Why UChicago UTEP

A five-year experience

Aspiring, novice, and experienced teachers each have specific professional development needs. To prepare candidates for the rigors of teaching, UChicago UTEP provides two years of preparation—a foundations year, residency—and up to three years of post-graduation supports, including in-classroom coaching, professional workshops, inquiry groups, and teacher leadership training.

Close ties to CPS and the University of Chicago Charter School

UChicago UTEP has developed a context-specific approach to teacher education, which means residents are placed in schools and classrooms where they can best learn the substance and pedagogy of teaching in Chicago Public Schools. Residents’ lead-teachers in these placements are the program’s carefully selected clinical instructors who receive comprehensive professional development from UChicago UTEP. Read more about UChicago UTEP and its school partners.

Integration of clinical experiences and coursework

Coursework and clinical experiences are tightly linked in UChicago UTEP. Residents engage in a cycle of learning in which they study subject matter and pedagogy; try out instruction; reflect on their practice—on their own and with course instructors and peers; revise and refine their instructional strategies; and try again. Observations and feedback from clinical instructors support each step in this cycle of learning. See a summary of UChicago UTEP’s coursework and methods classes and a scope and sequence of clinical experiences.

Small, personalized, and centered on relationships with students and peers

UChicago UTEP stays small deliberately so that all teacher candidates receive personalized guidance from faculty and staff. The cohort structure enables candidates to complete coursework and fieldwork together, share experiences of their work, and support each other’s continued learning after graduation. Throughout the program, candidates see how reflection and making practice public are hallmarks of the intellectual work of teaching and spurs to individual and collegial growth. Read more about exploring diversity at UChicago UTEP.

Designed and taught by a staff with experience teaching in CPS

All UChicago UTEP instructors are former CPS practitioners who know what it means to enact the kind of instruction candidates are preparing to carry out. Learning in UChicago UTEP is school-based, interactive, and inquiry-driven—a model for effective classroom practice that invests students in learning, taps their prior experience and knowledge, and pushes them to excel.

Focus on race, class, and culture in teaching and learning

UChicago UTEP prepares teachers for Chicago Public Schools, a high-need district serving a largely low-income student population that is predominantly African American and Latino. UChicago UTEP explicitly addresses issues of race, language, class, and culture that aspiring teachers will encounter in their classrooms and schools. This emphasis—in coursework, clinical experiences, and the foundations year soul strand—supports UChicago UTEP students in learning how to apply understanding of these complex issues in both their classroom instruction and their relationships with students, parents, and colleagues.

A World-Renowned University in a World-Class City

The University of Chicago is a vibrant intellectual community, situated in a Gothic-inspired campus located just 15 minutes from the city center. Chicago is among the nation’s most livable big cities, with extraordinary cultural attractions, museums, an accessible lakefront, and diverse ethnic neighborhoods. Read more about UChicago UTEP and the University of Chicago.