Maryland Specific Incentives:

  • NBCTs actively teaching in Maryland public schools will earn a salary increase of $10,000 dollars. Teachers staying or moving to a low performing school will receive an additional $7,000 added to their salary.
  • Initial and maintenance candidates for National Board Certification who qualify for the Incentive Program for Certification can receive fee support in Maryland. 
    • Candidates who would like to participate in the Incentive Program should contact their local school system to discuss the selection procedures and eligibility requirements. 
  • Grant CEU equivalents are available to teachers who complete the National Board Certification process as well as to teachers who achieve National Board Certification.
  • Universities frequently provide graduate credit to teachers pursuing National Board Certification. Check with your local university to see if graduate credit is a possibility for you.
  • Board certification can enable teachers to take on leadership roles—such as mentoring, leading professional development efforts, and advocating for policy changes—that allow them to advance their careers while staying in the classroom.

Why Certify?

  • Direct Impact on Students 

Over a decade of research supports the fact that Board-certified teachers have a positive impact on students. Students of Board-Certified teachers learn more than their peers without Board-certified teachers. Studies have also found that these positive impacts are even greater for BIPOC and low-income students. 

  • Relevant and Impactful Professional Development

A national survey of effective teachers’ views on Professional Development found that 96% of respondents felt that National Board Certification was among the top three most impactful PD experiences for advancing their teaching practice. 

  • Created by Teachers, for Teachers

Too often, professional development opportunities are not shaped by the wisdom and expertise of practicing educators. That is not the case with National Board Certification. Our Standards and the 5 Core Propositions are developed by committees of educators who are broadly representative of professionals in the teaching field. 

“I felt that it was teachers speaking directly to me. It was because teachers helped write that book. Within the first part of the book that talks about core proposition one – that teachers are committed to their students. The book talks about equity and how teachers are committed to enacting equity in our schools. I was immediately hooked. I knew that this was going to be the right sort of challenge for me because the whole process was written and designed by teachers for teachers.”

Juliana Urtubey, NBCT, 2021 National Teacher of the Year
  • Changes and Improves Teacher Practice 

91% of teachers engaging with the National Board standards reported that it had a direct impact on their instructional practices. These shifts include adjusting lesson plans and to meet the needs of individual students, using data in new ways to assess student progress and learning goals, deepening their content knowledge. 

  • State Incentives and Support Networks 

State incentives and support networks across Maryland make it easier for teachers to start and complete their National Board journey!  Check out the section below for more information on how Maryland policies incentivize Board Certification and help remove barriers to access and success in achieving. 

Board Certification At a Glance

  • Understand the Process

 Read the National Board Certification: Quick Start and Overview Guide to learn more about the process.

  • Confirm your eligibility and create an account

To pursue certification, you must have:

  • A bachelor’s degree* 
  • Three years of classroom or school counselor experience 
  • A valid state license (or meet the licensure requirements set by your state or school)

Creating an account can help you further determine what certificate area is right for you, and gives you access to more resources to make your decision! 

  • Know the important dates and available financial support 

 Many states and districts provide financial support for certification. Check what options are available in your state and deadlines for applications. Please be aware that local deadlines are often different from the National Board registration deadlines, so be sure to check as soon as possible. There are additional funding sources listed here and payment plan options listed here.

  • Choose the Certificate Area and Timeline that works best for you 

Area of Certification: 

  • There are 25 different areas you can choose to certify in. It’s important you reflect on which area is right for you, as you will be asked to demonstrate and collect evidence related to the certificate you choose to pursue.
  • Take a look at the Choosing the Right Certificate Guide for the 25 different areas.


  • You have the flexibility to work towards certification in a way that suits you and your professional and personal responsibilities. Completing your first attempt of all four components can take as little as one year, or up to three. 
  • You have up to two retake attempts for each component and have a five-year window to achieve certification. 

  • Register and Pay your Registration Fee 

Select which certificate area is right for you and pay your $75 registration fee before the deadline 

  • Select and Pay for your Components

Decide which components you want to complete this cycle. You can start with one, or attempt all four in the first year! Remember, you must attempt each of the four components within the first three years of your candidacy, and you have a five-year window in total to attempt retakes and achieve certification.

  • Put everything into practice

You are now on your journey to become a National Board Certified Teacher!