MAT Social Science Areas of Study

WGU Master of Arts in Teaching, Social Science

The Master of Arts in Teaching, Social Science (5-12) is a competency-based degree program that prepares students at the graduate level both to be licensed to teach social science in grades 5-12 and to develop significant skills in social science curriculum development, design, and evaluation. All work in this degree program is online with the exception of the Demonstration Teaching and in-classroom field experience components. Students enter this program with a significant background in social science and then proceed through study in the Foundations of Teaching, Teacher Education Diversity, Instructional Planning and Presentation, Social Science Content (Grades 5-12), Preclinical Experiences, Demonstration Teaching and Research Fundamentals.

Foundations of Teaching

Foundations of Teaching Practice Integration
Foundations of Teaching Practice Integration helps students to review and synthesize foundational teaching concepts including classroom management, human development, assessment, diversity and inclusion, and the historical, legal, and philosophical foundations of education.

Teacher Education Diversity

Fundamentals of Diversity, Inclusion, and Exceptional Learners
Students will learn the history of inclusion and develop practical strategies for modifying instruction, in accordance with legal expectations, to meet the needs of a diverse population of learners. This population includes learners with disabilities, gifted and talented learners, culturally diverse learners, and English language learners.

Instructional Planning and Presentation

Instructional Planning and Presentation in Social Science
Instructional Planning and Presentation assists students as they continue to build instructional planning skills. Topics include unit and lesson planning, instructional presentation strategies, assessment, engagement, integration of learning across the curriculum, effective grouping strategies, technology in the classroom, and using data to inform instruction.

Preclinical Experiences

Preclinical Experiences in Social Science
Preclinical Experiences in Social Science provides students the opportunity to observe and participate in a wide range of in-classroom teaching experiences in order to develop the skills and confidence necessary to be an effective teacher. Students will reflect on and document at least 60 hours of in-classroom observations. Prior to entering the classroom for the observations, students will be required to meet several requirements including a cleared background check, passing scores on the state or WGU required basic skills exam, a completed resume, philosophy of teaching, and professional photo.

Social Science Pedagogy

Social Science Pedagogy
This course helps students develop the knowledge and skills required as a beginning teacher of social studies in a secondary school. The activities help students develop the knowledge about planning and teaching social studies lessons and assessing the academic progress of secondary school students in social studies.

Demonstration Teaching

Supervised Demonstration Teaching in Social Science
The Supervised Demonstration Teaching in Social Science courses involve a series of classroom performance observations by the host teacher and clinical supervisor that develop comprehensive performance data about the teacher candidate’s skills.

Teacher Work Sample in Social Science
The Teacher Work Sample is a culmination of the wide variety of skills learned during your time in the Teachers College at WGU. In order to be a competent and independent classroom teacher, you will showcase a collection of your content, planning, instructional, and reflective skills in this professional assessment.

Professional Portfolio
You will create an online teaching portfolio that includes professional artifacts (e.g. resume and Philosophy of Teaching Statement) that demonstrate the skills you have acquired throughout your Demonstration Teaching experience.

Cohort Seminar
The Cohort Seminar provides mentoring and supports teacher candidates during their demonstration teaching period by providing weekly collaboration and instruction related to the demonstration teaching experience. It facilitates their demonstration of competence in becoming reflective practitioners, adhering to ethical standards, practicing inclusion in a diverse classroom, exploring community resources, building collegial and collaborative relationships with teachers, and considering leadership and supervisory skills.

Research Fundamentals

Research Foundations
The Research Foundations course focuses on the essential concepts in educational research, including quantitative, qualitative, mixed, and action research; measurement and assessment; and strategies for obtaining warranted research results.

Research Questions and Literature Review
The Research Questions and Literature Reviews for Educational Research course focuses on how to conduct a thorough literature review that addresses and identifies important educational research topics, problems, and questions, and helps determine the appropriate kind of research and data needed to answer one's research questions and hypotheses.

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