Teacher Licensure Program - NIU - Foreign Language and Literatures

Teacher Licensure

FAQs about Teacher Licensure in French, German or Spanish

  • I want to get a Teaching License in French, German or Spanish. What should I do?

    First, read the information provided in the FL&L Teacher Licensure Handbook. Then download and fill out the Preliminary Review Form listing all coursework previously completed in foreign languages. Write your Initial Reflective Essay, in which you include an account of your background, reasons for seeking licensure and your interest in the Teacher Licensure Program in Foreign Languages at NIU. To complete the application, attach a copy of all transcripts of coursework completed at NIU and other institutions, highlighting courses in foreign languages. Make an appointment with the coordinator and provide the coordinator with your application.
  • If I am accepted, how long will it take to complete the program?

    Students generally complete all licensure requirements (except for student teaching) in eight semesters. Student teaching may require a ninth semester. Enrollment in summer school may also be required, depending on the number of credit hours you take per semester. Transfer students may need to enroll for a ninth and tenth semester depending on courses they have completed at other institutions.
  • What courses are required for admission?

    Ordinarily, students should have completed the Advanced Grammar coursework (FLFR 301-302, FLGE 301-302, FLSP 301) prior to admission with a grade of B or better. In addition, students must be enrolled in or have successfully finished ILAS 301, which has a prerequisite of passing the Basic Skills Test.
  • What kinds of tests do I need to take?

    Currently, students are required to take three tests required by the State of Illinois and one test required by ACTFL, the accrediting agency. These tests are: Basic Skills Test: The exam must be passed prior to admission into the program. Successful completion of the test is the basis for admission into ILAS 301. Content Area Test in French, German or Spanish: This exam must be passed before enrolling in FLPT 485/584 Student Teaching. Assessment of Professional Teaching (APT): This test must passed before receiving your license. Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI): This test must be taken prior to receiving your license. A minimum score of Advanced Low must be attained.
  • Are there any additional requirements?

    • TB Test: Required for enrollment in ILAS 201 and admission to program. This test must be updated each year.
    • Online Safety Tutorial for Pre-Service Teachers: Must be completed before Student Teaching.
    • Criminal Background Check: Must be approved prior to enrollment in ILAS 201.
    • CPR/AED First Aid Certification: Must complete KNPE 262 First Aid and CPR or provide relevant documentation prior to taking FLPT 485/584.
    • FERPA Release: Needs to be signed, dated and handed to the Coordinator for inclusion in student’s file.
  • Can students select the schools in which they wish to complete their clinical experiences and student teaching?

    Placements for ILAS 201 and 301 are arranged by the placement coordinator of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Because of the large number of placements the coordinator must arrange, you will probably need to travel outside the DeKalb area to complete the clinicals. The FLMT 401 clinical is ordinarily completed during the semester prior to student teaching. You may request a particular geographic area and level (middle or secondary school), but may not specify particular schools or cooperating teachers. In addition, you may not request placement into schools they themselves attended. Clinical and student teaching placements are always arranged and supervised by the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the Department of Foreign Languages & Literatures. Transportation to and from schools is always your responsibility.
  • What about students who already have one or more academic degrees in Foreign Languages and wish to obtain teacher licensure?

    These students are welcome to apply to the program. They must satisfy the same requirements of the university and the State of Illinois as any other student seeking licensure. Holding of one or more degrees in foreign languages does not automatically confer the right to teacher licensure in Illinois public schools. Such individuals often find that they must take additional coursework in order to satisfy requirements not in force at the time of his or her original matriculation at a college or university.
  • What about native speakers of French, German or Spanish who wish to obtain teacher licensure in their first language?

    Again, these persons must satisfy the same requirements as other students. According to the guidelines established by the State of Illinois, status as a native speaker of a language does not guarantee teacher licensure.
  • What is the duration of student teaching?

    Student teaching is 16 weeks in length, and it is ordinarily completed during the spring semester. Other requirements during the student-teaching seminar are attendance at several late-afternoon seminars.