Educator Licensure Admissions

Our educator licensure program will prepare you to teach the following courses in grades nine to 12. Graduate-level students can meet licensure requirements as students-at-large or in a graduate program. You can teach grades 6-8 by taking a content exam. More information can be found in the Additional endorsements section below.

The program consists of 46-47 credits taken over four semesters. If you're an undergraduate student, you'll most likely complete the program during your last two years at NIU, along with your upper-level content classes. Our programs are designed to be completed in two years. If you attend part time or need to meet additional requirements, it may take longer.

Learn more about Illinois requirements for educator licensure.

Students are admitted to the Secondary Mathematics Educator Licensure Program when they have:

  • Established an advising file with the Secondary Mathematics Educator Licensure Program and completed satisfactory reviews of progress each semester after establishment of the file.
  • Completed at least 12 semester hours at NIU with a cumulative GPA of at least 2.50.
  • Earned a minimum GPA of 2.25 in all courses counted for credit toward the major and a minimum grade of C in all Mathematics courses.
  • Earned a minimum GPA of 2.25 in all courses counted for credit toward the major numbered above MATH 231.
  • Completed at least 20 clock hours of approved early clinical experiences.
  • Obtained approval from the Secondary Mathematics Educator Licensure Program.

Students admitted to the licensure program must:

  • Maintain a GPA of 2.50 in all course work taken at NIU.
  • Maintain a minimum GPA of 2.25 in all courses counted for credit toward the major.
  • Maintain a minimum GPA of 2.25 in all courses counted for credit toward the major numbered above MATH 231.
  • Complete a satisfactory review of progress each semester with a coordinator of educator licensure in the Department of Mathematical Sciences.
  • Take and pass the Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP) of the Illinois Licensure Testing System (ILTS) or meet the ACT/SAT/TAP substitution according to the Illinois State Board of Education rules.
  • Take and pass the ILTS Mathematics Content Exam prior to applying for MATH 401/Student Teaching.
  • Take and pass the Teacher Performance Assessment (edTPA) before completion of the program.

A complete listing of discipline course requirements can be found in the undergraduate catalog.

Licensure Courses

The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) requires a minimum of 100 clock hours of substantial, varied and sequential clinical experiences prior to student teaching. This requirement may be satisfied by completing the following sequence of courses:

You must apply in advance for the clinical courses. Information on each course and application materials can be found on the CLAS Educator Licensure website.

The ISBE and requirements for educator licensure in Mathematics at NIU also specify that candidates must earn a grade of C or better for each course included in required professional course work in human development and learning, and teaching of English Language Learners, teaching exceptional children. Candidates should consult with the Coordinator of Educator Licensure in Mathematics to determine which courses satisfy these additional requirements outside the department.

Middle School Endorsement (Grades 6-8)

For the middle school endorsement in mathematics the required 18 hours are broken down into seven content areas. You must have a course in at least four of those areas as well as an instructional methods course focused on teaching mathematics at the middle school level.

In order to teach at the middle school level in Illinois you need to fulfill:

  • Three hours of educational psychology aimed at the middle school level.
  • Three hours of philosophy and methodology focused on the middle school level.

If you already hold an Illinois teaching certificate these requirements may be met by taking EPS 419 (The Middle School Child) and TLCI 422 (Middle School Organization and Instruction) in the College of Education. If you are pursuing a 6-12 certificate or a K-12 certificate, you should see your program advisor.

  • 18 semester hours in the field, including:
    • Three semester hours in the methods of teaching mathematics in grades 6-8 MATH 410 Methods of Instruction in the Mathematics Curriculum for the Middle School (3)
    • 15 semester hours to be selected from four of the following areas:
      • Math content courses for elementary teachers
        • MATH 201 Foundations of Elementary School Mathematics (3)
      • Calculus
        • MATH 229 Calculus I (4) or MATH 230 Calculus II (4)
      • Modern algebra or number theory
        • MATH 303 Introduction to Number Theory (3) or MATH 420 Abstract Algebra I (3) or MATH 480 Number Theory (3)
      • Geometry
        • MATH 302 Introduction to Geometry (3) or MATH 353 Axiomatic Geometry (3)
      • Computer Science
        • CSCI 230 FORTRAN (4) or CSCI 240 C++ (4)
      • Probability and Statistics
        • STAT 200 Elementary Statistics (4) or STAT 300 Introduction to Probability and Statistics (3)
      • History of Mathematics
        • MATH 304 History of Mathematics through the 17th Century (3)

At the discretion of the department, other courses may also be found acceptable toward meeting the requirements for an endorsement.

If you intend to complete the requirements for the Initial Teacher Certification in secondary-school mathematics, there is additional information for your review. We encourage an individual consultation with one of our advisors to determine your academic plan.

  • Questions should be directed to Renee Olsen or Paul Stevenson, coordinators of educator licensure in mathematics.
  • Please review the special departmental requirements for licensure as a guide for courses you take during your community college experience. Also, you may complete the calculus sequence (equivalent of MATH 229, MATH 230 and MATH 232 at NIU) and the computer programming course at your community college. The computer science course should articulate to NIU as CSCI 240 and be a four semester hour course.
  • If you will be completing the calculus sequence at your community college and plan on taking MATH 240 (Linear Algebra and Applications) during your first semester at NIU, you should consider taking ILAS 201 (Introductory Clinical Experience) during your first semester at NIU. Taking MATH 240 at NIU is highly recommended as preparation for the upper level math courses.
    • If you wish to take ILAS 201 during your first semester at NIU, you should contact one of the Coordinators of Educator Licensure by the end of the fifth week of the NIU fall or spring semester that precedes your transfer to NIU.
    • Download the application form and return to:
      Renee Olsen
      Department of Mathematical Sciences
      Northern Illinois University
      DeKalb, IL 60115.
    • You need to return the completed application materials by the end of the seventh week of that same semester.
    • Once we receive your completed application materials, your application will be passed to the clinical office. Check your NIU student email regularly, as you will receive important placement information and class meeting information.

Contact Us

Department of Mathematical Sciences
DeKalb, IL 60115

815-753-0566
chair@niu.edu

Registration or class questions
815-753-6722

Chair's office
815-753-6780

Director of Undergraduate Studies
Alastair Fletcher
afletcher@niu.edu

Director of Graduate Studies
Sien Deng
gradprog@niu.edu

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