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Masters of Arts in Teaching Program Overview

University of Arkansas 

The University of Arkansas College of Education & Health Professions offers a five-year program leading to licensure in elementary education (Kindergarten through sixth grade), the Bachelor of Science (B.S.E.) degree in Childhood Education, and Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) degree in Elementary Education. Students who obtain their B.S.E. in Childhood Education from the university will have completed the prerequisite course requirements for entry into the M.A.T. program. The M.A.T. degree program is a 33-semester-hour program.

Because elementary school teachers are typically responsible for the entire curriculum, the program at the University of Arkansas prepares teachers to teach language arts, reading, writing, math, science, and social studies using the Arkansas State Frameworks and Common Core State Standards. U of A teacher candidates is continually engaged in field experiences throughout their programs of study. Teacher candidates progress from observational field placements to practicum placements, and eventually to a full-time, yearlong internship experience. Field experiences take place in public school classrooms in districts that engage in partnerships with the University of Arkansas.  The program focuses on an intentional balance between learning on campus and practicing in local school sites. We believe that high-quality clinical practice (field experiences and internships) is CENTRAL to preparation in becoming a highly effective teacher. 

Students majoring in the Elementary Education M.A.T. must choose from among four concentrations:

  • E.S.L. for K-6 Concentration

  • Gifted and Talented for K-6 Concentration

  • Reading for K-6 Concentration

  • STEM Education for K-6 Concentration


This college is accredited by the Arkansas State Board of Education, the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP), the Higher Learning Commission and the North Central Association.  The M.A.T. program at the University of Arkansas has been recognized for excellence in teacher preparation by the American Association of Teacher Educators. 

College of Education and Health Professions Conceptual Framework

The Conceptual Framework for the University of Arkansas, a provider for Educator Preparation Programs (EPP), is derived from the mission of the University and College of Education and Health Professions (COEHP) and from professional literature. The Framework represents the views of numerous constituencies, including EPP faculty, public school teachers, administrators, and candidates. The Conceptual Framework serves to establish a "shared vision for ... efforts in preparing educators to work effectively in P-12 schools."  In so doing, it provides guidance regarding factors "likely to have the strongest effects" on outcomes for students (U. S. Department of Education, 2013, p. 12).

The vision for U of A Educator Preparation Programs is to develop educational professionals who are leaders in the areas of essential knowledge, evolving technology, research findings, and reflective practice in a diverse and dynamic global society. The overarching goal of the EPP is to offer effective and academically rigorous preparatory programs for future educators, as scholar-practitioners, who advocate for the learning of all children. The scholar-practitioner reflects a professional who is knowledgeable about the subject matter and pedagogy; skillful in teaching and managing classrooms and schools; caring and supportive of students, families, school staff, and the community; and a professional who continues to learn and who embodies ethical behavior. 

The Scholar-Practitioner Model forms the basis for preparing school professionals. This preparation occurs at the basic and advanced levels and ties directly into the COEHP mission of enhancing the quality of life of citizens of Arkansas and the nation.  Teachers, administrators, counselors, and other school professionals play a significant role in the quality of life for all citizens.

Educator Preparation Programs (EPPs) at the University of Arkansas believe in the nature of continuous improvement.  It is through the cycles of assessment that all professional programs can evaluate their impact on their teacher candidates. This culture of assessment extends to the way candidates’ are prepared through their professional learning experiences.

Graduates from the University of Arkansas are expected to be scholar-practitioners who advocate for the learning of all children in diverse settings. Proficiencies reflect the knowledge, skills, and dispositions identified by specialized professional associations (SPAs), CAEP, INTASC, and criteria found in the Arkansas Department of Education Teacher Excellence & Support System (TESS), based on the Danielson Framework for Teaching. Scholar-practitioners are teachers, administrators, counselors, and other school professionals who value theory and research, understand that theory and practice are complementary and mutually reinforcing, and are committed to the enhancement of teaching, learning, and professional practice.  The outcomes of the University of Arkansas EPP focus on the preparation of professional educators who will be scholar-practitioners that will assume leadership roles in education and enable them to enhance the quality of life of citizens in Arkansas, the nation and the world.

Qualified Scholar Practitioner 

Knowledgeable.  Professional educators must possess general knowledge, content knowledge, pedagogical knowledge, and professional knowledge to be effective. I feel that I am committed to being a lifelong learner as I am willing to grow with my students each and every year. 

Skillful.  Aspects of a skillful teacher are planning, implementing, and modeling best practices including best technology practices. During my internship experience, I have analyzed and practiced a variety of teaching methods that will be useful when providing differentiated ways to instruct students. 

Caring. The classroom environment created in a classroom should be inclusive, supportive, and inviting to all. The goal of the classroom teacher should be to invest in her students and aim to utilize any and all resources to best meet the needs of students. 

Professional. As a lifelong learner, I plan to continue to grow my skill set by educating myself on the best classroom practices. It is my responsibility to mold my classroom to meet the needs of my students, therefore professional developments, educational research, and organizations will be crucial to building the foundation with my students. 

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