Professional Licensure

Are you interested in a program that requires a professional license in your state?

Some professions (e.g. doctors, lawyers, counselors, accountants, geologists, nurses, etc.) require that you obtain licensure or certification beyond your degree in order to hold a position in that field. Professional Licensure regulations and requirements vary from field to field, and from state to state. Each state and U.S. territory has an authority, be it public or private, responsible for overseeing the licensure requirements of the various professions in that state.

Adams State offers three programs in leading to licensure:


Adams State’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree meets all curricular requirements for students to sit for the NCLEX licensing exam. Passing the exam leads to licensure nationwide. To determine how to apply for licensure, students should contact the relevant state licensing board for nursing.

Teacher Education

Adams State’s education programs are authorized by the Colorado Department of Education to lead to elementary, secondary and/or K-12 licensure, as well as specialized endorsements in the State of Colorado. Adams State has not determined whether it’s programs meet the requirements for professional licensure in other states. Adams State’s department of Teacher Education will work with individual students from outside Colorado to help them determine licensure requirements in their state. Students should check the particular requirements for their state with the relevant State Teacher Education licensing authorities.

Counselor Education

The M.A. and Ph.D. programs in Counselor Education meet the requirements for CACREP accreditation and curriculum requirements for all states. Licensure requirements vary by state and applicants may need to meet additional requirements such as additional classes in order to meet licensure requirements in those states. Students should inquire with the relevant state licensing boards for Counselor Education. Information about school counselor state certificates is here. Currently we cannot accept students living in Texas in our MA in School Counseling program.

If you are completing one of these programs with the intention of becoming licensed in a state outside of Colorado, you should contact the applicable licensing board to determine any other requirements you may need to fulfill in order to obtain licensure in a particular state. Some licensing boards may require you to take additional coursework, post-graduation examinations, acquire additional experience, pay application and/or licensing fees, undergo criminal background checks, submit fingerprints, or provide other information prior to obtaining licensure.

If questions remain after reviewing the information provided by the respective state agency, contact your program at Adams State where faculty and staff will do our best to connect you with the information you need. While we can provide initial guidance, including whether or not the education you receive at Adams State will prepare you for the applicable licensing exam, it is ultimately your responsibility to check with the state licensing board where you intend to seek licensure and practice to confirm all licensing requirements; make sure you understand and consider the implications of the additional requirements prior to enrolling in a program intended to lead to professional licensure.

Completing a distance program, or relocating to another state during your program, will also likely impact your eligibility for licensure and requirements for reciprocity. Adams State encourages you to inquire with the appropriate licensing board in your state (or the state where you intend to practice) in order to ask any questions regarding licensure and to confirm that you understand the requirements for licensure or reciprocity.

If you have any questions, please contact the school director, program chair, or your academic advisor at Adams State.