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Education Standards and Practices Board

Assuring highly qualified professional educators for North Dakota students
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2718 Gateway Avenue
Suite 303
Bismarck, ND 58503-0585
(701) 328-9641 - Phone
(701) 328-9647 - Fax
espbinfo@nd.gov

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ESPB square logo Licensure

Licensure Application

First Time Applicant Information

Basic Requirements for North Dakota Licensure

  1. Initial teacher licensure for in-state graduates or graduates of out-of-state programs requires a minimum of a bachelor's degree from a state agency-approved teacher education program. The approved program must include a general studies component, a North Dakota recognized program area major, and a professional pedagogy core as defined in this section and the North Dakota standards for teacher education program approval:
    1. The general studies component includes liberal arts preparation in the areas of the humanities, fine arts, mathematics, natural sciences, behavioral sciences, and symbolic systems as prerequisite to entrance into the professional education program.
    2. North Dakota recognized program area majors are printed on the application form and include content-specific majors at the secondary level, content-specific kindergarten through grade twelve majors as listed below, majors in middle level education, or majors in elementary education. Majors that are transcripted by state-approved teacher education programs using terminology not appearing on the application form must be compared to the North Dakota standards for teacher education program approval to determine whether they meet the same criteria as the listed recognized majors. Majors must include a minimum of thirty-two semester hours of coursework specific to the major beyond the introductory level.
      1. The secondary content-specific major must include a minimum of four semester hours in special methods of teaching at the secondary level and special methods of teaching in the specific content area. Effective July 1, 2006, all initial secondary licensure applicants grade seven through twelve in the core academic areas will need to meet or exceed the cut scores for the Praxis II as set by the Education Standards and Practices Board.
      2. The middle level major must include study of middle level foundations, adolescent development, reading in the content areas at the middle level, and special methods of teaching at the middle level. Study of these areas must total a minimum of ten semester hours with at least two semester hours of special methods of teaching at the middle level and twenty clock hours of middle level classroom field experience. Effective July 1, 2006, all initial middle licensure applicants grade five through eight in the core academic areas will need to meet or exceed the cut scores for the praxis II as set by the Education Standards and Practices Board.
      3. The elementary major must include special methods of teaching elementary content areas with a minimum of twelve semester hours specific to teaching elementary school mathematics, science, social studies, reading, and language arts. Effective July 1, 2006, all initial elementary licensure applicants grades one through six will need to meet or exceed the cut scores for the praxis II elementary test 0011 and the praxis II principles of learning and teaching test 0522.
      4. Kindergarten through grade twelve preparation programs in special education, foreign language, art, music, physical education, business education, and computer education must include a minimum of four semester hours of special methods of teaching inclusive of kindergarten through grade twelve and special methods of teaching in the specific content area.
      5. The early childhood major must include study of child development, birth through age eight, and include special methods of teaching at the early childhood level.
    3. The professional education component includes a minimum of twenty-two semester hours of pedagogical study of teaching and learning in addition to the program-specific major. This coursework must be from the areas of educational foundations, educational psychology, child development, teaching and learning theory, educational diagnosis and assessment, inclusive education, educational technology, classroom and behavioral management, and human relations specific to teaching. The professional education component must also include classroom professional experience prior to student teaching and a minimum of ten weeks of full-time successful participation in student teaching at appropriate grade levels. The professional education component, including student teaching, must be completed under the supervision of a teacher training institution approved by the education standards and practices board in North Dakota or the appropriate state, provincial, or similar jurisdictional authority for out-of-state institutions.
    4. Student teaching exception - Internship. An applicant who graduated from a state-approved teacher education program prior to January 1, 1988, which did not include a minimum of ten weeks of full-time student teaching may qualify under one of the two options under this subdivision. These options are available only if the applicant has met all other requirements for licensure of the education standards and practices board and North Dakota Century Code 15.1-18-02 and 15.1-18-03, except the requirement of ten weeks of student teaching.
      1. The applicant must document a minimum of eight full weeks of student teaching at the appropriate level in the major field of study under the supervision of a state-approved teacher education program and document five years of successful teaching within the last ten years; or
