Teaching (MAT) Curriculum
The Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) degree is designed for women and men planning careers in the teaching profession at the early elementary (PreK-4), middle level (4-8 in the areas of science, mathematics, English, and/or social studies), and secondary levels (7-12 in the areas of biology, chemistry, English, mathematics, physics, social studies); in K-12 art education and environmental education; and special education. The program is based on the premise that successful teachers will need a strong liberal arts education, in-depth knowledge of a chosen discipline, and mastery of current educational theory, practice, and technology.
Applicants’ transcripts will be reviewed to determine whether students have completed the academic requirements specified by the Pennsylvania Department of Education in the standards for the desired certification area.
The MAT degree provides a curriculum differentiated to serve students with a wide range of academic and professional experiences, including those:
- who have no experience in the field of education and are seeking both a master’s degree and certification in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania;
- who are currently teaching in an independent or parochial school without certification and wish to become certified while earning a master’s degree.
Admission: PDE Clearances
The Pennsylvania Department of Education requires all individuals who interact with children in Pennsylvania schools to obtain three types of clearances: Act 34, Act 151, and FBI Criminal History Report (fingerprinting). These clearances – a criminal background check, a child abuse check, and a criminal history report – are required for all Chatham field placements including observations and student teaching. In all M.A.T. programs, field placements begin in the first term of enrollment. Therefore, students must submit these three clearances to the education department prior to beginning coursework. Negative information on any of these clearances may be cause for dismissal from the program.
More information regarding these clearances is available on the Pennsylvania Department of Education website. Visit http://www.teaching.state.pa.us/teaching/site/default.asp and click on “Background Checks” in the left-hand menu.
Program of Study
Students with no academic or professional experience in the field of education who are seeking a master’s degree and either elementary, middle level, or secondary certification must complete 47, 43, and 45 credits respectively, including:
- 36 to 38 credits in professional preparation and content-related courses
- 150-190 hours in field placement
- 9 credits in student teaching
All students seeking Pennsylvania state certification must have the following:
- six credits in English, including three credits in composition or writing and three credits in literature (American or British Literature), and
- six credits in college-level mathematics prior to entering the program.
Those individuals who are seeking a master’s degree with certification in special education must have a valid instructional certification and complete 40 credits, including: