May 20, 2024  
National University Q2 Addendum B-2 (formerly NCU) 
National University Q2 Addendum B-2 (formerly NCU) [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Teaching, Special Education Specialization, MAT

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Master of Arts in Teaching

Description of Program

Aligned with the standards of The Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (In TASC), the MAT degree is ideal for the student who seeks educator preparation to support the learning and development of PK12 populations. Students in the MAT program will choose an area of specialization from one of eight areas of Curriculum and Teaching, Early Childhood Education, Reading Education, Special Education, E-learning, Sport Management, Athletic Coaching, or English Language Learning. The MAT is a progressive program that prepares students to meet the growing nationwide need across PK12 learning communities for qualified and prepared educators.

Please be advised that this program is NOT accredited in Kentucky by the Education Professional Standards Board and is NOT recognized for initial, additional, or renewal of certification or salary enhancement (rank change) for P-12 educators in Kentucky. For more information, please visit the Education Professional Standards Board’s website at

Click here for potential career opportunities within the MAT.

Learning Outcomes

  • Apply human development theories to instructional methods supporting developmentally appropriate and academically challenging learning experiences for students
  • Create collaborative environments through instructional methods supporting active learning and student self-direction
  • Evaluate instructional and assessment practices ensuring student mastery of the content
  • Adapt multiple methods of assessment to engage learners in their own growth and provide data to support continuous program improvement
  • Design cross-disciplinary curriculum and instruction supporting student attainment of learning goals
  • Model ethical behavior in all aspects of the profession

Basis for Admissions

Admission to a Master’s program requires a conferred bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited academic institution or an international institution that is determined to be equivalent through an approved evaluation service. In addition, the MAT program requires a completion of an alternative teacher certification program.

Degree Requirements

The Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) requires 33 credit hours for degree completion, including the successful completion of an approved alternative certification prior to admission to the MAT program. Graduates of the Teacher Ready alternative certification program receive 9 credit hours toward the MAT degree, and graduates from other alternative certification programs may be considered, pending transcript review. Students who are considering any degree program are strongly encouraged to check specific state requirements carefully to be sure any degree program they consider will be accepted for purposes of certification or recertification, promotion, or advancement on school district salary schedules.

The MAT program includes 12 credit hours of foundational courses. The foundational courses are taken by all students regardless of their undergraduate degree or form of certification in order to strengthen fundamental skills. The next 9 credit hours in the program encapsulate a specialization aligned with a student’s career goals and interests. Students end the program with a 3 credit-hour capstone course.

The MAT degree program has the following graduation requirements:

  • A minimum of 21 credit hours of graduate instruction in education must be completed through the University
  • Successful completion of any MAT core course signature assignment with a grade of “B” or better
  • Official transcripts on file for all transfer credits accepted by the University

The University may accept a maximum of 12 semester credit hours in transfer, with a maximum of 9 semester credit hours applied for the completion of the Teacher Ready certification, in the Master of Arts in Teaching for graduate course work completed at an external accredited college or university with a grade of “B” or better. See the Transfer Credit Policy  for additional information.

Time to Completion

The University allows 5 years to complete all Master’s programs of 36 credits or less.

The median time to completion for this program is 25 months.

Time to completion varies depending upon the pace in which a student completes courses and the number of transfer credits accepted. As most students are working adults, balancing educational, professional, and personal commitments, our academic and finance advisors will work with you to develop a program schedule that works best for your needs.

Students following the preferred schedule designed by the Dean for this program, and applying no transfer credits, can expect to finish in as little as 13 months.

Additional MAT Information

Certification and Licensing 

Alternative teaching certification is required for admission into the program. Program does not purport to provide licensure or certification in any particular state or country.

Sanford College of Education Curriculum 

The Sanford College of Education curriculum emphasizes a combination of learning theory, instructional strategies, and technology integration for educators working with any grade level, and within professional associations, organizations or as a consultant. The emphasis is on students transforming theory immediately into practice and faculty tailoring instruction to enhance student understanding and achievement. The program aims to produce graduates who understand the scope, pace, and magnitude of the transformation of education within the world that is taking place; and to assist students to meet the challenges of state and national standards (if desired), while meeting the learning needs of educators who work beyond the classroom.

State of the Art Content

The Sanford College of Education sequence of courses undergoes constant review to ensure that, while maintaining depth of focus, the program also includes the latest educational innovations and the tools MAT students need to incorporate those innovations into pedagogy. All Sanford College of Education courses are continually updated to reflect the latest developments in instructional technology to support instruction.

Special Education (SE) Specialization

This specialization prepares educators to address the needs of students with disabilities and gifted abilities by preparing such students to develop, implement and assess specially designed curriculum. Attention is given to teaching methods and strategies that illustrate an advocacy for these student groups. The specialization can be customized to meet the student’s unique professional and personal goals, and allows the student to concentrate their coursework on the advanced and the disabled student, or select a single focus.

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