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Environmental Science Licensure


Why Environmental Science Licensure?


The number of environmental science courses being taught in Wisconsin high schools is increasing every year. Growing environmental concerns such as climate change and sustainability emphasize the need for educating the next generation of decision makers. Districts are becoming more aware of this need and responding by developing environmental science/studies courses.
Having an environmental science teaching license ensures educators meet state requirements and have the necessary background to teach these courses. Holding environmental science licensure makes teachers more marketable and provides options for them and their district to expand existing curriculum.

Licenses Available

There are two types of environmental science teaching licenses teachers can obtain in Wisconsin:
  • Environmental Studies (615) – most common, has been around the longest
  • Life and Environmental Science (606) – created under PI 34 


License Options

A) Preservice or continuing education students: If you would like to obtain an environmental science teaching license there are several universities/colleges in Wisconsin that offer licensure in environmental science programs. There is an up-to-date list of the universities/colleges on the DPI website


B) Inservice teachers: If you are a licensed teacher and would like to add a 615 Environmental Studies teaching license, your requirements will be based on several factors including the current license(s) you hold and your educational background. The following are options for adding the 615 license:

UW-Stevens Point – Add-on Licensure

The School of Education and College of Natural Resources at UW-Stevens Point partner to offer a 615 Environmental Studies add-on teaching license. Your educational background and previous coursework taken determine your requirements for completing the program. If needed, additional coursework is offered online or can be substituted from an institution other than UWSP.

overview_4_3_13.pdf Program Overview | application procedures_4_3_13.pdfApplication Procedures

UW-Oshkosh – Center for Additional Teaching Licenses  

The Center for Additional Teaching Licenses offers add-on licensure in a variety of K-12 areas for in-service teachers. A 615 Environmental Studies teaching license can be obtained through the Center without leaving your current employment. The program requires 9 credits in Environmental Science content, 6 credits in teaching methods and 6 credits in Environmental Science issues courses. Courses can be taken through any 2 or 4-year accredited institution, and credit for prior learning may be requested in place of a course requirement in some cases.


The United States Department of Education requires institutions that provide distance education to disclose information for programs leading to professional certification or licensure about whether each program meets state educational requirements for initial licensure or certification. Following is this disclosure information for this program:

The requirements of this program meet Certification/Licensure in the following states:

The requirements of this program do not meet Certification/Licensure in the following states:
Not applicable

The requirements of this program have not been determined if they meet Certification/Licensure in the following states:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wyoming; District of Columbia; American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands
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