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Master of Arts in Teaching

MAT degree teacher in classroom with students

What is a Master of Arts in Teaching?

A Master of Arts in Teaching or MAT degree is a graduate degree program that is focused on preparing current or future teachers for licensure. This kind of degree program is ideal for those who currently hold a bachelor's degree and want to make a change to teaching, or for current teachers who want to add another specialty to their licensure. 

WGU offers many MAT programs for those who currently hold a bachelor's degree in either a teaching or non-teaching field. If you're looking to become a teacher or expand your licensure, an online degree program from WGU can help you be prepared for certification. You can get in the classroom and start a meaningful career with the help of WGU.

Who should get an MAT degree?

MAT degrees are ideal for those who want to pursue an education career inside the classroom. Most MAT programs will help prepare you for a teaching license and are geared to ensure you are ready to lead a classroom. There are MAT programs that help teachers earn initial licensure, and MAT programs that help already licensed educators gain additional licensure so they can teach other academic subjects. MAT programs are available for teaching students of different ages, as well as different topics.

Type of student:
  • Elementary education
  • Middle school (secondary education)
  • High school (secondary education)
  • Special education
  • ELL or ESL
Education topic:
  • Math
  • English
  • Science (different specialties like chemistry, biology, etc.)
  • History
  • Social studies

Current teachers can add to their licensure and aspiring teachers can get the initial certification they need in order to become the kind of educator over the specific subject they are passionate about. An MAT degree program is critical for furthering your career in the classroom.

How long does it take to get a Master of Arts in Teaching?

18 months

Typically MAT degrees take about 2 years to complete. At WGU, most students are able to finish their MAT in about 18 months due to competency-based education which allows them to accelerate their academic courses.

How much more will I earn with a Master of Arts in Teaching?

$10,000

In their first year with an MAT degree, most teachers earn about $2,800 more in their salary. Once you reach the top of the salary schedule, this difference can be closer to $10,000 more per year.

Will a Master of Arts in Teaching help me get certification?

Yes

Accredited MAT programs should prepare you for teacher licensure in your state. There will be unique requirements for certification in teach state, but an MAT degree that is from a respected school will ensure you have the education element needed to be licensed.

Learn about becoming a teacher

Take a look at all the degree programs you can choose from that help you prepare to become a teacher.

View all teaching degrees

WGU Master of Arts in Teaching Programs

Teaching, English Education (Secondary) – M.A.

An online teaching master's degree and teacher certification...

An online teaching master's degree and teacher...

An online teaching master's degree and teacher certification program for aspiring middle or high school English teachers who already have a bachelor's degree in a non-teaching field.

Leads to teacher licensure. Specific grade levels will vary depending on licensure in your state.

  • Time: 74% of graduates finish this online English degree program within 18 months.
  • Tuition and fees: $3,685 per 6-month term.

Candidates for this high school English teaching program often include:

  • Aspiring junior high and high school English teachers who currently hold a bachelor's degree but lack a teaching license
  • Substitute teachers
  • Career-changers with a passion for English
  • School paraprofessionals
  • Others who feel the call to teach

This secondary English MAT program includes courses in the foundations of teaching, instructional planning and presentation, English content, research, and pedagogy. It requires in-classroom observation and a term of full-time demonstration teaching. This online English degree prepares students for teaching certification in any of the 50 states.

Teaching, Mathematics Education (Middle Grades) – M.A.

An online teaching master's degree and teacher certification...

An online teaching master's degree and teacher...

An online teaching master's degree and teacher certification program for aspiring middle school math teachers who already have a bachelor's degree in a non-teaching field.

Leads to teacher licensure. Specific grade levels will vary depending on licensure in your state.

  • Time: 70% of graduates finish this middle school math teaching degree within 18 months.
  • Tuition and fees: $3,685 per 6-month term.

