Taking the CETL® Exam

There are several steps to becoming a Certifed Education Technology Leader (CETL).  

Step 1: Apply to become a CETL by completing an application process. This is a new step, effective October 1, 2017, for all new candidates. You will be sent a link to the application form after purchasing your exam below.

Step 2: Take Part I of the CETL exam. Part I is a multiple-choice exam largely administered at secure testing centers through the Prometric testing network. Occasionally, group exams for the multiple-choice exam are offered at large events, such as conferences. 

Step 3: Upon successfully passing the Part I multiple-choice exam, candidates take Park II.  Part II is essay based; this is not proctored and may be completed using your own computer (submission instructions and the deadline will be provided via email). Essays are graded by a panel of trained subject matter experts.

Email us or call 202-524-8464 for any inquiries.

CETL exams are administered via the Prometric network of testing centers. Occasionally, testing is offered at group events, such as conferences. To find the Prometric testing center nearest you, click here.  

For complete program details and policies for CETL exams, please download our Candidate Handbook.  

Apply for the Exam

Apply for Exam at a Prometric Testing Center (You will be sent a link to an application in your confirmation of purchase.  You must ALSO complete the application)  Exams are available at any Prometric Testing Center globally. To find the testing center nearest you, click here and select "Find a Test Center" Candidates can schedule their personal testing appointment once they are approved to take the exam.

Upcoming exams:

Eligibility Requirements

Effective October 1, 2017, all applicants must complete an application process to be determined eligible to sit for the CETL exam.   A link to the application is sent to candidates upon purchasing the exam registration.
To be deemed eligible for the CETL certification exam you must have a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree plus (4) four years of education technology experience in a K-12 educational setting. “Education technology experience” is defined as:
Demonstrable experience in the tasks included on the Detailed Content Outline for the CETL exam, which falls into three broad categories: Leadership & Vision; Understanding the Educational Environment; and Managing Technology & Support Services

In addition, candidates will be required to sign a Code of Conduct and Terms of Confidentiality before an application is accepted for review.

If a candidate does not meet the minimum education requirements, the candidate must have at least seven years of demonstrable experience in education technology. To be deemed eligible using these criteria, a candidate may request that the Certification Governance Committee (CGC) grant a waiver of the education requirement. This appeal must be writing and must include the following:

  1. A current CV or resume
  2. A cover letter outlining a minimum of seven years of experience in education technology, specifically relative to the content areas covered on the Detailed Content Outline
  3. A signed recommendation from the candidate’s supervisor attesting to your experience.

This request may be sent via hard copy to Certification Governance Committee – Eligibility Request, Consortium for School Networking, 1325 G Street, NW, Suite 420, Washington, DC 20005. A pdf of the signed request may also be emailed to certification@cosn.org.

No requests for a waiver of the experience requirement may be made.

The Certification Governance Committee believes that four (4) years is a reasonable period of time for an education technology leader to become acclimated to the requirements of their position within the district.  This time frame also allows for both the educational environment and technology requirements to be understood.  At least four years in a position demonstrates an investment of time in the position and culture of the district.

The seven (7) year requirement for those without a formal degree was instituted as an equivalency for those with a 4-year bachelor’s degree + 4 years of experience. It was done with the recognition that there are IT leaders that have mastered their trade as they were promoted from administrative levels to a leadership position over time.  Given the demands of the position, there is job-specific, embedded training that provides for an equivalency. 


Exam Fees, Per Person

Member Exam Fee
Non-Member Exam Fee
Retake Fee, Each Section


Preparing for the Exam

No two candidates come from the same background, with the same experiences. Each candidate's preparation journey will be their own. For more information on how to prepare, visit Preparing for the Exam.