Licensure & Certification

Individuals seeking teacher licensure in North Carolina have several routes available to them; each route carries specific requirements and limitations. In all cases, individuals should seek additional information from appropriate offices or authorities; below is a brief overview of the routes.

Several licensure options exist for students:

  • Traditional Teacher Licensure
  • Middle and Secondary Teaching Graduate Certificate
  • Licensure Only 
  • Lateral Entry or Regional Alternative Licensing Center (RALC)

Traditional Teacher Licensure

  • A four-year undergraduate degree is the most common route for students who enter a college or university with the intention of completing a degree in teacher education.
  • Students select a major, follow a prescribed course of study, and complete an official degree program designed to prepare teachers in a particular field.
  • Students are then recommended by the Reich College of Education for initial licensure.

For further information, visit Academics to learn more about the programs offered by Appalachian State University or visit the University Bulletin where majors and licensure requirements are detailed.

Note: RCOE participates in the Appalachian Learning Alliance, where students may enroll in a degree completion program leading to licensure. Students complete an appropriate Associate of Arts degree and then are admitted to Appalachian's teacher education program and may complete all requirements at one of our community college site-based programs or online. Learn more!

Applying for Traditional Applicant Licensure 

Upon the official conferral of your degree, submit an online application for licensure through the North Carolina Department of Instruction's (NCDPI) online application web-page.

The following information must be uploaded with your application:

  • Official Transcripts
  • Test Scores (NES or Praxis II)
  • Work Authorization (if not a US citizen)
  • Teaching Experience Verification (if you have prior teaching experience outside of Student Teaching)
  • $70.00 nonrefundable processing fee ($100.00 for speech pathology license)

*If this is your first North Carolina teaching license, include official, degree posted undergraduate transcripts.

**If applying for specialist (sixth year) or doctorate level licensure, include a Form V with your application (contact to request a Form V) 

It takes NCDPI approximately eight to 12 weeks to process your application. Please note: applications cannot be submitted until degrees have been conferred, which occurs about three weeks after graduation.

Middle and Secondary Teaching Graduate Certificate

Through the Graduate Certificate in Middle and Secondary Teaching program at Appalachian State University, eligible candidates can obtain an initial A-level teaching license in as little as three (3) semesters.  

The program is offered completely online and is only 18 credits. This is by far one of the quickest, most cost-effective and convenient means towards licensure. This is a coherent program for lateral entry as well. Learn more!

Licensure Only

The Licensure Only pathway to teaching is for students who have a degree from a regionally accredited university and want to complete coursework before they obtain a teaching job.

This non-degree, licensure only program results in an "A" level license. This is the equivalent of the license earned by completing an undergraduate program in teacher education. 

  • Available to individuals who have completed a four-year degree from an accredited university.
  • FREE analysis to determine what requirements are needed before being recommended for licensure. Allow four to six weeks.
  • Study full-time or part-time. 
  • The length of time that it takes to complete the program varies by individual and is dependent on the number of courses required for licensure and whether a student is attending full-time or part-time.
  • Classes are not offered on weekends, but many are offered at night and during the summer. Visit the Office of the Registrar for details on when specific classes are offered. Visit App State Online for information about satellite programs.
  • Student Teaching is a program requirement of this program. Learn more about Student Teaching.


Ready to apply?

Complete the Transcript Evaluation Request Form and send with your unofficial transcripts to:

By email:

By mail:

Licensure Only
Appalachian State University
Reich College of Education, Office of the Dean
ASU Box 32038
Boone, NC 28608-2038

Allow four to six weeks for review.

Residency Model and Restricted License

A Residency License (RL) allows individuals to work as licensed teachers in North Carolina while they complete licensure coursework. Appalachian State University has developed graduate certificate programs to meet the Residency Licensure requirements.  

Appalachian State University offers an online Residency Model and Restricted License designed to assist residency candidates in meeting residency licensure requirements. For more information, email

Click here for more information regarding Residency Licensure programs