Candidates for this master's in math education degree often include:

  • Aspiring junior high math teachers who currently hold a bachelor's degree but lack a teaching license
  • Substitute teachers
  • Career-changers with a passion for math
  • School paraprofessionals
  • Others who feel the call to teach

This M.A. Teaching program in middle grades math education includes courses in the foundations of teaching, mathematics education, instructional planning and presentation, and pedagogy. It requires in-classroom observation and a term of full-time demonstration teaching.

It differs from the M.A. Teaching, Mathematics Education (Secondary) program in that it does not require courses in upper levels of calculus, including advanced calculus and mathematical modeling. The curriculum of this online math degree is designed to prepare middle school math teachers for success.

Teaching, Elementary Education – M.A.

An online master's of arts in education degree and teacher...

An online master's of arts in education degree...

An online master's of arts in education degree and teacher certification program for aspiring elementary school teachers who already have a bachelor's degree in a non-teaching field.

Leads to a teaching license. Specific grade levels will vary depending on teaching certification in your state.

  • Time: 67% of graduates finish within 18 months.
  • Tuition and fees: $3,685 per 6-month term.

Candidates for this master's of arts in education degree program often include:

  • Aspiring elementary teachers who currently hold a bachelor's degree but lack a teaching license
  • Substitute teachers
  • Career-changers
  • School paraprofessionals
  • Others who feel the call to teach

This online teacher's degree includes courses in the foundations of teaching, mathematics content, instructional planning and presentation, elementary education methods, and effective teaching practices. It requires in-classroom observation and a term of full-time demonstration teaching.

Teaching, Science Education (Secondary) – M.A.

An online master's teaching degree and teacher certification...

An online master's teaching degree and teacher...

An online master's teaching degree and teacher certification program for aspiring middle or high school science teachers who already have a bachelor's degree in a non-teaching field.

Leads to teacher licensure. Specific grade levels will vary depending on licensure in your state.

  • Time: 69% of graduates finish this secondary science teaching degree within 18 months.
  • Tuition and fees: $3,685 per 6-month term.

Candidates for this high school teaching degree program often include:

  • Aspiring junior high and high school science teachers who currently hold a bachelor's degree but lack a teaching license
  • Substitute teachers
  • Career-changers with a passion for science
  • School paraprofessionals
  • Others who feel the call to teach

This graduate-level secondary science teaching program includes the following areas of coursework: foundations of teaching, science education, pedagogy, field experience, research, and a teacher performance assessment. It requires in-classroom observation and a term of full-time demonstration teaching. You'll be prepared to teach in middle school or high school settings, based on teaching certification in your state.

Teaching, Mathematics Education (Secondary) – M.A.

An online teaching master's degree and teacher certification...

An online teaching master's degree and teacher...

An online teaching master's degree and teacher certification program for aspiring middle school or high school math teachers who already have a bachelor's degree in a non-teaching field.

Leads to teacher licensure. Specific grade levels will vary depending on the teaching certification in your state.

  • Time: 66% of graduates finish this high school math teaching degree within 18 months.
  • Tuition and fees: $3,685 per 6-month term.

Candidates for this high school math education program often include:

  • Aspiring junior high and high school math teachers who currently hold a bachelor's degree but lack a teaching license
  • Substitute teachers
  • Career-changers with a passion for math
  • School paraprofessionals
  • Others who feel the call to teach

This online teaching degree in secondary math education includes courses in the foundations of teaching, mathematics education, instructional planning and presentation, and pedagogy. It requires in-classroom observation and a term of full-time demonstration teaching.

It differs from the M.A. Teaching, Mathematics Education (Middle Grades) program in that it includes courses in upper levels of calculus, including advanced calculus and mathematical modeling. Graduates from this secondary math degree program will be eligible for a teaching license in any of the 50 states.

Mathematics Education (Secondary) – M.A.

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to...

An online master's degree for current teachers...

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to specialize in teaching math to middle and high school students.

