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Master of Arts Degree in Teaching

K-6 Elementary Education and K-6 Special Education

Our master of arts in teaching degree is designed for students who already hold a bachelor’s degree in a field other than education. College of Saint Mary offers master’s degrees in elementary, middle and secondary education as well as high-demand endorsement areas allowing you to strengthen your ability to serve students.

College of Saint Mary students experience fieldwork in schools upon starting their education courses to apply what they are learning and to see their impact on children’s lives. This opportunity, combined with the career-relevant endorsements we offer, prepares you to lead and enjoy a fulfilling, fruitful career in education.

One of the highest compliments we receive is from school districts that tell us our graduates “hit the classroom” running because they have had excellent preparation in our classrooms and excel through the fieldwork we provide.

Teacher Education - Mission Statement 

As an inclusive, compassionate, and supportive environment, the CSM Teacher Education Department provides pre-service teachers the opportunity to  acquire knowledge, skills, and dispositions to become highly qualified teacher leaders within a strategic, intentional, rigorous curriculum that promotes lifelong excellence.

Teacher Education Diversify Statement

As an inclusive, compassionate, and supportive environment, the CSM Teacher Education Department strives to provide students with,

  • faculty and course materials representing a wide range of perspectives,
  • experiences to develop culturally responsive teaching strategies to meet the needs of diverse learners,
  • and a global understanding with which to work toward equity and social justice inside and outside of the classroom.

Master of Arts Degree in Teaching

K-6 Elementary Education and K-6 Special Education

Master of Arts in Teaching core classes required for all endorsements. Additional requirements must be met for an endorsement. 

Master of Arts in Teaching — Core Courses

Lifespan Development

Study physical, cognitive, social and emotional development from conception through old age.

Introduction to Special Education

Survey various areas of exceptionality — high ability learners, mental disability, behaviorally impaired, visually impaired, hearing impaired, learning disabled, orthopedically impaired, speech language impairments, autistic, Asperger’s, traumatic brain injury, multiple and severely handicapped, physically disabled and health impaired. You will discuss the history, philosophy and future trends of special education as they are relevant to educational implications.

Technology in the Classroom

Learn strategies for integrating instructional technology in curriculum planning and implementation. After receiving instruction in their use, you will plan learning activities that include instructional media, the Internet, web page construction, production and organizational software and multimedia programs in classrooms. In addition to computers, you will use video equipment, digital cameras and scanners in preparing your lessons.

Educational Psychology and Measurement

Study teaching and learning processes to learn the nature of educational psychology and applications of major learning theories.

History, Philosophy and Trends in Education

Compare philosophical foundations of historical and contemporary education and consider current issues using an informed discussion-centered approach. You will also assess political and social trends, laws, proper conduct and penalties for teachers and changes related to contemporary and future educational planning.

Human Relations in a Multicultural Society

Identify characteristics of various ethnic groups that relate to learning, working and living and develop strategies for assisting people in living jointly in our pluralistic society.

Guidance and Classroom Management

Learn techniques, models and psychological theories related to managing individual and small and large group learning activities including practical methods that enhance self-control and provide healthy classroom environments. You will learn the common behavior problems for pre-K through grade 12 students and exceptional children, along with assessment techniques.

Student Teaching — Secondary

Supervised teaching experience under the direction of a college faculty member and a classroom art teacher. 

Student Teaching Seminar

You will have an opportunity to share and discuss problems, success, teaching methods and innovations of mutual interest with fellow student teachers and your college faculty. You will learn strategies for career planning and seeking professional employment with an emphasis on professionalism, organizational skills and ethical behaviors for a successful teaching career. 

Required for K-6 Elementary Education and Special Education

*Must meet all content area course requirements as required by state rule in addition to the following courses:

Teaching Reading and Language Arts 

Study theoretical background and identify Nebraska and National Standards in reading and Language Arts, with an emphasis on the organization of programs, effective teaching methods and varied instructional materials for students in elementary and middle school literacy settings.

Teaching Natural and Social Science 

Learn about methodology and appropriate materials to effectively present social science in elementary and middle school settings, including integrating technology into instruction of content and pedagogy.

Teaching Mathematics 

Learn current trends and strategies in teaching elementary and middle level math, including content, methodology and appropriate materials, including integrating technology into instruction of content and pedagogy.

Integrating Fine Arts in the Classroom 

This course will provide you with practical implementation strategies to integrate fine arts (visual and performing arts) into your classroom curriculum. We will examine basic concepts and instructional techniques in art, music, drama and dance.

