Apr 17, 2024  
2012-2013 CU Denver Catalog 
2012-2013 CU Denver Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Undergraduate Teacher Licensure

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Undergraduate Teacher Education Program

The undergraduate teacher education program at CU Denver is a joint effort between the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the School of Education & Human Development. Students earn a bachelor’s degree through the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and a teaching license through the School of Education & Human Development.

This undergraduate program is dedicated to quality teacher education. To that end, our admission standards are rigorous and there are a number of program “gates” that teacher candidates go through to complete licensure.

CU Denver has selective admission standards for entering freshmen, including a 93 institutional index that includes students who are typically in the top third of their class or have a 3.4 GPA or score above a 23 on the ACT or 1100 on the SAT. Students transferring from community colleges must have a minimum of a 2.5 GPA.

Please note: The admission into the School of Education & Human Development teacher education program is a separate process from admission to the university. Summer deadlines are January 15* February 15; the fall deadline is March 15. Spring admission deadlines are August 15, September 15 and October 15.

Undergraduate Teacher Education Pathways

Undergraduate teacher candidates can earn a BA and a Colorado provisional teacher’s license in the following areas:

  • BA—Individually Structured Major Elementary Education Licensure
  • BA—English Literature Secondary English Licensure
  • BS—Mathematics Secondary Mathematics Licensure
  • BA—History Secondary Social Science Licensure
  • BA—Political Science Secondary Social Science Licensure
  • BA—Spanish Secondary Spanish Licensure
  • BA—French Secondary French Licensure

Program Distinctions

Program Structure

The School of Education & Human Development teacher education program admits teacher candidates in two cohort groups: one in the summer/fall and one in the spring. The initial professional teacher education program includes a 12- or 15-month licensure plan. Students will be taking course work at the university and field-based work in one of CU Denver’s partner schools. By enrolling in several courses together, elementary and secondary teacher candidates consider how students develop as learners over the entire K–12 school span. This collaborative approach applies to students in the general and special education program as well. This ensures that all elementary and secondary classroom teachers are well-prepared to work with students with special needs and that all special educators have a solid foundation in general education in curriculum and instruction.

Professional Development Schools

While in the licensure portion of the program, teacher candidates work in a partner school one to four days per week, depending on the internship. University courses are closely interrelated with the four internship experiences in which teacher candidates gradually assume responsibility for teaching. Elementary teacher candidates generally spend an entire academic year in a single partner elementary school, whereas secondary teacher candidates spend their four internships in one of the partner middle schools and one of the partner high schools. The partner schools are located in several Denver metropolitan districts with most serving large populations of low-income and/or minority students, as well as a sizeable number of students for whom English is a second language and students with special needs. Each partner school is supported by a site professor from the university one day per week and by a master teacher, called a site coordinator.


In 2000, Senate Bill 154 required all Colorado teacher education institutions to become performance based. PBA stands for performance based assessment. PBAa are created that correspond to many of the teacher education courses and concurrent practice in the series of internships. In doing so, knowledge can be evaluated as a result of coursework and performance in schools simultaneously. As teacher candidates progress through the program, they will be introduced to Performance Based Assessments (PBAs) and will be guided and supported in both coursework and internships. Students seeking dual licensure are responsible for four additional PBAs associated with their second endorsement in Special Education. 

The PBAs are:

1.       Literacy Instruction & Assessment (elementary and secondary versions)

2.       Mathematics Instruction & Assessment (elementary)

3.       Subject Matter Content (secondary)

4.       Student Profile

5.       Classroom Management

6.       Teacher Work Sample (TWS)

7.       Internship Performance Rubric (used at the end of each internship)

Passing the PLACE or PRAXIS II Content examination prior to the final internship is also required before a candidate is eligible for a provisional teaching license in Colorado.

Undergraduate Advising

Undergraduate teacher candidates will have a team of individuals who work with them throughout the completion of their bachelor’s degree and teacher licensure. The following are the members of the advising team:

College of Liberal Arts and Science (CLAS) Education Advisor

The CLAS advisor will assist you upon entry to the university though graduation.The CLAS advisor will monitor your progress through the core curriculum, pre-IPTE curriculum, eligibility requirements for the UCTE program and transfer credits. The CLAS advisor will also approve individually structured major-elementary education contracts for elementary education teacher candidates.

Faculty Advisor

A faculty advisor designated within the academic department works with undergraduate teacher education students pursuing secondary licensure regarding specific requirements within academic major (i.e., English, history, mathematics, Spanish, French, and political science). See the CLAS advisor for specific names and contact information.

School of Education and Human Development Advisor

An advisor in the School of Education and Human Development’s Student Services Center (Lawrence St. Center Bldg., 701; 303-315-6300) is able to help with questions about prerequisite completion, taking the PRAXIS II/PLACE exam and other general questions.

UCTE Undergraduate Academic Planning Sheets

Developed in collaboration with the academic departments and UCTE program faculty, advisors will work with the teacher candidates on an academic planning sheet. There is little flexibility in the program course requirements as these requirements meet and exceed the Colorado Department of Education’s teacher education professional and content standards.

UCTE Undergraduate Community College Articulation

UC Denver honors the community college articulation agreement to transfer the 60 designated semester hours from the community college to anyone admitted to the teacher licensure program. If the teacher candidate is a transfer student, he/she should work with his/her CLAS advisor early and often to ensure that all courses are transferred properly. 

Programs of Study

Due to the complex nature of state mandated influences of teacher preparation courses and consistently evaluating this program for students, please refer to the most current version of the teacher education program handbook  for academic requirements for this program.

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