Maria Del Carmen Salazar

Professor; Assoc. Dean; Fac. Affairs & DE

  • Faculty

What I do

Professor, Curriculum & Instruction & Teacher Education
Curriculum & Instruction, Program Chair
Appointment, Promotion, Tenure (APT) Co-Chair

Professional Biography

Dr. María del Carmen Salazar is Professor of Curriculum & Instruction and Teacher Education in the Morgridge College of Education at the University of Denver. Dr. Salazar has authored 38 publications and given 155 scholarly local, national, and international presentations on a humanizing pedagogy, equitable teaching and culturally responsive teacher evaluation, and college access and success for Latinx youth. She is the author of Teacher Evaluation as Culture: A Framework for Equitable and Excellent Teaching. This book is published by Routledge Press with series editor Professor Emerita Sonia Nieto. She published a seminal article reframing Paulo Freire's conceptualization of humanizing pedagogy. She is the lead author on a research study detailing Community Views on Quality and Equity in Education. Dr. Salazar is the lead author on a briefing to the U.S. Congress related to the state of the Latinx community in the U.S. In 2018, she was the recipient of the American Educational Research Association (AERA) Innovations in Research on Equity and Social Justice in Teacher Education Award.

Dr. Salazar’s service includes local, national, and international contributions. She led Denver Public School Superintendent (DPS) Dr. Alex Marrero's Transition Advisory Team in 2021. She was one of three Chairs leading this work in partnership with DPS leaders, teachers, educators, parents, and community members. This work led to the development of strategic priorities for the DPS. She has partnered with the Denver Public School and Jefferson County Public Schools in Colorado to develop district-based culturally responsive evaluation tools. She served on the Colorado Quality Teachers Commission, and she contributed to the development of the Colorado Teacher Quality Standards. She is affiliated and founding faculty of the University of Denver Interdisciplinary Research Institute for the Study of (in)Equality (IRISE). She served on the Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (InTASC), a national collaborative to revise model content standards and develop learning progressions for teacher licensure, assessment, and development. She was a key contributor in the development of the InTASC Model Core Teaching Standards and Learning Progressions. Dr. Salazar served on the Board of Directors of the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), and she is currently a member of the CAEP Equity and Diversity Committee. She served as Associate Editor for the Journal of Teacher Education, a top journal in the field of education. She serves as an educational consultant for organizations such as the Gates Foundation, Branch Alliance for Educator Diversity, Youth Celebrate Diversity, and the Association of Colorado Independent Schools.

She is proud of her accomplishments as a mother scholar, Denver Public Schools alumna, first-generation college student, and Mexican immigrant.


  • Ph.D., Education, Equity & Cultural Diversity - Social, Multicultural, & Bilingual Foundations of Education, University of Colorado at Boulder, University of Colorado at Boulder, 2004
  • MA, Curriculum & Instruction , University of Denver, 1995
  • BA, Psychology, University of Colorado at Denver, 1993

Licensure / Accreditations

  • Higher Education Resources and Services Institute (HERS)
  • Secondary Social Studies Teaching Certificate

Featured Publications

Salazar, M. D. C. (2013). A humanizing pedagogy reinventing the principles and practice of education as a journey toward liberation. Review of Research in Education. Article In A Journal, 37(1), 121-148.
Salazar, M., & Rios, F. (2016). Just scholarship: Publishing academic research with a social justice focus. Multicultural Perspectives, 18(1), 3-11.
Salazar, M. D. C., & Lerner, J. (2019). Teacher evaluation as cultural practice: A framework for equity and excellence. New York: Routledge.


  • Division K Innovations In Research on Equity and Social Justice in Teacher Education, American Educational Research Association (AERA)
  • International Women's Leadership Association Award, International Women's Leadership Association
  • Innovators in Education Award, School Improvement Network