Diagnosis and Remediation of Reading

Learn assessment procedures and effective instructional and diagnostic techniques in reading. You will participate in formal and informal testing including achievement, criterion references, observational and portfolio strategies. You will implement your knowledge with a directed reading practicum in a partner school.

Children’s Literature

Interact with a variety of children’s literature representative of ethnic and cultural diversity, emphasizing critical appraisal of significant authors and illustrators, quality of writing and appropriateness of topic to age and/or experience level.

Adaptive PE

Study of the special physical activity and exercise needs, interests, and problems of the exceptional learner, with considerable emphasis on the development of methods and competencies in modifying physical activities. This course will enhance the skills of the teacher to orchestrate the learning environment for students with special needs.

Learners with Mildly/Moderately Handicapping Conditions

Examine learning and analyze strategies used in I.E.P.s of mildly and moderately mentally handicapped, specifically learning disabled, behaviorally impaired, orthopedically impaired, autistic, other health impairments, speech language impaired and traumatic brain injured, with an emphasis on assisting learners in making healthy transitions between special education and regular classrooms. You will also learn about recent legislation and its impact on the regular classroom.

Assessment Techniques for Diverse Learners

Examine techniques and methods of administering formal and informal assessments and analyze learning tasks in visual, auditory, motor, language and behavioral areas. You will examine and practice tying individualized education programs/individualized education service program (I.E.P/I.E.S.P.) process to assessment and will write appropriate instructional strategies, goals and materials to implement I.E.P./I.E.S.P. objectives or gifted program objectives based on analysis of learning tasks and instructional needs.

Instruction Strategies

Examine and practice tying I.E.P./I.F.S.P process to instruction through modification of curricula. You will practice designing curricula for various areas of exceptionality for special needs populations. The course emphasizes task analysis, individualized instructional strategies and interventions, and use of assistive technology.

Special Education Law and Ethics

Examine processes and use skills necessary to identify and verify special needs, the I.E.P./I.E.S.P process, plan for transitions and organize and maintain student special education records. You will become familiar with state and local resources for improving and strengthening educational programs for special populations with an emphasis on national, state and local laws, policies and procedures affecting special populations.

Critical Issues in Special Education I

Observe and implement effective approaches for remediation through supervised practicum experience in self-contained classrooms, resource rooms or inclusive settings. You will investigate, discuss and present critical issues, including current research and appropriate remediation techniques.

 

Requirements for Graduation from College of Saint Mary

K-6 Elementary Education and K-6 Special Education 

  • 24 credit hours in education program courses
  • 24 credit hours in elementary education for the K-6 elementary education emphasis
  • 3 credit hours of student teaching
  • Content area course work as required by state rule

     

Teaching Certification

Completion of the education program does not guarantee certification. Students who successfully meet state required competencies may qualify for a Nebraska Teaching Certificate. Continuous growth in knowledge, pedagogy and professionalism, as well as satisfactory performance during student teaching and completion of Praxis II for each content area as required by Nebraska Rule is in the recommendation for certification. 

Failure to apply for Nebraska Teacher Certification at the time of program completion/graduation may result in your program not meeting Rule 20 or 24 changes in interim between application and program completion.  Rule changes in effect at the time of application will need to be made up as deficiencies.

Since certification requirements of various states differ, a student planning to teach in a state other than Nebraska should inquire about specific requirements for that state.

The Assurance of Accreditation

The assurance of regional accreditation means that our degrees have been evaluated for their outcomes — including how well they prepare you to meet the needs of your employers, yourself and our global society. College of Saint Mary is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission.

The University is approved to offer work leading to teacher certification in elementary and secondary education by the Nebraska Department of Education, 888-285-2556.

Requirements for Admission to College of Saint Mary

Admissions Requirements

  • Cumulative GPA of at least 2.75
  • Official transcripts from previous institutions
  • Resume or curriculum vitae
  • Demonstrate professionalism throughout application process
  • Submit application fee

 

Additional Requirements for MAT Program

  • Completion of background check prior to both field experiences (practicum and student teaching). If a student has felony convictions or misdemeanor convictions involving abuse, neglect or sexual misconduct as defined in state rule section 005.07A he/she will be rejected for admission to the program
  • Completion of the minimum number of field experience hours (at least 100 hours) and a passing score on the practicum portfolio
  • Demonstration of required professional dispositions throughout the course of the program

Academic Description

Master of Arts Degree in Teaching

K-6 Elementary Education and K-6 Special Education

Our master of arts in teaching degree is designed for students who already hold a bachelor’s degree in a field other than education. College of Saint Mary offers master’s degrees in elementary, middle and secondary education as well as high-demand endorsement areas allowing you to strengthen your ability to serve students.

