Early Literacy

Graduate Certificate

Helping children develop early literacy skills can put them on a path to a successful future. You can be the one to assist young, diverse learners in gaining these vital skills.

The Program at a Glance

School: School of Education & Human Development Campus: CU Denver Classroom: Fully Online Recommended completion time: 1 year Credits required for completion: 9 Application deadline: Rolling decision

The Details

What you'll learn

Developing early literacy skills is a crucial step in children’s growth and development. Early literacy instruction is a national focus, and for good reason. Studies show that students who are not reading on grade level by fourth grade have decreased chances of graduating from high school. Students need educators who can help them grow their reading skills at an early age as a way of preparing them for a successful future.

The University of Colorado Denver’s Early Literacy certificate offers primary grade teachers, preschool teachers and para-educators advanced skills in the development, assessment and instruction of literacy for young learners. You’ll explore methods that will help all learners--including those who are linguistically or culturally diverse--gain important literacy skills.

Even though these courses are offered online, participants still become part of a learning community. You’ll learn and share with like-minded peers and form lasting relationships with colleagues as you learn and grow together.

After completing the program, you’ll have the knowledge and skills necessary to create rich environments that envelop young learners in language and literacy development opportunities, both oral and written. You will be the guide who sets young learners on a path to success and empowers them for a lifetime of learning.


Faculty at CU Denver match your passion for education and believe in giving all students equal access to an excellent education. Engaged in literacy education at the local, state, national and international levels, these professionals bring with them a wide breadth of experience. Additionally, our faculty network and collaborate with local district leaders to ensure you are prepared for the current challenges that schools and districts face.

Choose CU Denver's School of Education & Human Development

You can trust CU Denver to provide an education that will prepare you for excellence in your career. We have a name that is recognized for preparing leaders of excellence who value diversity and inclusion. Additionally, CU Denver’s School of Education and Human Development is counted among U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Graduate Schools,” making us one of the top education schools in the country.

Admissions Requirements

Registration for CPE courses can be completed online using the following steps.

For new CU Denver students or those that have not taken a course within the past three semesters:

  1. Please apply for your student ID here: CPE Application.
  2. Create your password and obtain your username at: My Account.
  3. Register for courses in UCDAccess using your specific CPE course information. 

CU Denver students who have taken a course within the past three semesters should be able to enroll through UCDAccess (step 3 above).

Please contact the Office of Continuing and Professional Education to learn more about the program or for assistance with your application at 303-315-5000 or cpe@ucdenver.edu.