Career Options with an MAT Degree

The Master of Arts in Teaching degree is a hands on, philosophy focused, immersive program. It’s the perfect next stop for teachers looking to advance their careers, and in some schools a program good for students who are not licensed as teachers yet and looking for a master’s licensure at the very beginning of their career. Either way, it’s a degree designed to empower teachers as resources for students in this age of learning when education has never been more important.

What does the MAT involve?

MAT programs usually have a significant amount of course work intensively focused on the methods of teaching. Programs usually include classes like the following:

  • Methods and Materials for Teaching
  • Development of Students
  • Exploration of Families and Students
  • Leadership Seminar

Besides these general core classes, there are also, often, specific tracks that students can focus on in their MAT programs. Deciding on a focus within the program can often help fine tune teaching skills and also help students, once graduated, find placement in schools as teachers.

Some tracks include:

  • Reading and Literacy
  • Elementary Mathematics
  • Teaching at the Community College Level

There are, of course, plenty of other focuses, depending on the program, but each will emphasis methods, ideas, and training important for those areas of teaching.

Where Can You Earn an MAT?

With more and more people pursuing education as a way to increase their likelihood to receive an interview, raise, or promotion, more schools are adding curriculum and programs, particularly in the master’s degree category. While many traditional institutions, both private and public, are adding to their course and degree listings, more online universities are adding entirely online degree programs to meet the needs of busy professionals.

What Careers are Available with an MAT Degree?

A Master in Arts in Teaching degree can be helpful in getting a new job, getting a promotion, or even just reaching a new pay grade. It is a great way for teachers to stay trained in a competitive job market and valuable to the students they teach. Some jobs those with an MAT go on to work in are:

  • Special Education Teachers: Those with advanced training in teaching are specially equipped to handle many of the challenges that come along with teaching special education. These teachers work with many different students with many different needs – some have learning disabilities and need special attention in math in reading while some have developmental disabilities and need help with basic life skills, like learning to manage money or learn to follow directions. Someone with an advanced degree can be a great ally in a special education classroom. Special education teachers make between $52,000 and $56,000 a year.
  • Adult Literacy: Many of the skills and methods of teaching that MAT students have learned for teaching students in high school can be applied to adult learners in adult literacy and diploma classes. These classes are important because they help adults learn or re-learn basic skills to improve their quality of life and go on to work in betters jobs and improve their family’s circumstances. Teachers in this position make, on average, almost $49,000 dollars a year, with some making close to $82,000 a year.
  • Post Secondary or College Level: Another way that MAT graduates go on to work with adults is at the college level. Since colleges require at least a master’s degree to teach, an MA will allow for teaching in the areas of education or whatever focus a student studied during their degree, such as math or science. On average, college instructors make around $68,000 a year.

Additionally, sometimes the MAT is a great way to earn a raise in an already established position – having increased education and training makes anyone a more valuable resource. Earning an MAT is a definitive way to become a better teacher – and also a great start to a strong career.

Online Master of Arts in Teaching Programs

Liberty University Liberty University is one of the largest private, non-profit schools in the country with over 100,000 students enrolled. Liberty offers a wide variety of MAT degrees for students to choose from, including Elementary Education, Secondary Education, and Special Education. Liberty is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
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Grand Canyon University Grand Canyon University’s Master’s in Education degrees are unique in that they lead to teaching certification in many cases. Students can pursue an MEd degree in Special Education, Elementary Education, and Secondary Education or work towards their MAT in Teacher Leadership. GCU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
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Purdue University Purdue University has two programs available for students wanting to advance their teaching careers beyond a bachelor’s degree. The MAT is designed for students wanting to teach middle school and high school classes while the MS in Higher Education is more geared towards students wanting to teach in a college setting and who already have experience in the field.
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University of Southern California Many students seeking MAT degrees specifically make the University of Southern California their school of choice. USC offers many online MAT programs including a general program as well as specializations in areas like Secondary Math, English, and Social Science. USC is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.
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Northcentral University If you already have your teaching licensure, Northcentral University can provide a convenient way to further your career. NCU offers several MEd programs in various areas, like Special Education or General Education that can be completed entirely online within just a year if enrolled full-time. NCU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
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Saint Joseph’s University Students who want smaller classrooms and more attention from their professors should consider Saint Joseph’s University. The smaller school offers two masater degrees in education, one of which is the MS in Secondary Education. This program allows students to spend most of their time in online classrooms, but do require time as a student teacher for full licensure.
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