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Department of Reading and Language

at the National College of Education at National Louis University

ul 4.15.13

Endorsement and Licensure

Applying for Reading Teacher or Specialist Endorsement


You may apply for endorsement any time after you finish your practica, 592A, B and have a total of 24 sh of reading coursework (which may include your undergraduate or other graduate work). Click here for directions on how to apply for additional endorsements.


If you are ready to graduate from NLU's Reading Specialist program, have two years of experience and have passed the Reading Specialist test 221 and Advanced Professional teaching test 188, you may apply for licensure by entitlement:

  1. You must have graduated. So, first apply for graduation. Dates for application are online, on the commencement page. The registrar checks your courses against your degree plan and issues you a statement that you are ready to graduate. If there are any problems, the registrar lets you know, and you should contact your Academic Advisor. You do not need to contact your advisor unless the registrar check indicates you should. We cannot process anything until you actually graduate but you can get your file ready to go.
  2. Get an Illinois licensure application for reading specialist, Type 73-03C Application or obtain one from any state office. You want form 73-03C for licensure. You are applying for an endorsement in Reading. It is the first option. You want a single K-12 endorsement. Do not check supervisory endorsement. You do not have to submit the second sheet. You do not need middle school classes for the K–12.
  3. Put together a file including everything required. This includes confirmation that you have at least two year's teaching experience, a copy of your degree plan, and information on your teaching experience. You will need to include copies of your pass notices from Reading Specialist Content test 221 and Advanced Professional Teaching Test 188 (pre K–12). We cannot recommend you for licensure unless you have passed these tests. Put it all in a folder and use the credential checklist as a cover sheet.
  4. Fill out the Illinois licensure application for reading specialist, Type 73-03C Application. You are applying for a special endorsement. When it asks for the type of endorsement, look for the word SPECIAL. You must write READING SPECIALIST on the line after SPECIAL. Then check for the K–12 endorsement. You do not fill in supervisory endorsement. Be sure to write the correct name for our institution—we are National Louis (not Lewis). If you already hold a standard license, check STANDARD. If you only hold an initial license, check INITIAL.
  5. Send 2 and 3 above BUT DO NOT INCLUDE A CHECK to:
    Licensure—Office of Admissions and Records
    1000 Capitol Drive
    Wheeling IL 60090

What happens next?

Your documents are double checked, and if everything is OK, you receive the application back again with a letter and directions from the registrar's office, and you are directed to send it to the state with a check or apply online. Once you receive your application back, the state has your entitlement number on file. You can print off notice of your entitlement (you are entitled to that license) to show potential employers even before you get your actual license. This internal process takes 3-8 weeks depending on the time of year.
Nothing will happen until you graduate, pass the tests and send us your scores. We will not be able to process anything without these requirements. After we return the application to you and you send it to the state, they send you the license.

To check on the status of your file, contact (1.800.443.5522 extension 5361).

Note: If you are not graduating from NLU's reading specialist program you must go through the state. You are expected to keep abreast of licensure issues by checking this website and that of ISBE regularly for updates. As an NLU reading student you will also be entered onto our mailing list for updates of important issues about licensure. Check the ISBE Web site (in our links) for dates and locations of licensure tests.



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