Who needs to take the Minnesota Teacher Licensure Exams?

Effective September 2010, the Minnesota Teacher Licensure Examinations became the sole means of assessing the basic skills, pedagogical, and content-area knowledge of Minnesota P–12 teacher candidates. As of that date, all candidates for an initial license will be required to pass the MTLE basic skills test as well as pedagogy and content-area tests.

If you are already licensed and adding another license, you only have to take the content knowledge test in the new licensure field. To learn more about the new requirements, download the “Frequently Asked Questions” document.

What are the MTLE tests?

All candidates applying for first-time Minnesota teaching licensure must complete:

  1. Basic Skills
  2. The Basic Skills examination includes three subtests: Reading, Writing and Mathematics. Examinees may take one, two or all three subtests at one test appointment.

    All Basic Skills examinations are computer based tests.

      Reading Writing Mathematics

    Subtest Format

    Approximately 48 multiple choice questions

    Approximately 33 multiple choice questions and two written assignments

    Approximately 50 multiple choice questions

    Passing Score

    240

    240

    240

    Time Allowed

    Up to 1 hour

    Up to 1 hour and 45 minutes

    Up to 1 hour and 15 minutes

    Reference Materials Available During Subtest None Written assignment directions Formulas/Constants page
    Cost $25.00* $25.00* $25.00*

    *There is also an annual registration fee of $50.00, paid once per program year, September 1 - August 31, regardless of the number of tests taken during that year.

  3. Pedagogy Tests
    All candidates applying for a first time Minnesota teaching license must take ONE of the THREE adopted tests in professional knowledge. The candidate should select any pedagogy test within the grade range for which licensure is sought. (Exception: There is no pedagogy exam for Parent Education).


  4. Pedagogy Tests

    Early Childhood
    (Birth – Grade 3)
    Elementary
    (Grades K-6)
    Secondary
    (Grades 5-12)
    Subtest Format

    Two subtests, computer based, approximately 50 multiple choice questions per subtest.

    Two subtests, computer based, approximately 50 multiple choice questions per subtest.

    Two subtests, computer based, approximately 50 multiple choice questions per subtest.

    Passing Score

    240

    240

    240

    Time Allowed Up to 1 hour per subtest Up to 1 hour per subtest Up to 1 hour per subtest
    Reference Materials Available During Subtest

    None

    None

    None

    Cost $35.00*
    per subtest
    $35.00*
    per subtest
    $35.00
    per subtest*

    *There is also an annual registration fee of $50.00, paid once per program year, September 1-August 31, regardless of the number of tests taken during that year.

  5. Content Area Test
  6. Candidates applying for a first time Minnesota teaching license, or adding a field, must take the Board adopted content/subject matter test for the licensure field for which they are applying. See MTLE Content Exam Information.

How can I prepare for the MTLE?

  • Watch the video, entitled "How to Prepare for your Teacher Licensure Test".
  • Borrow MTLE resources through the MTLE Center at SCSU, located in the Education Building, room A131. Center hours are posted on the bulletin board in the hallway adjacent to the MTLE Center. The MTLE Center offers general information, official study guides, schedules individual and group test preparation sessions, and conducts test preparation workshops for Basic Skills, Pedagogy and Content exams.  Call (320) 308-3645 or email mtle@stcloudstate.edu for more information.

  • MTLE online resources. There are full-length practice tests available online in many areas. Costs for the practice tests range from $14.95 - $29.95. These practice tests will provide comprehensive feedback on your performance and diagnostic score reports. You can find more information about what is available for each specific exam, on the Minnesota Teacher Licensure Examinations tests page.
  • Review similar study materials from other states. While there are no free materials available that align specifically to the MTLE Basic Skills tests, similar competencies are required in other states. Reviewing those study guides can be helpful for our candidates.
  • Other resources for test preparation are listed here.