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Alternative (non-traditional) teacher licensure is an option for those who have not completed traditional teacher preparation programs, but have an interest in changing careers and becoming teachers. If you hold at least a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution and wish to pursue a teaching license, alternative licensure may be the right fit for you.

 IL Approved Alternative Program Process

Instead of completing a traditional route to educator licensure, individuals may complete an approved alternative licensure program in the state of Illinois.

Admission Requirements

  • Hold a Bachelor's degree or higher from a regionally accredited institution with a GPA of at least a 3.0
  • Pass the TAP (basic skills assessment) and applicable content area test

As part of program, individuals:

  • Complete intensive session (over summer) of methods/pedagogical coursework and be issued as part of the program an Educator Licensure with Stipulations endorsed for Alternative Educator - ELS(APE) once requirements of licensure program are met, and then:
    • Enter into first of a two-year residency, placed in classroom as paid, full time teacher of record, and assigned a Mentor teacher
    • Prior to second year of residency, complete any coursework required by program and be recommended by program for second year, and
    • ​Pass the edTPA performance based assessment during the first semester of the second year of teaching residency, successfully complete year two of residency and any remaining program requirements
  • Upon program completion, the ELS(APE) is exchanged for the Professional Educator License (PEL) via entitlement​

 IL Approved Alternative Licensure Programs

​​***Entitlement - Individuals who complete an IL approved alternate educator preparation program will be entitled by the university/college.  The university/college licensure officer will enter program completion information into candidates ELIS account.  Individuals will not apply for the professional educator license until the university has fully entered the entitlement. ***


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