Is a Master of Arts in Teaching for Me?

The master of arts in teaching degree provides graduate courses toward Kansas teacher licensure for grades 6-12 for those individuals who have received a baccalaureate (or higher) degree in a subject area where Kansas has secondary (grades 6-12) teaching licensure available (English, mathematics, speech/theatre, etc.). The program can enable licensure for grades P-12 for those with a baccalaureate (or higher) degree in music or physical education. Kansas licensure is accepted in other states.*

This 36 semester hour program is available completely online. Classes are offered in 6 and 12-week sessions.

*Check with your state’s department of education to determine specific licensure requirements for teaching within that state and the acceptability and transferability of a Kansas state license before starting the program. This is an Alternative Licensure program.

Looking to take your education further? Consider entering our Doctorate of Education program after earning your bachelor’s degree and you can earn both your master’s and doctoral degrees. The entire program is 5 years and combines both online coursework and 1-2 weeks on campus in the summer. Click here to learn more.'s Online Degree Reviews

Program Outcomes

  1. The educator demonstrates the ability to use the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structures of each discipline he or she teaches and can create opportunities that make these aspects of subject matter meaningful for all students.
  2. The educator demonstrates an understanding of how individuals learn and develop intellectually, socially, and personally and provides learning opportunities that support this development.
  3. The educator demonstrates the ability to provide different approaches to learning and creates instructional opportunities that are equitable, that are based on developmental levels, and that are adapted to diverse learners, including those with exceptionalities.
  4. The educator understands and uses a variety of appropriate instructional strategies to develop various kinds of students’ learning including critical thinking, problem solving, and reading.
  5. The educator uses an understanding of individual and group motivation and behavior to create a learning environment that encourages positive social interaction, active engagement in learning, and self-motivation.
  6. The educator uses a variety of effective verbal and non-verbal communication techniques to foster active inquiry, collaboration, and supportive interaction in the classroom.
  7. The educator plans effective instruction based upon the knowledge of all students, community, subject matter, curriculum outcomes, and current methods of teaching reading.
  8. The educator understands and uses formal and informal assessment strategies to evaluate and ensure the continual intellectual, social, and other aspects of personal development of all learners.
  9. The educator is a reflective practitioner who continually evaluates the effects of his or her choices and actions on others (students, parents, and other professionals in the learning community), actively seeks out opportunities to grow professionally, and participates in the school improvement process (Kansas Quality Performance Accreditation [QPA]).
  10. The educator fosters collegial relationships with school personnel, parents, and agencies in the larger community to support all students’ learning and well-being.
  11. The educator demonstrates the ability to integrate across and within content fields to enrich the curriculum, develop reading and thinking skills, and facilitate all students’ abilities to understand relationships between subject areas.
  12. The educator understands the role of technology in society and demonstrates skills using instructional tools and technology to gather, analyze, and present information, enhance instructional practices, facilitate professional productivity and communication, and help all students use instructional technology effectively.
  13. The educator is a reflective practitioner who uses an understanding of historical, philosophical, and social foundations of education to guide educational practices.

Required Courses

Required Courses

EDUC 601 Seminar (1 credit hour)
EDUC 602 Education Foundations
EDUC 603 Educational Psychology/Learning Theories
EDUC 604 Content Area Literacy
EDUC 605 Teaching in the Content Areas
EDUC 606 Teaching Methods
EDUC 607 Student Teaching Clinical*
EDUC 609 Teacher Portfolio
EDUC 512 Action Research
EDUC 524 Introduction to Special Education (2 credit hours)
EDUC 549 Race, Class & Power in Schools
Optional Courses
EDUC 518 Educational Practice and Innovation
EDUC 526 Classroom Management
EDUC 610 Lifespan Developmental Psychology

The KSDE approved and NCATE accredited Teacher Education Program offered by Southwestern College provides study and practice of the essential knowledge, skills, and dispositions for obtaining a teaching license. In addition to successfully completing the program of study, each student is required to take and pass one or more KSDE identified licensure exam(s) at or above the level of performance specified by KSDE. With successful completion of the teacher education program of study as well as passing the required licensure exam(s), Southwestern College will be able to recommend the successful student for a specific teaching license or endorsement.

If not applying to teach in the state of Kansas, please check with your state’s department of education for specific licensure testing requirements.

Course Descriptions

EDUC 512 Action Research

This course will introduce students to action research, a form of self-reflective systematic inquiry by practitioners on their own practice. The primary objective of the course is to prepare students to do action research in schools. There are three other goals: 1) the development of professional community; 2) the illumination of power relationships; and 3) students’ recognition of their own expertise.

EDUC 518 Educational Practice and Innovation

Develops an understanding of the context and nature of educational practice and innovation in schools and classrooms; identifies different forms of innovation in learning and teaching and enables teachers to take a critical approach to integrating innovative practices; enables informed judgments and critical thinking in the context of educational practice.

EDUC 524 Introduction to Special Education

Designed to provide an overview of the fields of behavior disorders, learning disabilities, and mental retardation for present and future teachers, school psychologists, administrators, counselors, and other professionals preparing to work with students with mild disabilities. Emphasis on causes, identification, classification, characteristics, and recent trends and issues. 2 credit hours

EDUC 526 Classroom Management

A study of behavior of children and youth with emphasis on the diagnosis and modification of problematic behaviors.

