Mar 03, 2024
The Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) English as a Second Language (ESL) program is designed for individuals with a bachelor’s degree (in any area) interested in teaching English Language Learners (ELL) in K-12 public schools. The M.A.T. program is a 30 credit hour program comprised of two phases: the Graduate Certificate phase (Phase I) and the Master’s degree completion phase (Phase II). Completion of Phase I (Graduate Certificate) leads to the initial Standard Professional I teaching license in Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL). Phase I requires 18 credit hours of coursework, including a required graduate student teaching/internship experience. Upon completion of Phase I and formal acceptance into the M.A.T. program by the Graduate School, qualified candidates may continue into Phase II to complete the remaining requirements for the Master’s degree and qualify for the advanced Standard Professional II teaching license. Applications must be submitted to the Graduate School for formal admission to the Graduate Certificate program in TESL (Phase I). Upon completion of Phase I, another application must be submitted for formal admission to the Master’s program (Phase II).
General Requirements for Admission to the Graduate School
Please refer to general information provided in The Graduate School section.
Admission Requirements for all M.A.T. Programs
- Successful completion of the Graduate Certificate in Teaching
- GRE or Miller Analogies Test scores are required for students with GPAs that do not meet minimum requirements*
- Three recommendation letters that include at least one from a full-time faculty member who has taught the student in the Graduate Certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language program
- A statement of purpose (500-1000 words)
- Apply online at graduateschool.uncc.edu
There may be additional requirements (at the discretion of the Graduate Program Director) for admittance to the TESL Master’s program. The admission process includes timely completion of the Admission to Candidacy form and the Application for Graduation from the Graduate Certificate program.
* Test scores may be waived if students complete the Graduate Certificate in Teaching with a minimum GPA of 3.5.
Phase I: Graduate Certificate Courses (18 credit hours)
Required Courses (15 credit hours)
Internship/Student Teaching (3 credit hours)
The graduate-level student teaching/internship is the culminating experience of the Graduate Certificate program, offering students the opportunity to demonstrate their readiness for the initial Standard Professional I teaching license. 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.
** TESL 6470 is a full-time internship requiring employment as an English as a Second Language teacher in an approved school or a non-paid placement with a licensed ESL teacher in a public school. It requires a formal application and approval during the semester prior to the internship.
Phase II: Completion of M.A.T. Courses (12 credit hours)
Note: All requirements of Phase I should be completed before beginning Phase II.
Required Courses (9 credit hours)
Elective Course (3 credit hours)
Select one of the following:
*** Written approval for any study abroad experiences and/or elective courses not listed here must be provided in advance by the Graduate Program Director.
The capstone experience for the M.A.T. is fulfilled by completing the Comprehensive Electronic Portfolio project. In addition, candidates for the M.A.T. complete an electronic licensure portfolio during coursework that demonstrates their readiness for the advanced Standard Professional II teaching license.
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
Most courses require students to develop their knowledge, skills, and dispositions in public school/agency settings. All students are expected to complete clinical experiences in at least two significantly diverse 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 P-12 student learning, and develop the ability to positively impact all learners. All students are expected to complete clinical experiences in at least two different settings. Upon approval from course instructors, these structured experiences can take place in multiple settings such as neighboring schools or districts, day care centers and after-school programs, alternate youth centers, community organizations, non-profit organizations, or in the schools and classrooms in which the candidates work.
Candidates who are lateral entry 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, students are recommended for the North Carolina initial Standard Professional I teaching license. For this initial license, students are required to complete an electronic licensure portfolio that is created during coursework and student teaching. Upon successful completion of Phase II, students are 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.