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Masters in teaching

Master of Arts in Teaching

Elementary Education

Final Submit Deadline

July 13, 2018

Class Start Date

August 27, 2018

Time to Completion

20 months


Ensure that future generations have the tools and skills required to address society’s most pressing concerns tomorrow with an online master of arts in teaching (MAT) from American University. Students enrolled in the master’s in teaching program will have access to American University’s cutting-edge research, engaging coursework, and crucial partnerships with academic institutions throughout Washington, DC. Under the guidance of our award-winning faculty, students will learn how to empower others to make a difference and make a lasting, positive impact on communities in need.

American University’s online MAT is CAEP-recognized and designed for individuals who have a bachelor’s degree and are interested in obtaining a teaching license in elementary education (grades 1-6). Our top-notch faculty consists of respected specialists and researchers, and their educational resources are grounded in innovative, evidence-based techniques. Given our university’s strong political and social legacy, students enrolled in our master’s in teaching program will have the skills and resources needed to drive progress both inside and outside of the classroom.

Program Highlights

  • Earn your degree in 20 months

  • Accredited locally by DC (OSSE) and nationally with CAEP

  • Complete student teaching in your local area

  • No previous training in education necessary

  • Obtain over 600 hours of experience in a classroom setting

  • Become part of a diverse network of talented students from all over the United States and more than 150 countries


The education experts who have designed and run our master’s in teaching program understand that while grounding in a theoretical framework is an important part of training teachers, it’s hands-on experience in a real-life classroom setting that allows great future teachers to solidify their practical skills in elementary education (grades 1-6). For that reason, practical experience is an integral part of our online teaching program.

All students start with foundational online graduate courses for teachers such as Theories of Educational Psychology and Human Development, and then go on to earn at least 18 credit hours.

Student Stories

photograph of Emily Harden teaching students.

Emily H.

This year I'm working as an educational aide in a pre-k3 classroom at Hyde Addison Elementary in Georgetown. I'm doing my practicum and student teaching in my classroom. Being able to work while I complete these requirements and go to class at night has been really fantastic.

Matthew Koh.

Matthew K.

After two school years as a partner teacher and student teacher at Mann, I was hired last spring (2014) to be the school's full-time science teacher. I have my own classroom and teach grades K-4 across the week.

Photograph of Catalina Rincon teaching students.

Catalina R.

I am currently at K-1-2 classroom teacher at an independent school in Denver, Colorado called Stanley British Primary. In the future I see myself continuing to teach at the Early Childhood level! Not sure if that means continuing to teach where I'm at — or branching out to other types of schools! For now I am happy where I am.

Alumni & Outcomes

Our alumni are working to change the lives of students throughout the country and the world. Within six months of completing their programs, 100% of American University’s MAT graduates are working, continuing their education, or both.*

Our students channel their talents into a wide variety of career roles:

*American University does not guarantee employment after graduation.

Program Head
Bilingual Teacher
Policy Maker
Classroom Teacher
Educational Game Designer
Curriculum Specialist
Art Coordinator
Adult Educator
Learning Specialist
University supervisor with student.

What makes the online master’s in teaching unique?

American University’s master’s in teaching online program was built on the idea that a successful education system filled with exceptional teachers improves our democracy and society by continuing to help individuals progress mentally and socially. With that philosophy in mind, the program is grounded in four principles, which influence everything from course design to encouraged collaborations to the projects and organizations we partner with. Those principles are equity, community, diversity, and excellence.

Students enrolled in the online master of arts in teaching can expect an emphasis in cultural competency and diverse perspectives, an interesting and progressive curriculum, a focus on cultivating community among students (no matter where they might be based), and faculty members who are leaders in their fields.

Daniela Silver teaching a group of students.

Who should choose this online teaching degree?

American University is looking for students who want to be teachers who change lives, empowering the next generation of change makers and ensuring that students have the tools to effectively transform their communities. Our online format will enable you to stay rooted in the community where you are as you work toward your degree—a factor that we know is often important to the active community members we tend to attract.

Without passionate, trained, and dedicated teachers, our society simply cannot function to its democratic ideal. And teachers are currently in short supply in this country: according to the Learning Policy Institute, the United States faced a shortage of approximately 60,000 teachers in the 2015-2016 school year. The lack of trained teachers is a real problem that we all face, but we believe that, with our students and talented graduates, we can rise to the challenge together. Help us be a part of that solution.

Professional Licensure Disclaimer Statement

This program meets the requirements for professional teaching licensure in Elementary Education (Grades 1-6) in Washington D.C.  American University cannot guarantee whether the program meets requirements for professional licensure in any other states. American University recommends that you consult with the appropriate licensing agency or board in the state or territory for which you seek to obtain licensure prior to beginning your course of study.

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