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Federal TEACH Grant Program

The Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant Program provides up to a $4,000 grant each year to graduate students who intend to teach in a public or private elementary or secondary school that is high-need. Eligible students may receive up to $8,000 for graduate studies. The annual grant award depends on a student’s enrollment status, which will be prorated for students who are enrolled less than full-time.

Program Conditions:

  • You must agree to serve as a full-time teacher in a high-need field
  • You must teach for at least four academic years within eight calendar years of completing the program
  • If you fail to complete these service obligations, the TEACH grant that you receive will be converted to a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan. This must be repaid to the U.S Department of Education with the applicable interest charges from the date of the disbursed funds.

High-Need Subject Areas

Public or private elementary or secondary school high-need fields and teacher shortage areas:

  • Bilingual Education and English Language Acquisition
  • Foreign Language
  • Mathematics
  • Reading Specialist
  • Science
  • Special Education
  • Other teacher shortage areas are listed in the U.S. Department of Education’s annual Teacher Shortage Area Nationwide Listing. Learn more.

TEACH Grant recipients who need specific details regarding qualifying teaching service such as high-need fields, schools serving low-income students, and other eligible institutions may go online for further information.

Note: TEACH Grant recipients planning to teach in a high-need field that is included in the Nationwide List must verify that the particular field is listed for the state where the recipient is teaching, either at the time the recipient begins qualifying teaching service or at the time the recipient received a TEACH Grant.

Institutions that fulfill the TEACH Grant service obligation include elementary and secondary schools (public and private) and educational service agencies serving low-income students. These qualifying institutions change each year and are listed in the annual Teacher Cancellation Low-Income Directory. In addition, elementary or secondary schools operated by the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Indian Education or operated on Indian reservations by Indian tribal groups under contract or grant with the BIE qualify as low-income schools.

For further assistance, please contact the Federal Student Aid/Student Loan Support Center at 1-800-557-7394.

Eligibility Criteria

In order to receive a TEACH Grant, you must be a U.S. citizen or an eligible noncitizen, and you also need to be enrolled as a degree-seeking graduate student in a TEACH grant-eligible program that is designed to prepare students to teach in a high-need field.

You will need to have a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of at least 3.25 (on 4.0 scale), or have scored above the 75th percentile on a college admissions test (e.g. GRE or other national standardized admissions test). You also are required to not have defaulted on a student loan.

Eligible Graduate Programs at UChicago:

  • Urban Teacher Education Program (UTEP)
  • Physical Sciences Programs
  • Molecular Engineering
  • Biological Sciences Programs
  • Social Service Administration Programs
  • Humanities English Language & Literature Programs
  • Humanities Romance Languages & Literature Program with a concentration in Spanish 


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