Why Get a Master of Arts in Teaching? 

In most states, becoming an educator doesn’t require a Master’s in Education or Master of Arts in Teaching, but many aspiring teachers still prefer to pursue an advanced teaching degree. Looking for Master of Arts in Teaching programs is an excellent way to advance your teaching career and professional development. 

Those working towards a MAT degree try to advance their career and gain practical expertise in lesson instruction and dealing with children. The Master of Arts in Teaching (sometimes called a Master’s in Teaching) is a degree program centered on practical skills and subject-specific information. Traditional master of arts in teaching programs takes two years to finish and should position students to earn initial state teaching certification.

The first few semesters will likely be dedicated to topics like classroom management, evaluation and assessment, planning and instruction, and the study of specific subject areas like math, reading, science, etc. The end of a master of arts in teaching programs will usually incorporate a clinical placement during a classroom, like a practicum and a student teaching experience where the MAT student will gradually take on full-time teaching responsibilities and practice leading a real class.

This is the degree most frequently pursued by people who want hands-on teaching experience and seek to work directly with students. The MAT focuses heavily on advanced coursework during a specific subject to hone your expertise. Coursework for the MAT also focuses on pedagogical theory and implementation. The MAT will mainly teach you ways to be a teacher: methodology, stylistic approach, etc. Frequently, the Master of Arts in Teaching consists of hands-on experience that places you during a classroom as a student teacher to practice what you’re learning.

MAT Concentrations and Specializations: Typical master of arts in teaching programs will feature various specializations that focus on a particular branch or subject. Below are a couple of samples of concentration areas a MAT program might feature:

Early Childhood Education: MAT programs that specialize in early childhood and childhood education are typically designed for teachers who want to work with students from ages 0 to 4, with some programs including certifications for kindergarten and first grade.

Primary/Elementary Education: elementary education-specific MAT programs equip teachers with the abilities and methods needed to work in K-6 classrooms. Foundational coursework in areas like learning styles and teaching methods are emphasized with additional electives typically rounding out the curriculum.

Secondary Education: For the first part, MAT programs with a secondary education specialization found out students with certifications to show in grades 7-12. The coursework is analogous to it of the other specialization but takes a more in-depth check out issues like mental health and cultural diversity in schools.

Special Education: MAT degree programs specializing in special education take an enhanced check out teaching students with disabilities. This might include discussions of teaching methods designed for specific student groups and interactive lessons on understanding various disabilities.

While many programs offer attention to special ed, some schools offer a particular education credential that engages students in higher-level learnings within the sector.

This honed-in focus presents a plus for students who wish to strengthen their material knowledge. Still, it could also be an obstacle for those that have educational ambitions beyond classroom teaching. MATs are often excellent options for people with bachelor’s degrees in another field looking to modify careers.