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How to Register for the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) Certifications

Instructor: Stacey Blakemore
How do candidates register for the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) Certifications? This guide will provide information on how to register, fees for the exam, information on testing locations, and more.

What Are the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) Certifications?

The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) is a nonprofit organization that sets national standards and expectations for educators. Teachers can earn NBPTS certification by completing the certification process offered by the organization. There are 25 areas of certification. NBPTS has five core propositions, and the certification process is built on those propositions. The propositions are listed below.

  • Educators support students throughout their learning journey.
  • Educators are experts in their field and understand how best to instruct students in that field.
  • Educators have a responsibility to gauge and support students' academic progress.
  • Educators should reflect upon their experiences in the classroom and use those observations to further their instructional skills.
  • Educators belong to and foster a community of life-long learners.

The certification process has four components that must be successfully completed to achieve certification.

Component Format Content Weight
Component One Computer-Based Assessment Content Knowledge 40%
Component Two Portfolio Entry Differentiation in Instruction 15%
Component Three Portfolio Entry Teaching Practice and Learning Environment 15%
Component Four Portfolio Entry Effective and Reflective Practitioner 15%

The computer-based assessment is at least two and a half hours long. Depending on the content area, it could be longer.

The Registration Process

Registration for each application cycle typically begins in the summertime and ends in February of the following year. Candidates who are ready to begin the NBPTS certification process should read the Guide to National Board Certification. This document contains important information such as deadlines and requirements. When ready, the candidate should create an account in the National Board Candidate Management System. Teachers can use this account to register and to pay for components.

After registering, candidates can log in to their National Boards account to select, view, and purchase components. Only components that can be completed during the current cycle should be purchased. In order for candidates to remain active during a current cycle, at least one component must be purchased. Although candidates are given a five-year window in which they can earn their certification, each of the four components must be attempted at least once within the first three years of candidacy.

Once the registration process is complete, candidates can find assessment information, materials, standards, and scoring information on nbpts.org. Emails will be sent to candidates concerning scheduling component one, the computer-based assessment. These assessments are only given at Pearson VUE testing centers. Candidates will also receive emails about how to electronically submit materials for the other three components.

Scoring and Fees for the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Certification

There are unweighted and weighted scores. An unweighted average score of 1.75 is necessary on Component One. Components 2-4 also required an unweighted average score of at least 1.75. A total weighted score of 110 is required for certification. Assessors use a rubric to score components 2-4. Candidates who do not earn the minimum scores can retake a component up to two times each.

The fees associated with National Board Certification are:

Registration fee per assessment cycle $75
Initial attempt of each component $475

Some states and districts will cover the costs of certification for teachers. Candidates should be sure and check with state and local resources to see if this is a possibility. Some states and local districts offer bonuses or salary increases for those that become certified. National Board also offers a limited number of scholarships. If a candidate meets the requirements for a scholarship, they will be notified by email.

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