Educational Studies News & Events

Read Associate Professor Dr. Lin Muilenburg's interview with, about her co-authored book, The Handbook of Mobile Learning

Department Head & Associate Professor Katy Arnett's co-edited volume, Minority Populations in Canadian Second Language Education has been published by Multilingual Matters. In addition to editing duties, she wrote a chapter for the book, examining the practice of exempting students with learning disabilities from French study in Canada. 

A response to the National Council on Teacher Quality Version II

MAT Graduation

  • June 7, 2014
  • 11:00 am 
  • Athletics and Recreation Center (ARC)

Educational Studies Blog

Small group of students in The Gambia

Interns abroad, publications, presentations, innovations, collaborations...
Educational Studies Blog



What is the MAT at SMCM? 

 The Master of Arts in Teaching program at St. Mary’s College of Maryland is a masters program designed for individuals with their bachelor’s degree in hand who want to pursue certification to teach.  Candidates can certify in elementary education (grades 1-6), elementary with early childhood education (birth through grade 6), secondary education (grades 7-12) in English, social studies (requires a major in either history or political science), mathematics, biology, chemistry, physics, French, German, Spanish, Chinese, or theater, and preK-12 certification in art or music.  The MAT was designed primarily for SMCM undergraduates who graduate with their bachelor’s degree in May and return in six weeks to enter the MAT; in essence, it’s a fifth year program.  However, each year we welcome several non-native SMCM students as well as SMCM graduates who have taken time off between graduation and the MAT.  Back to top


Why should I pursue teacher certification at SMCM?

  • You will graduate with a degree from a well-respected liberal arts institution; our placement rate for future teachers is almost 100% and school districts tell us that they like SMCM graduates because they know how to think, have a solid content knowledge base, and a strong understanding of child and adolescent development.
  • You will be immersed in the life of public schools, gaining a rich array of experiences that will enhance your understanding of teaching and learning.  Our extensive field experiences and our year-long internship program are designed to ensure that our future teachers have the confidence, knowledge, and skills they need to succeed in the profession.
  • You will be part of a cohort of individuals who share similar passions and an idealism about their role in making the future better for our K-12 students. 
  • We are a small school and our teacher certification programs reflect the size of the institution; we certify between 25 and 35 teachers a year.  Thus we can provide a great deal of individual support, guidance, and mentoring to our future teachers.
  • We have strong partnership agreements with our local public schools; we have worked with them to develop an America Reads Tutor Corps, to develop technology courses that future teachers and their cooperating teachers take together, to create communities of pre and in service teachers in our literacy courses, and to learn not just from the faculty on the campus, but from a strong cadre of exceptional teachers in the field who are viewed as adjuncts to the faculty in the Educational Studies Department.
  • You will be able to take classes from faculty members who have all had public school teaching experience, who regularly spend time in the public schools, who are actively engaged in school-based research and curriculum development, and who are passionate about teacher education.
  • Contact the MAT Program at or  240-895-2018 for more program information, particularly about how our program compares to alternative certification programs.


How long will it take me to complete the MAT at SMCM? 

The MAT is a full-time, intensive cohort program that runs for 11 months, typically from early July through early June of the following year.  There are pre-requisite courses in both education and content, so you will have to budget time to complete those into your schedule, but the program itself runs just shy of a year. Back to top


How much does the MAT cost?

The MAT tuition is based on the undergraduate tuition for SMCM students (and out-of-state students pay the in-state rate!).  For 2011-2012, the total for tuition and fees is $18,180.00  This covers 48 credits for candidates certifying in elementary education and 46 credits for secondary and K-12 candidates.  Tuition is billed in four equal segments across the 11 months of the program. Back to top


What are the anticipated additional costs of the program? 

We estimate approximately $14,000 for living expenses, books, parking permits, transportation, and personal items over the course of the 11 months.  The cost of living goes down if you share an apartment or house with other MAT interns. Back to top


How many MAT candidates are admitted for a given year? 

The program is fairly small, running from 30 to 45 candidates in a given cohort.  Our ideal cohort size is approximately 35.  Recent cohorts have included 20 or so secondary and preK-12 candidates and 12-15 elementary candidates. Back to top


How do I apply?   