College of Saint Mary students experience fieldwork in schools upon starting their education courses to apply what they are learning and to see their impact on children’s lives. This opportunity, combined with the career-relevant endorsements we offer, prepares you to lead and enjoy a fulfilling, fruitful career in education.

One of the highest compliments we receive is from school districts that tell us our graduates “hit the classroom” running because they have had excellent preparation in our classrooms and excel through the fieldwork we provide.

Teacher Education - Mission Statement 

As an inclusive, compassionate, and supportive environment, the CSM Teacher Education Department provides pre-service teachers the opportunity to  acquire knowledge, skills, and dispositions to become highly qualified teacher leaders within a strategic, intentional, rigorous curriculum that promotes lifelong excellence.

Teacher Education Diversify Statement

As an inclusive, compassionate, and supportive environment, the CSM Teacher Education Department strives to provide students with,

  • faculty and course materials representing a wide range of perspectives,
  • experiences to develop culturally responsive teaching strategies to meet the needs of diverse learners,
  • and a global understanding with which to work toward equity and social justice inside and outside of the classroom.

Accreditation

The Assurance of Accreditation

The assurance of regional accreditation means that our degrees have been evaluated for their outcomes — including how well they prepare you to meet the needs of your employers, yourself and our global society. College of Saint Mary is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission.

The University is approved to offer work leading to teacher certification in elementary and secondary education by the Nebraska Department of Education, 888-285-2556.

Admissions Requirements

Requirements for Admission to College of Saint Mary

Admissions Requirements

  • Cumulative GPA of at least 2.75
  • Official transcripts from previous institutions
  • Resume or curriculum vitae
  • Demonstrate professionalism throughout application process
  • Submit application fee

 

Additional Requirements for MAT Program

  • Completion of background check prior to both field experiences (practicum and student teaching). If a student has felony convictions or misdemeanor convictions involving abuse, neglect or sexual misconduct as defined in state rule section 005.07A he/she will be rejected for admission to the program
  • Completion of the minimum number of field experience hours (at least 100 hours) and a passing score on the practicum portfolio
  • Demonstration of required professional dispositions throughout the course of the program

Curriculum

Master of Arts Degree in Teaching

K-6 Elementary Education and K-6 Special Education

Master of Arts in Teaching core classes required for all endorsements. Additional requirements must be met for an endorsement. 

Master of Arts in Teaching — Core Courses

Lifespan Development

Study physical, cognitive, social and emotional development from conception through old age.

Introduction to Special Education

Survey various areas of exceptionality — high ability learners, mental disability, behaviorally impaired, visually impaired, hearing impaired, learning disabled, orthopedically impaired, speech language impairments, autistic, Asperger’s, traumatic brain injury, multiple and severely handicapped, physically disabled and health impaired. You will discuss the history, philosophy and future trends of special education as they are relevant to educational implications.

Technology in the Classroom

Learn strategies for integrating instructional technology in curriculum planning and implementation. After receiving instruction in their use, you will plan learning activities that include instructional media, the Internet, web page construction, production and organizational software and multimedia programs in classrooms. In addition to computers, you will use video equipment, digital cameras and scanners in preparing your lessons.

Educational Psychology and Measurement

Study teaching and learning processes to learn the nature of educational psychology and applications of major learning theories.

History, Philosophy and Trends in Education

Compare philosophical foundations of historical and contemporary education and consider current issues using an informed discussion-centered approach. You will also assess political and social trends, laws, proper conduct and penalties for teachers and changes related to contemporary and future educational planning.

Human Relations in a Multicultural Society

Identify characteristics of various ethnic groups that relate to learning, working and living and develop strategies for assisting people in living jointly in our pluralistic society.

Guidance and Classroom Management

Learn techniques, models and psychological theories related to managing individual and small and large group learning activities including practical methods that enhance self-control and provide healthy classroom environments. You will learn the common behavior problems for pre-K through grade 12 students and exceptional children, along with assessment techniques.

Student Teaching — Secondary

Supervised teaching experience under the direction of a college faculty member and a classroom art teacher. 

