Program Contact

Dr. Penny Shumaker Jeffrey
Teaching Assistant Professor

Master of Arts in Teaching

Science Education

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

In the MAT, we expand our knowledge and impact, and continue to support teachers’ needs to integrate practice with theory as well as to experience today’s culturally diverse and technology-enhanced classrooms. The MAT provides an outstanding teacher preparation program at a reasonable cost.

The MAT program at North Carolina State University follows a hybrid model, including classes that are online, face-to-face on the main university campus and face-to-face off campus, also here in Raleigh.

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.

Important Dates
June 1, 2020
Application deadline for Fall 2020

Information Sessions
Friday, 4 - 6 p.m.
October 18, 2019
Graduate Programs Open House for STEM ED
Poe Hall 742 Opportunity to visit with our faculty and students in small groups to learn about our programs.
Register Here

Friday, 4-6 p.m.
January 24, 2020
STEM Ed Graduate Programs - Open House
742 Poe Hall Opportunity to visit with our faculty and students in small groups to learn about our programs.
Register Here

4-7 p.m.
May 1, 2020
Annual STEM Ed Graduate Research Symposium/Open House
400 Poe Hall, Main Campus
4-4:30 p.m. Meeting with Prospective Graduate Students for STEM Ed. Opportunity to visit with our students and faculty in small groups to learn about our programs.
5-7 p.m. Symposium, METRC Center, 400 Poe Hall. Opportunity to see current graduate research efforts and observe our students in action.
RSVP and more information: Please contact Christy Buck, 919-515-1740 or
Please include the concentration area and degree of interest if known.

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Program Description

Our MAT in Science program prepares science teachers for grades 9-12 by building off a candidate’s strong background in the laboratory sciences. Coursework and field experiences focus on developing strong pedagogical content knowledge as it relates specifically to teaching high school science.

Our program is strong in the use of technology as candidates develop expertise with hand-held and computer-based technologies used for learning and teaching science. Candidates are expected to engage as scholars to synthesize research literature on learning and teaching science and use scientific inquiry methods in their planning, instruction and assessment of students.

In North Carolina, science teachers are licensed comprehensively, meaning that any licensed science teacher can teach any science course a school offers. In practice, teachers generally specialize in the life sciences or chemistry, or the physical sciences or earth/environmental sciences, but preparation for a license includes significant experiences in multiple fields of science. Having a broad-based knowledge of the sciences also give the teacher the opportunity to see and share with students the natural interdependency of the sciences.

The semester after you have completed a minimum of 15 hours you must complete the following to continue in the program:

  • Keep a minimum average of 3.0 in all course work.
  • Criminal Background Check

Admission Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree from a college or university that holds regional accreditation from a recognized accrediting agency such as SACS
  • 3.00 GPA or higher in prior work, as required by the Graduate School
  • Minimum passing score of 100 on the TOEFL AND an official course-by-course evaluation from an accredited foreign credential evaluation service required for applicants with non-U.S. degrees*
  • Meet the specific requirements of content area or grade level. See specialty coursework under curriculum for content standards.

In the absence of a content degree, 24 semester hours/credits in content relevant to the area in which you wish to teach are needed. Candidates who are missing content area courses can take them at a local college or university or as a PBS (post-baccalaureate student) at NC State prior to admission.

If an applicant does not have the 24 content area credits needed to be accepted into the program, he or she can still enroll in the first graduate classes as a Non-Degree student (NDS) while completing the full 24 content-specific hours and transfer those credits into the degree program. Up to 12 credit hours with a grade of “B” or better can be transferred into a master’s degree program (either from NDS studies or from partner institutions). See the NCSU Graduate School policies at

* Please note that the Master of Arts in Teaching is a Distance Education program, so 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. Depending on the content area, the program is approximately 33 credit hours, including a full-semester student teaching experience.


Course descriptions can be found in the university course catalog.

MAT Core Courses 15 semester hours (Required for all MAT students):

  • ECI 507 Principles of Developing and Interpreting Assessment (2 hrs.)
  • ECI 508 Exploring Diversity in Classroom and Community (3 hrs.)
  • ECI 570 Classroom Action Research (1 hr.)
  • ECI 571 Inquiry and Professional Development (1 hr.)
  • ECI 579 Organization and Behavioral Management of Inclusive Classrooms (3 hrs.)
  • ED 572 Teacher Leadership (1 hr.)
  • ED 569 Teaching Internship: MAT (4 hrs.)

Specialty Area Course Requirements (Sample Full-Time Course Rotation):


  • ED 570: Seminar in Classroom Action Research (1 hr.)
  • EMS 505: Methods of Teaching Science I (3 hrs.)
  • Science Content/Science Education Course (3 hrs.)
  • ED 508: Exploring Diversity in Classroom and Community (3 hrs.)

Summer Sessions

  • ED 571: Seminar in Inquiry and Professional Development (1 hr.)
  • ECI 579: Organization and behavioral management of diverse classrooms (3 hrs.)
  • ED 507: Principles of Developing and Interpreting Assessment (2 hrs.)
  • EMS 573: Technology Tools for Science Teaching (3 hrs.)


  • EMS 531: Introduction to Research in Science Education (3 hrs.)
  • EMS 506 Methods of Teaching Science II (3 hrs.)
  • Science Content Course (3 hrs.)

Spring – Final Semester is a Student Teaching Internship

  • ED 572: Seminar in Teacher Leadership (1 hr.)
  • ED 569: Enhanced Internship in Teaching (4 hrs.)

Additional Info

CAEP_LogoCost will vary based on your plan of study. The 15 core MAT classes are all Distance Education (DE) and will have DE tuition. The specialty courses are on campus, online or a hybrid. Students typically enroll in 9-10 hours per semester and classes are paid on a per-semester basis. This does not include additional content courses, if they are needed.

Example total program estimate: (North Carolina Residents) for MAT in Science 2014-2015: $13,050 (for all 33 hours)

Visit the NC State’s Graduate Distance Education Tuition rates page for detailed information about tuition and fees.

To be eligible for Student Teaching students must have completed/obtained the following:

  • Recommendation from advisor and another faculty member
  • Minimum of 30 credit hours completed in the MAT
  • Completion of all methods and core courses