Colorado Teaching Certification Program Overviews with Course Info

Jul 26, 2019

There are more than 15 schools within the State of Colorado that have teacher certification programs. Read an overview of the ten largest schools' programs, requirements and tuition info and find out which school is the right one for you.

Essential Information

Colorado colleges and universities do not offer a bachelor's degree program in education. Instead, students earn a bachelor's degree from any one of a number of liberal arts majors and complete a teaching certification program. These programs are available at many 4-year schools throughout the state at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. Teaching certification programs include courses in teaching methodology, as well as student teaching field experience; they prepare students for teaching licensure through the Colorado Department of Education (CDE). In some cases, students may need to pass a test, such as the PRAXIS, before student teaching.

Additionally, a few schools offer alternative licensure programs and teacher residency programs allowing students to work full-time as teachers while concurrently fulfilling methodology and required Colorado teaching licensure coursework. Some schools also offer dual certification programs and, in some cases, credits from a certification program can be transferred to a degree program.


Colorado Mesa University

Grand Junction's Colorado Mesa University provides bachelor's degree plus teaching certification programs as well as initial teacher certification programs in elementary education, secondary education, and K-12 education. Students enrolling in the elementary education teaching certification program must earn a bachelor's degree in English, mathematics, or social science. Additionally, students pursuing a secondary education teaching certification must major in biology, English, geology, history, mathematics, or Spanish. K-12 education teaching certification program requires students to major in arts, kinesiology, or music. The initial teacher licensure certification programs are designed for students who already hold a bachelor's degree and students complete supervised student teaching as part of the coursework.

Colorado State University - Fort Collins

Located in Fort Collins, the university offers teaching certification programs in early childhood education, secondary education, and K-12 education, as well as a master's degree plus teaching certification program. Individuals may apply to the three teaching certification-only programs as undergraduate students who are concurrently working towards a bachelor's degree at the university. Individuals may also apply to the teaching certification programs as a post-baccalaureate student. Secondary education areas of focus include agriculture, business, English, family and consumer studies, marketing, mathematics, science, social studies, speech, and technology. K-12 education areas of focus include art, foreign language, instructional technology, and music. Furthermore, the university offers teaching certification in early childhood education and secondary education as part of the Master of Education (M.Ed.) in Education and Human Resources Studies degree program.

Colorado State University - Pueblo

Pueblo's Colorado State University - Pueblo provides elementary education, secondary education, and K-12 education teaching certification programs. The secondary education teaching certification program allows students to major in biology, chemistry, English, history, mathematics, physics, political science, and Spanish, where as the K-12 education teaching certification program allows majors in music, art, and physical education. Likewise, students entering the elementary education teaching certification program earn a liberal arts bachelor's degree in one of a number of subjects. Students participate in 200 hours of field experience and complete a 14-week student teaching program with a master teacher during the final semester of the teaching certification program. Furthermore, students are required to pass the PLACE or PRAXIS content exam before student teaching. Colorado State University - Pueblo offers an alternative licensure program.

Metropolitan State University of Denver

Denver-based Metropolitan State University of Denver offers various teaching certificate programs within multiple grade levels. The university provides an undergraduate and post-baccalaureate early childhood education teaching certification program. Students may also enroll in undergraduate or post-baccalaureate secondary education (English, math, science, social studies) and K-12 education (art, modern language, music, physical education) teaching certification programs. Furthermore, a Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) is offered for elementary education and K-12 special education, which fulfills academic Colorado teaching licensure requirements. Lastly, the university offers an alternative licensure program.

Regis University

Located in Denver, Regis University provides two options for obtaining teaching certification in Colorado. The bachelor's degree plus certification program has concentration areas in elementary and secondary education, with several minor options that include special education. Additionally, students may transfer up to 90 credits into the 128-credit-hour program. Individuals already holding a bachelor's degree may choose to complete teaching certification-only programs in elementary education or special education.

University of Colorado - Boulder

The University of Colorado's flagship campus in Boulder was ranked as having the 28th best education school in the nation by the 2013 edition of U.S. News and World Report. The university provides teaching certification programs for undergraduates and post-baccalaureate students in elementary education, secondary education (English, mathematics, science, social studies, and foreign languages), and K-12 education (music). Students may also enroll in the master's degree plus teaching certification in secondary education for English, mathematics, science, and social studies. Additionally, students obtaining a post-baccalaureate teaching certification at the university may transfer up to six credits into the master's degree program.

University of Colorado - Colorado Springs

Colorado Springs is home to the sister university of the University of Colorado system. Students may obtain Colorado teaching certification through undergraduate programs, post-baccalaureate programs, or the alternative licensure program. The university offers undergraduate and post-baccalaureate teaching certification programs in elementary education, special education and secondary education. Areas of concentration in secondary education include English, mathematics, science, social studies, foreign languages, and for undergraduate students, history. Students in the alternative licensure program are able to gain a teaching certificate in English, mathematics, science, social studies, or Spanish. Ideal candidates into the alternative licensure program are substitute teachers, paraprofessionals, retired military, and other qualified professionals interested in a career change.

