Accreditation and Unit and Program Approval

St. Olaf is approved by the Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board (PELSB) of the State of Minnesota to grant teaching licenses to applicants who complete our approved programs. The Teacher Education Program at St. Olaf has been approved to grant licenses through 6/30/2027.

Admissions requirements for the St. Olaf Teacher Education program are monitored when students apply to the program during their sophomore year while taking the first course in the Education sequence (Education 290 for students who entered the Teacher Education program by 7/1/22 and Education 295 for students entering after 9/1/22).

Clinical experiences occur throughout the program. Candidates for licensure complete coursework in general methods (Education 330), special education and ESL (Education 375 or 340-for students entering after 9/1/22), technology (Education 291 or Education 330 lab-for students entering after 9/1/22), reading (Education 321 or 374), and special content-area methods.

The St. Olaf Education program files annual data reports with PELSB that includes program enrollments,  teacher licensure exams pass rates, and other data required by the state. Compiled data for the most recent report, including from St. Olaf, can be found on the PELSB website under “Teacher Preparation.” Additionally, St. Olaf files a Title II report with the US Department of Education; those reports can be found on the Title II website. St. Olaf also lists Minnesota Teacher Licensure Exam pass rates here.

Minnesota’s teacher licensure shortage areas can be found on the Office of Higher Education website and include the following programs that St. Olaf offers:

  • Communication Arts and Literature
  • English as a Second Language
  • Instrumental and Classroom Music
  • Mathematics
  • Science: Chemistry, Life Sciences, Physics, Middle Level Science (Grades 5 – 8)
  • Social Studies
  • Theatre Arts
  • Visual Arts
  • Vocal and Classroom Music
  • World Languages: Spanish, French, German, Latin

The St. Olaf Education Department strives to increase the number of teachers in these areas of shortage, and works to recruit talented potential educators. One recent step that St. Olaf has taken to increase the number of applicants to these shortage areas is to allow students to major in Education as of the 2020-2021 academic year. Additionally, the Education Department holds frequent interest meetings and offers a concentration in Education Studies. Finally, St. Olaf partners with Carleton College to license Carleton students along with their St. Olaf peers. Over the past several years, while our overall numbers have holding steady, we have seen increases in enrollments in mathematics, social studies, and vocal music programs.