Back to top

Background Checks

Any student participating in a pre-kindergarten-12 field placement of any length or purpose  (who is not already a fully licensed professional), must submit a background check prior to entering the field site. View the PDF iconBackground Check Quick Guide.

The guidelines for educator preparation field placements are based on the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) screening system. Failure to submit the appropriate background checks may result in a pre-service candidate being dropped from a course. If you have a conviction that falls into either the First or Second Screen for Initial Licensure and Initial Employment, you will not be placed in a pre-kindergarten-12 setting until you have met the Rehabilitation stage (if applicable, and Second Screen only). If your background check shows any conviction in either area, your program will immediately alert you of your academic options.

For questions about background checks, please first contact your program representative. All other questions can be directed to

What background check do I need?

Only the following codes will be accepted for students who will be placed in pre-kindergarten-12 settings*:

  • BCI&I: Request code 3319.39B3
  • FBI: Request code 3319.39

*Pre-service candidates placed in preschool sites overseen by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) should  request the following codes instead of the above:

  • FBI: CCDBGA “Child Care and Development Block Grant Act” of 2014 employee. Do not select “volunteer”.
  • BCI: 5104.013 

Students placed in preschool sites should check with their program representative or course instructor to identify if they should get these checks. For more information, please review the ODJFS Background Check Instructions available in Box.

What to know for processing?

Have a copy of your background check sent to the campus address where you plan to attend classes:

Columbus Campus

The Ohio State University
Background Checks-EHE
1590 N. High St., Suite 300
Columbus, OH 43201

Lima Campus

The Ohio State University at Lima
Dr. Leah Herner-Patnode
Lima Campus Education & Human Ecology
Galvin Hall 402-D
4240 Campus Drive
Lima, OH 45804

Mansfield Campus

The Ohio State University at Mansfield
Redmond L. Wood, M.S. Ed.
124 Riedl Hall
1760 University Dr.
Mansfield, OH 44906

Marion Campus

The Ohio State University at Marion
Jim Craycraft
1465 Mt. Vernon Ave.
Marion, OH 43302

Newark Campus

The Ohio State University at Newark
Lu Ann Bline
1179 University Dr
Newark, OH 43055


Important processing details:

  • Bring your state photo ID with you to be fingerprinted.
  • All fingerprint agencies can select only one recipient form each of the following: the “direct copy” and “mail to”. You should provide the following instructions to the finger printing agency before being fingerprinted:
    • Select the “direct copy” radio button to send an electronic copy of the results to the Ohio Board of Education.
    • Select the “mail to” option entering the appropriate campus physical address above. 
  • Some placement sites may require a copy of your background check. OSU is unable to disseminate copies of results to any third party, including but not limited to an outside employer, school district, private entity, placement site, etc. Copies of results can only be released to the individual who was fingerprinted. Columbus campus students may request a copy of their background check results by sending a written request to the background check team at . Students on all other campuses should contact the individuals listed above to determine how to obtain a copy.
  • Processing times:
    • First-time processing: allow 8 weeks prior to placement.
    • Repeat processing: allow 2-4 weeks without an arrest record, 6-8 weeks with an arrest record (even if expunged or occurred as a juvenile).
Where do I get a background check?

The links below provide background check locations available based on Ohio State campus geographic location.  Pre-service candidates who need access to other location options should visit the directory of Ohio approved background Webcheck locations. It is advised to call ahead before traveling to any location to verify if they are still providing fingerprinting, as service availability across the state can change daily. 

Prior to getting fingerprinted, students should request that the background check agency do the following:
1- order the appropriate background check codes (see “what background check should I get”).
2- send the results to the appropriate campus address (see “what to know for processing”).
* Failure to follow this process may result in paying to process again.

Other background check information.
  • Autumn term background checks must be valid through October 1 to begin a placement. Spring term background checks must be valid through February 1.
  • Any conviction of an offense found on the screening tool list, according to ODJFS and ODE's Standard for Licensure, will result in the student's inability to be placed in field sites.
  • Any arrest (without conviction) of an offense on the screening tool list, will be up to the discretion of the field site to determine eligibility.
  • The price varies depending on where you get your background checks completed. Prices range $50-$70 USD, with an average of $63 USD.
  • Background checks are only good for one year from the date of issue; therefore, you will need a new background check every year a student is placed in the field.
  • If you are employed by the district/ agency in which you are placed, please send a letter from your placement’s HR on school letterhead with: your background check codes, expiration date, and a statement that your checks meet their compliance requirements for placement. APL will then verify that this letter will meet the background check compliance requirement. 
  • If you are an F-1 visa international student, you are required to have an approved Curricular Practical Training documents on file with the Office of International Affairs prior to beginning any placement.