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Teacher Education | MAT Program Degree Requirements

Teaching (MAT)

Offered by the School of Education, College of Arts and Sciences, the Master of Arts in Teaching is designed for the student with no previous background or preparation in education who wishes to acquire teaching certification in early childhood, elementary, K-12, or secondary education, or English for speakers of other languages.

Admission to the Program

In addition to meeting the minimum university requirements for graduate study, applicants must earn a satisfactory score on PRAXIS CORE as set by the District of Columbia.

Students must have an earned bachelor's degree in the licensure area or 33 credit hours in the licensure subject area. A review of the undergraduate transcripts takes place upon admission.

Students seeking certification in English for speakers of other languages must be proficient in English. It is strongly recommended that native speakers of English have some background in at least one other language. International students are expected to demonstrate competence equivalent to a score of 600 or better on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) in order to be endorsed for certification.

Degree Requirements

  • 33-39 credit hours of approved graduate work, including 27-33 hours of coursework and 6 hours of student teaching with required seminar.
    • Candidates must, over two semesters, successfully complete a practicum (15 hours/week) and student teaching (40 hours/week) field placement. Evaluation of practicum and student teaching will include observations from AU clinical faculty and local K-12 teachers.
    • Students' undergraduate transcripts will be evaluated individually; based on this evaluation, students may be required to take additional coursework to meet certification requirements.
    • Option to waive credit hours: Students who are fulltime classroom teachers may be permitted to waive 3 credit hours of student teaching (EDU-699) without replacement. The waiving of credit hours and the specific number of credit hours to be waived are determined and approved by the program director and the SOE Dean upon admission to the program.
  • Completion of Praxis II Exam prior to graduation
  • Electronic professional teaching portfolio

Course Requirements

All coursework must be approved by the director of the MAT program. Evaluation of field performance may involve videotaping of classroom teaching.

Core (6 credit hours)

Student Teaching (6 credit hours)

Tracks (21-27 credit hours)

Complete one of the following tracks:

Early Childhood Education (24 credit hours)

Elementary Education (27 credit hours)

Secondary Education in Social Studies, English, Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, or Physics (21 credit hours)

K-12 Education in Performing Arts, Art Studio, Spanish, French, Music, or Physical Education (21 credit hours)

Bilingual Education (24 credit hours)

English for Speakers of Other Languages (27 credit hours)

Ongoing Assessment of Academic and Professional Performance

Students must be admitted to the MAT program before enrolling in methods courses (EDU-601, EDU-602, EDU-603, EDU-604, EDU-605, EDU-606, EDU-607, EDU-608, EDU-609, EDU-663/EDU-688, or TESL-601/TESL-602). To enroll in EDU-699 Student Teaching Seminar in Professional Practice (3-6), students must receive a positive evaluation from the Teacher Education Committee based on established criteria, a grade of B- or better in EDU-630 Foundations of Education (3) and EDU-620 Theories of Educational Psychology and Human Development (3), and grades of B or better in methods courses. Students must also earn a passing score (as set by the District of Columbia teacher licensing agency) on the PRAXIS CORE or equivalency exam.

Combined (BA) and Teaching (MAT)

American University offers students the opportunity to earn both undergraduate and graduate degrees through its combined bachelor's/master's programs. See Combined Bachelor's and Master's Degrees for more information.

In addition to meeting the minimum university requirements for combined bachelor's/master's programs:

  • Applicants must have a grade point average of 3.00 or higher in major and minor courses.
  • Undergraduate students may apply up to 12 credit hours of approved graduate-level coursework for 36 credit hour MAT programs and up to 15 credit hours for 39 credit hours MAT programs to satisfy the requirements of both degrees.

Graduates receive a Master of Arts (MA) in International Peace and Conflict Resolution through the School of International Service and the Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) (Secondary Education track) through the School of Education, College of Arts and Sciences.

Admission to the Program

Applicants must hold an accredited bachelor's degree with a cumulative grade point average of at least a B+ (3.30 or higher on a 4.00 scale) and should have had at least 24 credit hours of social science coursework relevant to international studies. Students who do not meet these minimum requirements, if otherwise admissible, may be assigned additional coursework specified at the time of admission.

Students must apply to both the School of International Service (SIS) and the School of Education in the College of Arts and Sciences. Admission to either of the participating teaching units in no way implies admission to the other unit. For more information on admissions requirements, contact the SIS Graduate Admissions Office at 202-885-1646 or the School of Education Teacher Education Office at 202-885-3720.

All applicants whose native language is English or those whose degrees are from an accredited institution where the language of instruction is English are required to submit results of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Non-native English speakers are required to submit results of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) unless they hold a degree from a US-accredited institution before enrollment. The minimum TOEFL score for full admissions consideration is 100 on the Internet-based test (iBT) or 600 on the paper-based test (PBT). The minimum IELTS score is 7.0. Fall applicants should plan to take the appropriate test no later than December to ensure full consideration of the application by the January deadline.

For secondary education certification, students must have a bachelor's degree or 33 credit hours in the subject area they are seeking licensure. It is anticipated that students who complete the MA in International Peace and Conflict Resolution will have sufficient background to meet certification requirements in social studies. However, students who meet requirements for other subject areas will also be considered. Students will be notified at the time of admission concerning additional coursework required for state certification.

Dual Degree Requirements

  • 57 credit hours of approved graduate coursework with a cumulative grade point average of 3.00.
    • Students must complete 6 credit hours in the education core courses, 6 credit hours of student teaching, 18 credit hours in secondary education, 9 credit hours in peace and conflict resolution core courses to receive the Teaching (MAT).
    • Students must complete 6 credit hours in peace and conflict resolution core courses, 3 credit hours in economics, 6 credit hours in methodology, 9 credit hours of IPCR concentration, 3 credit hours in a capstone experience, and 12 credit hours in the education core/secondary education track to receive the International Peace and Conflict Resolution (MA).
    • In addition to intensive coursework and student teaching placements, students are also required to participate in an educational internship program. These field placements are carefully supervised and coordinated to meet state certification requirements.
  • SIS Capstone experience: demonstration of critical thinking, research and writing skills through completion of a master's thesis, substantial research paper requirement, or practicum. All courses taken to fulfill this requirement must be passed with a grade of B or better.
    • Thesis: 6 credit hours of thesis credit and submission of the thesis.
    • Substantial research paper requirement: 3 credit hours.
    • Practicum: 3 credit hours.
  • Evidence of professional experience in the field. Relevant internship or work experience must be certified.
  • Proficiency in a modern foreign language. Research competence in English and another language relevant to the student's career objectives must be certified.
  • Praxis CORE and Praxis II Exams, as determined by state certification requirements.
  • Electronic professional teaching portfolio.

Course Requirements

Student Teaching (6 credit hours)

Peace and Conflict Resolution Core (6 credit hours)

  • 3 credit hours of IPCR Seminar I
  • 3 credit hours of IPCR Seminar II

Economics (3 credit hours)

Complete one of the following:

Social Science Research Methodology (6 credit hours)

IPCR Concentration (9 credit hours)

Complete one of the following:

Culture, Identity, and Peace
International Negotiation
Peacebuilding
  • 3 credit hours in Peacebuilding Theory and Organization
  • 6 credit hours in this IPCR concentration
Reconciliation and Justice

Capstone (3 credit hours)


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Please note

The Bilingual Education and K-12 Education Tracks will not be admitting students for the Spring 2017 semester or 2017-2018 and 2018-2019 academic years.