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Master of Arts in Teacher Education

Department of Curriculum and Instruction

Frequently Asked Questions
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  1. Can I apply for the Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT)  Program if I have a teaching license?Answer
  2. What exams are required for entry?Answer
  3.  How long is this program?Answer
  4. Can I work while I am in this program?Answer
  5. Is this program online?Answer
  6. What is a cohort?Answer
  7. How long is student teaching?Answer
  8. What should I do if my GPA is under a 3.0?Answer

Can I apply for the Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT)  Program if I have a teaching license?
No, this program is for initial licensure only. If you have a teaching license you may want to consider a Masters in Education.

What exams are required for entry?

You must take one of the following:

GRE, ACT, SAT, or Praxis CORE (5712, 5722, 5732)

You must also take the appropriate state licensure content exams.

  • After August 31, 2019, Middle Grades mathematics applicants must submit passing scores (220 or higher) on the NES assessments for Middle Grades Math 6-8 (Test Code # 105).
  • Middle Grades science applicants must submit passing scores (150 or higher) on the Praxis II Exam in Middle Grades Science 6-8 (Test Code #5440).
  • If you are seeking secondary licensure you must have a passing Praxis II score in your content area.

Passing scores:

  • GRE:Verbal Reasoning 151, Quantitative Reasoning 153
  • ACT: Reading: 22, Math: 22
  • SAT: Evidence-based reading: 542, Math: 533
  • Praxis II and Praxis Core exams: see the ETS website for the current Tennessee requirements.

 How long is this program?
  • The program can be completed in a timely manner but the coursework in your Residency Year must be taken concurrently.
  • The 17 month program begins in January (Spring term) and will be completed May the following Spring.
  • Another option is to take the program at a slower pace, which is especially helpful for job-embedded candidates who are full-time teaching. This option can generally take 2 - 3 years. You may start in the Fall semester, possibly even Summer, if necessary.
  • Please contact our office ( to determine which track would work best for you.

Can I work while I am in this program?
  • You can work as a GA or TS while you are enrolled in this program except for the last spring semester where you will be student teaching full time. Moonlighting (working while full-time teaching) during this semester may lead to poor grades due to the time constraints.
  • While you can work outside of the school we suggest that you apply for a tuition scholarship, which requires you to work 8 hours a week and will cover your tuition, or a graduate assistantship, which requires you to work about 20 hours a week and covers your tuition and provides you with a monthly stipend.

Is this program online?
Between 30% and 40% of this program is online. You will have at least one in-person class every semester and will be placed in a school for observations and teaching each semester, so please keep that in mind.

What is a cohort?
Our program is a cohort based program, which means that everyone entering in a given semester goes through much of the program as a unit. Being in a cohort gives you the opportunity to grow with your peers and develop a unique bond and support system that goes well beyond graduation.

How long is student teaching?
  • In this program, you have field placements in public schools or volunteer facilities every semester. 
  • The Residency Year requires the following:
      • EDFN 5420 will require 20 hours of field placement where you will interact with the students and teacher, begin observing classroom practices, and start adapting to the teacher role. 
      • During the summer II term you will complete 50 placement hours which will include classroom management, pre-residency year preparations, and welcoming the students at the beginning of the year.
      • During the fall semester, your formal evaluations will begin and your transitioning into the full time teacher role. This is the time where you become a vital part of the classroom.  You will complete 135 hours during this semester. 
      • During the final Spring semester, you are expected to be in the classroom everyday and take on the role of instructor and co-instructor with your mentor teacher.  

What should I do if my GPA is under a 3.0?
  • We do offer options for you to take required courses as a non-degree seeking graduate student to bring up your GPA.
  • Please contact our office to schedule a meeting with the program coordinator for more information.



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