College of Education & Human Services

Educator Preparation

Educator Licensure Frequently Asked Questions



A PEL is the credential that allows you to work as a teacher, school support personnel, or administrator in a public school in Illinois. Please note that after issuance, all licenses must be registered with a Regional Office of Education (ROE) to be valid.

The term endorsement is used to describe a credential listed on a professional educator license. A teaching endorsement may be a grade-level endorsement (i.e. early childhood, elementary, middle grade, secondary, or special) or a content/subject-area endorsement (i.e. middle school language arts, senior high school mathematics).

The following endorsements can be added to a professional educator license:

  • Early Childhood Education (Birth-grade 2)*
  • Elementary Education (1-6)*
  • Middle Grades Education (5-8, endorsed in a subject area)*
  • Secondary Education (9-12, endorsed in a subject area) *
  • Special (K-12, endorsed in art, foreign language, music or PE)*
  • Special Education (PK- Age 21)*
  • School Counselor (PK- Age 21)*
  • School Psychologist (PK – Age 21)*
  • Speech Language Pathologist (non-teaching) (PK-Age 21)*
  • Principal (PK-12)*
  • Superintendent (PK-12)*
  • Reading Specialist (K-12)*
  • Content/Subject Areas (Grade range varies)**

*Requires completion of a state-approved educator preparation program
**Can only be added within the grade range of your current credentials

A newly issued professional educator license (PEL) is valid for five full fiscal years and renewable if professional development requirements are met.

You will not receive a paper copy of your teaching license. However, you may print any ELIS page if you wish to have a printed version of your credentials.

The professional educator license (PEL) application fee is $100. You must also register your PEL with a Regional Office of Education (ROE) before it is valid. The fee to register your license is $50. Both of these processes can be completed online at the same time and must be completed in order for your license to be valid.

The application fee for adding an endorsement to an existing license is $50 per endorsement.

An IEIN (Illinois Educator Identification Number) is a unique number assigned to each individual when his/her ELIS account is created.

Entitlement is the process WIU uses when recommending a candidate for a particular endorsement or license. When you have completed one of our state-approved programs for a PEL or an additional endorsement, we enter a notification for entitlement in your ELIS account. By entering this notification, we are confirming you have completed all coursework and testing requirements required for the endorsement/license per current Illinois rules and regulations. The pending credential will be listed on your ELIS home page. You can apply for this credential on your ELIS home page.

You apply for entitlement/educator license after you have completed all of your program requirements:

  1. you have earned a qualifying edTPA score and the score is posted to your ELIS account;
  2. your Western Illinois University (WIU) degree is awarded;
  3. your final WIU transcript has been sent electronically to ISBE;
  4. you have received an email from the WIU Licensure Office stating that you have been entitled and that you may apply for your license.

The basic skills requirement and the content area test(s) must be met prior to the student teaching semester; and the edTPA prior to licensure.

The basic skills requirement can be met in one of three ways:

  1. Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP 400). You can register for the TAP here:
    www.il.nesinc.com/TestView.aspx?f=HTML_FRAG/IL400_TestPage.html
  2. ACT: Please use ISBE code #3001 when registering to have your results sent to ISBE and posted to your ELIS account.
    Tests taken prior to 9/1/15 – Composite score of 22 with a combined English/Writing score of 19
    Tests taken 9/1/15 to 9/9/16 – Composite score of 22 with a Writing score of 16
    Tests taken 9/10/16 and later – Composite score of 22 with a Writing score of 6
  3. SAT: Please use ISBE code #6773 when registering to have your results sent to ISBE and posted to your ELIS account.
    Tests taken prior to 3/5/16 - Composite score of 1030 (mathematics and critical writing) with a minimum Writing score of 450
    Tests taken 3/5/16 and later – Composite score of 1110 (evidence - based reading and writing + mathematics = 1110 or higher) and a minimum score of 26 on writing and language

Content test information can be found at this website:
http://www.il.nesinc.com/PageView.aspx?f=GEN_Tests.html

All test study guides are available on-line at the Illinois Licensure Testing System (ILTS) website:
https://www.il.nesinc.com/PageView.aspx?f=GEN_PreparationMaterials.html

The edTPA is a performance and knowledge based assessment for pre-service teachers that is designed to measure teacher candidate effectiveness in the classroom by focusing on student learning. It is completed during a candidate’s student teaching semester.

Passing scores on the Illinois Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP), or either ACT or SAT, and on the appropriate content area test are required prior to student teaching. A passing score on the edTPA is required in order to qualify for entitlement through the Teacher Education Program. Any Content Area Tests required for additional endorsements must be passed prior to entitlement to add the endorsement to the PEL.

Yes, you can retake a test. The retake policy for all ILTS tests can be found here:
https://www.il.nesinc.com/TestView.aspx?f=ILCBT_RetakePolicy.html

Information about test fees can be found here:
https://www.il.nesinc.com/TestView.aspx?f=ILCBT_PaymentPolicy.html

The Illinois State Board of Education maintains an electronic file on each Illinois license holder. Upon admission to the teacher education program, you should create an ELIS account by going to the ISBE website. There is no charge to create an ELIS account.

Educators can access their personal files through ELIS to check that ISBE has received test results and transcripts. After Western Illinois University’s licensure office enters the educator’s entitlement, he/she will apply for and register their license/endorsements via ELIS. School administrators will be able to check an educator’s credentials in ELIS to confirm he/she has a license with the appropriate endorsements.

Please email licensure@isbe.net a copy of your social security card and a note indicating you have two ELIS accounts that need to be merged. The note should include your name and IEINs for both accounts.

You may change your email address, mailing address, or phone number by logging in to your ELIS account and clicking the edit link in your contact information section.

  • To change your name or update your degree information, complete form 73-71 Licensure Update Request and bring the form and other necessary documents to your regional office of education (ROE) so they may upload the materials to ISBE. Alternatively, you may email the materials to ISBE at licensure@isbe.net. Official transcripts verifying a degree must be sent directly from the institution or mailed to ISBE in an envelope that was sealed by the institution.
  • If your social security number is listed incorrectly, your ROE can upload a copy of your social security card to ISBE, or you may mail or fax a copy of your card directly to ISBE.
  • If your birth date is listed incorrectly, your ROE can upload a copy of your birth certificate or driver’s license to ISBE, or you may mail or fax a copy directly to ISBE.
  • Incorrect gender listings may be corrected by having your ROE upload a copy of your driver’s license or birth certificate. You may also mail or fax a copy directly to ISBE.

Licensure Contact Information

Tammy WilsonTammy Wilson

Licensure Officer
309 298-1434
309 298-2117
Horrabin Hall 91
TS-Wilson@wiu.edu

Nancy StonekingNancy Stoneking

Staff Clerk - Licensure
309-298-1434
Horrabin Hall 91
NE-Stoneking@wiu.edu

Please see our Frequently Asked Questions page for helpful information.

Licensure Quick Links