State Profile

School Leader Certification and Preparation Programs

State Profile - North Dakota

April 2018


The data included in this 50-state comparison is specific to school leader preparation program and certification requirements. There may be additional requirements that are not indicated. For additional information, questions or comments, please contact Deven Scott at

Has the state adopted leadership standards? Yes. North Dakota has adopted the 2008 ISLLC standards. Source
Which state entity approves traditional school leader preparation programs? North Dakota Education Standards and Practices Board N.D. Admin. Code 67-11-02-04
Does state policy require school leader preparation programs to align with adopted standards? Yes. Educational administration preparation programs must align with general educational leadership program approval standards, as well as educational leadership building-level program approval standards. Source
Does state policy require field experience as part of school leader preparation programs? Yes. Educational administration preparation programs must provide coherent, authentic experiences that provide opportunities through a minimum of six months of concentrated (at least 10-15 hours/week) building-level internship or clinical experience. State guidelines provide additional requirements. Source
Does state policy allow for innovative or experimental preparation programs? No state policy found.
Certification and Licensure
What are the initial school leader certification requirements? To qualify for an Elementary or Secondary Principal's Credential, Level I, a candidate must:
  • Hold a valid North Dakota Teaching License allowing the candidate to teach at the elementary/secondary level
  • Hold a master's degree in educational administration from a state-approved program or hold a master's degree with an approved major other than educational administration, which must include coursework in 1) leadership, planning and organizational behavior in education, educational law and organizational structure of education, 3) personnel, supervision and staff development, 4) curriculum, instruction and learning theory, 5) policy and educational finance, 6) administration of the elementary/secondary school and 7) elementary/secondary school curriculum
  • Have at least three years of teaching experience, administrative experience or a combination in elementary/secondary schools.
N.D. Admin. Code 67-11-02-05

N.D. Admin. Code 67-11-06-05
What are the requirements for school leaders licensed out-of-state? Out-of-state applicants are held to the same education and work experience requirements as in-state candidates. In addition, applicants prepared out-of-state must graduate from a state-approved program and submit transcripts for review. N.D. Admin. Code 67-11-02-04

N.D. Admin. Code 67-11-02-06
Is there an alternative route to initial certification? No state policy found. However, a provisional credential may be issued to a candidate who does not meet necessary requirements for a professional credential. The candidate is expected to progress toward meeting all requirements. N.D. Admin. Code 67-11-02-03

N.D. Admin. Code 67-11-07-03

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