Apr 17, 2024  
Graduate Catalog | 2021-2022 
Graduate Catalog | 2021-2022 Previous Edition

Elementary Education, M.A.T.

The Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) program is designed for individuals who hold a bachelor’s degree. The M.A.T. program is a 30 credit hour program composed of two phases: the Graduate Certificate phase (Phase I) and the Master’s degree completion phase (Phase II). Completion of Phase I leads to the initial Standard Professional I teaching license in Elementary Education. Phase I requires 21 credit hours of coursework, including the graduate student teaching/internship experience. Upon completion of Phase I, qualified candidates may apply for the M.A.T. in Elementary Education (Phase II). The M.A.T. in Elementary Education is a part of the University of North Carolina Distance Education Consortium. Completion of the remaining requirements for the Master’s degree (Phase II) qualifies candidates for the advanced Standard Professional II teaching license.

All courses for both phases of the Graduate Certificate/M.A.T. must be completed within seven years. Coursework within Phase I/Graduate Certificate must be completed within five years.

General Requirements for Admission to the Graduate School

Please refer to admission information in the Graduate School section.

Admission Requirements for all M.A.T. programs

  1. Completion of the Graduate Certificate in Teaching
  2. Minimum graduate GPA of 3.5 in the Graduate Certificate in Teaching in Elementary Education  
  3. Statement of purpose
  4. Apply online at graduateschool.uncc.edu

Degree Requirements

Phase I: Graduate Certificate Courses

Internship/Student Teaching (6 credit hours)

The graduate-level student teaching/internship is the culminating experience in Phase I of the M.A.T, offering students the opportunity to demonstrate their readiness for the initial Standard Professional I teaching license.  It must be taken in the final semester for the initial licensure program.  Students are assigned to an appropriate classroom for a full-time, semester-long experience under the supervision of the classroom teacher and University faculty.  Residency teachers and teacher assistants must contact the Office of School and Community Partnerships to determine the appropriateness of their classroom for the student teaching/internship experience and licensure requirements.  This contact should take place at least one semester before student teaching.  

Phase II: Completion of the M.A.T.

Required Courses (9 credit hours)

Elementary education courses taken in Phase II of the M.A.T. require employment as an elementary teacher.


* ELED 6303  is the Capstone Course and must be taken in the final semester of the program.

Degree Total = 30 Credit Hours


All students are assigned an advisor upon formal admission to the program. Students should consult with their advisors at least once each semester.

Clinical Field Experiences

All courses require students to develop their knowledge, skills, and dispositions in public school/agency settings. During Phase I of the program, all students are expected to complete clinical experiences in at least three significantly different settings.

Clinical field experiences provide opportunities for helping all students learn, including children with exceptionalities and students from diverse ethnic/racial, linguistic, gender, and socioeconomic groups. During clinical experiences, students apply theories and understandings gained in coursework, analyze K-6 student learning, and develop the ability to positively impact all learners. Each course in Phase I of the program requires 20 clinical hours. These structured experiences can take place in multiple settings such as neighboring schools or districts, after-school programs, or in the schools and classrooms in which the candidates work. All elementary education courses in Phase II of the program require employment as an elementary teacher as extensive action research is done in the classroom setting.

Candidates who are residency teachers and teacher assistants must move beyond their own classrooms and schools for at least two clinical experiences. Alternative settings must be approved by the instructor. A limited number of clinical experiences may be approved in significantly different classrooms within their school of employment. Employed candidates are encouraged to seek assistance and support from their administrators.


Upon successful completion of the Phase I/Graduate Certificate, teacher candidates will be recommended for the North Carolina Standard Professional I teaching license.  For this license, students are required to complete all NC State mandated testing/performance assessment requirements for licensure.

Upon successful completion of Phase II, students will be recommended for the North Carolina advanced Standard Professional II teaching license.  For the advanced license, students are required to complete an advanced electronic licensure portfolio during coursework.

Research Opportunities/Experiences

Faculty members in the Department of Reading and Elementary Education are deeply committed to research in urban schools. As a result, candidates will have opportunities to become involved in practical and meaningful classroom-based research.