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Initial Master Teacher Certificate
Preparing to Apply
Am I in the Right Place?
This checklist is for first-time applicants only. If you have ever held a master teacher certificate, please review the other checklists and make the appropriate selection.
To apply for this certificate, you must also hold a valid Colorado professional license. If you do not hold a professional license, you will need to submit the Colorado professional license and master teacher certificate applications to CDE.
- You will need electronic copies of all documentation.
( Get Help with Document Scanning )
- Allow ample time to request any third party transcripts or other documentation.
7 years from date of issue
(5 years for professional license plus 2 years for master certificate)
- In most cases, additional fingerprinting is not required for this type of application.
- If you already hold a valid, CDE-issued educational credential and have consistently maintained an active credential (authorization or license) since you submitted your fingerprints, you can skip this step. We reserve the right to evaluate your application for adherence to the fingerprint requirements and will notify you by email should any follow-up be needed.
- If you have submitted fingerprints for CDE credentialing in the past, but allowed all credentials to lapse and have held no active credential for a period exceeding 1 year, you must submit a new set of fingerprints.
- Confirm you have a valid form of government-issued identification.
( View List of Valid IDs )
- Obtain proof that you have attained a National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) certification.
- Within the application you must include employment history for at least the past 5 years.
- Include employer/business name, dates of employment, reason for leaving, work addresses, supervisor names, and contact information.
- Include teaching experience from more than 5 years ago, if you have it.
- If applicable, obtain supporting documentation on the following:
- Past criminal history
- Disciplinary actions
- Any issues related to licensure or employment
Register and Apply
Once you have gathered all of the information listed above, you are ready to begin the online application process! Just register for the eLicensing system or, if you are already registered, log in.
Then, select the application titled "Teacher" to get started.
For questions, email CDELicensing@cde.state.co.us or call 303-866-6628.