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Alternative Routes to Licensure

Possible Routes

There are two alternative routes to licensure:

1. Licensing by Agreement (Coursework)

Licensing by Agreement means a person is completing requirements through a specific course of study (e.g. coursework and Praxis testing). The ARL advisor will determine required coursework on a case-by-case basis. Although ARL has its own curriculum and coursework, required coursework may be completed through any accredited institution of higher education.

The state Alternative Routes to Licensure program has entered into a partnership with the Utah State University Alternative Route to Licensure (ARL) Masters in Education program. Secondary Education participants who wish to earn a masters degree while earning a Secondary Education license through the state ARL program may do so by also applying to the Utah State University ARL Masters program.  

The state Alternative Routes to Licensure program has entered into a partnership with Salt Lake Community College.

2. Licensing by Competency (Tests)

Licensing by Competency means a person is completing requirements through Utah Board of Education approved content and pedagogical tests. The ABCTE program is not approved as an Alternative Route to Licensure on its own, but rather is a pathway to meet requirements for individuals already accepted into USOE’s ARL Alternative Route to Licensure Program. Any such candidate must meet all the ARL requirements in order to be eligible for licensure. The completion of a Bachelor’s degree and content eligibility requirements prior to admission to ARL is considered demonstration of prior academic performance. Competency can be demonstrated in some subject areas by completing requirements through Utah Board of Education approved content and pedagogical tests. Not all content areas can be licensed through competency testing. The Board of Education has approved the following tests through American Board for Certification of Teacher Excellence (ABCTE) as long as they are currently a participant in USOE’s ARL program: Biology, Chemistry, Elementary Education*, English Language Arts, Mathematics*, Physics, History*. (* See additional requirements below) Please do not enroll in ABCTE unless you have received an ARL plan with specific options for this because Utah doesn’t accept the ABCTE program otherwise.

It is expected that all Utah ABCTE participants FIRST meet all ARL eligibility requirements: apply to and be approved to participate in the Alternative Routes to Licensure program, be hired to teach in a Utah school district, charter school, or accredited private/parochial school in their approved subject area, and receive a Professional Growth Plan from an ARL advisor. The choice to earn licensure through ABCTE comes after all of the above have been met.”

Additional requirements, if participating in ABCTE for Utah licensure are:

  1. Apply and be accepted to Utah Alternative Routes to Licensure. See requirements for eligibility on ARL eligibility page.
  2. Submit an authorization to ABCTE to release official copies of score reports to the Utah State Office of Education.
  3. Successfully complete one or more years of teaching in a Utah School district, charter school, or accredited private/parochial school while in the ARL program and receive a formal recommendation for licensure from your employer and the state ARL advisor after completing all requirements.
  4. Each Content Area includes at least a Content Test (approximately 4 hours) and Professional Teacher Knowledge Test (approximately 3.5 hours long).

*Mathematics teachers must also successfully complete a Methods of Teaching Secondary Mathematics course from a Utah University in addition to ABCTE tests.
Kindergarten teachers must also pass the Praxis Test 0022 Early Childhood test as part of the K content course competency testing route.

History has 2 Content Tests plus the PTK Professional Teacher Knowledge Test.

The ARL advisor and participant will determine the most appropriate route. All program participants must demonstrate competency in four areas. The four levels of competency are:
Content Knowledge, Pedagogical Knowledge, Classroom Performance Skills, Dispositions for Teaching.