Application Checklist for Teacher Licensure Candidates

Application Checklist for M.A. in Education + Teacher Licensure


Deadline for Application: June 15, 2019

Priority deadline for application: March 15, 2019. To increase your chances of being placed in your first or second choice school and to be eligible for department scholarships, you must complete your application by March 15, 2019.    

For your application to be complete, you need to submit:   

  • Two essay responses
  • Proof of transcript request
  • Two recommendation forms
  • Background check (This usually takes a minimum of two weeks to process)
  • Prove content by passing the Praxis, transcript evaluation, or degree in your endorsement area

​Select the "M.A. in Education + Teaching License ​" admissions application to apply to Western's teacher licensure preparation program.  All teacher licensure candidates are admitted as part of the M.A. in Education program, but may choose to complete only the licensure portion of the program.  

Start your application

1. If you aren't a CDE licensed substitute, CDE alternative licensure candidate or employed in a school district for the upcoming year, please complete Western’s background check:
Schedule a fingerprint appointment online with either: 

  • IdentoGo, available in Colorado cities (not Gunnison). Enter the Service Code: 25YQ54. Enter Western’s OCA number: CONCJ 5671.
  • Take your ID, a payment of $43.50 (credit/debit card or money order) with you to your appointment.

​​These instructions are for Western student teacher residents/ 340 students/ MA Ed. applicants only. They are not for CDE licensing upon completion of the licensing program in May.

*Please note that CDE currently requires their own separate check for licensing teachers, subs, etc. and they plan to begin a background check that will cover both student teachers and licensed teachers, around March 2019.

2. Two Forms of Professional Recommendation. The recommenders will submit their recommendation forms electronically. You will provide the names and e-mail addresses of your recommenders in your online application, and they will be sent a link to complete the recommendation form.

3. Resume

4. University Application Fee $50

5. Demonstrate your knowledge of the content area you'd like to teach by either:

  • passing a Praxis Subject Assessment (Special Ed. and Elementary Ed. must pass the Praxis Subject Assessment for Elementary Education Content Knowledge #5001) OR
  • holding a degree in the content area OR
  • ordering a transcript evaluation that shows you have taken 24 semester hours of college coursework in your endorsement area (click here to view a list of content worksheets). Contact the Education Department ( to order an transcript evaluation; 

If you are not able to take or pass a content exam by the application deadline, you will need to write a statement that addresses your proficiency in your subject.

6. Official transcript.  Submit official transcripts demonstrating a minimum GPA of 3.0 with a undergraduate or graduate degree conferred.​  Transcripts should be sent directly to Western from the issuing institution by mail to:

Western Colorado University
School of Graduate Studies
1 Western Way, Crawford Hall 118
Gunnison, CO 81231

Electronic transcripts can be sent directly from the issuing institution to:

If your GPA is less than 3.0, you may request an exception from the minimum GPA requirement.  Submitting the following (optional) documents will strengthen your application. Please note that meeting these criteria does not guarantee admission into the program:

  • Passing content area exam scores.
  • An official evaluation from a supervisor for direct work with students.
  • Post-BA or professional development coursework successfully taken.
  • You may also be interviewed by the Education Department Graduate Admissions Review Committee.

7. Essay Response. Answer each of the following questions.  Allow 500-750 words for each response:

  • Why do you want to be a teacher? Why now? What makes you a good candidate to be a teacher? 
  • Based on your beliefs and experience, can all students learn?  Explain your response. 

**If you plan to complete your student teaching in addition to working as a paraprofessional/school assistant, you must complete a para guideline form as well as provide a schedule outlining how you will meet our residency requirements of 24 hours/week while meeting the demands of your job. Both the para form and schedule must be approved by the Education Department, your mentor, your principal and an HR School District professional prior to submitting your application. All forms must be completed and approved before your application will be reviewed. Please download and complete the form here: Para Guidelines Form

Contact Deanna Banker with questions: or call 970.943.2045.

Additional Requirements for Alternative Teacher Licensure Candidates

  1. Secure a full-time teaching position in your endorsement area and submit an Employment Confirmation Form.
  2. Complete an alternative licensure application through the CDE and submit your Statement of Assurance by the start of school, details here: CDE Alternative Licensure Application information.

For more information on the requirements of the Alternative Licensure program, see the Colorado Department of Education Alternative Teacher Program webpage.

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