Requirements for Licenses

Basic Requirements for Obtaining a Teaching License

In order to be eligible for an Iowa teaching license, applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • Graduates from Iowa institutions:
    • Baccalaureate degree from a regionally-accredited institution.
    • Completion of a state-approved teacher preparation program in Iowa, including the required assessments.
    • Recommendation for licensure from the designated recommending official where the program was completed.
  • Graduates from non-Iowa institutions:
    • Baccalaureate degree from a regionally-accredited institution.
    • Completion of a state-approved teacher preparation program, including the coursework requirements for a content area teaching endorsement, coursework in pedagogy, and a student teaching (or internship) placement.
    • Recommendation for licensure from the designated recommending official where the program was completed.
    • Valid or expired license from another state.
    • Completion of the required Iowa assessments. The assessments are not required if the applicant completed their teacher preparation program prior to January 1, 2013, or if the applicant has three years or more teaching experience on a valid license in another state. Assessment requirements can be found on the Department of Education Practitioner Preparation & Teacher Education page.

 

 
Initial License: The initial license is granted to new graduates and those from out-of-state with less than three years of experience. It is valid for two years and may be renewed twice. There is no coursework required to renew the initial license other than the mandatory reporter training for child and dependent adult abuse. The second (and final) renewal of an initial license also requires proof of contracted employment that will lead to the standard license.
 
Standard License: The standard license is valid for five years. To convert from the initial to the standard license, applicants will need to teach for two years on a valid license within their endorsement area(s) in an accredited Iowa public school, or for three years in any combination of public, private or out-of-state accredited schools (or Head Start). Iowa public school teachers will participate in the mentoring and induction program and meet the Iowa teaching standards.  The standard license renewal requires six renewal credits and the mandatory reporter training for child and dependent adult abuse.
 
Master Educator: The master educator license is valid for five years. To convert from the standard to the master educator license, applicants must have a master’s degree in a recognized endorsement area, or in curriculum, effective teaching, or a similar degree program which has a focus on school curriculum or instruction, five years of teaching experience, and meet the renewal requirements for the standard license (six credits).  The master educator license renewal requires four renewal credits and the mandatory reporter training for child and dependent adult abuse.
 
Substitute License: The substitute license is valid for five years. Applicants who are eligible for, or have ever held, one of the teaching licenses listed above are also eligible for a substitute license. This license is maintained separately from teaching licenses. The substitute license renewal requires one renewal credit OR 30 days of substitute teaching during the term of the license and the mandatory reporter training for child and dependent adult abuse.
 
Regional Exchange License: The regional exchange license is valid for one year. This license is a teaching license issued to out-of-state applicants who are eligible for licensure but have deficiencies in order to fully meet Iowa’s requirements. Applicants will convert to one of the licenses above once the deficiencies have been met. The regional exchange license is non-renewable, but it may be extended for one additional year.
 
Iowa Administrator Licenses and Renewal Requirements
In order to be eligible for an Iowa administrator license, applicants must meet the following requirements:
  1. Hold or be eligible for an Iowa teaching license.
  2. Verify three years of teaching experience.
  3. Completion of the requirements for an administrative endorsement.
  4. Completion of a master’s degree
 
Initial Administrator License: The initial administrator license is valid for one year and may be renewed twice. There is no coursework required to renew the initial license other than the mandatory reporter training for child and dependent adult abuse. The second (and final) renewal requires proof of contracted PK-12 employment as an administrator.
 
Professional Administrator License: The professional administrator license is valid for five years. To convert from the initial to the professional administrator license, applicants will need serve as an administrator in an Iowa public school for one year, or for at least two years in a private or out-of-state school. Iowa public school administrators will participate in a mentoring program. The professional administrator license renewal requires four renewal credits (which must include an approved evaluator training course) and the mandatory reporter training for child and dependent adult abuse.
 
Administrator Exchange License: The administrator exchange license is valid for one year. This license is issued to out-of-state applicants who are eligible for administrative licensure but have coursework deficiencies in order to fully meet Iowa’s requirements. Applicants will convert to one of the administrator licenses listed above once the coursework deficiencies have been met. The exchange license is non-renewable, but it may be extended for one additional year.
 
