How to apply for your License

Minnesota officially switched to the new Tiered Licensure system on July 1, 2018. The new Tiered system takes into account more factors than the old system. For a complete outline of requirements for each of the 4 tiers, please see the info-graphic provided by Education Minnesota.

WHICH license do i qualify for?

The majority of graduates (program completers) from BSU’s Professional Education programs who are seeking initial licensure will be eligible for one of two options, based on the following:

Tier 2:

  • Completed BSU Professional Education Program, including a Bachelor’s degree
  • Job offer from a school district who will apply jointly with you for your Tier 2 license
  • License is good for two years and can be renewed three times
  • This is the only option available to candidates who have not passed all MTLE Pedagogy and Content exams (Basic Skills is not included in this requirement)

Tier 3:

  • Completed BSU Professional Education Program, including a Bachelor’s degree
  • Passing scores on MTLE Pedagogy and Content exams
  • License is good for three years and can be renewed indefinitely
  • Once the candidate has taught in Minnesota for three years (without being put on an improvement plan) and passed the state approved Basic Skills exams, they are eligible to move to Tier 4, the highest possible tier

If you have NOT passed all of the required MTLE Pedagogy and Content exams you will need a job offer with a school district in order to apply for a Tier 2 license. You may do so using the paper applications for Tiers 1 and 2 available on the Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board (PELSB) website:

https://mn.gov/pelsb/aspiring-educators/apply/

If you have passed all of the required Basic Skills, MTLE Pedagogy and MTLE Content exams you may apply for a Tier 3 license. You may do so using the paper application for Tiers 3 and 4 available on the Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board (PELSB) website:

https://mn.gov/pelsb/aspiring-educators/apply/

Tier 4:

  • This license may apply to FasTrack, SPED, or any other student who has been teaching in their own classroom for a minimum of 3 years
  • Completed BSU Professional Education Program, including a Bachelor’s degree
  • Passing scores on the MN Basic Skills (Reading, Writing & Math) and MTLE Pedagogy and Content exams
  • THREE YEARS OF TEACHING EXPERIENCE IN MINNESOTA
  • MOST RECENT SUMMATIVE EVALUATION MUST NOT HAVE RESULTED IN AN IMPROVEMENT PLAN
  • License is good for five years and can be renewed indefinitely by following MN’s continuing education process
For assistance in determining which Tier you qualify for, please see the “Tiered Licensure Explained” document created by the Certification Officer. More information about requirements and the application process is available on the first few pages of each application.

TO APPLY FOR YOUR TEACHING LICENSE YOU MUST HAVE:

YOUR DEGREE:

Records will begin processing applications for graduation at the end of the semester. It will take approximately 4-6 weeks after student teaching grades are posted for your degree to be posted. Please keep this in mind when starting your application with PELSB as the application fee is only good for 60 days. To see if your degree has been posted/awarded go to MyBSU – E-Services – Academic Records – Unofficial Transcripts – Chronological – Get Academic Record. Once your degree has been posted it will show up at the top of the page as “Awarded on:”.

OFFICIAL SCORES** ON FILE FOR ONE OF THE FOLLOWING BASIC SKILLS REQUIREMENTS:

  • MTLE Basic Skills – Reading ≥ 240   Writing ≥ 240   Math ≥ 240 or
  • ACT – Composite plus Writing ≥ 22   AND   English/Writing ≥ 21 (within 10 years) or
  • SAT – Reading ≥ 510   Writing ≥ 510   Math ≥ 520 (within 10 years) or
  • Minnesota NES Essential Academic Skills Reading ≥ 520  Writing ≥ 520  Math ≥ 520
  • Another state approved Basic Skills Exam:

    https://mn.gov/pelsb/assets/Teacher%20Licensure%20Testing%20Information_tcm1113-321360.pdf 

OFFICIAL SCORES** ON FILE SHOWING YOU HAVE MET ALL OF THE FOLLOWING MTLE EXAMS:

  • MTLE Pedagogy (Elementary OR Secondary) ≥ 240 each subtest and
  • MTLE Content Area(s) ≥ 240 each subtest – see the Advising Coordinator to confirm which tests you need to take

**Scores sent from the testing company to BSU or score reports with bar codes are considered ‘official scores.’


ONCE YOU’VE VERIFIED THE ABOVE ITEMS YOU CAN APPLY FOR YOUR LICENSE.


THE APPLICATION PROCESS:

Step 1: Download the appropriate application (based on your qualifications) from the PELSB wesbite. Remember, if you have not passed all of the required MTLE Pedagogy and Content exams you must have a job offer from a school district who will apply jointly with you for a Tier 2 license. If you have passed all required MTLE Pedagogy and Content tests you may apply for a Tier 3 license.

https://mn.gov/pelsb/aspiring-educators/apply/

Step 2: Once you’ve downloaded the appropriate application from the PELSB website, find the “Verification of Completion of a State-Approved Licensure Program” form. DO NOT COMPLETE THE VERIFICATION SECTION, this section must be completed by BSU’s Certification Officer. Submit the Verification Form along with your Student ID Number and Return Address to the Certification Officer, Aspen Easterling (via mail or email).

Bemidji State University
ATTN: Aspen Easterling
1500 Birchmont Drive NE # 35
Bemidji, MN 56601

Email: Aspen.Easterling@bemidjistate.edu

Step 3: Upon receipt of the Verification Form, the Certification Officer will verify your coursework completion and ensure we have official test scores on file for all required licensure exams. If everything is complete, the Certification Officer will sign and return the form to you with a SEALED copy of all relevant transcript(s). This takes approximately 2 weeks, but may take longer during peak licensing times. PELSB requires original signatures, so make sure to send the original form to them. If you have not met all of the requirements, the Certification Officer will NOT sign your form.

Step 4: Send your entire application, including the signed Verification Form, Review & Checklist, transcript(s), fingerprint card, and any other required documentation to PELSB in ONE packet. Refer to the PELSB Review & Checklist included at the end of the application.

Step 5: PELSB will process your application and send you an email with your license (you can print out a hard copy). Make sure your email address is correct on your application and do NOT use your BSU email address (you will lose access to it after a year). PELSB processing times vary, but they estimate 8-10 weeks.

Note: Once you begin the online application, you will have 60 days to complete it before your application fee is forfeit. Please be sure you can complete your application and mail it to PELSB within 60 days or you will have to repay the fee.