EDUC 549 Race, Class and Power in Schools

Students will explore theoretical frameworks for understanding cultural difference as it impacts teaching and learning in the classroom. They will examine ways to provide equity in education for all students.

EDUC 601 Seminar

An introductory and exploratory course for those considering education as a career. The course is designed to assist each prospective teacher in gaining a valid and comprehensive knowledge of what is involved in a teaching career. Emphasis is placed upon use of Blackboard, IQ Web, program assessments, field experiences, Praxis II exams, and personal involvement in planning an effective and successful career in education. 1credit hour

EDUC 602 Education Foundations

This course explores the historical, philosophical, and social foundations of education to guide interaction with all students, colleagues, parents, and community members in a manner that demonstrates respect for them as persons as well as guide instruction, educational practices, and decision making to support policies, practices, and legal requirements that promote student welfare and development.

EDUC 603 Educational Psychology/Learning Theories

This course explores concepts and distinctions imperative to apply learning theories from theory to practical application. Each theory is uniquely derived from a time period and vision of the theorist. Each learning theory will allow students to explore how to properly implement the theory and use it as an instructional process. Through the in depth analysis, students will have a better understanding on how to improve classroom practice and student learning.

EDUC 604 Content Area Literacy

A course on content-based literacy designated to encompass study skills, concept development, reading comprehension strategies, and critical thinking. This course presents the area of reading demands of content subjects and the need shown by a diverse population of students. This course will serve as a basis for new teachers to demonstrate their knowledge and enable higher-order thinking to be present in schools today. This course focuses on each aspect of reading, but more specifically on comprehension. Reading, interpretation, and visualization will be key components to have cohesion exist among content areas within education.

EDUC 605 Teaching in the Content Areas

This course will assist prospective teachers in developing the skills necessary for utilizing teaching strategies in the middle and secondary school environment. Students will study new and traditional methods in teaching middle and secondary education. Special attention will be given to research in selecting materials, use of proper strategies, assessment, delineating information, and cooperative learning.

EDUC 606 Teaching Methods

This course focuses on the development of professional teaching skills for the secondary and middle school teacher, including: a personal philosophy of education; classroom management procedures; a discipline plan; instructional methods and strategies; program, course, unit, and lesson planning; awareness of current trends in education; and assessment/evaluation strategies. During this semester, students complete their professional portfolio and make application for student teaching placement. This course is taken immediately prior to student teaching.

EDUC 607 Student Teaching

Clinical Experiences in the public schools for teacher licensure candidates .Student teaching is a 14-week full time teaching experience. Concurrent enrollment with EDUC 609 Teacher Portfolio.

EDUC 608 Restricted Licensure Practicum

This course provides restricted licensures students with supervised practicum throughout the teacher education program until they obtain their initial license. Students on a restricted license will substitute this course for EDUC 607. (1 credit hour may be repeated six times.)

EDUC 609 Teacher Portfolio

A collection of candidate assignments over the program aligned with the 13 professional standards. The course also requires candidates to complete a Kansas Performance Assessment during student teaching. Restricted licensure candidates complete this course during their last semester of courses.

EDUC 610 Lifespan Developmental Psychology

Focuses on human development throughout the lifespan, from birth to death. Students will examine central concepts related to parameters of human development, individual and social, which arise throughout the life span, as well as continuity and change within the developing individual.

Admission Requirements

To be admitted into the MAT, candidates must have access to the internet, current computer technology with a microphone and speakers, a digital camera, and digital camcorder. The application for admission process includes submission of the following:

Graduate Program Application Form – Application forms are accepted on an ongoing basis. No application admission fee is charged. Complete the online application.

Official Transcripts of all Prior College/University Coursework – Applicants must hold a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution with a grade point average of 2.5 higher (on a 4.0 scale) for all previous college course work. Print a copy of the transcript request form and mail the request to the institution which awarded your bachelor’s degree.

Successful completion of the Praxis II content knowledge exam in the field in which you plan to teach. View Praxis test information and scores.

Two Confidential Letters of Recommendation – using the Graduate Recommendation Form (at least one from a current or former employer).

A one page Admissions Essay Explaining the Importance of Teaching – submit your written statement electronically to or via mail or fax to 316.688.5218.

Current Resume submit your resume electronically along with your Admissions Essay to or via mail or fax to 316.688.5218.

Applicants should have at least three years of professional work experience.

International Learners – All international learners must show evidence of their English language ability by providing the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) report. A score of 550 (paper test) or 213 (computer-based test) on the TOEFL is considered the minimum acceptable for admission to the M.Ed. program.

Applicants who hold bachelor’s degrees from a U.S. institution or from an institution in another English-only speaking country will receive a waiver of the TOEFL. Applicants who are from native English speaking countries are not required to take the TOEFL.

Admission requirements may differ for international learners, or for learners whose undergraduate degrees were awarded outside of the United States. Please contact an admissions counselor for more details.

In addition to the above, it is recommended that candidates have a working knowledge of word processing and presentation software.

A candidate’s file must be complete before an admissions decision may be made. It is the responsibility of each candidate to provide all of the information requested above. Candidates will receive a letter of admission to the program.


Master of Arts in Teaching