Out of State Licensure

Information for Applicants Who Completed an Out of State Licensure Program

This information will assist you in providing the documents necessary to complete the application process for an Ohio license. 

To apply online: 

Set up a SAFE account. https://safe.ode.state.oh.us/portal

If you need assistance with SAFE, be sure to check the Help manual. Also, information on alternate forms of ID (other than an Ohio driver's license) are explained here.

In order to create an online application:

  • Access your SAFE account.
  • Click on ODE.CORE
  • From your Dashboard, select Apply/New Application.
  • Complete the three steps of the application, and submit payment.

The following documents may be uploaded by the applicant during the online application process:

  • Copy of out of state teaching license (front and back), or
  • Letter of eligibility: If you do not hold a teaching license in the state in which you completed a teacher education program, a letter, on university letterhead, signed by the dean or head of teacher education, stating the license type you are eligible for in that state and the subject area(s) this license allows you to teach. For Intervention Specialist licenses, the letter must state the disability areas included in the scope of the license.
  • Verification of completed out of state licensure exams (see requirements for testing below);
  • Verification of experience (see requirements for experience below);
  • Official transcripts: Please scan and upload your original, official transcript in PDF format only. We cannot accept grade reports, photos/photocopies of transcripts or unofficial transcripts. Before uploading your transcripts please see the following requirements:
    • Confer date of degree must be visible.
    • Include all pages of transcript (front and back).
    • Registrar's signature and transcript key/guide must be visible.
    • Create one PDF file per transcript (do not upload pages separately).
    • Upload transcripts from multiple universities separately (i.e. each transcript should be one PDF file).
  • College coursework completed outside the United States requires a course by course analysis from an approved international credential evaluation service. List of approved organizations

Verification of Experience

Please provide verification of the necessary experience for the Ohio license(s) you are requesting by submitting an original letter, on district letterhead, signed by the superintendent of schools or the human resource director verifying dates of full-time employment, assignments and grade levels during each year of employment as a lead classroom teacher. Additionally, please provide the teaching license(s) you held during each school year you taught. The years on the license(s) should coincide with your work experience verification letter(s).

Are you applying for an initial Ohio teaching license?

  • Apply for a four-year resident educator license if you have less than three years of out of state teaching experience under a standard teaching license (experience verification not required).
  • Apply for a five-year professional teaching license if you have three or more years of out of state teaching experience under a standard teaching license (experience verification required, including work experience verification letters and previously held teaching licenses).

  Are you applying for an initial Ohio administrator license?

  • A professional principal license requires a minimum of two years of teaching experience under a standard teaching license (experience verification required).
  • A professional administrative specialist license requires two years of teaching experience under a standard teaching license, with the exception of the pupil services administration license, which requires two years of experience under a professional pupil services license (experience verification required).
  • A professional superintendent license requires three years of administrative experience (experience verification required).

Are you applying for an initial Ohio pupil services license?

  • Experience verification is not required for these types of licenses; however, it is necessary to hold the corresponding Ohio Board license for the following pupil services areas:  school audiologist, school speech-language pathologist, school social worker, school nurse, occupational therapist, physical therapist.

Licensure Assessment Requirements

Applicants who meet any of the following criteria are required to successfully complete applicable portions of required exams.

  • Began college coursework AFTER July 1, 1987, OR
  • Began coursework requirements PRIOR to July 1, 1987, but did not complete licensure requirements until AFTER July 1, 1991, OR
  • Are adding an area to an existing license or seeking a new license (program completed after July 1, 1991).

If you have not completed both a content area assessment and professional knowledge/pedagogy assessment for licensure in your state, please click here for testing requirements.

Please note: Educators requesting licensure in early childhood (grades Prek-3); middle childhood (grades 4-9), intervention specialist or early childhood intervention specialist areas must also pass the Ohio Assessment for Educators (OAE) 090, Foundations of Reading exam. The requirement applies to any applicant who is issued a license in one of these areas on or after July 1, 2017. Please click here for more information.

Reading Coursework Requirements

Pursuant to Ohio law, educators requesting Early Childhood, Middle Childhood or Intervention Specialist licensure must have successfully completed at least 12 semester hours of coursework in the teaching of reading that includes at least one separate course of at least three semester hours in the teaching of phonics in the context of reading, writing and spelling.  The coursework must be completed at an accredited college or university. Many educators who completed their educator preparation program out of state will not have met this requirement, so a license may be issued to the educator with the limitation placed upon it to complete the reading coursework requirement prior to expiration. Educators must have completed at least six of the required 12 semester hours of coursework in the teaching of reading to be issued a standard teaching license in Ohio.

Background Checks

BCI and FBI background checks are required for initial licensure. Click here for information. 

If you reside outside of Ohio, please call the office of Educator Licensure at the Ohio Department of Education to request fingerprint cards.

Related Links

Last Modified: 5/16/2018 3:19:53 PM