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CU Denver offers first-ever elementary education undergraduate degree

School’s urban setting believed to be important factor in meeting future needs of elementary classrooms

Denver (Aug. 20, 2013) - Students seeking an undergraduate degree in teaching can now earn their bachelor’s at the University of Colorado Denver. The Colorado Board of Education has approved the proposal by CU Denver’s School of Education and Human Development to offer a four-year, interdisciplinary professional degree. The Bachelor of Arts with a major in teaching, learning and development is now accepting students for the Spring 2014 semester. The program prepares students for careers in early childhood education, elementary education or special education.

“Our goal is to provide multiple pathways to teaching for all students,” said Rebecca Kantor, dean of CU Denver’s School of Education and Human Development. “We expect that the diverse backgrounds of the students at our urban campus will play an important role in meeting the needs of a rapidly diversifying preschool-high school student population.”

The program combines the academics of education with liberal arts classes in an effort to address the needs of the whole child that these young professionals will one day teach. A key element of the program focuses on an integrated approach of early childhood, elementary and special education as all three often collaborate in the classroom.

Honorine Nocon is the school’s associate dean for academic programs and services called the program a “first” for the university.

“The BA of Teaching, Learning, and Development is the first undergraduate degree at CU Denver’s School of Education and Human Development. It offers the opportunity to implement a new program that reflects our commitment to interdisciplinary and rigorous preparation of teachers. The new major promotes inclusive education by bringing the lenses of applied linguistics, human development, and the ecological understanding of the contexts in which teachers teach and students learn to the content knowledge and skills teachers need to be able to teach all children." said Nocon.

In addition to the classwork, to become licensed in the state of Colorado, students must take and pass the PLACE content examination in Early Childhood Education.

The university anticipates enrollment in the new bachelor’s degree will be strong from the onset with a proposed first-semester enrollment of 40 students.

The University of Colorado Denver proudly celebrates its 40th anniversary! Since state legislation made it an independent university in 1973, CU Denver has grown from a few classrooms in an old tram car barn to a complete and dynamic urban campus, serving more than 14,000 students and awarding more graduate degrees than any other institution in Colorado. This year—through special events, commemorative displays, new building ground-breaking, a retro-themed Block Party and even a brand-new mascot—we celebrate 40 years of high-quality education in the heart of downtown Denver.

CU Denver School of Education &
Human Development

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