Programs preparing K-12 teachers

Live to inspire.
Love to teach.

Do you have a passion for helping people learn and  want to make a difference in their lives? Then consider becoming  a K-12 school teacher.
Few careers give people the opportunity to impact individuals and communities like teaching. Can you think of a specific teacher who made a difference in your life? Would you like to become that kind of teacher?

Warner will prepare you to become an innovative K-12 school teacher, empowered and able to help all students succeed. Our teacher preparation programs offer the shortest path to NYS initial and professional teaching certification and a guaranteed 50% tuition scholarship.
Guaranteed 50% ScholarshipLearn More About Our Scholarships

Program Quickview

All the master's programs described below prepare candidates for New York State initial and professional teaching certification and are offered at the graduate level only. 
These programs are designed for new candidates to the teaching profession.

If you already have New York State initial teaching certification, but need professional certification, Warner offers many options to obtain this credential through state-approved master's degrees.
See our programs leading to New York State professional certification.

If you are interested in other teaching or teacher education programs, check our related programs.
Prerequisites (as required by NYS):
  • A minimum number of credits in your area of specialization (see list of content prerequisites below).
  • Undergraduate degree in a liberal arts (BA) or science (BS).
Key Program Features:
  • Meets all coursework and internship requirements for both initial and professional New York State teaching certification: In addition, you will need to pass the required state exams and complete the teaching requirements for professional certification.
  • Shortest program: Preservice teachers can complete the program in 15 months of full-time study (if starting in summer); certified teachers seeking an additional certification may require less time.
  • Focus on content-specific teaching: Includes at least three teaching methods courses as well as internships (taken concurrently).
  • Focus on teaching all students: Includes courses on diversity, students with disabilities and English language learners; these required courses may be transferred in for certified teachers.
  • Preparing for technology-rich schools: Includes at least one course addressing learning in digital spaces; options exist to take some courses online to experience this learning modality.
  • Option to add Specializations: With only a few additional credits required, you can pursue additional New York State certifications or advanced certificates that can strengthen your effectiveness with diverse learners and make you more marketable; see Opportunities for additional specializations.

University of Rochester programs that prepare K-12  teachers

We prepare teachers for New York State teaching certification in the following areas of specialization. For more information about program requirements specific to your chosen area of specialization, visit the program page describing how we prepare teachers in: 

  • Inclusion/Special Education (Content prerequisites: early childhood/elementary, None; Adolescence, 6 credits each in ELA, math, science and social studies)
  • Literacy/Reading (Content prerequisites: Prior teaching certification)
  • TESOL (Content prerequisites: 12 credits in another language)
  • Early Childhood (Content prerequisites: None)
  • Elementary (Content prerequisites: None)
  • English Language Arts (Content prerequisites: 30 credits in English language arts)
  • Foreign Languages/ Latin (French, Spanish, German, Italian, Chinese, Latin) (Content prerequisites: 30 credits in the chosen language)
  • Mathematics (Content prerequisites: 30 credits in mathematics, including a two-course sequence in calculus)
  • Science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Earth Science)  (Content prerequisites: 30 credits in science, including at least 18 credits in the science of specialization)
  • Social Studies (Content prerequisites: 30 credits in social studies, including at least 21 credits in history and geography of the United States and the world, and coursework that provides a background in economics and government)

Opportunities for Additional Specializations (with minimum additional credits required):
  • NYS Certification in Teaching Students with Disabilities: Prepares you to better serve students with differentiated learning needs while qualifying you to teach in inclusive classes.
  • Advanced Certificate in Urban Teaching and Leadership: Prepares you to teach and lead in racially, ethnically, and socioeconomically diverse urban settings.
  • Advanced Certificate in Digitally-Rich Teaching: Prepares you to make the best use of digital technology in your teaching.
  • NYS Certification in TESOL: Prepares you to better serve English language learners in your classes and qualifies you to teach ESOL courses.

Licensure in other states. Review licensure and certification requirements for Warner programs.

ROC Urban Teaching Fellows Program

A paid teacher residency program designed to prepare teachers for the Rochester City School District.
  • 1 year paid teacher residency while studying
  • 2 years of employment following graduation
  • $10,000 toward your tuition

Our Approach

Preparing teachers who can inspire and lead change

The University of Rochester - Warner School of Education's teacher preparation programs will prepare you to stand out as an innovative teacher – a teacher who lives to inspire and loves to teach. 

At Warner, you will find curricula informed by research and best practices, faculty who are passionate and supportive, a shared commitment to social justice and inclusion and the drive to make education “ever better.”
three middle school students give a thumbs up
Learn More About Warner's Approach to Teaching and Teacher Education
Our programs that prepare teachers for New York State certification have all been designed to support you in improving your teaching practices, as intended by New York State. But the real difference at the University of Rochester - Warner School of Education, given increasingly diverse classroom environments and a continued focus on inclusion of students of all abilities, is our capacity to teach you how today’s students learn and how you can create optimum learning environments for all. We help tomorrow’s teachers move learning from memorization to critical thinking, from competition to community building, from “just getting over the finish line” to creating lifelong learners. That’s the Warner way.

