Urban Teacher Education Program (UTEP)

Urban Teacher Education Program (UTEP)

UTEP is an undergraduate 30-credit course of study leading to New Jersey secondary teacher certification. UTEP develops middle and high school teacher candidates through nine courses, including a year-long clinical experience in an urban classroom.

We offer certification in the following areas: Biological Science, Chemistry, Earth Science, English, Mathematics, Physical Science, Physics, Portuguese, Social Studies, Spanish, Technology Education (NJIT students only).

UTEP Vision: 

The Urban Teacher Education Program (UTEP) at Rutgers University-Newark is intrinsically tied to the idea that public education is fundamental to enhance and sustain an equitable democracy. As a result, our teacher candidates are change agents who question and transform the world around them through teaching, while implementing innovative pedagogical ideas and educational philosophies needed to reimagine urban education. This process of re-imagination requires thinking of urban education in a way that places the needs of urban students and their communities at the center of teaching and learning. With deep knowledge of current challenges in urban education with regard to race, class and gender inequities, our program develops teacher candidates, who practice an ethic of care and intellectualism that serve the needs of urban youth in New Jersey and beyond. Along with preparing teacher candidates for state certification to teach middle or high school content areas, our program promotes continuous reflection on culturally responsive and critical teaching practices that are tied to personal, political and pedagogical conceptions of education for social justice.

UTEP Mission:

The Urban Teacher Education Program (UTEP) at Rutgers University-Newark is a unique and dynamic secondary education preparation program that seeks to develop educators who practice culturally relevant teaching and are committed to social justice. UTEP is a 30-credit, academically rigorous curriculum that prepares future educators to serve students of all backgrounds in New Jersey, with a particular focus on urban communities. Unique to UTEP is a commitment to equity that is grounded in valuing a racially and socioeconomically diverse society. Our focus on justice is deeply intertwined with  RU-N’s social mission that values individuals of diverse racial, ethnic, religious and national backgrounds. In addition, our program seeks to engage deeply with the Newark community, through teaching and public service. Academically, notions of urban education are holistically investigated through critical questioning, student teaching and student-centered classes that embrace theoretical and practical notions of education. As a result, teacher candidates complete the program with a strong understanding of their content areas, foundations of education, culturally responsive curricula and diverse teaching and learning methods.

To accomplish our mission, we ensure that our teacher candidates have obtained a satisfactory level of mastery of our 6 principles of teaching known as SUPER 6:

  • Principle 1: Subject Matter and Curriculum Aptitude

  • Principle 2: Understanding Your Learners

  • Principle 3: Pedagogical Content Knowledge

  • Principle 4: Evaluation of Achievement

  • Principle 5: Readiness for Establishing and Maintaining Effective Learning Environments

  • Principle 6: Educational Professonalism 

Our teacher candidates are provided with opportunities to become proactive, effective citizens who demonstrate the importance of social responsibility to the greater community throughout their experiences in the program. 

Unique to UTEP is our commitment to urban schools in general, Newark Public Schools (NPS) and Jersey City Public Schools (JCPS) in particular.  Our mission statement is infused throughout our Secondary Education Program and mirrors both New Jersey Core Curriculum Content Standards and TEAC’s goals for preparing competent, caring, and qualified educators. 


Check out this video clip of UTEP graduate, Ms. Mariam Younan. Mariam Younan is a graduate of the Urban Teacher Education Program at Rutgers-Newark. Mariam currently teaches English at Barringer High School in Newark. In this short interview she gives us a look into her classroom and what motivates her to be a great teacher.


Mariam Younan is a graduate of the Urban Teacher Education Program and now teaches English at Barringer High School in Newark.