CU Denver – ALPS Principal Licensure Program

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If you do not have a Master’s Degree or would like a second degree, apply to the MA Administrative Leadership & Policy Studies program. If you do have a Master’s Degree, apply to the EdS Administrative Leadership & Policy Studies program. If you only plan to complete the principal licensure portion of the courses (not the degree), you still need to apply for the MA or EdS. Do not submit a non-degree application. For cohort option, select Denver Public Schools or DPS.

Program Overview

University of Colorado Denver’s Administrative Leadership and Policy Studies program for diverse communities is designed for aspiring principals or teachers interested in becoming leaders in their schools and districts. Coursework is designed to simulate the actual challenges faced by principals and is delivered through a combination of face-to-face and online sessions coupled with field-based clinical practice. This program also offers candidates credits that can be applied towards a Master’s or Doctorate degree.

The first emphasis prepares future principals to lead for equity toward college and career readiness through a culture of empowerment, continuous improvement and celebration.

The second emphasis prepares future principals to lead for effective English Language Acquisition programming, and instructional processes (teaching and learning) for the academic and social‐emotional success of a diverse student population.

With the goal of addressing the achievement gap in Denver, CU Denver and Denver Public Schools have collaborated on a program that provides candidates with the type of leadership required to have a profound impact on student opportunity, achievement and success in urban and diverse communities.  The ALPS Principal Licensure Program has a specific focus on culture, equity and ELA leadership.   If you want to make a difference in Denver Public Schools, leading faculty and students to higher levels of achievement and development, come join this unique principal preparation cohort experience.

Program Philosophy

To make a profound impact on the success of students, teachers, schools and districts.

The ALPS Program and instructional faculty cultivate dynamic leaders who are prepared to face demanding challenges and lead teachers, students, and schools. The program prepares principal candidates to use evidenced-based knowledge of learner-centered leadership and to implement coherent leadership practices necessary for fostering student performance and increased student achievement for all students.

  • Work with experienced instructors to enhance self-awareness in order to more fully engage schools and communities in crucial conversations that value the language and culture of students and families as assets.
  • Focus on building and maintaining relationships with school staff to develop strong support networks and maximize resources.
  • Emphasize technology as a means of empowerment for administrators, teachers, and students.
  • Develop in-depth understanding about leadership roles and responsibilities, contemporary educational issues, and collaborations within and across communities.
  • Raise a thorough awareness of the legal, financial and political dimensions of schools and school districts
  • Incorporate multiple perspectives, themes of equity and social justice, a focus on the needs and experiences of diverse children and youth, and implications for leadership in today’s schools.

Program Format

  • Candidates complete the 32-credit principal license program as part of a cohort of approximately 25 students.
  • Courses are delivered in a hybrid format (i.e., face-to-face classes and online learning support through CANVAS, CU Denver’s learning management system.
  • The program is delivered over four-consecutive semesters (Spring 2017, Summer 2017, Fall 2017, and Spring 2018).
  • Face-to-face class sessions are distributed over eight Tuesdays and three or four Saturdays per semester. These class sessions provide students with opportunities to share, problem solve real-life experiences, take field trips to community based organizations/resources, and prepare for successful completion of performance-based assessments.
  • Completion of course work and clinical-practice activities prepare you to take and pass the principal PLACE test and to apply for your initial principal license.

Message to Applicants

Interested principal licensure candidates will apply either for the MA or EDS degree programs, although finishing the degree requirements is optional after students have completed the 32-credit licensure program. If you do not have a previous graduate degree, you may complete nine additional semester credits and write a comprehensive exam paper to earn an MA degree in Administrative Leadership and Policy Studies. If you have a previous master’s degree, you may complete nine additional semester credits and write a comprehensive exam paper to earn an EDS degree in Administrative Leadership and Policy Studies.

All applicants must hold at least a bachelor’s degree and have a teaching or special services license; we recommend approximately three years of post-teacher licensure experience in the field of education.

Great schools need great leaders! We are committed to supporting your continued growth and development. If you are interested in continuing your leadership development and expanding the scope of your impact, we would like to invite you to learn more about our University Partnerships.

UCD-DPS Educational Leadership For Diverse Communities Principal Licensure Program

University of Colorado Denver’s Administrative Leadership and Policy Studies program is designed for aspiring principals or teachers interested in becoming leaders in their schools and districts. For more information on how to apply.

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