There are many opportunities in the field of education with the College of Education Canyon Residencies at Grand Canyon University (GCU). Canyon Teacher Residencies are learning opportunities that allow eligible College of Education teacher candidates to be employed as a substitute teacher, tutor, paraprofessional, teacher’s aide or teacher of record while completing requirements for both teacher certification and their program of study at GCU.
Understanding these pathways, including what best suits your learning needs and whether they are available in your state of residence, is crucial for progress.
There are varying levels of hands-on experiences within each Canyon Teacher Residency. Some Canyon Teacher Residency pathways provide teacher candidates the opportunity for intensive support from the college, school and/or district in which they are employed. Other pathways, like alternative pathways to licensure, require teacher candidates to be independent and self-reliant.
The College of Education at GCU supports a variety of traditional and non-traditional Canyon Teacher Residency pathways.
Teacher Residency Pathways Guide:1
Previously known as the AZ Teaching Intern Program, the Arizona Alternative Teaching Pathway is offered for individuals seeking certification at an Arizona school or district that requires Arizona Department of Education certification. This program is offered to eligible master’s candidates and allows them to teach in a classroom while pursuing their degree. To be considered an alternative teaching candidate, an individual must be enrolled and actively participating in one of the following licensure programs: Master of Education in Early Childhood,2 Elementary, Secondary or Special Education.
Arizona Emergency Substitute Teaching Residency
Arizona Emergency Substitute Teaching Residency is offered to eligible candidates who have completed the necessary courses to effectively enter the classroom as a substitute teacher. Candidates are assigned to a school district where they will serve as a substitute and are paired with a faculty advisor who will support them along with school administrators. Candidates participating in this residency serve schools as paid substitute teachers while also completing field experience hours required for coursework and must work to obtain their emergency substitute certification through the ADE.
Arizona Student Teaching Intern Certificate
The Arizona Student Teaching Intern Certificate is available to eligible candidates who have secured a contract with a district and are currently enrolled in the student teaching capstone experience of one of the eligible licensure programs. To obtain a Student Teaching Intern Certificate, candidates must have a request from a school or district for the issuance of the certificate, have active enrollment in the student teaching capstone experience and have met all other requirements for the certificate as outlined in A.A.C. R7-2-614.
Teaching Associate Residency
Teaching Associate Residency is offered to eligible candidates who have completed the necessary courses to effectively enter the classroom as a teaching associate, also called a teacher’s aide, paraprofessional or instructional aide, depending on the school or district. Candidates are required to research the requirements of the state, school and/or district in which they hope to be employed and take necessary steps to receive any required certification before entering the classroom. Candidates participating in this residency serve in schools as paid support staff in classroom settings that meet programmatic requirements, while also completing field experience hours required for coursework.
Nevada Alternative Route to Licensure
Nevada Alternative Route to Licensure (ARL) is an alternative route to teacher licensure that is designed for individuals who have secured a contract with a district in a high needs area in the state of Nevada and who are currently enrolled in one of the following programs: Master of Education in Secondary Humanities Education ARL, Master of Education in Secondary STEM Education ARL or Master of Education in Special Education ARL.
Canyon L.E.A.P. to Teach offers pathways for elementary and secondary teaching certification tracks to eligible Arizona candidates who are the teacher of record in their own classroom. This opportunity may apply to teachers who hold an emergency teaching, alternative teaching or subject matter expert certificate or those who teach in a charter or private school.
The two Canyon L.E.A.P. to Teach pathways allow candidates to complete their chosen track in as little as 10 months while working in their own classroom. Both pathways consist of graduate level courses, available for credits toward select education master’s programs. Candidates must have earned a bachelor’s degree, have passed the state content exams required for either an elementary or secondary certification and have a letter of intent verifying their employment as Teacher of Record (TOR).
Find a Canyon Teacher Residency Pathway That Suits Your Educational Journey
There is a modification process in place for qualifying teacher candidates for the Canyon Teacher Residencies. Reach out to your field experience counselor for additional information. Learn more about how states, districts and schools are taking up the call to strengthen the teacher pipeline, get more educators in the classroom and accelerate student recovery at ed.gov/news.
If seeking licensure or certification, applicants to the program are responsible for contacting their state department of education for licensure requirements and program approval. In addition, fingerprint and background clearance is required.
Please note, all Canyon Teacher Residency opportunities, including student teaching and clinical field experience, are traditionally unpaid opportunities. As an institution of higher education, GCU and COE do not solicit, source or guarantee paid positions. It is the teacher candidate’s responsibility to secure employment. Teacher candidates may have the opportunity to student teach or complete practicum in the classroom(s) in which they are employed as the full-time teacher of record, paraprofessional, teacher’s aide or substitute if: (1) the setting aligns with the setting required in the teacher candidate’s program of study, (2) the teacher candidate has an appropriately certified mentor available at the school site and (3) the teacher candidate is able to fulfill all student teaching expectations, including the ability to have a takeover for the minimum required time during student teaching. Refer to the Student Success Center for additional information: GCUMedia.com/StudentSuccessCenter
1 Employment opportunities and compensation are dependent on the school site.
2 Candidates in the M.Ed. in early childhood program must maintain a full-time contracted teaching position within a general education K-3rd grade setting. Positions within a Birth to Pre-K setting will not qualify for the Early Childhood Alternative Teaching Certificate. The early childhood master’s program requires two student teaching settings. One placement must be in a Birth to Pre-K setting and one placement must be in a K-3rd setting. Candidates on the Alternative Teaching Certificate in the early childhood program must contact their field experience counselor to arrange a placement for Birth to Pre-K student teaching placement. The candidate on the Alternative Teaching Certificate will be able to use their own classroom to fulfill the K-3rd student teaching requirement.