      2. An applicant who can document a minimum of eight weeks of successful student teaching but cannot document a minimum of five years of successful teaching experience must either complete the additional student teaching hours or may choose to complete an internship under the supervision of a state-approved college of teacher education to fulfill the additional hours.
        1. The internship contact hours in the classroom must consist of classroom time blocks not less than one-half day and when added to the applicant's existing student teaching hours total a minimum of ten weeks of full-time equivalent student teaching and supervised internship experience.
        2. The internship must occur in a regular kindergarten through grade twelve classroom setting and allow the intern to experience the full range of curriculum and classroom operations.
        3. The internship must be approved by the education standards and practices board and transcripted through a state-approved teacher education institution.
    5. Teaching minors. A teaching minor may only be earned or added to a teaching major. An individual may not be licensed or change grade levels of licensure with only a teaching minor unless the individual has met the requirements in section 67.1-02-03-03.3.
      A teaching minor is defined as a minimum of sixteen semester or twenty-four quarter credit hours in a single designated academic area. These sixteen semester or twenty-four quarter credit hours must be in courses for which the institution gives credit toward graduation in the major.
  2. An applicant must have a minimum overall grade point average of 2.50. The education standards and practices board will use the college-figured grade point average if all previous college coursework is on the transcript. If the student has transferred from another institution, and the grade point average calculated by the institution granting the degree is only for those credits at that institution, the education standards and practices board will refigure the grade point average using all previous college coursework.
  3. Verification of eligibility for home state licensure may be requested.
  4. Acceptable translations for preparation received in foreign institutions will be requested at the applicant's expense.
  5. An application fee of thirty dollars must accompany a request for an initial application form.
  6. A fee of seventy dollars must accompany the application for initial licensure for in-state and out-of-state graduates. An additional fee of one hundred seventy-five dollars for transcript review from out-of-state graduates must also accompany the licensure application.
  7. All initial licenses are valid for only two consecutive years.
  8. Fingerprinting. In addition to completing the licensure application process outlined in this section, an applicant applying for licensure in North Dakota for the first time after August 1, 1997, must submit to a fingerprint screening for criminal records in accordance with North Dakota Century Code 15.1-13-14.
    1. An applicant graduating from a North Dakota teacher preparation program may obtain the fingerprinting materials from college officials. Previous graduates and out-of-state graduates must contact the education standards and practices board directly for the fingerprinting materials. Fingerprint screening reports from other agencies are not available to the education standards and practices board. Applicants must complete the process with cards and release forms designating the education standards and practices board as the agency to receive the report.
    2. The applicant must have the fingerprinting done by an authorized law enforcement agency such as a sheriff's office, police department, or campus police. Both cards are to be completed with a ten-finger check. The criminal record inquiry authorization form must also be completed, including an original signature. The fingerprint cards and authorization form must be returned directly to the education standards and practices board office.
    3. Unofficial, incomplete, altered, or damaged cards and forms will not be accepted.
    4. The applicant is responsible for all local, state, and federal law enforcement agency fees related to the fingerprint background check.
    5. The applicant is advised to allow a minimum of eight weeks for the fingerprint screening process. An applicant must hold a valid North Dakota license to be employed or permitted to teach in North Dakota. Individuals who have completed all requirements for the professional educator's license except final completion of the fingerprint background check may obtain a provisional license under section 67.1-02-04-04.
    6. Fingerprint screening reports must be recent and may only be used for licensure for six months from the date the report is received by the education standards and practices board.
  9. Reeducation for initial licensure. Applicants who hold nonteaching degrees in content areas taught in public schools may receive, initial licensure by completing the professional education requirements at a state-approved program authorized to recommend applicants for licensure in that area. This reeducation may be completed at the undergraduate or graduate level. The institution with the approved program must document that the applicant's specialty area degree is equivalent to its approved program's specialty area requirements in subdivisions b and c of subsection 1, and recommend the applicant for licensure. Applicants applying under this section must file a completed application form as other initial applicants, comply with the fingerprint background check in subsection 9, and pay all applicable fees.
  10. Preprofessional skills test. On July 1, 2002, all initial applicants for licensure will be required to submit their test scores for the PPST in reading, writing, and mathematics. Beginning July 1, 2003, all applicants for initial licensure will need to submit their test scores for the PPST in reading, writing, and mathematics which meet or exceed the state cut score.
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