North Dakota Develops Standards in Computer Science (CS) and Cybersecurity


The North Dakota Department of Public Instruction (NDDPI) and the North Central Comprehensive Center (NCCC) partnered to facilitate the development of North Dakota’s first ever Computer Science and Cybersecurity Content Standards.
This 7-month project brought together NDDPI staff, NCCC staff, National Integrated Cyber Education Research Center (NICERC) staff, and practitioners from K–12 schools and higher education institutions to provide the state with an updated vision of what students need to know, understand, and be able to
do on their path to becoming digital citizens in a global society.


In September 2018, the Development Committee met to review statewide computer science content standards developed in other states, such as Arkansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, and California. Additionally, members also reviewed the previously developed North Dakota Library Technology Content Standards, building a shared and updated vision for computer science and cybersecurity content standards. It was critical that these standards align with the context of North Dakota school communities and with the latest trends and research in student development in computer science and cybersecurity knowledge and skills.


In October 2018, members of the Development Committee met again to build a first draft of new standards that were prepared for public review and feedback. The feedback process was initiated in December 2018, when NCCC staff and NDDPI staff brought together a Review Committee comprised of experts in the field from higher education, industry, and K–12 schools to conduct a public review of the standards. Education stakeholders across North Dakota also had their opportunity to submit feedback through an online survey administered by NCCC. In January 2019, the Computer Science and Cybersecurity Content Standard Development Committee met a final time to respond to the public feedback, make final edits, and recommend the content standards for approval. The Computer Science and Cybersecurity Content standards is slated for Superintendent Baesler’s review and consideration in spring of 2019.


Computer Science and Cybersecurity marks the latest new standards for North Dakota. Science, early learning, health, and arts content standards have recently been developed, and new standards for social studies are slated to reach classrooms in the fall of 2020, the same year of the first-ever standards for computer science and cybersecurity.



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