For graduate degrees: the population
Students tend to enroll in graduate degrees to enhance their career progression and future professional goals. In addition, most graduate degrees have specific admissions criterion requiring previous undergraduate courses or undergraduate or professional experience.
Based on these attributes, it makes sense to identify the student populations who would benefit most from the degree. This allows students to easily identify whether they have the qualifications for a program and whether the program will prepare them for the future goals toward which they aim.
Here is a good example of two programs that appear similar from their names, but which the faculty designed for different populations:
Science Teaching M.S.
MAT is a challenging Master’s program that prepares science teachers for teaching in grades 7-12 and emphasizes the development of a teacher’s ability to develop research-based teaching strategies that make science accessible to learners. Specific attention is directed at the interaction of schools, learners, pedagogy, subject matter and curriculum. The program is unique in that it focuses solely on science education. This allows you to be in a supportive cohort of high-achieving science peers taught by faculty who specialize and conduct research in science education. We strive to provide a cutting-edge, high-quality program that will utilize and build upon your science knowledge and experiences to become an innovative middle or high school teacher. The program is designed for students with strong undergraduate preparation in the sciences seeking certification to teach biology, chemistry, physics, earth science, or general sciences at the secondary (middle and high school) level.
Master of Arts in Teaching Science
The MA degree is designed to meet your needs as a professional science educator. The program can be taken on the Flagstaff campus or synchronous online through video conferencing. Whether you want to increase your knowledge of pedagogy or science content in order to improve your practice or you are interested in becoming a leader in your school or district, we are here to help you.
The MAST degree is designed for:
- Licensed secondary (middle or high school) science teachers pursuing advanced knowledge in the profession.
- Secondary science teachers preparing for leadership roles such as secondary curriculum, instruction or professional development specialists, department heads, etc.
- International science educators interested in extending their knowledge and skills through engaging in the American school system.
While many MA students continue to work during the program, it is possible to complete the program as a full-time, on-campus student. This allows you to take a greater variety of science content courses and provides the opportunity to engage with faculty on science education research projects. Competitive graduate assistantships are available to mitigate tuition costs and provide a monthly stipend (see the funding section below). We would highly recommend this option for incoming international students.