Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

Q: What is Northwest Educational Development?

A: NWED is a  Washington state Professional Education Standards Board ( approved teacher education program dedicated to improving education for all by providing professional development, conditional teacher placement, teacher certification and teacher retooling.

Q: Does NWED issue credits or clock hours?

A: Since NWED is not a college or university we do not issue credits. However, NWED does issue clock hours for currently certified Washington state teachers adding the SPED and Elementary Endorsements.

Teacher Certification Program

Q: Who can apply?

A: You must also have a completed 4 year degree from a regionally accredited college/university and be at least 18 years old.

Q:  What endorsement do you offer?

Elementary K-8

English Language Arts

World Languages


Special Education (In conjunction with a general education endorsement)

Social Studies



Early Childhood Education (In conjunctio with a general education endorsement.

Note: The state of Washington is now requiring new teacher candidates to hold a dual endorsement for SPED and Early Childhood Education.  These endorsements require an additional endorsement like Elementary, Mathematics, English Language Arts etc.  See for the new rules.

Q: When can I start?

A: NWED has an open entrance process.  Candidates can begin at anytime during the year.

Q: What tests do I need to have completed to be admitted to the program?

A: In order to be admitted all candidates must have passed the WEST-B or equivalent. Before entering a traditional field placement the WEST-E or NES (depending on the endorsement pursued), and if a candidate is pursuing a World Language they must also pass the ACTFL OPI and WPT tests.

Q. How will my application be evaluated? 
A. There are many factors in the evaluation process. It is imperative that the NWED program work for your learning style, employment needs, and time constraints. A right fit with the program will increase the likelihood for success. These are the pieces we will consider before admitting you to the program:
    Test scores (Basic skills and endorsements tests)
    Previous work with children or young people
    Application writing sample
    Disposition regarding time constraints and working independently 
The NWED team works together to determine if this program is right for you. Not being admitted to the NWED program does not indicate your lack of skills or ability to become a teacher, it simply means that another program will better fit your needs. 


Q: Is there financial aid offered for this program?

A: Our program is not a degree program and therefore isn't eligible for federal financial aid.  However, we can structure the payment for the program to meet your individual situation.  We offer a monthly auto billing option of the program cost.  We can divide the cost of the program up to 20 months with an initial payment of $2,500 due before you enter the field placement.  The monthly amount over 20 months would be $370 (in additional payment of $2500 for the field placement).  The final monthly payment is due before formal recommendation for certification.  Contact the NWED Finance Director Jim Mickel at  for more details. 

Q: How much does the program cost?

A: The program (20 online modules and the in classroom coaching) is $9,900 for a single endorsement. You can pay as you go with each module costing $300 and the field placement costing $3,900.  Dual endorsements like Elementary/SPED are an additional $1,500.  (Also see the above note on a monthly billing plan.)

Q: How long is the program?

A: The program is designed to be flexible to the needs of the student. It can be done in as little as 6 months or up to two years depending on the candidate.  

Q: How long is the student teaching?

A: Each candidate must complete a minimum of one full semester in their student teaching placement. That is 540 contact hours with their students.  (Equates to 90 days of student contact)

Q: Can I work while I'm in the program?

A: It depends on the nature of your work and how long you want to take to complete the program. The program fully supports candidates on conditional certificates in their own classrooms, so you can continue in that position as long as it matches the endorsement you are pursuing. If you are working as a para-educator or substitute teacher, you would need to speak with your district's HR department to see if it will be possible to continue working while you're student teaching. Student teaching must be done in one classroom; you can't substitute in multiple classrooms while student teaching. If you have a job outside of the school, you could continue to work as long as it still allows you to be in a classroom full time for that semester of student teaching.

Q: What districts can I student teach in?

A:  Our model is dependent on support at all levels and strong partnerships are what allow us to deliver this support.  We currently have partnerships with 25 Washington districts including the following:

  • Puyallup

  • Bethel

  • Tacoma

  • Sumner

  • Lake Stevens

  • Evergreen

  • Auburn

  • Highline

  • Federal Way

  • White River

  • Warden

  • Hockinson

  • Seattle

  • Highline

  • Bellingham

  • Olympia

  • Shelton

  • Bainbridge Island

  • Spokane

  • Steilacoom Historical School District No. 1

  Please contact us for a list of other district partnerships.

The NWED Program Manual can be found below.  The manual outlines in more detail the requirements and expectations of the program.

Q: Where can if find information on the required testing (WEST B/E and NES tests).

A:  See this information page: 

Q: When can I start the edTPA?

A: After you start the field experience and upon completion of 15 courses and the 10 reflections.  This is to ensure you are properly prepared to pass the edTPA.

Q: What does the beginning of the program look like?

A:  Here is a link to the Introduction Course in .pdf 


Q: Is the money paid to NWED tax deductable:

Since NWED is a certification only program, it does not qualify to issue IRS 1098 T forms.

Check with your tax adviser to see if they are still deductible.


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