Frequently Asked Questions


Frequently Asked Questions about the Professional Development Program:

Where do I find the PDP application and information?
You may open, view, print or save the PDP application booklet by clicking on the links at the bottom of this page.

What is the cost to obtain my PDP Certificate?
$55.00 for members applying for their first certification.  NCATA annual $40.00 dues keeps your certificate current until it is time for you to renew or upgrade your certification (renewal is required every five years - see below).  If your membership dues are not paid each year, your PDP will become inactive.

Do I have to be a member of NCATA to submit my PDP?
Yes, NCATA membership is required in order to apply for certification. PDP certificate holders receive all of the benefits of being a member of the only organization that works exclusively for teacher assistants, simply by paying annual NCATA dues.

How do I submit my PDP Application?
Print the PDP booklet and forms from the website. Fill out all forms and attach necessary documents. Mail the documents, forms, application and fee to: NCATA PO Box 893 Lewisville NC 27023. Using the checklist on page 8 of the PDP booklet will help you organize your files. Please use this page to ensure your application is complete.

When do I submit my PDP?
For May certification, applications must be received no later than Dec. 31st of the PREVIOUS year. Applications, renewals, and upgrades are reviewed in November, and January. The earlier the better.

Will I be given additional money from my school system for having PDP Certification?
A few NC school systems give bonuses or increased pay levels for certification, but not all. Please check with your school system’s payroll department for this information. NCATA does not provide any monetary stipend for PDP certification.

What is an official transcript?
A transcript is a record of courses taken, and degrees earned from a college or university. A transcript is only official if it comes directly to the NCATA from the college or university in a sealed envelope, with an official stamp or seal on the actual transcript. No photocopies of transcripts will be accepted. No transcript first opened by the applicant will be accepted. Please have the transcript sent directly from the school to the NCATA office. We will match it with your application.

How do I get an official transcript?
Call your college or university’s Student Records office. Be sure ask for the correct transcript (the College class transcript or the Continuing Education transcript) if you have taken both types of courses from the school.

Do you have to have a certain number of years in service to qualify for PDP?

How often do I have to renew my PDP Certification?
Re-certification is required every five years. Five years following your certification year you must submit 64 contact hours (4 semester credits) from approved programs plus the $45.00 renewal fee. This is due by Dec. 31st of the year before your expiration. If we do not receive your renewal, your PDP certification will become inactive.

Can I maintain my PDP even if I am not a teacher assistant?
Yes, anyone can have a PDP as long as you're a member of NCATA. If you are not employed as a teacher assistant, you would qualify for the PDP program as an Associate Member. (*Note: if you're temporarily laid off by the school system, it may be to your advantage to keep your PDP certification active which shows your interest in continuing education and may improve your chances for rehire.)

What is the difference between Clock Hours, Semester Hours, and CEU’s?
1 college semester hour=16 contact hours
1 college quarter hour= 11 contact hours
1 unit if CEU credit=10 contact hours

How can I make sure that the workshop certificates I submit are valid?
All workshop certificates MUST have the following to be valid:

  1. Your name
  2. Course name
  3. Date(s) of course
  4. Clock hours of instruction
  5. Signature of instructor
  6. Title of instructor

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