Credentialing educators in North Dakota is the responsibility of the North Dakota Department of Public Instruction (NDDPI). All credentialed positions require a North Dakota Educators Professional Teaching License before a credential can be issued. Licensing and endorsements are issued by the Education Standards and Practices Board (ESPB).

NDDPI has an online application process for all administrative, school counselor, library media, Title I, and special education director credentials, and paraprofessional certificates of completion for special education, special education technician, speech-language pathology, and Title I. The online credential applications can be accessed on NDTeach.

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Dyslexia Credential

A school district or non-public school may choose to employ an individual that holds the credential for specialists trained in dyslexia. A “specialist trained in dyslexia” must have a valid North Dakota educator’s professional license issued by the Education Standards and Practices Board. To obtain the credential, an individual must complete the following coursework or hold certification approved by the International Dyslexia Association (IDA) or the Center for Effective Reading Instruction (CERI):

  1. Introduction to dyslexia;
  2. Assessment for students with dyslexia;
  3. Interventions for students with dyslexia; and
  4. Minimum of three semester hours of practicum experience related to dyslexia assessment and interventions.

An individual may be exempt from completing the coursework if they have completed certification approved by the IDA or the CERI. The certification must include a practicum experience of a minimum of three credits or forty-five clock hours. Administrative Rules 37-11-25

Those interested in obtaining the Credential for Specialists Trained in Dyslexia must complete an online application at ND Teach.

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Library Media

The NDDPI issues three types of Library Media Credentials:

  • The LMO3 Librarian Credential requires 15 specific credits to be completed in a state-approved LMIS program
  • The LMO2 Library Media Specialist Credential requires an additional specific 9 credits in a state-approved LMIS program, for a total of 24 credits.
  • The LMO1 Library Media Director Credential requires a Master's degree in a state-approved LMIS program OR a Master's degree in a related certifiable education field, plus 24 credits in a state-approved LMIS program.
  • The Plan of Study Option is available to applicants who are currently enrolled in a state-approved LMIS program. The Plan of Study is renewable every year and allows applicants to serve in the school library while completing the required coursework.

*A library media credential does NOT require a Praxis test. Applicants seeking this credential need to follow the above requirements, as outlined in ND Administrative Rule 67-11-04.

For more information on Library Media Credentials, please contact the NDDPI at (701) 328-4571.

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School Counselor

In North Dakota we strive to provide a robust, comprehensive school counseling program. The first step to achieve this goal is in the training of the school counselor. North Dakota requires that a school counselor must have a School Counselor Credential or School Counselor Plan of Study issued by NDDPI.

A School Counselor Credential can be issued to individuals that have a master's degree in counseling, education, or a related human service field along with coursework in the following content areas: 

  • Elementary school counseling
  • Secondary school counseling
  • Supervised school counseling internship consisting of a minimum of 450 contact hours of which at least 150 contact hours are at both the elementary and secondary level
  • Counseling program management
  • Counseling theories
  • Assessment techniques
  • Group counseling
  • Career counseling and assessment
  • Social and multicultural counseling
  • Ethics and law
  • Counseling techniques

School counselors must also obtain a professional educators license before they may be issued a School Counseling Credential.

A School Counselor Plan of Study can be issued to individuals that are enrolled in a state-approved school counseling graduate program and be allowed to work as a counselor while completing their coursework. To qualify for the School Counselor Plan of Study, an individual must:

  • Have an ESPB Professional Educators License
  • Have a minimum of three graduate courses completed as part of the school counseling curriculum from the following content areas:
    • Counseling Program Management
    • Counseling Methods/Techniques
    • Counseling Theory
    • Ethics and Law
  • Submit transcripts showing a minimum of five credits completion of the school counseling graduate program each year until the program has been completed
  • Universities approved for the School Counselor Plan of Study are UND, NDSU, University of Mary, MSU-Moorhead, Capella, Walden, Ft. Hayes State, St. Cloud State, and Creighton University.

To apply for a School Counselor Credential or the School Counselor Plan of Study, log onto NDTeach and follow these steps to the application:

  • Begin New Application
  • Add or Renew Credential
  • Click on the credential that you wish to apply for

School Counselor Credential FAQ

Contact the Office of School Approval & Opportunity at (701) 328-2244 for additional information.

