Highly Effective School Libraries

Graduate Certificate

Teacher-librarians lead the way in digital, media and information literacy development in their schools. Create an inclusive, future-ready learning culture for building essential student skills by completing this certificate at CU Denver.

The Program at a Glance

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

The Details

What you'll learn

Highly effective school libraries are learning hubs that facilitate student creativity, critical-thinking and problem-solving skills for their achievement and preparation for post-graduate success. Librarians are teacher-leaders who are needed to create and maintain collaborative partnerships with their colleagues, community leaders, students and their families. 

The University of Colorado Denver’s Highly Effective School Libraries certificate prepares school librarians who are not endorsed as a certified school librarian with the knowledge and skills necessary to establish an inclusive learning community that ensures students have the ability to find, evaluate, create and communicate information. This certificate will update current librarians’ skills based on the Colorado State Library’s competencies for highly effective school library programs.

You will be prepared to:

  • Plan an effective library program
  • Design and implement lessons that integrate 21st century skills and state standards in collaboration with colleagues and community partners
  • Assess students’ abilities to find, evaluate, create and communicate information in a variety of media, and
  • Manage a diverse collection of materials in the library to promote both literacy and a love for learning.

Become a professional who helps schools thrive by creating a learning space that is inclusive, high-tech and effective for students and staff members. 


Faculty at CU Denver match your passion for professional success in libraries. Engaged in school library work 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 school libraries 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 library 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 & 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.


SCHL 5030: Information Literacy

Teaching, assessment, and integration of information literacy skills. Reference collection development, policies and procedures, and use of and reference tools, including electronic resources. Emphasis is placed on standards-based collaborative planning and instruction with classroom teachers. 3 credits

SCHL 5160: Managing School Libraries

Case studies in the organization and administration of school library and instructional leadership of programs and projects. Topics include project management, personnel administration, budget development, management strategies, copyright and intellectual freedom. 3 credits

Choose one course:

INTE 5300: Media Literacy

In this course students learn to create, use, extend, and evaluate media products to support decision-making and real world problem-solving. Students also become more aware of the significant role of mass media, popular culture, and digital media in our lives. 3 credits


SCHL 5200: Promoting Literacy in Schools

Approaches the school library as a resource to promote literacy and development in children and young adults. Topics include genres of literature, methods for advising students toward appropriate reading and media resources, and the promotion of multiple literacies - information, new media and transliteracy. 3 credits

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.