Many times, in our professional lives, we go through change and transitions--changes that sometimes takes us away from our current state. As a teacher, here's what you need to know if you want to transfer a teaching license to another state.


As teachers and educators, we are blessed to live in a nation that allows us to move across state lines while maintaining our careers with relative ease. Should you need to transfer teaching licenses to another state, your journey in doing so will be just another step in the right direction.

Contact the Department of Instruction

When transferring a teaching license from state to state, the best first step is to contact the Department of Instruction in the state in which you plan to reside.

This agency is referred to as the DOE or Department of Education. Each state is different, but luckily, the majority of state licenses transfer to other states with relative ease through something called license reciprocity. Reciprocity which means each state recognizes your host state’s teaching credential as proof you are a qualified specialist in teaching. Should you plan to move states immediately after completing your licensure program, it is recommended that you obtain your home state license, then apply to transfer your license to the state you plan to live and work.

The majority of states require licensure in order to teach in both the private and public sectors of education. Not having your license will substantially limit your choices as employers tend to hire solely licensed candidates.

The NASDTEC Interstate Agreement

Nearly all states in the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education Certification (NASDTEC) have signed the NASDTEC Interstate Agreement. This agreement gives certified teachers eligibility for certification in the state they seek to relocate. Often times, NASDTEC will require additional testing and state-specific clearances in order to transfer your credential. It is important to note that you need to be a licensed teacher so that you will qualify according to NASDTEC’s requirements. Also, note that many states will offer a temporary provisional certificate valid from 1 to 5 years.

Find a DOE Specialist

Knowing all this, in the end, the best advice is to contact a real person in the state you seek to reside and work. Find a DOE specialist or Human Resources administrator in an in-state University and work with them directly. Throughout the process, you will find it easiest and quickest to work with the same individual specialist each regarding questions and help. These experts are paid to help and their guidance will prove invaluable.

The job market for a teaching professional is as competitive as ever. Any way you can distinguish yourself from other candidates gives you an advantage. We offer a wide variety of options for educators, from licensure to graduate degrees. Not only will a graduate degree set you apart, but it will also provide you with vastly advanced teaching techniques and knowledge. In many cases, our degrees also lead directly to licensure.

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