It’s a movement focused on student-centered education with the goal of increasing intellectual engagement. It’s a commitment to developing “reform-minded” teachers who won’t settle for the status quo. It’s a goal of encouraging teachers to take responsibility for creating learning environments that are inviting for all students. It’s an ability to nurture and develop teachers who step up to be leaders by imparting ideas and a vision for where their students, the school, and the district can grow and contribute in meaningful ways. 

The Warner School delivers a big-picture view of what the classroom and the school should look like. It begins with approaching teaching as a profession, not a job – a commitment to inspiring all young men and women to grasp what they are learning, why they are learning, and why what they are learning matters to them personally and to the world.

On the leading edge of the classroom and beyond
All of our teacher education programs are firmly grounded in proven research and sound theory. Faculty, in conducting research and supporting others, stay on the leading edge of learning. They help to provide candidates with in-depth knowledge of how people learn by focusing on how the world sees each student, and conversely, how each student sees the world. This ensures that students have a keen understanding of where learning needs to go and the reasons why they will need to teach and engage students differently in the future.

Warner prepares students for teaching and the pursuit of educational endeavors beyond the classroom. We provide the theoretical foundation, the intellectual tools and the practical experience to help graduates thrive in a wide variety of learning environments.

Passionate, supportive professors 
A major strength of the Warner School is our expert, diverse faculty. These are individuals who’ve been there, seen it, and done it. Each is an accomplished, well-respected educator, dedicated to changing the way teachers teach by researching learning, teaching, and curriculum in various educational contexts and applying what they learn in the classroom. Warner professors are passionate education professionals here to support you every step of the way. Close relationships with faculty are developed in the classroom, on research teams, through internship supervision, and beyond. Small class sizes ensure you work closely with your professors and your peers, getting the one-on-one instruction, advice, and advocacy you need to succeed.

Commitment to social justice
One of the fundamental pillars of a Warner School education is a commitment to social justice and a keen recognition of a teacher’s responsibility to address social inequities in the learning environment. Students become very aware of social and racial inequalities, as well as socioeconomic issues, that impact a student’s ability to learn. Students are taught to understand and be responsive to different learning needs, to adapt to diverse behaviors and to be open to a wide spectrum of perspectives. As a result, they are driven to close the gap of social inequities and build a supportive, engaging learning environment.

Students with a higher calling
University of Rochester - Warner School of Education graduates aspire to a higher calling. A quest to inspire a greater level of learning. A commitment to achieve the utmost success for all students. A strong professional vision for the future of learning, backed by wise and effective teaching practices. Practices they’ve lived themselves, putting theories to the test, and executing powerful lessons with students, rather than just reading and talking about them.

Our graduates stand out, head and shoulders above their peers from other teaching institutions, well prepared for a future in teaching, and even better prepared for the future of learning. That’s the Warner difference.

The Warner Advantage

Preparing graduates to innovate, advocate and Elevate

Our teacher preparation programs will help you stand out from other teachers and prepare you to excel in your career.
  • Become a K-12 school teacher who can create learning opportunities that are inviting and accessible for all students – engaging with cutting-edge research and educational innovations.
  • Be challenged to be an agent of change, who can effectively introduce new ideas and practices that will enhance students’ learning and address current inequities.
  • Leverage the reputation of a leading research university to strengthen recognition of your degree.
  • Network with the best and the brightest future colleagues.
  • Make yourself stand out when applying for teaching positions by pursuing additional specializations for a few additional credits.
  • Learn from an accessible, supportive faculty of researchers and accomplished practitioners who will prepare you to become adaptive experts in today’s K-12 schools.
  • Shorten your path to a doctoral degree by earning transferable credits.
While rigorous, Warner’s teacher preparation programs are both flexible and affordable.
  • Benefit from a guaranteed 50% scholarship.
  • Take advantage of online learning options that help reduce trips to campus.
  • Be ready to teach the school year following enrollment, as the program can be completed in as little as 15 months, even by those new to the teaching profession.

All About experience

Your experience at the Universit of Rochester will be informed by the many research projects and community initiatives we are engaged in. In addition, you'll benefit from the experience of faculty that include nationally recognized researchers, award-winning authors and accomplished practitioners.

East High School Partnership

East High School Partnership

Our students have the opportunity to observe and learn from the reforming of an urban high school. As the Educational Partnership Organization for East High School, we are overseeing a radical transformation affecting all aspects of the school – including curriculum and teaching practices.

Horizons at Warner: Enrichment Program for RCSD Students in Grades K-8

Horizons at Warner: Enrichment Program for RCSD Students in Grades K-8

Warner hosts a six-week summer enrichment program that engages urban K-12 students in meaningful and authentic learning experiences. The Horizons program creates a unique opportunity for Warner students to interact with younger learners in an out-of-school setting. Opportunities for paid teaching experiences in this program are also available after graduation for a limited number of students.

Center for Learning in the Digital Age

Center for Learning in the Digital Age

Benefit from faculty who are involved in transformative uses of digital technology to enhance teaching and learning. The Warner Center for Learning in the Digital Age collaborates with various educational partners to leverage the potential of digital technologies for education.

Career Opportunities

Advancing education and your career to the next level

Graduates of a University of Rochester - Warner School teacher preparation program will have the credentials needed to teach in their area of specialization in New York State public schools and other states that recognize New York's teaching certification. 

Unlike graduates of an undergraduate teacher preparation program, our graduates will have already met all the coursework requirements for New York State professional teaching certification. This means they will only be required to complete three years of teaching and some state exams in order to obtain this additional level of certification – a state requirement within five years of beginning a teaching job.

At the same time, some of our graduates have chosen to pursue careers other than teaching in K-12 public schools. These include teaching in private schools and other educational settings, including informal and after-school environments, community-based organizations, and private industry.
teacher working with a young student


An accessible, supportive faculty of researchers and accomplished practitioners

Kevin Meuwissen thumbnail imageKevin Meuwissen, PhD
Teacher Preparation Program Director
LeChase Hall 466
(585) 273-5940

Other Program Directors

Zenon Borys, (Mathematics)
Jayne Lammers, PhD (English)
April Luehmann, PhD (Science)
Kevin Meuwissen, PhD (Social Studies)
Martha Mock, PhD (Inclusion/Early Childhood)
Carol Anne St. George, EdD (Inclusion/Early Childhood)

Additional program area faculty


Making your graduate education experience affordable

The Warner School of Education at the University of Rochester offers a number of scholarships to eligible students who enroll in preparation programs. These scholarships are made possible by federal grants as well as the generous support of donors, who are committed to the success of future teachers.

Byron Williams Teaching Scholarships – Guaranteed 50% tuition savings
All new students starting their master’s programs in teacher education leading to New York State teaching certification are guaranteed a minimum 50 percent tuition scholarship, provided they commit to teach in a United States school for a minimum of two years after graduation.

Vasquez in class at table with studnets

Try Us Out

Get a taste of what the University of Rochester has to offer

We invite you to visit one of our innovative instructional programs, including:
  • Horizons Summer Enrichment Program: A six-week, full-day summer program for K-8 city of Rochester students, taking place on the University of Rochester campus, that provides meaningful informal learning opportunities.
  • East High: This Rochester City School District secondary school is undergoing major transformation under the oversight of the University of Rochester as an education partnership organization.
Take a course. You can also experience the Warner School of Education's graduate programs as a non-enrolled student for a highly discounted price. Some of these courses also apply toward degree requirements. 

Contact admissions to arrange for a visit or learn more about opportunities for non-enrolled students.
teacher working with two high school students reading Romeo and Juliet


Meliora means 'Ever Better.' To our graduates, it means making a world of difference.

  • Shannon Walton, Sports Performance Counselor, Rochester, NY

    “I had a very unique situation. I wasn’t going down the typical path of a Warner student, and the school was just so flexible and supportive.”

    Shannon Walton, Sports Performance Counselor, Rochester, NY

  • Laura Van Laeken, Teacher, Midlakes, NY

    "The growth I’ve realized in myself is something I will be forever grateful for. I’ve learned to question, analyze, think and create in ways I never considered. I’ve changed as an educator and as a person."

    Laura Van Laeken, Teacher, Midlakes, NY

  • Jody Goodman, Program Director, UMass Amherst

    “As educators, it’s our job to make sure we’re giving students the knowledge to be successful when they move on in their life….Warner was the best grad school experience I’ve ever had because it prepared me extremely well to jump into my career, and I will forever be grateful for that.”

    Jody Goodman, Program Director, UMass Amherst

  • Beatriz M. Folch-Torres, MD, Rochester, NY

    “It was more than I expected. Not only what I learned in the program, which I’ve been able to put into practice every day since, but also the connections I was able to make and the relationships I was able to form."

    Beatriz M. Folch-Torres, MD, Rochester, NY

  • Jeremy Friedman, Research Associate, Harlem Children

    “When it came time to interview for jobs, it was very easy for me to talk about anything in the field, and that set me apart,” he says. “You name it, and I had at least one experience in it—largely due to Warner.”

    Jeremy Friedman, Research Associate, Harlem Children's Zone, New York, NY

  • Dawn Santiago-Marullo, Superintendent, Victor, NY

    "The most important thing I received there was the opportunity to be immersed in the study of education and leadership with very talented people, that think-tank mentality of being surrounded by the best of the best. The intellectual stimulation from both the staff and fellow classmates really did allow me to think about things differently."

    Dawn Santiago-Marullo, Superintendent, Victor, NY

Contact Admissions

The admissions team looks forward to assisting you as you explore graduate education at the University of Rochester's Warner School of Education. Use the form below, email us at or call (585) 275-3950.

Application deadlines

The next application deadline is March 01, 2023. View all admissions deadlines.

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