  • Time: 74% of grads earned this degree within 2 years.
  • Tuition and fees: $3,385 per 6-month term.

Coursework in this program includes:

  • Trigonometry and pre-calculus
  • College geometry
  • Calculus I
  • Calculus II
  • Calculus III
  • Mathematics learning and teaching
  • Probability and statistics I
  • Probability and statistics II
  • Algebra for secondary mathematics teaching
  • Geometry for secondary mathematics teaching
  • Statistics and probability for secondary mathematics teaching
  • Mathematics history and technology
  • Mathematics content knowledge
  • Mathematical modeling and applications
  • Linear algebra
  • Abstract algebra
  • Advanced calculus
  • Teacher performance assessment

Focus your teaching passion on instilling in junior high or high school students a love of math with this education master's degree.

Science Education (Middle Grades) – M.A.

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to...

An online master's degree for current teachers...

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to specialize in teaching science to middle school students.

Available in all states that offer a middle-grades general science endorsement.

  • Time: 76% of grads earned this degree within 24 months.
  • Tuition and fees: $3,385 per 6-month term, plus a one-time fee of $350 to cover the cost of an at-home science lab.

Areas of study in this program include:

  • General science
  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • Physics
  • Ecology
  • Science education
  • Teacher performance assessment

Propel your career as a middle school or junior high science teacher with this M.A. degree.

Science Education (Secondary Physics) – M.A.

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to...

An online master's degree for current teachers...

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to specialize in teaching physics to middle or high school students.

  • Time: 88% of grads earned this degree within 24 months.
  • Tuition and fees: $3,385 per 6-month term, plus a one-time fee of $350 to cover the cost of an at-home science lab.

Areas of study in this program include:

  • General science
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Science education
  • Teacher performance assessment

Propel your career as a junior high or high school physics teacher with this education master's degree.

English Language Learning (PreK–12) – M.A.

An online master's degree for current teachers whose next career...

An online master's degree for current teachers...

An online master's degree for current teachers whose next career goal includes a focus on teaching in ELL or ESL settings.

  • Time: 62% of grads earned this degree within 18 months.
  • Tuition and fees: $3,685 per 6-month term.

Coursework in this program includes:

  • Culture
  • Language production, theory, and acquisition
  • Theories of second language acquisition and grammar
  • Planning, implementing, and managing instruction
  • Assessment theory and practice
  • Professional role of the ELL teacher
  • ELL-specific pedagogy
  • Research foundations
  • Other courses, including a field experience in a K–12 classroom that serves English language learners.

Grow your teaching career on a commitment to ensuring language barriers don't become a barrier to learning with this education master's degree.

Mathematics Education (K–6) – M.A.

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to...

An online master's degree for current teachers...

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to specialize in teaching math to elementary school students.

  • Time: 79% of grads earned this degree within 18 months.
  • Tuition and fees: $3,385 per 6-month term.

Coursework in this program includes:

  • Number sense and functions
  • Graphing, proportional reasoning, and equations/inequalities
  • Geometry and statistics
  • Finite mathematics
  • Research foundations, questions and literature review, design and analysis, and proposals
  • Portfolio oral defense
  • Capstone project

Focus your teaching passion on instilling in elementary-age students a love of math with this education master's degree.

Science Education (Secondary Biological Science) – M.A.

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to...

An online master's degree for current teachers...

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to specialize in teaching biology to middle or high school students.

  • Time: 79% of grads earned this degree within 24 months.
  • Tuition and fees: $3,385 per 6-month term, plus a one-time fee of $350 to cover the cost of an at-home science lab.

Areas of study in this program include:

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Ecology
  • Science education
  • Teacher performance assessment

Propel your career as a junior high or high school biology teacher with this education master's degree.

Science Education (Secondary Earth Science) – M.A.

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to...

An online master's degree for current teachers...

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to specialize in teaching earth science to middle or high school students.

