Site Index | CDE Offices | Staff Directory


In Colorado, "qualified personnel" in gifted education means a licensed educator who has a teaching certificate along with one of the three gifted education endorsements.  The three types of endorsements include:

  1. Core Gifted Endorsement
  2. Gifted Specialist
  3. Gifted Director

Every administrative unit (AU) shall have an educator who is responsible for the management of the AU's program plan and gifted education professional development.  Although it is preferred that this person be qualified in gifted education, it is not an ECEA mandate.  An AU has the autonomy to determine the licensing and endorsement levels of those educators supporting gifted students.  However, paraprofessionals may serve in supportive roles, but may not be the sole instructional provider for gifted programming. 

House Bill 14-1102 permits AUs to apply for grant funds to offset costs incurred by employing a qualified person to administer the gifted program plan.  AUs may submit an application for the Qualified Personnel Grant to offset up to a .5 FTE. 

New Draft Licensure Rules for Gifted Endorsements

Gifted Education Endorsement Standards

Pre-2016 Endorsement Standards for Specialist in Gifted Education

Note: In Colorado, the pre-2016 set of endorsement standards will be applied to candidates entering Specialist approved programs through fall 2017. The new and current endorsement standards will be used in all three (3) approved endorsement programs beginning fall 2018.

Added Endorsement: Gifted Education Specialist

Information about endorsement application and online submission is available on the Educator Licensing Office webpage. Please direct any questions to them by calling 303-866-6628.

Graduate Programs

There are four Gifted Education Specialist Endorsement programs that have been approved by the Colorado Department of Education. These programs are at Regis University, University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, University of Denver and University of Northern Colorado. This webpage will provide general information about the Gifted Endorsements as well as information about the graduate programs that lead to an endorsement and/or master's degree.

University of Colorado at Colorado Springs

This 26 credit-hour endorsement prepares teachers at all levels to enhance their teaching methodologies in Gifted and Talented education. The Endorsement will require 3 credit hours of practicum work. Optionally, these courses may be applied to a 32-credit-hour General Master of Arts Degree in Curriculum and Instruction.

All courses are offered in a convenient online format. Upon completion of the endorsement and practicum credits, students are required to pass the approved PLACE exam prior to licensing.

University of Denver

The 45-quarter credit master's and 90-quarter credit doctoral programs in curriculum and instruction are designed for students who want to further their knowledge of teaching, learning, schools, and communities from academically grounded frameworks. Gifted and talented education is one of the frameworks that is offered in this program.

The Graduate Academic Certificate in Gifted Education involves 27-credit hours of coursework including a practicum. Courses are offered in several formats.

For additional information on the Certificate Program, contact Megan S. Kennedy, Enrollment Services Coordinator at 303-871-2503 or

University of Northern Colorado

For over 30 years, K-12 classroom teachers have benefited from the gifted education coursework included in our curriculum. The 24-semester-credit endorsement program will equip you with the specialized knowledge and skills needed to effectively work with gifted students. In addition to the requirements for the endorsement, the master’s degree program includes coursework in leadership, advanced pedagogy, and research opportunities in topics of your choice. Graduates of this 33-semester-credit program currently hold leadership and administrative roles in school districts, BOCES, CDE, and Colorado Association for Gifted and Talented, as well as being master teachers for thousands of students throughout the state. All courses are offered in both hybrid and online formats!

For additional information, please contact
Dr. Jennifer Ritchotte, 970-351-1657 or
Dr. Amy Graefe,

Regis University

Regis University CPS Master of Education requirements for an Added Endorsement in Gifted and Talented Education.

Quick Links


Contact Us

Colorado Dept. of Education
201 East Colfax Ave.
Denver, CO 80203
Phone: 303-866-6600
Fax: 303-830-0793
Contact CDE

CDE Hours
Mon - Fri 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
See also: Licensing Hours

Educator Licensing 

WCC Access