Teacher Licensure

Careers

Faculty & Staff

Faculty

Alissa Axtell, J.D. headshot
Director of Licensure
Phone: 970.943.3092
Office Location: Crawford Hall 122
Brian Coppess, Ed.D headshot
Assistant Professor, Director of Principal Licensure
Phone: 970.943.2135
Office Location: Crawford Hall 108
Caroline Powders Forrest, M.Ed. headshot
Lecturer, Clinical Coach
Phone: 970.943.7035
Office Location: Crawford Hall 122
Brooke Hanks, M.A. headshot
Senior Lecturer
Phone: 970.943.2504
Office Location: Crawford Hall 105
Jeff Hulbert, M.S. headshot
Lecturer, Clinical Coach
Phone: 970.943.2141
Office Location: Crawford Hall 107
George Kamberelis, Ph.D. headshot
Professor, Chairperson
Phone: 970.943.2033
Office Location: Crawford Hall 103
Jackie Luft, Ed.D. headshot
Lecturer
Phone: 970.943.7043
Office Location: Crawford Hall 110
Ian  Parker Renga, Ph.D. headshot
Assistant Professor
Phone: 970.943.2244
Office Location: Crawford Hall 106
Jennifer Whitacre, M.S. headshot
Lecturer, Clinical Coach, Director of Summer Teacher Institute
Phone: 970.943.2120
Office Location: Crawford Hall 104
Cori L. Woytek, M.S. headshot
Lecturer, Clinical Coach
Phone: 970.943.3019
Office Location: Crawford Hall 122

Courses

For required courses and degree plans, visit the official University Catalog. Below is a general overview of courses at Western Colorado University related to this area of study.

 EDUC 600 - Foundations of Literacy Development (3 cred.)

Provide in-depth understanding of the reading acquisition process and current issues in reading research related to preliterate and emergent readers through observation and analysis of reading and written language development.

 EDUC 601 - Methods and Strategies of Effective Reading Instruction (3 cred.)

Provide in-depth understanding and application of scientifically-based methods of teaching reading comprehension vocabulary, and fluency.

 EDUC 602 - Literacy Assessment Informed Instruction (3 cred.)

Screen, diagnose, and monitor student progress in reading and writing to inform instruction and build home-school partnerships that promote reading and writing.

 EDUC 604 - Learning Environments (3 cred.)

Recognize needs for a successful classroom environment and apply strategies to support learning.

 EDUC 605 - Curriculum Development and Assessment (3 cred.)

Study and apply standards-based curriculum and assessment practices.

 EDUC 606 - Reading and Writing in the Content Area (3 cred.)

Analyze, evaluate, and apply methods for developing effective reading and writing strategies that improve student academic achievement in the content area.

 EDUC 607 - Rethinking Learning Through 21st Century Skills (3 cred.)

Investigate the research and theory of 21st Century Skills as they affect the education program. Develop effective teaching strategies through theory and simulation.

 EDUC 608 - Methods and Strategies of Effective Writing Instruction (3 cred.)

Provide in-depth understanding and application of research based methods of teaching writing as they apply to cognitive processes and socio-cultural context for diverse students.

 EDUC 609 - Secondary Student Teaching (3 cred.)

Work in a secondary school setting over the course of the year, in collaboration with mentor teachers. This course can be repeated twice for credit.

 EDUC 610 - K-12 Student Teaching (3 cred.)

Work in a K-12 school setting over the course of the year, in collaboration with mentor teachers.  This course can be repeated twice for credit.

 EDUC 611 - Strategies & Techniques for Teaching Students with Support Needs (3 cred.)

Address critical issues, content, and pedagogy needed by special education professionals. Apply these theories to the daily activities of the teacher.

 EDUC 612 - Behavioral Analysis & Intervention (3 cred.)

Use critical thinking and problem solving skills to study and apply current behavioral research and school law regarding the education of students with emotional/behavioral disabilities.

 EDUC 613 - Methods and Strategies of Effective Mathematics Instruction (3 cred.)

Examine and apply research-based teaching strategies that promote mathematics learning.

 EDUC 614 - Collaborating for Students with Support Needs (3 cred.)

Use data and collaboration process to develop Individual Educational Plans, and provide support needs and technologies for students with disabilities.

 EDUC 615 - Special Education Student Teaching (3 cred.)

Work in a K-12 school setting with students with disabilities over the course of the year, in collaboration with mentor teachers. This course can be repeated twice for credit.

 EDUC 619 - Elementary Student Teaching (3 cred.)

Work in an elementary school setting over the course of the year, in collaboration with mentor teachers. This course can be repeated twice for credit.

 EDUC 620 - Engaging Diverse Learners (3 cred.)

A study and application of research-based instruction to engage diverse learners. Focus is on creating learning experiences to maximize student engagement and achievement, while evaluating and reflecting on teaching practice.

