The Master of Arts in Teaching degree program is designed to lead to initial licensure in special education. Candidates completing the program are prepared to serve as teachers of individuals with disabilities in a variety of educational placements. There are two programs of study for students wishing to pursue an M.A.T. in Special Education; Post-Baccalaureate program and a 5th year program.
Post-Baccalaureate M.A.T. Program: Initial Licensure Program
The post-bac M.A.T. (initial licensure) program is designed for individuals who already hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college or university and are interested in pursuing initial licensure to teach special education K-12 Adapted Curriculum, special education K-12 accessing the General Education Curriculum, Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) or Visual Impairments. Candidates who have not completed the JMU undergraduate pre-professional program are required to provide transcript evidence that they have completed liberal studies and specified subject matter courses deemed necessary for pursuing licensure in special education. Those candidates not having such course work will be required to complete undergraduate-level, general education and/or subject matter content courses under the terms of provisional admission to graduate study as a degree-seeking candidate.
Additional Admission Requirements for Post-Baccalaureate programs:
- Pass the Praxis I Core Math and the Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment (VCLA)
- Professional resume
- Two letters of reference (one which can speak to potential as a graduate student and the other which addresses professional dispositions)
- A two- to three-page written statement (double spaced) describing the applicant's professional background, the educational issues that the applicant would like to address in the master's program, and the applicant's long-term professional goals
After you have been admitted to The Graduate School and have received your student ID, you must apply for admission to Teacher Education. Your application to Teacher Education through JMU's Education Support Center (ESC) is the first step in the process of obtaining your Virginia State Teaching License. This must be completed by the end of your first semester of course work.
Required for application:
- Completion of online application form: http://www.jmu.edu/coe/esc/admissions/
- Entry Assessments
- Undergraduate grade point average of 2.5 or higher
- Earn a "C" or better in the following classes:
- WRTC 103, or equivalent
- MATH designated course
- PSYC 160 or equivalent
- EDUC 300 or equivalent
- Two professional references
- Adviser's signature on printed copy of application. Bring the printed form to your adviser and return signed form to the Education Support Center (ESC)
- Complete registration and pay for TK20
- Complete the pre-professional self-assessment in TK20
The initial licensure M.A.T. degree program must contain a minimum of 30 credit hours of professional education course work at the graduate level. The total number of credit hours, however, may vary depending upon the educational background of the student. Please contact your assigned advisor to develop a plan of study. At least half of a candidate's program of study must be taken at the 600 level. In some rare cases, depending on a candidate's prior academic preparation, other prerequisite course work may be required for unconditional admission to this graduate program and to meet teacher licensure requirements. A comprehensive examination is required as part of the M.A.T. programs in K-12 Adapted Curriculum, K-12 General Curriculum and ECSE. A final portfolio will be completed by candidates in the visual impairments concentration.
Teacher Licensure Competencies
These courses may be needed by advisement to meet licensure standards.
- PSYC 160. Human Growth and Development Birth through Adolescence
- EDUC 300/620 . Foundations of Education
- TESL 426/626 or CSD 540 or READ 430. Reading
- EXED 440/512 . Behavior
- EXED 200/EXED 508 . Foundations of Exceptional Education
- Teaching Mathematics in Elementary and Middle Grades (MIED 530 )