  • Time: 85% of grads earned this degree within 24 months.
  • Tuition and fees: $3,385 per 6-month term, plus a one-time fee of $350 to cover the cost of an at-home science lab.

Areas of study in this program include:

  • General science
  • Mathematics
  • Geoscience
  • Science education
  • Teacher performance assessment

Propel your career as a junior high or high school geoscience teacher with this education master's degree.

Mathematics Education (Middle Grades) – M.A.

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to...

An online master's degree for current teachers...

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to specialize in teaching math to middle school students. Available in states that offer a middle-grades math teaching endorsement.

  • Time: 82% of grads earned this degree within 2 years.
  • Tuition and fees: $3,385 per 6-month term.

Coursework in this program includes:

  • College algebra
  • Finite mathematics
  • Trigonometry and pre-calculus
  • Mathematics learning and teaching
  • College geometry
  • Probability and statistics I
  • Middle school mathematics content knowledge
  • Calculus I
  • Algebra for secondary mathematics teaching
  • Mathematics history and technology
  • Research foundations
  • Teacher performance assessment

Focus your teaching passion on instilling in junior high students a love of math with this education master's degree.

Science Education (Secondary Chemistry) – M.A.

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to...

An online master's degree for current teachers...

An online master's degree for current teachers who want to specialize in teaching chemistry to middle or high school students.

  • Time: 79% of grads earned this degree within 24 months.
  • Tuition and fees: $3,385 per 6-month term, plus a one-time fee of $350 to cover the cost of an at-home science lab.

Areas of study in this program include:

  • Mathematics
  • Chemistry
  • Science education
  • Teacher performance assessment

Propel your career as a junior high or high school chemistry teacher with this education master's degree.

What are the benefits of a Master of Arts in Teaching degree?

There are many benefits to choosing to pursue a Master of Arts in Teaching degree program, including:

  • Increase your knowledge. One of the main benefits to an MAT degree and any higher education is your personal growth. You will learn new things that can help you be a better teacher, gain important skills that will benefit your students, and overall improve your abilities in the classroom and community. Learning more about certain subjects, educational technology, and classroom management will all benefit your career.
  • Make a career change. If you're currently in a non-teaching profession, an MAT can help you get the skills and licensure you need in order to make the move to the classroom. If you're ready to start making a difference in this important way, an MAT is the ideal choice.
  • Increase earning potential. Teachers with advanced degrees have the ability to earn raises and have higher salary levels all throughout their career. Some districts will even help pay for advanced degrees in order to upskill more of their workforce.
  • Add to your licensure. For current teachers, an MAT degree is a great opportunity to add to your teaching license. You may currently be qualified to teach elementary education, but an MAT degree could add special education to your licensure, enabling you to help more students in your school.
  • Improve job security. Teachers with higher education and more licenses often see greater job security than other teachers. Your additional knowledge and skills can make you more integral in your school and district.
  • Build a professional network. When you pursue higher education, you'll meet other like-minded educators who are passionate about helping students, just like you. Faculty and peers can become an important professional network for you that could impact your career in many ways.
  • Gain more respect. Higher education is a key way to gain more respect from your peers and administration. An MAT degree will demonstrate that you are committed to furthering yourself, and committed to being the best teacher possible for your students.

Why choose WGU for your Master of Arts in Teaching degree?

WGU is a great fit for your MAT degree for many reasons, including:

  • Low, flat-rate tuition means that you're charged the same amount per six-month term, regardless of how many classes you take. 
  • Competency-based education means you can use your knowledge to your advantage, accelerating your program and graduating faster. Graduating faster also saves you money. 
  • We offer scholarships and financial aid to help with our already affordable tuition, making college education accessible for even more students.
  • Respected and accredited programs ensure that your MAT degree is meaningful for you as an educator.

Learn about becoming a teacher

Take a look at all the degree programs you can choose from that help you prepare to become a teacher.

View all teaching degrees