Missouri State University

Master of Arts in Teaching

Professor Lecturing to Students

What is the Master of Arts in Teaching Program?

The Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) is an “alternative certification program,” as defined by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), which allows students to obtain their teaching certificate AND a master’s degree in the same program. This program is designed to enable students considering a mid-life career change to pursue certification in an area of secondary education similar to their undergraduate degree program or work experience. 

This program has been expanded to accept students who have recently graduated with a bachelor’s degree, but have decided to pursue teaching as a career, especially in those content areas deemed as high need by DESE. 

To be considered for this program, you should have a minimum of two years of work experience in your field. If you do not have significant work experience, additional content and teaching methodology coursework may be required. 

Since the MAT program is an “alternative” route to certification as defined by DESE, it is strictly sequenced and cannot be completed one course at a time while working full-time outside the field of education. However, this program allows for those who desire to teach full-time in the high school setting on a Provisional Certificate while pursuing certification.

Students who successfully complete our program go on to work as teachers in a public or accredited private school in grades 9–12.


Who should apply?

This program is currently offered at Missouri State University in Springfield, on the Missouri Southern campus in Joplin, and at Missouri State - West Plains. All programs are classroom-based, so students are required to attend classes on that campus. Joplin students can complete their entire program (including content coursework) without ever coming to the Springfield campus. Because West Plains is a community college campus, any required 300 level or above content coursework will need to be taken at a 4-year institution. See your advisor for options.

For more information about the MAT program contact Dr. Fred Groves at 417-836-6769.