The U-ACT Program is an alternative route-4 teacher preparation program, which means that applicants must be employed full-time as an educator in Washington state. For more information on the range of alternative route pathways in Washington, please see the Professional Educators Standards Board website around alternative pathways to certification.
The U-ACT Program is approved to support individuals in earning their Washington state “residency” teaching certificate with an initial endorsement in one of the following general education areas:
- Elementary (K-8)
- Middle & Secondary Endorsements: to be eligible for earning one of these endorsements, an applicant must meet requirements of the Endorsement Evaluation process, as required of all applicants seeking a secondary endorsement through the Teacher Education Programs in the College of Education.
- English Language Arts
- History/Social Studies
- Middle-level Mathematics
- Earth & Space Sciences
Because the U-ACT Program supports teachers across the state, coursework is most-often administered in a hybrid in-person and virtual synchronous model. When applicable, instructors require enrolled teacher candidates to meet in community with others (in partnered school district locations or at the University of WA, Seattle campus). Teachers meet weekly for 3-4 hours in content-like groups with talented instructors to focus on research-based instructional practices. Additional flexible online coursework is required (some independent modules and additional sessions offered at a variety of times to allow for flexibility and choice among enrolled teachers).
The U-ACT Program is directly partnered with the following organizations. For more information about their recruitment and/or hiring processes, please directly contact them.
Teachers who aren't affiliated with these organizations can apply to the U-ACT Program, however, there are limited numbers of open positions in each cohort for teachers who aren't affiliated with one of these direct partnerships. To be eligible to apply, an applicant must have a full-time teaching position in a WA state school and meet all application requirements.
During U-ACT’s three-quarter sequence, you’ll engage in unpacking the complexities of “ambitious” teaching in relation to your own teaching context. Through our program, you’ll earn a recommendation for a “residency” state teaching certification, with an option to continue graduate work in the College of Education past this initial certification year towards a Master in Education.
- Key components of the U-ACT Program:
- Coursework and assignments are grounded within your practice and specific context and school community, advancing your practice as an ambitious and equitable teacher.
- Partnership between instructors/coaches and school community (e.g. administrators, mentors) to best align and support teacher learning.
- Focused coursework in the content area where you are seeking an endorsement as well as integrated practice and support within foundations in teacher education.
- Assessments are aligned to school/district evaluation processes with specific, data-driven feedback provided by instructors.
In 3-quarters of academic coursework, enrolled teachers earn 21-graduate level credits. The estimated cost of these credits is about $15,000 and students are eligible to apply for financial aid (loans and relevant scholarships). A prerequisite requirement of eligibility for an alternative route 4 program includes an “intensive” summer learning experience. The U-ACT Program provides this for all eligible teachers in the summer prior to their beginning the program.
To learn more about U-ACT be sure to sign up for an upcoming online information session; visit the College of Education's calendar for dates and registration. For more information please contact Megan Kelley-Petersen, U-ACT Program Director.