Important Note: Education licensure requirements, statistics, and other information are subject to change. CertificationMap.com makes its best effort to keep content accurate; however, the official sources are the state education departments. Please confirm licensing requirements with your state before applying for licensure or renewal. Last updated: 08/09/2018
The 8-week Harvard Bok Teaching Certificate online short course is delivered by Harvard’s Bok Center for Teaching and Learning, in association with HarvardX. Students in this course will engage deeply with the most relevant research on effective teaching methods in the higher education context, while refining their own practices, portfolio, and teaching philosophy.
Licenses are not usually endorsed at the primary level, since teaching at that level in most subjects requires only an appropriate license and formal training in the subjects taught. However, there are some subjects that require 18 hours, or more, to teach at the middle grades and primary level.
Although teachers with middle grades endorsements are automatically qualified in those subjects at the primary level, it is possible a teacher who has the content hours required may wish to have the endorsement at the primary level because they do not have the necessary middle grades pedagogy courses required for a middle grades endorsement.
The primary level is K-4 for elementary licenses and K-3 for early childhood licenses. Illinois, therefore will issue primary level endorsements in the following subjects when the applicant does not have the required middle grades pedagogy coursework: English as a Second Language, Bilingual Education, Reading Teacher, Media, Library Information Specialist, and Technology Specialist. Except for the middle-grades pedagogy courses, the requirements in the content area are identical with those for the middle grades for each subject.
Secondary English/Language Arts, Mathematics, History/Social Science, and Science
A major in the content area indicated on the transcript or 32 semester hours in the content area; OR 24 semester hours in content courses completed at one or more institutions and passing the relevant content area test. If a person seeks an endorsement in a subject where there is no content test, the default requirement is a major or 32 semester hours of content.
Many schools of education now offer online MAT programs that provide increased flexibility by allowing aspiring or working teachers to attend class and complete coursework from any location that has an Internet connection. Online MAT programs are a practical option for students who have professional and personal commitments that make it difficult to obtain teaching certification through a full-time program.
The best online programs offer the same curriculum as the school’s on-campus program and apply the same admission requirements. Providing students with the ability to communicate with instructors and classmates in a face-to-face online environment is another hallmark of a good online program. In addition, candidates in online MAT programs should be provided with the opportunity to complete student teaching fieldwork in the local community.
Typically teacher education programs consist of a combination of curricula and fieldwork involved in an accredited teacher preparation program. The curricula often include instruction on foundational knowledge and skills, pedagogy (the art and science of teaching), and preparing students to research, design and implement learning experiences in their field of study. The fieldwork component can include field observations, student teaching, and an internship.
While the involvement in an education program may seem financially daunting, a number of financial resources specifically for teachers exist around the country. For more information on this, visit our page on scholarships for teachers. For more scholarships for teachers exclusive to the state of Illinois, visit our Illinois Teacher Scholarship page.
Graduates of accredited colleges or universities whose Bachelor’s degree was not in education, and who have not yet earned a traditional teaching license, can still receive an alternative teaching license by satisfying certain requirements. Click here to learn about obtaining your Alternative Teacher Licensure in Illinois.
The next step in getting your Illinois teaching license is completing a Basic Skills Assessment and Content Area test(s). All teaching candidates must complete the Illinois Licensure Testing System (ILTS) Test of Academic Proficiency, ILTS Content Area test(s) and edTPA tests:
Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP): The ILTS Test of Academic Proficiency measures teaching candidates’ fundamental skills in the areas of reading comprehension, language arts, writing, and mathematics. This content is based on appropriate expectations for students in teacher preparation programs and for teaching in the state of Illinois.
In lieu of the TAP, students may also submit their ACT scores with a composite score of 22 with a writing score of 6, or SAT scores of 1110 or higher in evidence-based reading and writing and mathematics, as well as a minimum score of 26 on writing and language.
edTPA: edTPA tests measure teaching candidates’ knowledge and skills on both a professional and pedagogical level, depending on their level of licensure.
Content Area Tests: The ILTS Content Area tests are designed to measure teaching candidates’ knowledge of specific content area(s), depending on their desired level of licensure. Visit ILTS’s Test Selection for a list of all available Content Area tests.
Finally, submit a completed licensure application to get the show on the road! You can do this by making an Educator account on the Educator Licensure Information System (ELIS). After that, you'll need to submit non-refundable $100 or $150 application fee, depending on whether you completed your educator preparation program in Illinois.
In addition to your application and fee, you will need:
Fingerprint-based CHRI (Criminal History Records Information) checks through both the Illinois State Police and the FBI
Check of the Illinois Sex Offender Registry
Check of the Murderer and Violent Offender Against Youth Registry
Incentives to teach in high-needs schools or shortage subject areas: Illinois offers loan forgiveness for teachers teaching in high needs schools but offers no support for teachers teaching in shortage subject areas
Policies in place that articulate elements of effective induction: Illinois has no induction policies in place