Renewal and Advanced Licenses
Renewal and Advanced Licenses
License Renewal and Continuing Education
All educators must renew their licenses after a certain period of time. Most states also require that educators complete continuing education (CE), either annually or every few years. You'll be required to complete a certain number of CE hours or credits to keep your license active.
Your state's department of education may maintain a list of providers that have been approved to offer CE credit. You may also be able to satisfy the CE requirement through your graduate program course work. Since requirements vary for each state, be sure to understand the requirements for renewing your license and meeting the CE requirements in your state.
Stages or Levels of Licenses
Every state has a different way of classifying the various stages or levels of licenses. In general, progressing from 1 stage to the next requires you to fulfill additional state specific requirements or complete further education
A first stage license requires a minimum of a bachelor’s degree and enrollment in an approved educator preparation program. The license holder is generally working on completing a degree or educator preparation program and the state-specific requirements, including field work. Some states call this a provisional or internship license.
A second stage license requires a minimum of a bachelor's degree and completion of an approved educator preparation program. The license holder is generally working on completing some additional state-specific requirements, including exams.
A third stage license requires a minimum of a bachelor's degree and completion of an approved educator preparation program. The license holder must also have met all state specific requirements, including field work, exams, and state-specific course work.
A fourth stage license requires a minimum of a master's degree or the equivalent, completion of an approved teacher preparation program, and a certain number of years of experience.
Note: Not all states have 4 stages of licenses or classify the stages in this way. These examples are based on the NASDTEC interstate agreement, which many states have agreed to follow."Highly Qualified"
In addition to state licensing requirements, federal policy also has an impact on an educator's ability to teach or lead
The federal definition of a highly qualified teacher is one who:
- Is fully licensed by the state
- Holds a minimum of a bachelor's degree from a 4-year institution
- Demonstrates competence in each core academic subject area in which he or she teaches
Each state determines how teachers must demonstrate competence within the federal definition. This means you may be required to take additional exams or earn a graduate degree to be considered "highly qualified" in your state. See your state's website and rules for more information.
Capella University cannot guarantee licensure, certification, or endorsement. State regulations vary regarding professional licensure and salary benefits. It is learners' responsibility to understand and comply with requirements for their state.