Alternative Licensure Program (ALP)

Alternative Licensure Program

Graduate Certificate

Program Delivery


Total Credits

33 Credits

About the Program

students working in classroom
Alternative Licensure Program

The Alternative Licensure Program (ALP) at UCCS is a "designated agency" approved by the Colorado State Board of Education to provide a one-year program for candidates seeking licensure in one of the following areas:

  • English Language Arts
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Social Studies
  • World Languages
  • Computer Science

Focus of Study

The alternative teacher pathway is intended to allow districts to hire candidates who already hold at least an undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education but have not completed an educator preparation program that includes student teaching.

To participate in the ALP, you will need to demonstrate that you have specific content knowledge in the state-approved area you wish to teach.

The ALP at UCCS is authorized to provide licensure programs in the following areas:  English Language Arts (7-12), Mathematics (6-8 and 7-12), Science (7-12), Social Studies (7-12), World Language (K-12), and Computer Science (K-12). Be sure that you can demonstrate content competence in one of the following ways:

  • Hold a degree in the endorsement area from a regionally-accredited institution; or
  • Have 24 semester hours in the endorsement area, as outlined within CDE's content evaluation worksheets; or
  • Earn a passing score on the state-approved exam for the endorsement area (usually the Praxis).

Program Requirements

It is each student's responsibility to make sure that all program requirements and licensure procedures are completed appropriately. 

  • All ALP candidates must maintain a 3.0 GPA and receive no grade lower than a B- in any course.
  • Because the ALP Year requires full-time teaching, candidates may not request or receive Incompletes in the ALP Year courses.

Obtaining Your Alternative Teacher License
  1. Take the first six courses within the program (known as the ALP Core) before applying for a teaching position.
  2. Find a teaching position in your endorsement area (subject/grade level you want to teach).
    • Your employer will provide a contract and a Statement of Assurance (SoA) - both of which must be signed by the College of Education before submitting to the Colorado Department of Education.
  3. Submit documents to the Colorado Department of Education through the Colorado Online Licensing (COOL) portal to receive your Alternative Teacher License.
  4. To complete the ALP, complete all ten courses before your Alternative Teacher License expires, which usually happens the August after your first year of teaching.

Program Coursework

The ALP consists of ten courses. Those seeking a Master of Arts (MA) in Curriculum & Instruction need to complete only two more courses within three semesters of completing the ALP. 


 Required Courses
Core Courses*

Complete all of the following courses:

  • CURR 5004-3 School, Society, & Diversity
  • CURR 5005-3 Educational Psychology
  • SPED 5001-3 Introduction to Special Education
  • CURR 5750-3 ESL for Educators
Summer Courses*

Complete all of the following courses:

  • CURR 5014-3 Instructional & Classroom Management Strategies I, Secondary
  • CURR 5016-3 Instructional & Classroom Management Strategies II, Secondary
Fall Courses**

Complete one of the following courses:

  • CURR 5491 Secondary English Methods
  • CURR 5492 Secondary Math Methods
  • CURR 5493 Secondary Science Methods
  • CURR 5494 Secondary Social Studies Methods
  • CURR 5495 World Languages Methods
  • CURR 5496 Computer Science Methods

Complete all of the following courses:

  • CURR 5018-3 Alternative Teacher Seminar in Secondary Education I
Spring Courses**

Complete all of the following courses:

  • CURR 5407-3 Teaching Content and Disciplinary Literacy to Adolescents
  • CURR 5020-6 Alternative Teacher Seminar in Secondary Education II
Additional Coursework for Master of Arts in Curriculum & Instruction

To complete a Master of Arts in Curriculum & Instruction - Complete the following courses within three semesters of completing the ALP:

  • LEAD 5700-3 Introduction to Research & Statistics
  • CURR 5090-3 Research Project

*Students may take courses before obtaining a teaching position and are strongly encouraged to do so.
**Students may not take these courses until they have a full-time teaching position.

For details on program coursework please visit the Academic Catalog.

Admission Details

Deadline: Students are admitted year-round. We recommend applying at least 30 days prior to the start of any semester.  

Financial Aid Priority: March 1

The Alternative License Program (ALP) at UCCS seeks to admit self-motivated, committed, and resourceful candidates who can readily take on teaching roles in public school classrooms. Ideal ALP applicants are paraprofessionals, substitute teachers, career changers, retired military, or others who have the background and potential for completing this rigorous, fast-paced program.

Note: Prior to applying, create an account with TEACH Colorado to receive up to $100 fee reimbursement toward application and testing expenses.

Application Process
  1. Schedule an admissions and information interview with a faculty member in the Department of Teaching & Learning early in the process. The goal of the appointment is to answer any questions you may have, clarify the procedures for admission, and determine your level of interest in and preparation for the program. Call the Student Resource Office at 719-255-4996 or email them at to set up appointments/interviews.
  2. Complete the Graduate applicationWithin the application you will need to:
    • Pay the $60.00 application fee.
    • Upload your "Career Goals Statement." This is a 2-3 page essay in which you discuss your motivation for becoming a teacher and outline the assets you can bring to the profession. We are particularly interested in your level of self-awareness, your academic potential, your personal growth experiences and a sense of what you hope to accomplish in your career.
    • Upload your curriculum vitae or professional résumé (please include relevant paid work and volunteer experience where applicable).
    • Complete the tuition classification form.
    • List the name, title/organization, and email of three people who will serve as references for you. The people you identify will be emailed a recommendation form/instructions. *Choose your references carefully. Ideally, one reference should be a former instructor, one should be a current supervisor, and one should be a professional colleague. People who have been in positions to supervise and/or evaluate your human relations skills are often effective references. Do not ask friends or family members who might be biased. Your reference should be able to attest to your ability to successfully complete a graduate program in Curriculum and Instruction and your ability to establish effective interpersonal relationships with others.
  3. In addition to the above materials that will be submitted with your online application, proof of your background check or proof of licensure can be attached directly to your graduate application when you apply, or you can email the document to Instructions for completing your background check are:  
    • Go to the website:
      • Click on Individuals
      • $6.85 is the cost to receive the results
      • Print a copy of the background check and turn it in with your admissions materials. (Current CO school or agency employees who completed a background check for employment may provide a copy of their CO license or a copy of the results of the background check for employment.)
  4. Have one official transcript of all higher education course work ever completed to date (undergraduate and/or graduate GPA must be included on transcripts), sent from the institution you attended directly to the University of Colorado Colorado Springs, Office of Admissions (electronically to or by mail).
    • UCCS Office of Admissions 
      1420 Austin Bluffs Parkway
      Colorado Springs CO 80918-3733