A Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) is a graduate degree that prepares individuals with a bachelor’s degree in the liberal arts or sciences for a teaching career in grades K through 12. In addition to including education courses that meet state certification requirements, MAT programs focus on providing teaching candidates with an academic foundation in education, as well as practical classroom skills. An MAT usually includes a full semester of student teaching under the guidance of a certified teacher. MAT programs offer subject areas of concentration that correspond with different grade levels. Candidates who want to teach in elementary schools concentrate on multiple subjects, while middle school and secondary school teaching candidates concentrate on a single subject area.
The Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT), Master of Education (M.Ed.), and Master of Science in Teaching are advanced degrees for teachers. The main difference between these degrees is that the MAT typically prepares teachers for initial certification, while the M.Ed. is primarily earned by professional teachers who want to gain more knowledge in a specific education subject area, such as curriculum instruction or administration.