Licensure Questions about Applying for Reading Teacher Certification After Coursework Is Completed

After completing the five courses, the reading practicum, and successfully passing the Foundations of Reading Test, you may apply for your Wisconsin 316 reading teacher certification.


What are the requirements before I can apply for Wisconsin reading teacher (WI 316) licensure?

Prior to applying for the license, students must demonstrate:

  • Satisfactory disposition ratings
  • Satisfactory Learner Assessment and Instruction Profile rating
  • Reflective Summary of Professional Growth
  • Satisfactory e-portfolio rating
  • Passing grade in all of the required reading courses
  • GPA of 3.0 or higher in each of the required reading courses (18 credits)
  • Two years of successful teaching experience
  • Valid Wisconsin teaching license
  • A bachelor's degree
  • Satisfactory passing score on the Foundations of Reading Test

The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction will issue the reading teacher (316) license to applicants who can verify two years of teaching experience, hold a valid Wisconsin teaching license, and show proficiency in the teaching of reading based on work completed in UW-Stout’s reading courses and practicum.

If you have questions about the verification of your teaching experience, please contact the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction Teacher Education, Licensing and Professional Development Team, email Educator Licensing at or call 1-800-266-1027.


How do I apply for Wisconsin reading teacher (#316) licensure?

The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction provides directions and videos to assist with your application for an initial license for the #316, reading teacher.

Apply online at

All license are issued electronically.

  1. Create an account in the ELO (Educator Licensing Online) system and initiate the process online.
  2. Enter biographical data and upload supporting documents online.
  3. Pay online by credit card.
  4. Print license certificates from the online system.

For updates and additional information about the Educator Licensing Online system visit:

If you have a question about the process, please contact our UW-Stout Certification Officer, Heather Klanderman, at or (715) 232-4088


Am I required to obtain licensure?

According to the WI DPI website:


Elementary Teachers Teaching in Elementary, Middle, or Junior High Schools
A reading teacher (316) license is required for the following assignments:

  1. A reading assignment for more than one class per day;
  2. A reading assignment in a Title 1 program identified as a reading program;
  3. A reading assignment in a reading recovery program, if not part of a self-contained classroom

A reading teacher license is not required for the following assignments:

  • A reading assignment which is a part of a regular self-contained classroom;
  • A reading assignment which is integrated as part of content courses (i.e. reading in the content area).


When do I apply for licensure?

Applicants may apply for the license online upon successful completion of the program and after taking and passing the Foundations of Reading Test

The Practice Test website provides opportunities for students to become familiar with the item types that will appear on the assessment.

According to the Wisconsin State Statute ACT 166: SECTION 21. 118.19 (14) (a) any person applying for a teacher license “…to teach in grades kindergarten to 5 or in special education, an initial license as a reading teacher, or an initial license as a reading specialist…” are required to take and pass a Foundations of Reading Test.


When does the Wisconsin reading teacher license need to be renewed?

Information can be found on the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction website.


If I do not need a #316 certification for my current position, may I wait to apply for this certification in five years when my Wisconsin license expires?

PI 34 program completers (finishing certification program after 7/1/04) may apply for initial educator licenses any time after finishing the certification program.


Will this qualify for certification in other states?

This post-baccalaureate non-degree add-on certification has been approved in the State of Wisconsin.

If you wish to seek licensure or certification in another state, you will receive proof of the program completion including a photocopy of the program plan signed by the university School of Education Certification Officer. 

You may submit your state certification application by mailing the form to:

Heather Klanderman, Certification Officer
School of Education
415 10th Avenue E
267 Heritage Hall
University of Wisconsin-Stout
Menomonie, WI 54751

It is up to each individual state to determine whether there is full reciprocity or if there are any deficiencies for their respective state's licensure.


If I have a license in another state and then moved to Wisconsin...

If I have a license in another state and completed two years of teaching in that state, then moved to Wisconsin, received a Wisconsin teaching license, but have been substitute teaching in Wisconsin, will my out of state teaching experience qualify for the Wisconsin 316 Reading Teacher license requirement?

Individuals applying for an initial license as a reading teacher (316) must hold, or be eligible to hold, a Wisconsin teaching license and have two years of successful teaching experience. The license needs to be a regular teaching category – not substitute or emergency teaching license. 

Out-of-state teaching experience (regular contract—not substitute teaching) must be documented with employment verification for the two years’ experience requirement.


Other Program Forms

Post-Baccalaureate Non-Degree Add-On Certification Plan Reading Teacher Certification Code #316 (Word document)

Learner Assessment & Instruction Profile Rubric (Word document)

Rubric for Professional Reading Teacher e-Portfolio (PDF)

Contact Us

Heather Klanderman
Certification Officer
School of Education
University of Wisconsin-Stout
(715) 232-4088