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Master of Arts in Teaching/MS Alternate Certification



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Belhaven offers a challenging educational experience for aspiring teachers who desire to enhance their knowledge and skills. Our faculty and staff are committed to preparing professional educators who can provide distinctive Christian leadership and service in the classroom, the school, and the community. The goal of graduate teacher education is to prepare competent teachers who demonstrate both academic excellence and professional knowledge while providing distinctive Christian leadership and service to students, parents, and communities.

The Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) is designed for students who have a non-education undergraduate degree. The Master of Arts in Teaching program outlines the licensure path for persons holding a baccalaureate degree who desire a Mississippi Teacher Certification. The State of Mississippi requires unlicensed degree holders who wish to be licensed to enroll in a M.A.T. program or another approved program. A qualified candidate must take EDU 501 and 506, pass the Praxis I and II to apply for a three year provisional Class A license. After completing 1 year of teaching and EDU 502 and 503 a candidate may apply for a Class A standard (5 year) license. If a candidate completes the MAT program, they would then apply for a Class AA standard license.

Online MS Teach Certification Courses Available

All MAT students have a choice of taking EDU 501 and EDU 506 either online or live in a classroom setting. This will allow for greater flexibility in scheduling. All other courses in the MAT program are only taught in a live classroom setting on either the Jackson or DeSoto campus.

Curriculum Summary

Phases 1 and 2 as well as passing of Praxis Core and Praxis II Exams enables candidates to become eligible for the Mississippi Alternative Certification; only if enrolled on the Jackson or DeSoto campuses.

Required First Two Courses (MS Alternate Teacher Certification)
Course #Course NameCredits
EDU 501 Measurement and Evaluation Strategies 3
EDU 506 Classroom Management and Organization 3
PHASE 2 – INTERNSHIP (Must be Employed as a Licensed Teacher)
EDU 502 Dimensions of Learning I 3
EDU 503 Dimensions of Learning II 3
PHASE 3 – CANDIDACY (Phase 3 can begin before Phase 2)
EDU 602 Psychology of the Exceptional Child 3
EDU 622 Teaching Reading and Math Skills 3
Candidates cannot be Fully Admitted to the MAT Degree Program and cannot progress any further until they have successfully completed Phase 1:  EDU 501, EDU 506 & Phase 3: EDU 602, EDU 622 and have passed the required teacher exams.  Candidates in Mississippi must have passed the Praxis Core and Praxis II Exams.
EDU 610 Research Methods and Procedures 3
EDU 612 Curriculum Planning and Organization 3
EDU 621 Assessing Student Learning 3
EDU 628 Advanced Teaching Strategies 3
CAPSTONE COURSE  (Prerequisite: a minimum of 21 program hours completed or 18 hours with EDU 503 in progress)
EDU 625 Instructional Leadership Skills in the Classroom
This courses includes writing a Comprehensive Paper

Course Descriptions

See University Catalogue for course descriptions.

Admission Information

The Master of Arts in Teaching degree is for students who hold non-educational undergraduate degrees and want to pursue the alternate route license at the graduate level (see steps to alternative teacher certification), or who currently hold an alternate license and desire a master's degree and standard certification. MAT graduates can teach in the elementary setting, grades 4 through 8, or in the secondary setting, grades 7 through 12.
Students must have a GPA of 2.8 or higher on one of the following:

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