Professional Service License: A professional service license is issued to an individual prepared to provide professional services in Iowa schools but whose preparation has not required completion of the teacher preparation coursework. The professional service license may be issued in the following areas:
1. School counselor.
2. School psychologist.
3. Speech-language pathologist.
4. Supervisor of special education (support).
5. Director of special education of an area education agency.
6. School social worker.
7. School audiologist.
The professional service license follows the licensure guidelines for the initial and master educator licenses.

 
Statements of Professional Recognition: The following are authorizations requiring or permitting statements of professional recognition and licenses obtained from the professional licensure division, department of public health, or the board of nursing:
a. School audiologist.
b. School nurse.
c. School occupational therapist.
d. School physical therapist.
e. School social worker.
f. Special education nurse.
g. Speech-language pathologist.
Statements of professional recognition are issued upon application filed on a form provided by the board of educational examiners and upon completion of the background check requirements set forth in rule 282—13.1(272).

 
Coaching Authorization: The coaching authorization is valid for five years. Applicants need to be at least 18 years old and complete the coaching authorization requirements. Non-teachers or teachers may apply for the coaching authorization. Teachers may instead pursue the coaching endorsement. More information about the coaching authorization and renewal requirements can be found at www.coaching.iowa.gov
 
Substitute Authorization: The substitute authorization is valid for five years. A substitute authorization allows individuals to substitute teach PK-12, but for no more than five days in a row or 10 days in a month for any one assignment (no long-term subbing). Applicants need a bachelor’s degree and the completion of an approved substitute authorization course. This is for applicants who are not eligible for an Iowa teaching license. The substitute authorization renewal requires two renewal credits and the mandatory reporter training for child and dependent adult abuse.
 
Initial School Business Official Authorization: The initial SBO authorization is valid for two years. The SBO authorization requires a minimum of an associate’s degree in business or accounting or 60 semester hours of coursework in business or accounting, of which 9 semester hours must be in accounting. A temporary authorization may be granted if the applicants has the above and only 6 semester hours in accounting.
 
Standard School Business Official Authorization: The standard SBO authorization is valid for three years. To convert from the initial SBO to the standard SBO, applicants must complete 9 semester hours or the equivalent in an approved program and the specific competencies set forth in 282-22.3(5). The standard SBO authorization renewal requires four semester hours of credit or the equivalent contact hours and the mandatory reporter training for child and dependent adult abuse.
 
Native Language Teacher Authorization: The preliminary native language teacher authorization is valid for three years and may be issued to an applicant whose native language is other than English, if the applicant has a passing Praxis II content score in their native language, and if a district conducted a diligent search to find a fully-licensed applicant. To convert to the full native language teaching authorization, the applicant must complete the requirements in 282-22.5(3). The full native language teacher authorization is valid for five years, and requires six renewal credits and the mandatory reporter training for child and dependent adult abuse to renew.
 
School Administration Manager (SAM) Authorization: The SAM authorization allows an individual to assist a school administrator in performing non-instructional, administrative-type duties. The initial SAM authorization is valid for three years. To convert from the initial to the standard SAM authorization, the applicant must complete the requirements in 282-22.7(5). The standard SAM authorization is valid for five years, and the renewal requires three semester hours of approved training and the mandatory reporter training for child and dependent adult abuse.
 
iJAG Authorization: The iJAG Authorization is provided to non-educators entering the education profession to teach iJAG coursework in grades 7-12. The iJAG authorization is valid for five years, but is void if the applicant leaves the iJAG program. The iJAG authorization renewal requires iJAG training and the mandatory reporter training for child and dependent adult abuse.
 
Career and Technical Authorization: The initial career and technical authorization is valid for three years and may be issued to an applicant who has 6000 hours (or 4000 hours and a bachelor’s degree) working in an approved career and technical area, and if a district conducted a diligent search to find a fully-licensed applicant. To convert to the full career and technical authorization, the applicant must complete the requirements in 282-22.9(6). The full career and technical authorization is valid for five years, and requires six renewal credits and the mandatory reporter training for child and dependent adult abuse to renew.
 
Activities Administrator Authorization: The activities administrator authorization is valid for five years and allows an individual to administer any pupil activity program in a K-12 setting. A bachelor’s degree or higher in athletic administration or related field from a regionally-accredited institution is required. Applicants must completed the requirements listed in 282-22.10(1). The activities administrator authorization requires one of the professional development options listed in 282-22.10(3) and the mandatory reporter training for child and dependent adult abuse to renew.
 


Questions or Comments?