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Arizona Teacher Residency Program

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Make a difference in the lives of AZ students

If you want to change the direction of your life, while impacting the lives of young people, this is your chance. The Arizona Teacher Residency (AZTR) master's degree program is for college graduates and career changers who want to become effective, lifelong educators.

Modeled after medical residencies, this program incorporates the most important features of a teacher residency.

Rigorous graduate education

This program begins with hybrid summer courses that include a one-week, in-person summer institute. From there, coursework revolves around the residents’ classroom experience and leads to a master’s degree through NAU.

All of our coursework revolves around the high leverage practices we collectively developed with our district partners, so that coursework and fieldwork are truly aligned.

These high-leverage practices (highlighted in the figure below) represent foundational knowledge, skills, and dispositions of authentic teaching practices and philosophies essential to becoming a professional educator.


High Leverage Practices

Coursework revolves around high leverage practices and aligns with fieldwork to prepare you to become a professional educator.

  • Teach from standards and objectives
  • Create strong student engagement
  • Maintain high expectations (assets-based thinking)
  • Create a positive classroom environment
  • Build relationships with students and families
  • Use assessments to guide instruction
  • Accommodate instruction for student needs

A year-long classroom apprenticeship

After the two-week summer institute, residents begin a year-long apprenticeship under the guidance of a Supervising Teacher in a partnering school. As you can see in the graph below, residents slowly ramp up their instructional responsibilities before becoming the teacher of record in their second year.


Year-long classroom apprenticeship

Under the guidance of a Supervising Teacher, residents follow a year-long schedule to becoming the teacher of record in their second year.

  • Shadowing and Assisting (August)
  • Assisting and Co-teaching (September to December)
  • Co-teaching (September to December)
  • Lead teaching (January to March)
  • Co-teaching (April to May)
  • Residency complete

Ongoing professional learning through the Arizona K12 Center

Residents receive two years of induction support once they become teachers of record, have access to continuing professional learning, and receive support to pursue National Board Certification if they are interested.


Ongoing professional learning through the Arizona K12 Center

Once a resident become teacher of record, they receive two years of induction support and access to continuing professional learning.

Aspiring teacher (growth)

  • Fueled for Success events
  • Arizona Teacher Residency

New teacher (support)

  • Comprehensive mentoring and induction
  • Arizona New Teacher Induction Network

National board (guidance)

  • Fee assistance
  • Comprehensive candidate support

Teacher leader (development)

  • Teacher solutions team
  • Instruction mentor/coach development

Get into teaching and stay out of debt.

AZTR is an Arizona Teacher’s Academy eligible program, which means most residents can earn their master’s degree without having to pay any tuition.* All residents will also receive a cost-of-living stipend and healthcare during their year-long apprenticeship. Our graduates walk away with a master’s degree, a teaching certificate, and a job within one of our partnering school districts—all without having to take on extensive student debt. In exchange, residents commit to serving in the partner district where they apprenticed for a minimum of three years after their first year.


Arizona Teacher Residency 4-year schedule

Year 1

  • Teacher apprenticeship
  • Paired with supervising teacher

Year 2

  • Teacher of record
  • Induction support: observation, feedback and coaching
  • Receive Master’s degree

Year 3

  • Teacher of record
  • Induction support: observation, feedback and coaching
  • National board pre-candidacy encouraged
  • Resident’s continued commitment at partnering district

Year 4

  • Teacher of record
  • National board pre-candidacy encouraged
  • Resident’s continued commitment at partnering district

Recent grad? Looking to change careers?

Prepare for a profession in teaching without going into debt.

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The only program in Arizona that is affiliated with the National Center for Teacher Residencies.


The Arizona Teacher Residency program is the only graduate teacher residency program in the state that has been developed with the support of the National Center for Teacher Residencies (NCTR). NCTR is the gold standard for teacher residencies and upholds a series of standards and expectations for residency programs that ensure the best possible outcomes for residents and their students. Learn more about the impact of teacher residencies.

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Frequently Asked Questions: About the Program

Here are some of our most common questions related to the Teacher Residency Program. For a full list of Frequently Asked Questions, please visit our FAQ page.

The Arizona Teacher Residency is different from most other programs in Arizona because it:

  • Requires a year-long intensive apprenticeship in partnering schools where residents slowly ramp up their instructional responsibilities under the guidance of a strong supervising teacher prior to becoming a teacher of record.
  • Is a two-year graduate program leading to a master’s degree through NAU, with coursework that revolves around residents’ classroom experience.
  • Offers direct support to residents and supervising teachers in the form of sizable stipends and extensive professional development opportunities.
  • Supports residents through two years of induction after they become teachers of record and then sets them up to be able to pursue National Board Certification, which we hope most will choose to do.
  • Requires a three-year commitment to teaching in partnering districts after the residency year.

If you already have or will have a bachelor’s degree (in any content) before the start of the program; and you are legally authorized to work in the United States, you are eligible to apply.

Email us! We are always open to partnering with others.

You are eligible to apply for ATA scholarship if you are:

  • Admitted to NAU as an in-state or out-of-state student,
  • Enrolled in an NAU ATA eligible degree program such as the degree program(s) offered through the Arizona Teacher Residency,
  • Eligible for and have a current FAFSA on file with NAU’s Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid (OSFA),
  • Willing to commit to the ATA teaching service commitment (for Arizona Teacher Residency participants, this will include two years of teaching in an Arizona public district, public charter, or Bureau of Indian Education school after you complete the two-year eligible degree program)
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