Intensive Training and Support

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Intensive Training and Support

Urban Teacher Center (UTC) partnered with Lesley University and national experts to design a residency and master’s degree program that draws on the very best practices in teacher and student learning. Our program is rigorous, grounded in the classroom, and focused on the research-based skills teachers need to improve student performance.

UTC participants receive best-in-class support as they prepare to become teachers of record. Important features of our program include:

  •   Real-world experience:   UTC residents spend a full year working with students in three different clinical sites—one during the school year, and another during each summer.
  •  Relevant coursework:  All coursework is practical, experiential, and actionable, allowing for immediate practice of learned skills in the classroom. UTC-trained faculty teach the courses, with credits conferred by Lesley University.
  •  On-site clinical coaching:  Participants receive regular on-site coaching and support from UTC faculty, including lesson-planning support, classroom observations, and targeted mentoring.


  •  Four years of support:  After the intensive residency year, participants (now called “fellows”) continue with UTC for their first three years of teaching. Fellows receive on-site coaching tailored to their developing practice.
  •  A team approach:  UTC clusters two or more participants at each school site, where they support each other and contribute to the school’s professional learning culture.


  •  Emphasis on literacy and math:  Our preparation model emphasizes literacy and math skills that are essential to student success across all content areas. 
  •  Deep training in assessment and diagnosis:  We train our teachers to implement and interpret assessments of reading and math skills, so they can understand their students’ learning needs and provide more targeted instruction.
  •  Dual licenses in general and special education:  In addition to their primary content focus, every UTC teacher receives a second license in special education, enabling them to meet the needs of diverse learners.  


“UTC prepared me to be an effective urban teacher by providing me with the resources I need to succeed. With my year of residency, I learned exactly what I needed to do before going into my own classroom.” — UTC Fellow