Dominican offers more than one way to earn a master’s degree plus a teacher’s license.

Dominican University’s School of Education is committed to preparing teachers and leaders to navigate the changing world of education. Innovations in instructional technology and social media, an increasing number of students who are English Language Learners, changing state learning standards, and an emphasis on standardized testing are only a few of the shifts that influence our nation’s classrooms. At Dominican University we are developing new approaches to teaching and learning that will serve our country’s children and youth well as the educational landscape continues to change.

The School of Education offers candidates with a bachelor’s degree an alternative route to attaining a Professional Educator License in the state of Illinois. Following successful completion of the two-year alternative licensure program, the candidate is eligible for a master’s degree and Professional Educator License (PEL).

Dominican University offers alternative licensure programs in the following areas:

What makes Alternative Licensure Programs unique?

In traditional teacher-preparation programs leading to licensure, you take all coursework leading to licensure prior to completing the clinical practice experience. You do some early field experience as part of your preparation, but are not in the classroom full time until after their coursework is completed.

In an alternative licensure program, you enroll in a summer pre-residency experience that includes two graduate education classes. Beginning in August/September, you begin teaching in a high-need or under-resourced school as part of a two-year paid residency. Over a two-year period, you take graduate coursework that is aligned with your program. A university supervisor observes each candidate every week and provides feedback and support. The school in which you are employed provides a mentor teacher who also supports you.

How can I teach full time if I don't have a Professional Educator License?

Candidates enrolled in an alternative licensure program will be entitled with a provisional license: an educator license with stipulations. With this license, the candidate can serve as teacher of record in any school in Illinois for up to three years as long as the candidate remains in good standing in their alternative licensure program.

Candidates who are accepted into an alternative licensure program who are not currently teaching are responsible for finding a teaching position in a high-need or under-resourced school. Dominican will provide suggestions on schools or districts, but it is the candidate’s responsibility to find a position. Candidates would go through the typical application process that any teacher seeking a K-12 position would pursue.

Partnership between Dominican University and the School or School District

A Memorandum of Understanding needs to be signed by an official at Dominican University and the School in which the candidate is employed. This memorandum of understanding outlines the resources and collaboration expectations as outlined by the State for an alternative licensure program. The University will initiate this memorandum at the time a candidate is hired.

For further information, please contact Dr. Colleen Reardon, Director of Alternative Licensure Programs at (708) 524-6643.

Alternative Licensure Program Brochure (pdf)

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