Preparing for the CETL® Exam

The CETL® exam is based on the Framework of Essential Skills of the K-12 CTO. It will measure your knowledge in the skills identified in the Framework. Because people come to the CTO field in a variety of ways (e.g. from a technology background, from an educational background), there is no best way to study for the exam. In addition, there are no preparatory materials that will “teach to the test.” Therefore, assessing your personal experiences in and knowledge of the education technology field should be your first step. Email us or call 202-524-8464 for any inquiries.

Preparing for the Exam

CoSN suggests you first review the Framework and take our Self-Assessment, which will help you identify the skill areas in which to concentrate your studies. Once you have gotten a sense of your knowledge levels, there are a number of ways to improve your skills:

  • Learn more about CoSN’s CETL Foundation Course which focuses on the Framework and prepares a practicing or aspiring education technology leader for the CoSN Certified Education Technology Leader (CETL) exam. There is no qualification process for participating in this training course, however there are minimum education and experience requirements to sit for the exam. Participating in this course does not guarantee qualification to sit for the exam. For more information on these requirements please read our FAQ or contact our Certification team.
  • Visit the CoSN Knowledge Center to review our library of resources available to education technology leaders. All of these resources are tied to at least two of the Framework’s ten skill areas.
  • There is an additional low cost resource, "Modern EdTech Leadership: A practical guide to designing your team, serving your teachers and adjusting your strategy for the 21st Century," prepared by CETL candidate Mike Daugherty.
  • View our exam format sample to give you a sense of how the exam questions are structured. These are questions that were written by the CETL item writing panel; however, none of these questions will appear on the actual exam.
  • Form a study group with members of your local CoSN Chapter or colleagues from your district. If a local study group is not available to you, CoSN offers a facilitated virtual CETL Foundation Course for your convenience.
  • Consider our special review course prior to taking the exam. CoSN offers a two day immersion course covering all framework modules. Read more about the CETL Foundation Course and pricing options here.
  • Identify a mentor in the CTO field (especially a CETL) willing to guide you with your studies.

Study Options and Groups

  • Georgia, Degree Program - CoSN offers a graduate degree option aligned with the Framework of Essential Skills through Kennesaw State University. For more information, go to