PLU is currently involved in a 2 year grant with PESB regarding the Alternative Routes to Certification Program. Due to the nature of the grant, only candidates from our partner districts are eligible to apply for admission into the alternative routes program, Our partners include Puyallup*, Bethel, Clover Park, and Franklin Pierce.

If you are not from an eligible partner district here is a website link for more information on other possible options: http://pathway.pesb.wa.gov/alternativeroutes/timeline

Availability for non-partnership alternative routes applicants for the 2017-2018 school year will be determined next year. We will post updates here as more information becomes available.

How to apply

The application requirements for the MAE Residency Certification, Alternate Routes, and Non-Certification programs are the same – with the exception of the WEST-B/E requirement for non-certification international students.

Applications are on rolling basis after the following two priority deadlines:
Priority Deadline #1:
November 1st
Interviews: November 28-December 2
Notification: End of December

Priority Deadline #2:
February 1st (also deadline for scholarship and fellowship applications)
Interviews: February 27-March 3
Notification: End of March


If you are interested in the MAE Alternative Routes to Certification, please read the following information:

  • PLU is currently involved in a 2 year grant with PESB regarding the Alternative Routes to Certification Program. Due to the nature of the grant, only candidates from our partner districts are eligible to apply for admission into the program. Our partners include:

Puyallup *
Bethel
Clover Park
Franklin Pierce

*If you are a candidate from Chief Leschi please work directly with your administrator and Puyallup School District.

  • If you are not from an eligible partner district here is a website link for more information on other possible options: http://pathway.pesb.wa.gov/alternativeroutes/timeline
  • Availability for non-partnership applicants for the 2017-2018 school year will be determined next year.
  • We continue to accept applications for the Alternative Routes option through May 15th, however we will give priority to applications received by the deadlines.

Application Process

Step One – Apply online

  • Create your application account and pay the nonrefundable $55 application fee via our application portal.
    Make sure to record your login and pin!
  • Enter two references via the online application portal. This will send an email notification to your recommenders to follow a link and submit their letters of recommendation. At least one of these letters should specifically speak to your experience working with young people. You can manage the references (change or re-send to recommenders) via the online application portal.
  • Special instructions regarding Alt-Route block grant applicants: Block grant applicants need to submit a Block Grant Letter of Support from the school district and submit a nomination form at this link: https://forms.plu.edu/1330

Step Two – submit / initiate all required supporting items below:

  • Official transcripts from ALL colleges and universities attended  (PLU graduates do not need to send their PLU transcripts).
    • Official transcripts must be submitted in a sealed envelope from the institution. Our mailing address: Graduate Admission, Pacific Lutheran University, 12180 Park Avenue S., Tacoma, WA 98447
    • E-transcript transcripts can be sent via a recognized delivery services such as National Student Clearinghouse, eSCRIP-SAFE or Parchment Exchange. Deliver it to: PLU Graduate Admission at gradadmission@plu.edu.
  • Resume: Upload your resume via the online application portal that includes your employment history; significant academic, professional, and community achievements; honors and awards. You can also submit this later via the application portal by logging in and clicking on the “checklist” button.
  • Application essay: Submit written essay identifying and discussing three values that will guide your educational practice. It should be between 500 and 750 words, double spaced, 12 point font. You can also submit this later via the application portal by logging in and clicking on the “checklist” button.
  • Schedule to take the WEST-B* and arrange for test results to be sent to PLU (the PLU code is 225) or If your SAT or ACT scores qualify you for a waiver, have your official SAT or ACT scores sent to PLU. You do not need to take the test at the time you submit the application, but you MUST take and pass the test by the application deadline. More information about the WEST-B: http://www.west.nesinc.com/

*WEST-B not required for international non-certification students.

Additional materials for international applicants:

  • Official Evaluation of all international transcripts.  Transcripts from institutions outside the US must be evaluated by one of the following two agencies. Evaluations must include course-by-course conversion and an overall GPA calculation. The evaluation must be submitted to us in a sealed envelope or electronically directly from the agency.
    1. World Education Services (WES) – Select the WES ICAP package
    2. SpanTran – Select the Course Analysis (GPA included) service type. Click this link to download the Request Form for PLU and email to SpanTran.
  • English translation is also required if the documents are in a language other than English. Translation must be provided by recognized translation services.
  • Proof of English proficiency
    • Master of Arts in Education Non-Certification program: Minimum TOEFL-iBT score of 88 or minimum IELTS score of 6.5.
    • All other programs: Minimum TOEFL-iBT score of 80 or minimum IELTS score of 6.5.
    • For TOEFL score report, the institution code for PLU is 4597.

Step Three – check what items have been received and what is missing via the application portal.

  • The portal will indicate when your application is complete. Your admission decision will be sent via email, not via the portal.

Step Four: Attend interview (by invitation)

Step Five: Post-admission requirements (if admitted)

  • Must have a passing score (240) on the WEST-E and (220) on the NES (or equivalent) for your intended endorsements by June 1st.  You are strongly encouraged to take the test early as candidates may not start the summer without passing scores.  World Language applicants must also take the written and verbal portions of the ACTFL.

You must complete any missing content coursework before starting your student teaching internship in the fall.