Student Teaching Seminar

You will have an opportunity to share and discuss problems, success, teaching methods and innovations of mutual interest with fellow student teachers and your college faculty. You will learn strategies for career planning and seeking professional employment with an emphasis on professionalism, organizational skills and ethical behaviors for a successful teaching career. 

Required for K-6 Elementary Education and Special Education

*Must meet all content area course requirements as required by state rule in addition to the following courses:

Teaching Reading and Language Arts 

Study theoretical background and identify Nebraska and National Standards in reading and Language Arts, with an emphasis on the organization of programs, effective teaching methods and varied instructional materials for students in elementary and middle school literacy settings.

Teaching Natural and Social Science 

Learn about methodology and appropriate materials to effectively present social science in elementary and middle school settings, including integrating technology into instruction of content and pedagogy.

Teaching Mathematics 

Learn current trends and strategies in teaching elementary and middle level math, including content, methodology and appropriate materials, including integrating technology into instruction of content and pedagogy.

Integrating Fine Arts in the Classroom 

This course will provide you with practical implementation strategies to integrate fine arts (visual and performing arts) into your classroom curriculum. We will examine basic concepts and instructional techniques in art, music, drama and dance.

Diagnosis and Remediation of Reading

Learn assessment procedures and effective instructional and diagnostic techniques in reading. You will participate in formal and informal testing including achievement, criterion references, observational and portfolio strategies. You will implement your knowledge with a directed reading practicum in a partner school.

Children’s Literature

Interact with a variety of children’s literature representative of ethnic and cultural diversity, emphasizing critical appraisal of significant authors and illustrators, quality of writing and appropriateness of topic to age and/or experience level.

Adaptive PE

Study of the special physical activity and exercise needs, interests, and problems of the exceptional learner, with considerable emphasis on the development of methods and competencies in modifying physical activities. This course will enhance the skills of the teacher to orchestrate the learning environment for students with special needs.

Learners with Mildly/Moderately Handicapping Conditions

Examine learning and analyze strategies used in I.E.P.s of mildly and moderately mentally handicapped, specifically learning disabled, behaviorally impaired, orthopedically impaired, autistic, other health impairments, speech language impaired and traumatic brain injured, with an emphasis on assisting learners in making healthy transitions between special education and regular classrooms. You will also learn about recent legislation and its impact on the regular classroom.

Assessment Techniques for Diverse Learners

Examine techniques and methods of administering formal and informal assessments and analyze learning tasks in visual, auditory, motor, language and behavioral areas. You will examine and practice tying individualized education programs/individualized education service program (I.E.P/I.E.S.P.) process to assessment and will write appropriate instructional strategies, goals and materials to implement I.E.P./I.E.S.P. objectives or gifted program objectives based on analysis of learning tasks and instructional needs.

Instruction Strategies

Examine and practice tying I.E.P./I.F.S.P process to instruction through modification of curricula. You will practice designing curricula for various areas of exceptionality for special needs populations. The course emphasizes task analysis, individualized instructional strategies and interventions, and use of assistive technology.

Special Education Law and Ethics

Examine processes and use skills necessary to identify and verify special needs, the I.E.P./I.E.S.P process, plan for transitions and organize and maintain student special education records. You will become familiar with state and local resources for improving and strengthening educational programs for special populations with an emphasis on national, state and local laws, policies and procedures affecting special populations.

Critical Issues in Special Education I

Observe and implement effective approaches for remediation through supervised practicum experience in self-contained classrooms, resource rooms or inclusive settings. You will investigate, discuss and present critical issues, including current research and appropriate remediation techniques.

 

Degree Requirements

Requirements for Graduation from College of Saint Mary

K-6 Elementary Education and K-6 Special Education 

  • 24 credit hours in education program courses
  • 24 credit hours in elementary education for the K-6 elementary education emphasis
  • 3 credit hours of student teaching
  • Content area course work as required by state rule

     

Teaching Certification

Completion of the education program does not guarantee certification. Students who successfully meet state required competencies may qualify for a Nebraska Teaching Certificate. Continuous growth in knowledge, pedagogy and professionalism, as well as satisfactory performance during student teaching and completion of Praxis II for each content area as required by Nebraska Rule is in the recommendation for certification. 

Failure to apply for Nebraska Teacher Certification at the time of program completion/graduation may result in your program not meeting Rule 20 or 24 changes in interim between application and program completion.  Rule changes in effect at the time of application will need to be made up as deficiencies.

Since certification requirements of various states differ, a student planning to teach in a state other than Nebraska should inquire about specific requirements for that state.