The University of the arts


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Teaching Artist Certificate Application Form 

Teaching Artist

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We are not currently accepting applications for the Teaching Artist Certificate Program. Receive information and updates about the program by signing up for our email list.

The Teaching Artist Certificate is an unprecedented online program inclusive of all the arts: visual, performing, literary, media and crafts. Recognizing the role of the artist as a vital component of PreK-12 educational reform, the program was designed by the University of the Arts and the Philadelphia Arts in Education Partnership in collaboration with the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. The University of the Arts was the first degree-granting institution in the country to offer a Teaching Artist Certificate program.  Launched in 2009, 7 cohorts have completed the program for a total of 44 graduates. 


Today, the term "teaching artist" is generally applied to individuals working in their chosen field who are also able to bring their art to learners in the community. Learners can be found anywhere from community centers to hospitals, from after-school programs to shelters. But for the vast majority of teaching artists the focus is on reaching school children in grades K-12. A teaching artist seeks a path different than a state-certified K-12 public classroom educator, choosing to focus on studio or performance processes and how to bring this creative knowledge to the community through their art.

This research-based certificate program will build the knowledge and capacity of artists to work alongside teachers and arts specialists in PreK-12 classrooms and community settings to create and implement best practices residency programs that support learning in and through the arts.

When you complete your course, you‘ll have a university-issued certificate that makes you more marketable. First, it can help lead to more interviews because it shows prospective employers you have the appropriate educational credentials.

Second, it helps justify a new employer’s decision to choose you to be part of their educational curriculum.

Program Structure

Participants complete five online courses in sequence, for a total of 110 contact hours over three semesters, starting in the Fall. All courses are offered in an online format allowing students to log-in at their convenience to participate in discussions and readings.

The benefits of our online course format include:

  • Cohort structure will introduce you to peers and help to build your professional network

  • Work while taking our classes - UArts classes are designed to support work-life balance

  • Participate in asynchronous class discussions at your pace and when convenient for your schedule

  • Participate in synchronous sessions where students and instructors come together for a video conference discussion at least twice per course.

 Why You Should Participate in the Teaching Artist Certificate:
  • You want to understand the business aspects of being a teaching artist + develop a professional portfolio to promote your work.

  • You want to learn know how to design, implement and manage your own residency.

  • You want to gain professional teaching skills developed through hands-on experience working alongside master teachers; skills necessary to work in schools and community sites.

  • You want to be considered an alumnus of the University of the Arts and receive the many associated benefits.

Requirements to participate in the program include:
  • Students must have general computer skills.
  • Students must have access to internet and ability to access Adobe Connect platform.
  • Students will use academic writing style, program will use the APA (American Psychological Association) formatting + style guide.
Ready to apply? Apply online today!

Bringing your art to others is an art in itself. You can perfect that art with us.

Please join the Continuing Education mailing list to get updates on this program. 


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The Pennsylvania Council on the Arts (PCA) fosters the excellence, diversity and vitality of the arts in Pennsylvania and broadens the appreciation and availability of those arts throughout the Commonwealth. The PCA fosters educational excellence through participation in the creative process in schools and community settings, creating an honored place for the arts in lifelong education. The PCA’s Arts in Education partners recruit, select, train, place and evaluate professional-quality artists for residencies in educational environments.

Teaching Artist Certificate Courses

  • Foundations of Learning Theory
First Course | 5 Weeks | $390

This course explores the history and philosophy of learning theories and their application to present-day classroom practices. Theoretical models from pre-20th century through current brain-based research are examined in relation to the teaching of the arts. Learning styles and teaching strategies are analyzed as a means to address effective classroom practices.

  • Human Behavior + Child Development
Second Course | 5 Weeks | $390

The purpose of this course is to provide teaching artists with a basic understanding of child development theories and current issues in human behavior as related to patterns of change in the most critical age group of learners, ages 4-14. Cognitive, language, social/emotional and motor domains are examined. Consideration is given to the ways teaching artists can create age-appropriate arts activities within instructional settings including preK-12 classrooms and community sites.

  • Methods for Teaching Artists
Third Course | 10 Weeks | $710

Application of theory into practice: Content of this course will include teaching methodology, arts integration, co-teaching strategies, program design and implementation, and student and program assessment. This course applies student knowledge of state arts and humanity standards, familiarity with preK-12 core curricula through PA Department of Education Standards Aligned System, and alignment of arts skills with core curriculum addressing Common Core State Standards. Methods for Teaching Artists will include the development of arts and arts integrated residencies in both schools and community settings and includes building an understanding of the culture and learning requirements of a particular community from pre-K to senior citizens. Course concentration focuses on how to design, deliver, and assess student learning in arts residency programs as well as assessing program success.

  • Professional Practices
Fourth Course | 5 Weeks | $390

This course focuses on the practical and business skills needed to support and sustain a working professional teaching artist. It addresses specific demands outside of working in the studio and making art. In addition to examining current trends and transitions in the field, students develop traditional presentation materials, which are central when applying for residencies. This includes writing artist statements and cover letters, documenting work, and other variables relevant to a professional portfolio. Through lectures, student research projects and class discussions, students examine best practices for marketing residencies, writing and managing contracts, record keeping, and taxes. Guest speakers representing the full range of visual and performing arts from the arts community as well as master teaching artists are scheduled to discuss different aspects of the profession in live classroom sessions.

  • Capstone Project
Final Course | 5 Weeks | $390

This course is designed to provide you the opportunity to demonstrate the skills and knowledge you have learned in the Teaching Artist Certificate program. You will identify and craft an application to a Teaching Artist residency that meets your individually defined goals in coordination with and approval by the instructor. Finally you will assemble and present your professional teaching e-portfolio, appropriate to your medium and professional goals.

Total Required:                                                                         11.0                                5 courses, 110 hours

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