 EDUC 624 - Managing to Differentiate (3 cred.)

This course provides a study of cognitive development as it impacts different learners’ ability to access academic content. Participants will build a foundation of understanding from which they will develop skills, strategies and resources that they can then apply in their teaching to address the complex challenges of meeting the diverse learning needs of all students.

Overview  

Western's one-year Teacher Residency program allows you to earn your teaching license while gaining firsthand teaching experience in a classroom. Aligned with Colorado’s Teacher Quality Standards, we join the best practices of top teachers with the knowledge developed by educational researchers to help you develop skills to thrive in a variety of classroom environments. As a Teacher Licensure candidate, you'll receive continuous feedback from your mentor teacher, regional coordinator and Western instructors. You may complete an additional 16 credits of coursework to earn your M.A. in Education. This degree must be completed within four years after earning your teaching license.

*Teacher licensure requirements vary from state-to-state. This program is approved based on the State of Colorado standards. You are solely responsible for checking what the specific requirements are from the department of education in the state where you plan to work. 

How It Works  

  • Residency: You'll complete a yearlong residency under the guidance of a mentor teacher while taking online courses. Western assists with the residency placement for all admitted students. You may complete your residency anywhere in Colorado, the nation or the world.  
  • Summer: You'll attend a Licensure Orientation on Western’s campus, which covers foundational concepts and reviews program expectations, while also allowing you to connect with your instructors and peers in person before starting the program.
  • Fall and Spring: You'll enroll in four online courses while spending 24 hours per week in a K-12 classroom. By spring you will progress toward teaching independently and will assume the role of the full-time, lead teacher for five consecutive weeks.  

Endorsement Areas for Initial Teaching License 

  • K-12: Art, Drama, Music, Modern Languages, Instructional Technology, Physical Education  
  • Secondary (grades 7-12): English, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, Business Education, Business and Marketing, Agriculture and Renewable Natural Resources, Family and Consumer Studies, Technology Education (Industrial Arts), Trade and Industry Education  
  • Elementary (grades K-6)  
  • Special Education Generalist (ages 5-21) 

Alternative Teacher Licensure Program 

The Alternative Teacher Licensure Program is designed for candidates who have secured a full-time teaching position in a Colorado K-12 school. With proof of employment, you'll teach in your own classroom under an Alternative License (granted by CDE), complete online coursework, and meet with a mentor for at least one hour per week. Please note your current employment must be in the endorsement area you are seeking. For more information about Colorado's Alternative Licensure program, see the Colorado Department of Education's Alternative Licensure webpage. 

M.A. in Education 

After completion of the teacher licensure year coursework (27 credits), you may complete an additional 16 credits of coursework to earn your M.A. in Education. This degree must be completed within four years after earning your Teaching License. You aren't required to complete the degree if you only want to earn the teaching license. 

Based on your interests, you may choose one of three leadership emphases for your master’s degree:

Teacher Leadership Emphasis

Teacher Leadership is defined as the work of an individual (a teacher-leader) within a school who is regarded as an excellent educator; is well respected by peers; is recognized for his or her leadership capacity; holds a lifelong learning orientation; and has been identified to facilitate, advocate, and advance school reform and improvement of student learning. The work of a Teacher Leader is typically carried out through informal and formal venues and processes; for example, with teachers in their classrooms, and district level task forces, committee, and/or membership in district level professional development projects.

Reading Leadership Emphasis

Reading Leadership is defined as the work of an individual (a reading-leader) situated in the classroom or in a school or district-level position who has advanced knowledge of federal and state policies related to literacy; has deep understanding of the development, implementation, and evaluation of scientifically-based reading programs; and can work effectively with other instructional staff to meet the literacy needs of all students. The reading leader provides professional guidance and expertise to classroom teachers, school and/or district literacy curriculum, instruction, and assessment programs; and develops and conducts in-service programs related to literacy.

K-12 Online Teacher Leadership Emphasis

 

K-12 Online Teacher Leadership is defined as the work of an individual (an online-teacher leader) teaching online in a virtual school and/or in a blended K-12 learning environment who knows federal and state policies related to online and blended teaching and learning; has advanced knowledge of the development, implementation, and evaluation of quality online teaching and instructional design; and can work effectively with other online or blended instructional staff to meet the targeted learning needs of all students. The K-12 online teacher leader provides professional guidance and expertise to virtual or brick and mortar schools on effective curriculum, instruction, and assessment programs in relation to online and blended learning.

Western is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. This regional accrediting agency is responsible for accrediting degree-granting post-secondary institutions in a 19-state region.

Apply to the M.A. in Education

Learn More

Reach out for more information about the program.

Headshot of Deanna Banker
Graduate Program Coordinator
Phone: 
Office Location: 
Crawford Hall 111

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