Professional Educator License (PEL), School Social Worker Endorsement

Make Your Impact as a School Social Worker!

school social worker with student

The Post-MSW Professional Educator License (PEL), School Social Worker Endorsement Program is a non-degree program that prepares individuals who have already obtained an MSW to become licensed school social workers. The curriculum prepares them for eligibility to obtain a PEL with a School Social Worker Endorsement, which is required to practice as a school social worker in the state of Illinois.

The program comprises a field education component spanning a full school year, and two additional courses typically taken during the fall semester of enrollment. The field education component (SOCW 574 and SOCW 575) involves an ISBE required school-based internship of at least 400 hours to be achieved over the academic year of the program through a minimum of two days per week in the setting. Both of the additional courses taken in the fall semester (SOCW 480 and SPED 410) are offered online.

Application Procedure

Students are responsible for applying to the Illinois Licensure Testing System to take the required certification tests (Test of Academic Proficiency) prior to admission and Content Area Test prior to completion of field placement).

An applicant must have an MSW from a CSWE-accredited program with a grade point average of at least 3.00 on a 4.00 scale (A=4.00) and demonstrate evidence of commitment to work with children.

To be eligible to register for courses, prospective students must submit an application and all supplemental materials listed to the Jane Addams College of Social Work (see below for address):

Supplemental materials:

  1. Official transcript denoting a MSW degree from a CSWE-accredited program with GPA of at least 3.00 on a 4.00 scale.
  2. Two letters of recommendation from professionals in the field.
  3. Resume.
  4. Personal statement.

For Fall 2020 enrollment, materials are due by March 20, 2020 and should be sent to:

Jane Addams College of Social Work
University of Illinois at Chicago
Office of Admissions
1040 West Harrison (MC 309)
Chicago, Illinois 60607

If you have additional questions please contact Krista Hinton at (312) 355-2280 or by email at