National Teacher's Certification is offered by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. Their objective is to hold teachers to a high professional standard, which will ultimately improve classroom instruction and consequently student learning. This voluntary program takes one to three years to complete and is recognized in most states as a valid certification.

Make sure you meet all the requirements of candidacy. You can apply if you hold a Bachelor's degree and have been teaching under a state certificate for at least three years. You also need one to three years to complete the process and funding either from your school district, a scholarship or your own pocket.

Complete the application that's available online and pay the $65 processing fee. Make sure your state recognizes the National Certification program and check online for any funding or benefits available to you in your area.

Choose the right certificate for you. The National Board offers several different certificates in various content areas. They can help you find the right certificate for your specialty.

Expect to pay approximately $3,000 to NBPTS when all is said and done. They do charge a processing fee for examining portfolios and assessments.

Pass the assessment exercises offered at an assessment center. Sample questions are available online. You have 30 minutes to respond to a question in writing.

Complete a portfolio. Your portfolio needs to include a video of your instruction and samples of student work.

Enjoy the prestige, honor and potential financial rewards associated with being a nationally certified teacher.