Submit the application, completed and signed, along with the required essay, and $50.00 non-refundable fee to the Office of Admissions:MAT Application (PDF), MAT Application Insert (PDF). Applications are due October 1 for the following July start date.  BUT, we do reserve some space for “late deciders,” so if you miss that deadline, contact Dr. Lois Stover at for more guidance.  In addition to completing the application, candidates must supply passing scores on a test of basic skills as mandated by the Maryland State Department of Education – see next question for more information. We require two recommendation forms from faculty who have taught you in your major and one letter of reference from someone who can discuss your work with young people. Back to top


What are the scores required for admission on the basic skills tests?

PPST Reading (mc - 60 min.) or 0710  177
Computerized PPST Reading (mc - 75 min.) 5710  177
PPST Writing (mc & cr - 60 min.)  or 0720  173
Computerized PPST Writing (mc  & cr - 75 min.) 5720  173
PPST Mathematics (mc - 55 min.)  or 0730  177
Computerized PPST Mathematics  (mc - 75min.) 5730  177
SAT (prior to April,1995) (math and verbal) - 1000
SAT (after April, 1995) (math and verbal or math and critical reading) - 1100
GRE (math and verbal) - 1000
ACT -    24

Candidates must also pass the appropriate PRAXIS II tests for graduation and eligibility for certification.  See the PRAXIS  site for more information - ( – go to the PRAXIS link). Back to top


Where will I be placed for my internship?   

We are partners in a “Professional Development Collaborative” as required by the Maryland State Department of Education; we place all of our candidates in, ideally, groups of five in schools within the St. Mary’s County Public Schools.  Thus candidates have an impact on the school, have opportunities for shared reflection and professional development – and school partners also benefit from the very close collaboration we have developed over the past two decades. Back to top


What is the course sequence

The course sequence varies from year to year to some degree as we continually tweak and revise the program.  But in general, candidates take 11 credits during the summer.  In the fall, candidates start the school year with their mentor teacher, attending new teacher orientation by St. Mary’s County Public Schools and then attending all the pre-school professional development workshops with their mentor teacher.  They spend four weeks in the schools, return to campus for four weeks of reflection and course work, go back to the schools for four weeks, return to campus once more for additional reflection and course work continuation, and then spend the last week before the schools’ winter break.  The number of course credits, including the credits for the internship, hovers around 15.  The spring term starts in the schools as soon as they open in January.  After two weeks, candidates spend two weeks on campus and then return to their placement for a continuous experience until the end of April.  At that point, candidates switch placements to a different grade/subject – and have the option of doing an “internship away” in The Gambia, Slovenia, Costa Rica, New Mexico or Baltimore City.  The spring course load is also approximately 15 credits.  After the end of the first week of May, candidates return to campus for three weeks of intensive work on their electronic portfolios and masters research projects, which are publicly presented prior to graduation, typically the first Saturday in June. Back to top


How can I help fund MAT? 

The MD Higher Education Commission stated that for 2012-13 the initial cut-off for awarding new MD EA Grants will probably be a 0 EFC. This means that the only chance middle-class families will have for receiving MD State funds is if they are awarded Legislative Scholarships (Delegate and Senatorial). The difficult part about the Legislative Scholarship program is that every senator and delegate can establish their own procedures and criteria for giving out the allocated money—students need to take the initiative to find out who their representatives are and then follow the appropriate instructions. We adapted the standard MD State flyer by adding clear instructions about how to find contact information for representatives and how to initiate the application process—for a copy of the flyer (click here)Back To Top


How can I decrease my loans? 

Even the most ambitious college grad might have some trouble getting excited about this one: repaying student loans. And with the average graduate leaving college with $27,204 in student loan debt, that day is sure to come for many a young professional. So yeah, maybe you’d rather poke your eye out than think about repaying your loans. But if you don’t spend some time figuring out your best strategy, you might be making higher repayments than absolutely necessary. 

That’s right. You might be able to take home more bucks each month. How’s that possible? Check out these tips on how to take your student loans from overwhelming to under control: (Click Here)Back to top