The first endorsement on a certificate must be earned through completion of an approved certification program with an area of concentration in the form of a major ( e.g., mathematics endorsement on a secondary certificate).
Additional endorsements can be earned at the time the certificate is issued through completion of either
For additional information, please refer to the Guide to Requirements for Certification, Endorsement and Assignment of Teachers, School Service Personnel, and Administrators and the Northern Illinois University Endorsement Application page.
Most additional endorsements on an existing certificate require either
Exceptions or "special circumstances" are discussed below.
Individuals who want to teach in a general classroom in kindergarten through grade 9 must
Elementary certificate holders who wish to teach in a departmentalized middle grades setting (grades 5-8) must also meet special requirements for teaching at this level. See separate section on middle grades.
The State Board rules for science and social science require that the candidate meet the core standards in the area AND the standards for at least one area of specialization. Thus, all secondary certificates with either a science or social science endorsement must also have a "designation" for each area of specialization.
For example, a candidate who completes an approved program in history will earn a secondary certificate with a social science endorsement and a history designation. A candidate who completes an approved biology program will earn a secondary certificate with an endorsement in science and a designation in biology.
The requirements for a science or social science designation differ based on the candidate's certification status.
An individual who holds a certificate endorsed in other fields, such as mathematics or English language arts, may add a science or social science endorsement/designation by passing the relevant content-area test (e.g., science-biology) and meeting one of the following requirements:
The holder of a science or social science endorsement and designation may teach any subject in the science or social science field, except when the subject is taught as an Advanced Placement (AP) class, or as an "honors" class as defined by the district. Teaching AP or honors classes requires a designation specific to the subject area (i.e., teachers of AP biology must have a science-biology designation).
No one may be assigned to teach reading in Illinois, other than reading as part of general classroom instruction or reading instruction in departmentalized grades 5-8, unless he or she holds a reading teacher endorsement or a reading specialist endorsement.
Both reading teachers and reading specialists are authorized to teach reading to students; holders of the reading specialist endorsement may also provide professional development and engage in other leadership activities.
A Reading Teacher endorsement may be earned through completion of a state-approved Reading Teacher program or by meeting specific requirements for coursework and a practicuum. These options, which provide for a period of transition, are outlined in the State Board rules in Part 25.100(i) of the State Board Administrative Rules .
Requirements for the reading specialist endorsement include two years of teaching experience, completion of an approved K-12 reading specialist program, passage of the reading specialist test and passage of the K-12 Assessment of Professional Teaching (APT), if he or she has not already taken and passed that test.
Candidates participating in a reading specialist program may earn, through entitlement by the institution, a reading teacher endorsement after completion of an identified 24-hour program-within-a-program; this must include a practicum.
A candidate for initial certification/endorsement in a foreign language must complete an approved program in a specific language (e.g., French, Spanish, Russian) and pass the relevant tests of content and professional teaching.
A foreign language endorsement may be added to an existing certificate based on evidence that the candidate has either