Teacher Licensure Programs

Earning your Teaching License - Residency Track

"The compassion my instructors have shown me over these past two years has been a huge inspiration to me as to the kind of teacher I hope to be to my own students. You are all very much appreciated and I have recommended this program to more people than I can even count.”

- Cortney Berry, Vientiane, Laos

Western's Residency Program allows you to earn your teaching license while experiencing life as a teacher. You will work in a classroom with a mentor teacher for 24 hours per week, while taking 27 credits of online coursework.  This Residency model of teacher preparation, unlike traditional student teaching, immerses Western students in a yearlong teaching experience, helping them learn what is currently happening in education. Western assists with the Residency placement for all admitted students. 


  • Relevant coursework designed around Colorado's Teacher Quality Standards
  • 5 day program orientation on Western's campus in July/August
  • Online courses with personalized, in-person support
  • Continuous feedback from mentor teacher, regional coordinator and  Western instructors

Endorsement Options for Initial Teaching License:

  • K-12 Endorsements: Art, Music, Foreign Language, Physical Education​

  • Secondary Endorsements  (Grades 7-12): English, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, Business ​

  • Elementary Education (Grades K-6)​

  • Special Education Generalist (Ages 5-21)

Teacher licensure requirements vary from state-to-state. This program is approved based on the State of Colorado standards. Students are solely responsible for checking what the specific requirements are from their state’s Department of Education.

Alternative Teacher Licensure

Alternative Teacher Licensure is for candidates who are hired as the teacher of record 100% of the day, with at least 51% of the day spent in the candidate's endorsement area. Candidates complete 27 credits of online coursework and spend one hour per week with their mentor teacher.  For more information about Colorado's Alternative Licensure program, see the Colorado Department of Education's Alternative Licensure webpage.

Pursuing your Master's degree

Following your licensure year, you may continue to pursue your Master’s degree, if you choose.  Western's many degree options produce uniquely skilled educational leaders and include additional endorsement opportunities to advance your career.  Find out more about our Master's degree options.

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