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School of Education

Certification & licensures

Teacher education programs offered at UWL are aligned with the WI administrative code for educator preparation, Wis. Admin. Code § PI 34Graduates who successfully complete an approved undergraduate teacher education program and have been endorsed by UWL are eligible to apply to the WI Department of Public Instruction (DPI) for a Wisconsin Tier II teaching license.
Wisconsin DPI Licensure Ranges Grade Ranges
Early Childhood Education (ECE) birth-grade 3
Elementary/Middle Education (EME)  K-9
Middle and High School Education (STEP) 4-12
Kindergarten through grade 12 K-12

Frequently Asked Questions

Where do I apply for my Wisconsin educator license?
When can I apply for my license?

In order to have your completion data uploaded to the Department of Public Instruction’s (DPI) electronic licensing portal, you must have completed student teaching, received passing edTPA scores and final SIPs forms, and had your final term grades posted.  At that time the certification officer will begin processing student completions.  When the processing is complete, the certification officer will send out an email notification clearing you to apply for your license. A detailed set of instructions on how to apply for your license will also be included in the notification email.  Please do not apply for your license until you receive the notification email from the certification officer.

I am still awaiting passing edTPA scores, but I have finished student teaching. Can I apply for my license and have my degree posted to my transcript?

SOE requires passing edTPA scores for program completion at UWL.  Therefore, no completion data can be uploaded to the DPI’s licensing portal until we receive your passing edTPA scores.

I completed some of my student teaching requirements in another state/country. Do I need to submit fingerprints to DPI?

According to the DPI website, any student who has worked, resided, or attended school outside of Wisconsin since they turned 18 years old is required to submit fingerprints with their license application.  Complete details about fingerprinting for DPI can be found here:

I have applied for my Wisconsin teaching license, but I need a letter of completion stating my program is officially completed for an immediate job opening. How can I get this?

Please contact Educator Licensing ( to request a completion letter to use while DPI processes your license application.

I participated in the recent graduation ceremony. When will my degree be posted to my transcript?

Although the graduation ceremony has occurred, your program is not considered complete until your student teaching experience has ended (per Wisconsin licensing statute 118.19.3a).  Your final grade for student teaching will not be posted until the end of your student teaching experience and we have verified your final SIPs forms are on file in the Field Experience Office.  Once we have verified completion of those items, we will provide your graduation clearance to the UWL Records Office they will post your degree.

I am experiencing technical difficulties with the electronic licensing portal on the Wisconsin DPI website. Can you help me?

The School of Education does not have access to troubleshoot technical difficulties in the DPI electronic licensing portal.  Please contact DPI directly for assistance:

Can I substitute teach?

Substitute teaching during student teaching is not allowed.  Prior to student teaching, students in an Educator Prep Program in Wisconsin may be eligible to apply for a short term substitute teaching license. See DPI website for eligibility requirements and more information.

Where can I find more information about out of state licensure?

Some states may require additional assessments and/or courses prior to applying for their license. The University of Kentucky College of Education provides links to Teacher Certification By States.

If your out-of-state license application requires a signature, please send appropriate materials to

Does UWL offer a pathway to post baccalaureate initial teacher certification?

At this time, UWL does not offer a pathway to post baccalaureate initial teacher certification.

Post Baccalaureate Teacher Certification

After receiving their bachelor’s degree, some students decide to pursue certification as a teacher at the k-12 level. There are several different types of programs that can assist these students in earning licensure in various states; some of these programs offer both certification and a Master’s degree. Some programs offer evening and weekend courses while others follow a more traditional, residential college program format. At this time, UWL does not offer a pathway to post baccalaureate initial teacher certification.

Most programs, whether certification only or dual certification/Master’s will expect applicants to have completed a bachelor’s degree program with a major in the area/discipline they plan to teach.


Post Baccalaureate Teacher Certification Programs

This is not an exhaustive list of the certification programs in Wisconsin. Rather, it is a sampling of the different types of programs designed to give you an idea of the types of programs out there, both in the UW System and at private agencies. Please note that licensure opportunities vary by the program.

  • CESA 1: Proficiency Based Licensure Program (PBL)
  • CESA 2: Licensure Academy of School Staff (CLASS)
  • CESA 4: Alternative Licensing Pathways Supports and Services (ALPSS)
  • CESA 6: Residency in Teacher Education (RITE)
  • CESA 9: Excellence in Teaching Program
  • Marquette University
  • UW-Milwaukee
  • Viterbo University – Post Baccalaureate Licensure Program


Web Resources

In 2018, WI DPI changed the Administrative Code regulating educator licensing. Like all educator preparation programs in Wisconsin, UWL is authorized to prepare and endorse teacher candidates completing programs under the pre-2018 license ranges until August 2023. Teaching licenses and programs based on the developmental levels prior to 2018 can be found in earlier catalogs

UWL Teacher Certification Officer