The Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) is designed to prepare individuals who are seeking initial certification to be a classroom teacher. Graduate candidates may pick one of the following areas of certification at the high school level: biology, English, mathematics, or social studies; or graduate candidates may pick one of the following areas for certification in grades K-12: art, music, physical education or Spanish.
Initial Teacher Preparation Unit Standards Framework Preamble Initial teacher preparation at Winthrop University is built around the central belief that teachers must be able to demonstrate knowledge, skills, and dispositions that produce learners prepared for 21st century challenges within the context of a free and democratic society. Through field-focused learning in school partnership settings, candidates demonstrate evolving skills in the domains of diverse needs of learners, learning environment, technology, assessment, instruction and learner engagement, literacy, and professional learning and ethical practice. These domains are embedded throughout an integrated series of classroom and field experiences involving core and discipline-specific curricula, grounded in evidence-based practice and professional standards, and designed to support teacher candidates as they learn about themselves, individual learners, classrooms, and the American school system. Expectations for Candidate Professional Dispositions I. Fairness The teacher candidate assumes responsibility for the learning of all students in the classroom in a caring, nondiscriminatory, and equitable manner and persists in effective learning for all students.
II. Integrity The teacher candidate demonstrates a recognition of and adherence to the moral, legal, and ethical principles of the University and the profession.
III. Communication The teacher candidate interacts in ways that convey respect and sensitivity.
IV. Commitment The teacher candidate embraces the complexity of work through reflective practice and professional growthUS7. Professional Learning and Ethical Practice The teacher candidate participates in ongoing professional learning and critical reflection, upholds ethical and legal standards, and articulates the impact of social, legal, and political contexts on American schooling.
Unit Standards and Elements
US1. Diverse Needs of Learners The teacher candidate plans and implements differentiated instructional strategies for diverse learners (including, but not limited to, English language learners, learners who are living in poverty, learners with disabilities, gifted and talented learners, and other exceptional needs in general education settings) to achieve learning outcomes. US2. Learning Environment The teacher candidate creates a positive, safe, and caring environment that promotes learning through active engagement and respect for individual differences. US3. Technology The teacher candidate plans and implements meaningful learning opportunities that engage learners in the ethical and appropriate use of technology to meet learning outcomes. US4. Assessment The teacher candidate designs, selects, and implements multiple assessments and systematically uses data to make instructional decisions that support, monitor, and promote learning. US5. Instruction and Learner Engagement The teacher candidate uses developmental and pedagogical content knowledge to independently and collaboratively plan and implement learning experiences that are relevant, appropriately challenging, and aligned with curriculum goals and standards. US6. Literacy The teach candidate implements essential components of literacy instruction (reading, writing, listening, speaking, viewing, and visual representation) within the discipline(s) to enhance opportunities for learning. US7. Professional Learning and Ethical Practice The teacher candidate participates in ongoing professional learning and critical reflection, upholds ethical and legal standards, and articulates the impact of social, legal, and political contexts on American schooling. To ensure knowledge of content, MAT teacher candidates are required to achieve the South Carolina passing score on the PRAXIS II Specialty Area Examination prior to the internship semester. Candidates for the MAT in Spanish and French must achieve a passing score on the PRAXIS II Specialty Area Examination prior to admission to the program. In addition, successful graduates must obtain a satisfactory score on the PRAXIS II Principles of Learning and Teaching before earning teacher certification. MAT teacher candidates must demonstrate dispositions that reflect the highest standards of the profession as they relate to students, their families, and their communities. The Richard W. Riley College of Education has established appropriate criteria for professional dispositions in the following areas: professional commitment; communication skills; interpersonal skills; classroom personality; emotional make-up; and academic integrity. Further information about the criteria is distributed to teacher candidates in a dispositions booklet. The MAT curriculum covers a variety of subjects from professional core courses to courses specific to the graduate candidate’s content area. Acquired competencies emphasized in this program will enable graduates to assume leadership roles in their classrooms, departments and schools. Through a dual advisement system that includes content and education faculty, transcripts will be evaluated and a program of study will be developed for each student. Additional course work may be required to address deficiencies in the content area.