Iowa Teaching License and Background Check

Please remember, Graceland University students are attending an Iowa university, so their initial teaching license will be issued from Iowa. If a student will not be teaching in Iowa, it is up to them to transfer their Iowa license to the state in which they want to teach in. 

All students will need to be fingerprinted and have a background check completed for their Iowa license. If they were fingerprinted and had a background check completed in another state, they will still need one for Iowa.  States do not share that information. 

The fees they will pay online when they complete their Iowa application will cover their Iowa license and federal background check for their Iowa license. 

If after a student has received their Iowa license and needs help transferring their Iowa license to Missouri or another state, we may be able to assist them in doing that.

All applicants will apply for their Iowa Teaching License on the BOEE website using their system.  Go to the BOEE website and click on:

  • Licensure Forms/Applications
  • Apply for a new license 

This will take them to the the BOEE's application system where the student will register and create an account. After they have created an account, they will only need to log in on future visits. 

Students will also enter their information required for their Federal background check for their Iowa license. 

After a student has been recommended for their Iowa Teaching license, they  may go back to the BOEE website and check under search for a license and if their license has been issued, it will appear there. To print a copy of their license, they will need to go back into the application system and there will be a tab marked My Licenses. 

Due to the large volume of requests, transactions in the summer take a minimum of four to six weeks to process. Please do not contact our office to check the status of an application unless it has been longer than six weeks.  

Denial of applications for licensure based on criminal convictions or founded child abuse

All initial applicants for licensure with the Iowa Board of Educational Examiners must undergo both a state and national criminal background check. This initial background check also includes a review of Iowa’s child abuse, dependent adult abuse, and sex offender registries. The Board’s administrative rules provide that certain criminal convictions, including forcible felonies and sexual offenses involving a child, will automatically disqualify a candidate from licensure.

With all other criminal convictions, as well as founded child or dependent adult abuse reports, the Board considers the totality of the circumstances and makes a determination based on the following factors:

The nature and seriousness of the crime or founded abuse in relation to the position sought;
The time elapsed since the crime or founded abuse was committed;
The degree of rehabilitation which has taken place since the crime or founded abuse was committed;
The likelihood that the person will commit the same crime or abuse again;
The number of criminal convictions or founded abuses committed; and such additional factors as may in a particular case demonstrate mitigating circumstances or heightened risk to public safety.

It is possible to be denied a license based on numerous traffic-related convictions, undisclosed assault convictions, repeated OWI's, or failure to disclose a suspended license from another state.  All applicants have the right to an appeal if an application for licensure is denied.