University of Colorado - Denver

The University of Colorado - Denver provides bachelor's degree plus certification programs, post-baccalaureate certification programs, and a master's degree plus teaching certification program. Bachelor's degree plus teaching certification and post-baccalaureate teaching certification programs include elementary education and secondary education (English, French, history, mathematics, political science, Spanish, and Science). The university offers a unique individually structured bachelor's degree plus certification program in elementary education, which allows students to craft a major that fulfills content knowledge licensure requirements. Additionally, the university offers a dual-certification program in elementary education/special education and secondary education/special education, as well as an early childhood education master's degree plus certification program. Master's degree and post-baccalaureate teaching certification programs are administered through the Urban Community Teacher Education program.

University of Denver

South Denver's University of Denver offers several options through its Teacher Preparation Program, all of which have the option of leading to a master's degree. Students may pursue an M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction along with teacher licensure in elementary education, secondary education (science, math, social studies or English) or K-12 education (art, music or Spanish). Alternately, they may pursue a dual-degree program in the same licensure areas that yields a bachelor's and a master's degree. Licensure-only programs are available for those not interested in the master's degree. The University of Denver collaborates with the Denver Teacher Residency program and Denver Public Schools to provide an internship program leading to Colorado teaching licensure. Students enrolled in the residency program work in high-needs schools and may earn a master's degree concurrently with teaching certification.

University of Northern Colorado

Based in Greeley, the university has various bachelor's and master's degree plus teaching certificate programs, as well as post-baccalaureate teaching certification options. These include an early childhood education teaching certification program and an elementary education teacher licensure program. Admission into the secondary education teaching certification program requires students to complete 30 credits in undergraduate courses with at least a 2.5 GPA. Furthermore, the university offers undergraduate certificate programs in K-12 art, music, and physical education. Post-baccalaureate teaching certification programs include a master's degree program plus teaching certification in elementary education, as well as options for secondary education and K-12 education teaching certification without obtaining a master's degree.

School Comparison: At a Glance

School Name School Type & Setting Teaching Certification Programs Offered Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2018-2019)
Colorado Mesa University 4-year, public; small city Bachelor's Degree/Teaching Licensure (Elementary Education, Secondary Education, K-12 Education),
Initial teacher Licensure (Elementary Education, Secondary Education)
$8,627 (in-state);
$20,944 (out-of-state)*
Colorado State University - Fort Collins 4-year, public; mid-size city Bachelor's Degree/Teaching Licensure (Early Childhood Education, Secondary Education, K-12 Education),
Post-Baccalaureate Licensure (Early Childhood Education, Secondary Education, K-12 Education),
Master of Education in Education and Human Resources Studies/Teaching Licensure
$11,707 (in-state);
$29,608 (out-of-state)*
Colorado State University - Pueblo 4-year, public; mid-size city Bachelor's Degree/Teaching Licensure (Elementary Education, Secondary Education, K-12 Education),
Alternative Licensure Program
$10,408 (in-state);
$26,329 (out-of-state)*
Metropolitan State University of Denver 4-year, public; large city Bachelor's Degree/Teaching Licensure (Early Childhood Education, Secondary Education, K-12 Education),
Post-Baccalaureate Licensure (Early Childhood Education, Secondary Education, K-12 Education),
Master of Arts in Teaching (Elementary Education, K-12 Special Education),
Alternative Licensure Program
$7,666 (in-state);
$20,847 (out-of-state)*
Regis University 4-year, private not-for-profit; large city Bachelor's Degree/Teaching Licensure (Elementary Education, Secondary Education, Special Education Generalist),
Post-Baccalaureate Licensure and Endorsements ( Elementary Education, Special Education Generalist)
$36,810*
University of Colorado - Boulder 4-year, public; midsize city Bachelor's Degree/Teaching Licensure (Elementary Education, Secondary Education, K-12 Music),
Post-Baccalaureate Licensure (Elementary Education, Secondary Education, K-12 Music),
Master of Education/Teaching Licensure (Secondary Education)
$12,532 (in-state);
$37,286 (out-of-state)*
University of Colorado - Colorado Springs 4-year, public; large city Bachelor's Degree/Teaching Licensure (Elementary Education, Secondary Education)
Post-Baccalaureate Licensure (Elementary Education, Secondary Education),
Alternative Licensure Program
$8,523 (in-state);
$20,067 (out-of-state)*
University of Colorado - Denver 4-year, public; large city Bachelor's Degree/Teaching Licensure (Elementary Education, Secondary Education),
Post-Baccalaureate Licensure (Elementary Education, Secondary Education),
Dual-Licensure in Elementary/Secondary Education and Special Education,
Master of Education in Early Childhood Education/Teaching License (Early Childhood Special Education Specialist)
$9,283 (in-state);
$25,771 (out-of-state)*
University of Denver 4-year, private not-for-profit; large city Post-Baccalaureate Licensure (Elementary Education, Secondary Education, K-12 Education)
Dual-Degree Bachelor's and Master's and Licensure (Elementary Education, Secondary Education, K-12 Education),
Master's Degree and Licensure (Elementary Education, Secondary Education, K-12 Education),
Denver Teacher Residency Program
$50,556*
University of Northern Colorado 4-year, public; midsize city Bachelor's Degree/Teaching Licensure (Early Childhood Education, Elementary Education, Secondary Education, K-12 Education),
Post-Baccalaureate Licensure (Secondary Education, K-12 Education),
Master of Teaching (Elementary Education)
$9,918 (in-state);
$21,786 (out-of-state)*

Source: *NCES College Navigator

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