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School Health Technician Certificate

A School Health Technician is an individual who has demonstrated an understanding of common school health needs and can respond appropriately and efficiently in a school setting and can determine when referrals are needed. Individuals who wish to provide services as a school health technician in educational settings must hold the North Dakota Certificate of Completion for School Health Technicians.

To obtain the School Health Technician Certificate of Completion, an individual must complete and submit the required application and provide documentation of completing the following trainings:  

  • First Aid, CPR, and Automated External Defibrillator training (provider of your choice)
  • Medication Administration course taught by a registered nurse (provider of your choice)
  • Completion of an approved online training as identified by NDDPI and NDDHHS

The approved online training course ”School Health Technician Certification” can be found on the ND Educational Hub under DPI Courses. 

For more information, contact the State School Nurse Consultant at (701) 328-4814.

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Special Education Director

In North Dakota, Special Education Director Credential applicants must meet the following standards. The documentation on each standard must be verified within the department before any credential will be issued. An applicant must have:

  1. A valid North Dakota educator's professional license issued by the education standards and practices board in accordance with North Dakota Century Code sections 15.1-13-10 and 15.1-13-23 and North Dakota Administrative Code title 67.1, based on a bachelor's degree with a certifiable major or minor or an endorsement;
  2. A master's degree in special education or a related field from a state-approved program, but a master's degree in gifted and talented will not be accepted;
  3. Basic preparation in one area of special education, excluding gifted and talented, which will entitle the applicant to the special education credential for North Dakota in that area;
  4. An additional nine semester hours in more than one other area of special education, excluding gifted and talented;
  5. Eight semester hours in school administration or a four-semester-hour internship in administration of special education and two semester hours in school administration. The eight semester hours in school administration must be chosen from courses in school law, administration of the public school, school finance, teacher personnel administration, or a seminar in administration;
  6. At least two years of successful professional education employment experience in one area of special education, excluding gifted and talented; and
  7. Written recommendations from two persons who supervised the applicant during the applicant's teaching experience.

Special Education Director's Credential Requirements (Administrative Rule 67-11-08)

Those interested in obtaining the Special Education Director Credential must complete an online application at ND Teach.

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In North Dakota, Superintendent Credential applicants first must fulfill all the requirements of the Elementary or Secondary Principal Credential, along with two years of administrative experience. Once the Principal Credential requirements have been met, applicants must complete a total of eight additional credits in an Educational Leadership program from the following content areas:

  • Field-Based Experience in Superintendency
  • Seminar in Superintendency
  • Advanced School Law
  • Advanced Revenue, Finance, and Business Management
  • Policy, Politics, and Community Relations
  • Personnel Administration 

Applicants can apply for a provisional credential that will allow them to serve as a school superintendent while completing either or both the coursework and experience requirements.

If you have questions regarding Superintendent Credentials, please contact the NDDPI at (701) 328-4571.

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Title I Reading, Math, and Coordinator Credentials

A new section of 15.1-02 of the North Dakota Century Code was created and relates to credentials for teachers and coordinators of Title I and requires the NDDPI to do the following:

“The superintendent of Public Instruction shall create a process to reinstate and recertify Title I credentials for individuals in the state who held a valid certification, issued by the Department of Public Instruction, as of July 1, 2018, and continue the process in perpetuity. A school district may advertise employment for a Title I certified teacher each year until the position is filled. The board of a school district may authorize the hiring of a teacher who is not certified as a Title I teacher for the school year if the school district fails to receive applications from qualified applicants to fill the advertised position by July 1."

This legislative action does not require districts to hire a teacher with a Title I credential, and Title I teachers are not required to have a credential to continue teaching in a Title I program. There will be no cost to apply for this credential.

Changes were made to match state licensure and the expiration date aligns to an individual’s teaching license. In the case of a lifetime teaching license, the credential would need to be renewed every five years.

For those interested in obtaining or renewing Title I reading, mathematics, or coordinator credentials, the online application is available in the ND Teach web application. 

To review the final administrative rules, please visit the following links: 

To review the final administrative rules, please visit the following links: