Urban Teaching Apprenticeship, MSEd

Urban Teaching Apprenticeship Program (UTAP) MSEd.

UTAP features a 10-month teaching apprenticeship that provides authentic experiences teaching at the side of experienced classroom mentors. Apprentices have over 800 hours of field time (more than twice the student teaching experience of the average program) to develop research-based practices.

The UTAP apprenticeship begins in the summer with both coursework and out-of-school fieldwork. Once schools begin, an experienced mentor shares the classroom with the apprentice, guiding their emerging teaching practice. Apprentices also receive support from instructional coaches who visit the classroom one day per week, and provide feedback to ensure development of targeted teaching skills and dispositions learned during course work.

When our alumni seek employment after graduation, they already have a full year of teaching experience on their resume.

More information:  https://www.gse.upenn.edu/academics/programs/urban-teaching-apprenticeship-teacher-education-masters

Purposeful Mentorship

The mentored field experiences are the core of the Urban Teaching Apprenticeship Programs. Carefully selected PreK-12 school settings and classrooms serve as learning sites for apprentices.

Cohort Model

The program is cohort based: all apprentices begin and move through the program together, sharing classes and experiences in their schools.

Inquiry & Practitioner Research Skills

An inquiry stance is modeled and encouraged; teachers see themselves not only as consumers of research but generators of it, using their own classrooms as sites for ongoing research and self-reflection. In the program, apprentices conduct research in their classrooms and complete a capstone project.

Advocacy and Leadership: Equity in Education

The Master of Science in Education degree and the urban teaching apprenticeship prepare alumni to take on leadership roles, particularly those that position them as advocates for all students.

Full Year Apprenticeship

Our students begin apprenticing in a Philadelphia public or charter school on the first day of the school year. Unlike traditional student teaching models, our apprentices experience nearly an entire year in the classroom.  


The degree and major requirements displayed are intended as a guide for students entering in the Fall of 2023 and later. Students should consult with their academic program regarding final certifications and requirements for graduation.


Urban Teaching Apprenticeship M.S.Ed. in Elementary Education with PA Grades PreK-4 Certification

The UTAP PreK-4 certification program of study is comprised of fieldwork, courses, and academic/career workshops within its thematic five-term school year, spanning 10-months.  A total of 11 course units are required for graduation.

Apprentice-teachers learn how to address the needs and nuances of the whole child. Our program provides a robust foundation in the four core content areas: Math, Literacy, Science and Social Studies, from the position that high-quality content instruction is key.

A total of 11 course units are required for graduation.

Program of Study

Courses
EDUC 5018Integrating the Arts in the K-8 Classroom0.5
EDUC 5015Field Seminar: Culturally Responsive Teaching1
EDUC 5020Literacy in Elementary/Middle Schools1
EDUC 5021Science Methods: Project-Based Learning Approaches1
EDUC 5023Social Studies in the Elementary and Middle Schools1
EDUC 5030Cultivating Creativity in the K-8 Classroom0.5
EDUC 5031Mathematics in the Elementary and Middle Schools1
EDUC 5040Differentiating Instruction for Diverse Learners/Special Education & Bilingual Students1
EDUC 5055Advanced Field Seminar: Student-Centered Social Justice Pedagogy1
EDUC 5065Introduction to Teaching & Classroom Routines1
EDUC 5113Development of the Young Child1
EDUC 6042School, Society & Self1

Fieldwork

Field placement in the summer takes place with community partners, where apprentice teachers will be able to implement small-group teaching tasks learned in their Math, Literacy and Maker-Space courses. Apprentices are in fieldwork for half-days, Monday - Wednesday each week and spend Fridays at community site-visits bi-weekly. Summer placements are a total of approximately 40 hours of fieldwork.

During the fall, apprentices are in their placements for two whole days and two half-days. Apprentices will begin their placement as small-group instructor, transitioning to whole-group facilitation by the beginning of Term III. Fall placements total approximately 330 hours of fieldwork.

During early spring, apprentices are in their placements for five whole days. Apprentices are expected to facilitate whole-group lessons regularly, including a “two-week takeover” during which apprentices become the lead teacher for the entire two weeks. Early spring placements are a total of approximately 280 hours of fieldwork.

During late spring, apprentices are at their placement for five whole days. Apprentices are expected to facilitate whole-group lessons regularly. Late spring placements are a total of approximately 245 hours of fieldwork.

Comprehensive Portfolio

Students complete an Inquiry Portfolio that expands on their inquiry question and highlights their two-week takeover from their social action project. Evidence of performance assessments, with commentary, appears in the final portfolios.

Additional Certifications

Alumni may earn the Special Education and ESL certifications by taking additional coursework during the first year of professional teaching. 

