
    • Committee Evaluation
      A committee evaluation is administered for occupational areas where NOCTI Skilled Worker tests are not available. A small committee of experts in the occupation asks questions to determine a candidate’s skill and knowledge base in the occupational area.
    • Credential Review
      A review of credentials is conducted for occupational areas where a state licensing bureau credentials the candidate or the candidate holds a credential from a state-recognized licensing or certifying agency. Examples include Health Assisting and Cosmetology.

    The assessments are administered three times a year at selected sites throughout Western Pennsylvania. For more information, call 724-357-4434 or e-mail info-cte@iup.edu.