Forms and FAQs

Licensure Forms

Read the instructional page and form carefully prior to submitting the completed and signed document to apply for or update a license in NCDPI Online Licensure System

Picture of person writing on a form.FAQs

1.  Who needs a professional educator's license in North Carolina?

All professional employees in public schools must hold a professional educator's license for the subject or grade level they teach or for the professional education assignment that they hold.  Begin the Process for an Educator's License

2.  In what areas are professional educator's licenses issued?

  • Professional educator's licenses are issued in administrative, supervisory, student service and teaching areas. These Areas of Licensure encompass birth through kindergarten, elementary (K-6), middle grades (6-9), secondary grades (9-12), special subjects (K-12), exceptional children (K-12) and career and technical education.

3.  How do I qualify for a North Carolina professional educator's license?

  • The standard basis for professional educator's licensure is the completion of either:  a) state approved educator preparation program (EPP) or b) a state approved alternative route to professional educator's licensure.

4.  Is there a list of steps that I must take to apply for a professional educator's license

5.  How much does it cost to apply for a professional educator's license?

6.  Will my professional educator's license ever need to be renewed?

7.  Where can I find courses for renewing my professional educator's license?

  • Courses for renewal can be taken with school systems, at NCDPI, community colleges, universities and other workshops directly related to your licensure area.

8.  What steps do I need to take to reinstate an expired North Carolina professional educator's license?

9.  How do I add an area to my professional educator's license?

  • If you hold a clear teaching license with no restrictions, you can add an area to your license by:
    • Taking and passing the State Board of Education (SBE) approved licensure content area exams;
    • Completing a state-approved educator preparation program that leads to licensure;
    • Completing 24 hours in the subject area with a grade of "C" or better in each course;
    • Out-of-state individuals who are approved for an NC teaching license in the primary area of certification may also be granted an NC teaching license in other content area(s) that were subsequently added to the initial license by passing a licensure exam in another state, provided NC has a comparable license area.
    • If you hold a professional educator's student services license you must complete an approved EPP to add a teaching area to your license. 
      • Not all tests are recognized by North Carolina

10.  How do I get a copy of my current professional educator's license?

11.  Are copies of transcripts acceptable?

  • Electronic copies of official degree-dated transcripts are acceptable. Unofficial electronic copies are not acceptable.

12.  How do I become National Board Certified Teacher?

13.  If I have a graduate degree that did not lead to a graduate-level license, am I eligible for graduate pay?

  • Yes, if it meets the following Session Law 2014-100 SECTION 8.3./Senate Bill 744 (a) at least one course for the earned graduate degree must have been completed prior to August 1, 2013. Salary can be authorized at the graduate level only when the teacher's assignment for the majority of the day (fifty percent or more) is in the area to which the graduate degree applies.
  • At the request of an employing NC school system, salary may be authorized at the graduate level when the teaching assignment for the majority of the day (50%) is in the area to which the graduate degree applies.

NC Testing Requirements

1.  Can I apply for a professional educator's license if I have not met the licensure exam(s) requirement?

  • Yes, if all other North Carolina licensure requirements have been met.
    • If the Initial Professional License (IPL) is issued, the North Carolina required licensure exam(s) must be attempted in the first year of the license and passed before or during the third year of the license.

2.  What exam(s) do I need to pass to convert an IPL to a Continuing Professional License?

  • SBE-approved licensure exam requirements - SBE Policy LICN-003 requires both:
    • Content exam(s)
    • Performance/Pedagogy assessment(s) - either edTPA or PPAT are required for all applicants who are awarded educator preparation program degrees or complete approved educator licensure programs on or after September 1, 2019.

3.  Are other states' tests acceptable in lieu of SBE approved licensure exams?

  • Yes, provided North Carolina has a comparable license area and you have 3 or more years of classroom teaching experience.
    • The other state's licensure exam(s) must be comparable to North Carolina's meaning:
      • The exam(s) must have been taken and passed by the applicant to satisfy one component of the licensure process in the other state at the time the exam(s) was taken.
      • The applicant demonstrates an exam(s) score(s) that meets or exceeds the passing score(s) recommended by the test developer, regardless of the passing score adopted by the other state.
  • No, if you completed another state's approved EPP leading to the Elementary Education and/or Exceptional Children:  General Curriculum license, and have fewer than 3 years of classroom teaching experience.
  • Out-of-state individuals who are approved for an NC teaching license in the primary area of certification may also be granted an NC teaching license in any content area(s) that was subsequently added to the initial license by passing a comparable licensure exam in another state, provided NC has a comparable license area.

    3.  How do I get a copy of my test scores?

    Out-of-State Educators

    1.  I have a license from another state and I would like to teach in North Carolina. What should I do?

    2.  Will my experience from another state be credited to my NC professional educator's license?

    3.  How do I transfer my license from another state to North Carolina?

    International Educators

    1.  Do I need work authorization?

    • Yes.

    2.  Can I get a NC professional educator's license if my degree was earned in another country?

    • Yes.  If you have earned a degree from another country you must provide an evaluation from an international education evaluation service with a copy of current work authorization.

    Alternate Routes to North Carolina Professional Educator's Licensure

    1.  What are "alternate" routes and the requirements to becoming a teacher in North Carolina?

    2.  What tests are required for Residency License in North Carolina?

    General Education Profession Questions

    1.  What is North Carolina's salary scale?

    2.  What benefits do teachers receive in North Carolina?

    3.  What is the best way to find a job teaching in North Carolina and how can I apply for teaching positions?

    • There is not a single point of contact for all public school employment in North Carolina. We have 115 Local Education Agencies (LEAs) and more than 160 charter schools, and each is a different employer. The best place to start your search is the NC School Jobs Board. Or you can contact a LEA or contact a Charter School directly to get their employment information. Visit Licensure, Compensation and Career to get information on Job Fairs, Beginning Teacher Support Resources, and more.
    • Another resource that is used by some LEAs is Teachers-Teachers.com. Use this non-DPI site to create and post your application, view and apply for job postings, record an interview, and track your job search.

    4.  How do I find contact information for a LEA or Charter School?

    • EDDIE contains school system contact information, including Personnel Administrators & Principals. Use the LEA Personnel Report (located under the Reports Menu) to obtain contact information for all of the LEAs, or use the Search or Selection boxes to navigate to an individual LEA for their staff information, or to a school for their principal information. EDDIE provides assistance with LEA or school information.
    • Charter Schools contact information can be located in EDDIE.

    5.  Do I need a professional educator's license to substitute teach?

    • No.  A state professional educator's license is not required to substitute teach. Contact each LEA in which you would like to teach to learn about the requirements for substitutes.

    6. Will substitute teaching count towards experience?

    • Yes, if it meets the non-teaching experience eligibility requirements, is verified appropriately, and is recommended by a North Carolina employing school system.

    Contact NCDPI Licensure Office

    1.  Through the Licensure Online System

    2.  Call 800-577-7994 (toll-free within North Carolina) or (919) 716-1800

    3.  Email asklicensure@dpi.nc.gov and provide the following information:

    • Your full legal name
    • Last 4 digits of your SSN
    • Your NC educator's license or application number
      • Failure to provide this information may delay or deny our ability to respond.