Pennsylvania Secondary Education Certification

Upon successful completion of all components of the Urban Teaching Apprenticeship Program (required coursework and student teaching apprenticeships), including obtaining clearances and completing prerequisite coursework, students receive faculty recommendation for instructional 1 certification, which is awarded by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. PDE requires that all applicants for instructional 1 certification be either U.S. citizens or permanent residents who are willing to submit a form indicating intention of applying for U.S. citizenship.

While we offer faculty recommendation for Pennsylvania certification, many of our students obtain Pennsylvania certification and then move to other states or countries. There is a NASDTEC Interstate Agreement to facilitate movement by teachers among states. We recommend, therefore, that students obtain Pennsylvania certification even if they plan to teach in other states.


The degree and major requirements displayed are intended as a guide for students entering in the Fall of 2023 and later. Students should consult with their academic program regarding final certifications and requirements for graduation.


Urban Teaching Apprenticeship M.S.Ed. in Middle Level Education with PA Grades 4-8 Certification – Student-Centered Teaching in Urban Contexts

The UTAP Middle Level Grades 4-8 program is 10 months long, culminating in a master's degree in education and faculty recommendation for instructional 1 certification in a middle years content area

Apprentice teachers apply coursework theory and engagement with students during their year long fieldwork experience. Apprentice teachers engage in mentored teaching in the 4-8 grade range, in public or public charter schools based on their certification area.

Field opportunities extend across the full 10 months of our program, offering apprentices up to 800 hours of experience.

A total of 12 course units are required for graduation.

Program of Study

Middle Level Grades 4-8 Core Curriculum

Courses
EDUC 5015Field Seminar: Culturally Responsive Teaching1
EDUC 5018Integrating the Arts in the K-8 Classroom0.5
EDUC 5020Literacy in Elementary/Middle Schools1
EDUC 5021Science Methods: Project-Based Learning Approaches1
EDUC 5040Differentiating Instruction for Diverse Learners/Special Education & Bilingual Students1
EDUC 5055Advanced Field Seminar: Student-Centered Social Justice Pedagogy2
EDUC 5557Developmental Theories: Applications with Adolescents1
EDUC 5030Cultivating Creativity in the K-8 Classroom0.5
EDUC 5065Introduction to Teaching & Classroom Routines1
EDUC 6042School, Society & Self1

Fieldwork

Field placements in the summer take place with community partners, where apprentice-teachers are able to implement small group teaching strategies learning in their summer courses.

During the fall, apprentices are at their placement for two whole days and two half-days per week. Apprentices are expected to begin their placement as small-group instructor, transitioning to whole group teaching.

During spring, apprentices are in their placements for five whole days and are expected to facilitate whole group lessons regularly, including a two week takeover, during which they are the lead teacher for the entire time.

Comprehensive Portfolio

Students submit an inquiry portfolio that features a social action project. Evidence of performance assessments is included in the final portfolio.

Literacy Requirements

Courses
EDUC 5023Social Studies in the Elementary and Middle Schools1
EDUC 6060Advanced Methods in Middle & Secondary Schools: English 1

Math Requirements

Courses
EDUC 5023Social Studies in the Elementary and Middle Schools1
EDUC 6057Advanced Methods in Middle & Secondary Schools: Math 1

Science Requirements

Courses
EDUC 5023Social Studies in the Elementary and Middle Schools (for literacy, math, and science students)1
EDUC 6058Advanced Methods in Middle & Secondary Schools: Science 1

Social Studies Requirements

Courses
EDUC 6029Teaching in the Middle and Secondary Schools: Social Studies1
EDUC 6059Advanced Methods in Middle & Secondary Schools: Social Studies 1

Additional Certifications

Alumni may earn the Special Education and ESL certifications by taking additional coursework during the first year of professional teaching. 

Pennsylvania Grades 4-8 Certification

Upon successful completion of all components of the Urban Teaching Apprenticeship Program (required coursework and student teaching apprenticeships), including obtaining clearances and completing prerequisite coursework, students receive faculty recommendation for instructional 1 certification, which is awarded by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. PDE requires that all applicants for instructional 1 certification be either U.S. citizens or permanent residents who are willing to submit a form indicating intention of applying for U.S. citizenship.

While we offer faculty recommendation for Pennsylvania certification, many of our students obtain Pennsylvania certification and then move to other states or countries. There is a NASDTEC Interstate Agreement to facilitate movement by teachers among states. We recommend, therefore, that students obtain Pennsylvania certification even if they plan to teach in other states.


The degree and major requirements displayed are intended as a guide for students entering in the Fall of 2023 and later. Students should consult with their academic program regarding final certifications and requirements for graduation.


Urban Teaching Apprenticeship M.S.Ed. in Secondary Education with PA Grades 7-12 Certification

In the Secondary Education program, coursework and intensive field experiences build on content expertise and support the development of pedagogical content knowledge.

Through the secondary education program, teachers are recommended for certification in English, math, social studies, world languages and the sciences.  Concentrations are designed to build upon apprentices’ passion for their content areas with best-practices in problem-based, student-centered pedagogies.

