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DE Track: Social Studies (Secondary)

Degree: Master of Arts in Teaching
Program: Teaching

Delivery Method: Online

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The MAT program is an accelerated teacher licensure program that is 100% online and leads to both an initial teaching license and a master’s degree in as little as a year-and-a-half (full-time).

You will be prepared to teach in any type of learning environment, including in-person, remotely or a mix.

The MAT provides an outstanding teacher preparation program at a reasonable cost. The total cost of the MAT in Secondary Social Studies Education program for North Carolina residents is approximately $13,850 ($1,385.64 per course). Visit the NC State’s Graduate Distance Education Tuition rates page for detailed information about tuition and fees.

Please note that the MAT’s focus is on preparation to teach in K-12 schools rather than an advanced credential for practicing teachers or a precursor to research-oriented doctoral studies in education.

Program Description

The MAT Social Studies Education program in the Department of Teacher Education and Learning Sciences (TELS) prepares teachers to teach secondary social studies including history, political science, government, civics, geography, and behavioral sciences.

Click here to view NC curriculum standards for required and elective secondary social studies.

The program results in licensure in grades 9-12 and focuses on a combination of social studies subject matter and classroom methods aimed at creating engaging, inquiry-based, culturally responsive, and equitable instruction. Courses are online using synchronous and asynchronous delivery.

In addition to coursework, students will be placed into schools to work alongside and observe experienced teachers. All students will spend one full semester in a student teaching placement where they will gradually take over full responsibility for instruction.

As required by the State of North Carolina, to be eligible for licensure students are required to pass the edTPA, a performance-based assessment of teacher preparation. Students in the MAT receive mentoring and support for completing this assessment. Fees associated with the edTPA are paid by NCSU. Students who do not pass on the first time will need to pay for subsequent attempts.

Admission Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree in a social studies content area (economics, geography, history, political science, psychology or sociology) from a college or university that holds regional accreditation from a recognized accrediting agency such as SACS.  

Candidates will need to review their own transcripts for the course prerequisites.

In the absence of a content degree in social science, applicants must demonstrate completion of 24 semester hours/credits with a minimum of one class from each of the following:

  • US History Pre 1865
  • US History Post 1865
  • Economics
  • Political Science
  • World History
  • History of a non-Western Culture
  • Geography

Candidates who have 24 hours in combined social science classes but do not have the specific courses listed above, can apply for the MAT in Middle Grades Social Studies.

Candidates who are missing content area courses can take them at a local community college or accredited college or university. Candidates can also take classes at NCSU as an NDS (Non-Degrees Studies) student prior to admission. More information can be found at NDS Admissions.  Please note that success as an NDS student does not guarantee admission to the MAT program. See NCSU Graduate School Policies.

Once an applicant has a minimum of 18 credit hours in the content area they may apply for fall admission. In this case, the admitted student can begin the MAT program in the fall and continue to complete the 6 missing content credits, which will be counted as elective courses for the program. Due to the structure and sequencing of the MAT classes, this offer cannot be extended to summer applicants.

  • Official transcripts showing a cumulative GPA of 3.00 or higher in prior college-level coursework. If you have attended multiple universities, the total GPA across all institutions must be above a 3.0. If you are unsure, please use a GPA calculator to make sure that you have met the minimum requirement. If you are a residency teacher with less than a 3.0 GPA, please refer to Pathways to Practice for licensure.
  • A personal statement of about 1-1.5 single spaced pages that addresses each of the following in some way: 1) the life and academic experiences that have motivated your decision to become a social studies teacher 2) what type of teacher you hope to become (consider: What knowledge, skills, values, dispositions would you like students to develop as a result of your teaching?). If applicable, please also discuss experiences that you have had working with middle and/or high school age people, especially from backgrounds that are different from yours, and what you learned from these experiences.
  • Three personal references from people who can speak to your potential to a) do graduate work and b) become a teacher. At least one reference should be from a college instructor. Former employers and mentors are also acceptable.
  • For applicants with non-US degrees: Minimum passing score of 100 on the TOEFL AND an official course-by-course evaluation from an accredited foreign credential evaluation. Please note that the Master of Arts in Teaching is a Distance Education program. Students on university-sponsored visas are not eligible for this program. Please contact the Office of International Services with any questions.

Course of Study

MAT participants can undertake this program full-time or part-time. The program includes 11 courses and a year-long classroom placement for a total of 30 credit hours.

Course descriptions can be found in the university course catalog.

Degree Requirements

Core Courses12
ED 507
Principles of Developing and Interpreting Assessment (2 credit hours)
ED 508
Exploring Diversity in Classroom and Community (3 credit hours)
ECI 579
Organization and Behavioral Management of Inclusive Classrooms (3 credit hours)
ED 569
Teaching Internship: MAT (4 credit hours)
Concentration Requirements18
Required Concentration Courses
ECI 525
Contemporary Approaches In the Teaching Of Social Studies
ECI 526
Theory and Research On Teaching and Learning Social Studies
ECI 563
Methods and Materials in Teaching Secondary Social Studies
Advanced Social Studies Courses
Select three hours of the following Social Science elective courses:
ECI 727
Special Problems in Social Studies Education
ECI 524
Theory and Research in Global Learning
Additional Elective Courses may be approved determined in conjunction with the academic committee. Select three hours from the following Social Science elective courses: *
Total Hours30

Social Science courses may include 500- and 700-level courses of the following: Anthropology, Economics, Geography, History, Political Science, Psychology, and Sociology; EDP 582 Adolescent Development / EDP 504 Advanced Educational Psychology

Additional Info

For NC State History Majors interested in pursuing a teaching license via the MAT:

  • CHASS students adhere to the same admissions standards as all other MAT applicants. CHASS students with a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher can apply for an Individualized Accelerated Bachelor’s-Master’s opportunity through which up to twelve (12) hours of graduate-level credit can be double-counted for their undergraduate and MAT degrees. Students must complete all necessary paperwork and submit it to the MAT Coordinator. In order for credits to be double-counted, students must earn at least a B (3.0) in each course. Under University Regulation 02.25.11, ABM students must complete their master’s degree within 12 moths of finishing the bachelor’s degree.
  • Any CHASS student may take graduate-level courses during their undergraduate work with adviser approval. Up to 12 hours of graduate-level credit with a B (3.0) or better may be counted toward a master’s degree as long as the credits do not count toward the undergraduate degree.

Approximate total program cost (North Carolina residents) for the MAT in elementary education program: $1,599.21 per 3 hour course, or $15,992 total. View more tuition-related information.

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