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Minnesota Teacher Licensure Examination (MTLE)

All candidates seeking an initial license are required to demonstrate basic skills competency and pass Minnesota Teacher Licensure Examinations (MTLE) that assess pedagogical and content-area knowledge. Candidates seeking an initial license may demonstrate basic skills competency through the MN National Evaluation Series (NES) Essential Academic Skills examination, the ACT Plus Writing, or the SAT. Visit the Licensure Exams page on the Minnesota Board of Teaching website for more information regarding the current options for meeting the basic skills requirement. Pedagogical and content-area knowledge are assessed through the MTLE. If you are already licensed and adding another license, you only have to take the content-area examination in the new licensure field.

In order for a University of Minnesota, Morris teacher candidate to student teach, he or she must pass all three Essential Academic Skills exams.


Teacher candidates seeking licensure must complete three sets of tests:

You must pass all Essential Academic Skills tests to be eligible to student teach and ALL exams in order to be eligible for a Minnesota teaching license. You may retake the subtests until you obtain a passing score.

  • The Essential Academic Skills Examination includes three subtests: Reading, Writing, and Mathematics. Candidates must take and pass all three subtests to qualify for a Minnesota license. You may take one, two, or all three subtests at one test appointment.
  • There are two levels for which you can take the two subtests of the Pedagogy exams: Elementary (K-6), and Secondary (5-12).
  • For each license you are seeking, you must complete Content Area tests (you can find out more here).
  • Please save your score report and email your score report to the Division of Education at


Computer-based tests are available by appointment, year round, Monday through Saturday (excluding holidays) at test centers across the state and nationwide.

The UMN Morris Test Center is located on the second floor of Behmler Hall.


If you need to retake a test you may do so in 45 days. Examinees who have failed a subtest five or more times may be eligible for a fee voucher for subsequent attempts.

To request a retake fee voucher, contact Evaluation Systems before registering to test.


The MTLE website provides test preparation materials and links.

There are MTLE test preparation materials available for purchase.

Many states have competency exams for beginning teachers that are designed to assess similar competencies to those in the MTLE. Below are links to study materials from several states. These materials may be helpful to you, but please remember that they are not designed specifically to meet Minnesota’s standards.

California Basic Education Skills Test (CBEST)
Georgia Assessments for the Certification of Educators (GACE)
Michigan State Teachers Certification Exam (MTTC)


Examinees with documented disabilities, examinees for whom English is not a primary language, and examinees whose religious practices prevent them from testing on Saturdays may be eligible for alternative testing arrangements.

This process will take several weeks, so be sure to register early.