North Central College - Naperville, IL

Testing Requirements

All teacher candidates must pass three tests and one performance based assessment in order to obtain a teaching license in Illinois.

  • 22 ACT score with writing or the Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP)
  • The Content Area Test
  • The Assessment of Professional Teaching (APT) test
  • The Teacher Performance Assessment (edTPA)

The Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP):  Prior to Admission to the Teacher Education Program

The Illinois State Board of Education requires students pass the Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP) OR have an ACT Plus Writing composite score of 22 before they are admitted to any state-approved teacher education program.

Preparing for the TAP
  • Online preparation materials are available at the Illinois Licensure Testing Website
  • North Central’s Department of Education offers “TAP Preparation Boot Camps” periodically throughout the school year, including the first week of D-term.

If you don't have a composite ACT Plus Writing score of 22 or above, you'll need to either:

  1. Retake the ACT Plus Writing to try to earn a composite score of 22 or above; or
  2. Pass the TAP prior to admission in the the North Central College education program

The TAP consists of four independently scored subtests:

  1. Reading comprehension: 60 multiple choice questions
  2. Language arts (grammar and writing): 60 multiple choice questions
  3. Mathematics: 50 multiple choice questions
  4. Writing: 1 constructed-response assignment

Content Area Test:  Prior to Residency (Student Teaching)

Each content area test consists of 125 multiple choice questions.

You need to pass this test prior to residency (student teaching); students typically take it junior year.

The various content tests include: elementary education, biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics, history, English, PE, music, art, Spanish, German, and French.

Assessment of Professional Teaching (APT): Prior to Licensure

The APTs assess your professional and pedagogical knowledge and skills.  Each APT consists of 120 multiple-choice questions and 2 constructed-response assignments. 

There are four levels: Birth to grade 3, grades K-9, grades 6-12 and grades K-12 (you'll take the one for your chosen level).

This test is taken during your final year of the program.

Teacher Performance Assessment (edTPA): During Residency (Student Teaching)

The edTPA is a national assessment used in teacher education programs.

There are three or four tasks (elementary education has four tasks) for each subject area:

Task 1:  Planning for Instruction and Assessment
Task 2:  Instructing and Engaging Students in Learning
Task 3:  Assessing Students’ Learning
Task 4:  Assessing Students’ Mathematics Learning (elementary education only)

You're required to submit the following materials for this assessment:

  • Plans for three to five lessons
  • Video clips of your teaching
  • Assessments utilized in the lessons
  • Samples of students’ work along with your feedback
  • Comprehensive commentary and analysis of your planning, instruction and assessment