A total of 11 course units are required for graduation.

Program of Study

Secondary Education Grades 7-12 Core Curriculum

Courses
EDUC 5007Teaching & Learning in Student Centered Classrooms1
EDUC 5040Differentiating Instruction for Diverse Learners/Special Education & Bilingual Students1
EDUC 5054Managing Collaborative Learning Environments in Urban Contexts1
EDUC 5557Developmental Theories: Applications with Adolescents1
EDUC 6041Culturally Responsive Pedagogy in Urban Secondary Schools1
EDUC 6042School, Society & Self1

Fieldwork

Students begin their apprenticeship working with youth-serving agencies in summer programs. All teaching apprentices are assigned to a full-year placement in a Philadelphia public school that serves grades 7-12. As student-teaching apprentices, students spend significant time in their placement schools, taking courses in the late afternoon-evening. At the end of the term, apprentices develop a question about student-centered learning that arises from their practice in the field.

In Spring, teaching apprentices take full responsibility for teaching in their high school classrooms for five full days per week.

Comprehensive Portfolio

Students submit an inquiry portfolio that features a social action project. Evidence of performance assessments is included in the final portfolio.

English

Courses
EDUC 5017Humanities Field Seminar in Secondary Schools: Curriculum Design & Assessment1
EDUC 5057Advanced Field Seminar for Humanities Inquiry in Secondary Schools2
EDUC 6030Teaching in the Middle and Secondary Schools: English 1
EDUC 6060Advanced Methods in Middle & Secondary Schools: English 1

Math

Courses
EDUC 5016STEM Field Seminar in Secondary Schools: Curriculum Design & Assessment1
EDUC 5056Advanced Field Seminar for STEM Inquiry in Secondary Schools2
EDUC 6057Advanced Methods in Middle & Secondary Schools: Math 1
EDUC 6027Teaching in the Middle and Secondary Schools: Math1

Science

Courses
EDUC 5016STEM Field Seminar in Secondary Schools: Curriculum Design & Assessment1
EDUC 5056Advanced Field Seminar for STEM Inquiry in Secondary Schools2
EDUC 6028Teaching in the Middle and Secondary Schools: Science1
EDUC 6058Advanced Methods in Middle & Secondary Schools: Science 1

Social Studies

Courses
EDUC 5017Humanities Field Seminar in Secondary Schools: Curriculum Design & Assessment1
EDUC 5057Advanced Field Seminar for Humanities Inquiry in Secondary Schools2
EDUC 6029Teaching in the Middle and Secondary Schools: Social Studies1
EDUC 6059Advanced Methods in Middle & Secondary Schools: Social Studies 1

World Languages

Courses
EDUC 5017Humanities Field Seminar in Secondary Schools: Curriculum Design & Assessment1
EDUC 5057Advanced Field Seminar for Humanities Inquiry in Secondary Schools2
EDTF 5080Methods: World Languages A1
EDTF 5350Methods: World Languages B1

Additional Certifications

Alumni may earn the Special Education and ESL certifications by taking additional coursework during the first year of professional teaching.

Pennsylvania Secondary Education Certification

Upon successful completion of all components of the Urban Teaching Apprenticeship Program (required coursework and student teaching apprenticeships), including obtaining clearances and completing prerequisite coursework, students receive faculty recommendation for instructional 1 certification, which is awarded by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. residents who are willing to submit a form indicating intention of applying for U.S. citizenship.

Alumni who successfully complete the UTAP program earn faculty recommendation for their application for Pennsylvania certification. Many of our students obtain Pennsylvania certification and then move to other states or countries. There is a NASDTEC Interstate Agreement to facilitate movement by teachers among states. We recommend, therefore, that students obtain Pennsylvania certification even if they plan to teach in other states.


The degree and major requirements displayed are intended as a guide for students entering in the Fall of 2023 and later. Students should consult with their academic program regarding final certifications and requirements for graduation.


Urban Education Minor

A collaboration between Penn GSE’s Urban Teacher Apprenticeship Program (UTAP), Urban Studies, and the Netter Center for Community Service, offers undergraduates a more focused, goal-directed approach to the study of education.

Accelerated Masters

Undergraduate students at Penn, Haverford, Bryn Mawr and Swarthmore Colleges (a group of colleges and universities know as the Quaker Consortium) may apply to the Urban Teaching Apprenticeship Program M.S.Ed. programs during their senior year. Undergraduates who are admitted into the Accelerated Masters program may take up to four courses, two of which will count toward both their undergraduate degree and the Urban Teaching Apprenticeship Program M.S.Ed.

Once they graduate from their undergraduate institution, they are automatically admitted into the M.S.Ed. degree program in elementary, middle level ,or secondary education, with advanced standing.


The degree and major requirements displayed are intended as a guide for students entering in the Fall of 2023 and later. Students should consult with their academic program regarding final certifications and requirements for graduation.