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Training Teachers To Provide Equitable Education To All Students.

American University’s School of Education produces graduates with the skills and knowledge to create equitable and excellent learning environments. AU faculty members, including researchers and distinguished scholars, produce cutting-edge research, lead innovative partnerships and outreach, develop relevant and evidence-based coursework, and effect positive change in the most vulnerable communities, both nationally and globally.

The School of Education Online brings the essence of DC culture right to your home. By engaging in class discussions inspired by the political rhetoric of DC, you’ll gain the necessary insight and tools to advance your career as you learn from faculty members who are on the cutting edge of education policy, teaching, and special education.

The Online Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program is committed to training current and aspiring teachers who are dedicated to providing equitable education to all students, regardless of race, socioeconomic background, or learning challenges. Our online program will prepare you to turn learning differences into learning strengths and equip future generations to address society’s most pressing concerns. You’ll engage in cutting-edge curriculum that leverages advancements in neurodevelopment, social-emotional interventions, and a multidisciplinary approach to STEM education.

As an education leader, you’ll create opportunities for all students to thrive and promote equity to advance our society. AU’s Online MAT is CAEP-accredited and designed for individuals with a bachelor’s degree and an interest in earning a teaching license in elementary education.

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Required Credits

33 Credit Hours

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Estimated Time to Completion

Less than two years

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Classroom Hours Completed in Your State of Residence

600 Hours

Program Highlights

  • Earn your degree in 20 months
  • Accredited locally by DC (OSSE) and nationally with CAEP
  • Complete student teaching in your local area
  • We currently have reciprocity in 47 states. Our Enrollment Team can help you research if your state is included
  • 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
  • Learn to teach in-demand STEM skills

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 is at the heart of the fight for social justice.

Online master of arts in teaching students can expect an emphasis in cultural competency and diverse perspectives, an interesting and progressive curriculum, a focus on the STEM skills necessary for tomorrow’s most exciting careers, a focus on cultivating community among students (no matter where they might be based), and faculty members who are leaders in their fields and committed to social justice.

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Fall 2020 Deadlines

Priority Application Deadline
June 12, 2020
Application Complete Deadline
July 10, 2020
Class Start
August 24, 2020

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Information Webinar Sessions

Join our admissions team for a chance to learn more about our Master of Arts in Teaching. Ask any questions you might have around the application process or program requirements, meet a faculty member from the program and more.

Register For The Next Event

Why the American Education System Needs Great Educators?

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National Teacher Shortage

The U.S. is in the middle of an unprecedented teacher shortage and school districts around the nation are struggling to find solutions.
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Growing Teacher Vacancies

Schools are having trouble filling vacant teaching positions, especially those related to STEM and special education.
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Lack of Special Education Teachers

While school districts need more teachers across the board, there’s a particular shortage of K-12 special education teachers in the U.S.
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AU Accelerates Teaching Careers

AU helps aspiring teachers to jumpstart their careers successfully, and most are able to find teaching positions after graduation.


American University’s Master of Arts in Teaching in Elementary Education is not a typical teaching program. We train future teachers who are dedicated to helping ensure that all students in this country—regardless of race, socioeconomic background, or learning challenges—receive the high-quality education they deserve. We help our graduates do this by designing a curriculum that leverages advancements in neurodevelopment, social-emotional interventions, and a multidisciplinary approach to teaching STEM education. More specifically, our curriculum stands apart by equipping teachers to turn learning weaknesses into strengths; to offer to their students a cutting-edge STEM education; and to place a focus on social justice at the heart of their classrooms.

Students enroll in two classes per semester and complete the program in a twenty-month period.

Course Schedule

To complete the online Master of Arts in Teaching program, students must earn 33 credits, which includes 6 hours of student teaching with a required seminar.

Fieldwork is completed across two semesters. First, online MAT students engage in a semester-long practicum, spending two days per week in a local classroom observing and learning new skills. In their final semester, students complete their student-teaching requirement, which requires five days a week in a local classroom to apply and build their practical teaching tools.


Exploration of philosophical, sociological, and political foundations of American education and inquiry into the role schools play in cultural production, maintenance, and transformation and what this means for diverse learners of all ages. Includes an examination of law and policies that affect children and families.

Surveys research literature in learning and human development with an emphasis on the role of educators as decision makers and change agents who are knowledgeable about diversity and multiculturalism. Emphasizes the role today’s educators play on advancing knowledge about instructional technology, human relations, time management, principles of growth and development, and the processes of memory and cognition. Usually Offered: fall, spring, and summer.


Through action research, students explore ways of organizing and managing classrooms to support diverse learners. Students engage in curriculum design and implementation across the curriculum, including instructional planning and using portfolios. The role that families, the community, and other professionals can play in assessment and curriculum planning are explored.

This course focuses on understanding language acquisition, literacy development, and classroom teaching through the lens of cultural and linguistic diversity. Includes class discussion of strategies for teaching literacy with practical application in local elementary schools.


Critical exploration of picture books and adolescent literature with a focus on using children’s literature to explore issues of social justice and equity.

This survey course examines students with diverse learning needs and effective programs designed to provide equitable education for all students. Exceptionalities of students with regard to cognitive, behavioral, and psychological/social differences are the focus of study.


Materials and methods for teaching mathematics to all learners. Emphasis is on analysis of current research and effective mathematics instruction. Includes hands-on interactive math activities and practical application in local elementary schools.

Strategies, materials, methods, and classroom management for teaching science in elementary schools. Examines pedagogy and best practices for effective science education for diverse learners. Includes practical application in local elementary schools.

The practicum enables application of knowledge and theory through supervised field experience in the classroom. Students participate in seminars that enhance learning in the field by encouraging study, reflection, connection, and application of teaching practice. Preparation of a professional portfolio is required.


Focuses on understanding how to support all learners through the use of various strategies, methods, and modes for effective social studies teaching. Emphasis on the analysis of current research in effective social studies teaching and learning. Includes practical application in local elementary schools.

The class meets weekly for students to discuss their teaching experiences and to assist them in developing ideas and strategies to improve their classroom effectiveness. Preparation of a reflective case study and completion of a professional portfolio and an on-line journal are required. Permission: director of teacher education. Note: Completion of relevant methods courses and practicum, and satisfactory academic and professional performance as defined by the Teacher Education Committee are required. Students enroll in this seminar in the semester they are completing their student teaching requirement.

Student Stories

Emily Harden teaching students.
“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.”

Emily H.

Matthew Koh
“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.”

Matthew K.

Catalina Rincon teaching students.
“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.”

Catalina R.

New AU Alums Thrive in All Economic Sectors and in Grad Schools

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  • American International School of Niamey
  • Arlington County Public Schools
  • Arlington Public Schools
  • Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School
  • Cesar Chavez Public Charter School
  • Dallas Independent School District
  • DC Public Schools
  • DC Public Schools - Oyster Adams Elementary School
  • Dolton School District 149
  • Duke Ellington School of the Arts
  • Fairfax County Public Schools
  • Frederick County Public Schools
  • Friendship Public Charter School
  • From the Heart Christian School
  • Mary McLeod Bethune Day Academy PCS
  • Montgomery County Public Schools
  • National Presbyterian School


  • Seattle University

Recent AU Grads are Competitive in the Marketplace

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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 percent 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.

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Program Head

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Bilingual Teacher

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Policy Maker

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Classroom Teacher

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Edu. Game Designer

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Curriculum Specialist

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Art Coordinator

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Adult Educator

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Learning Specialist

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, progressive-minded, 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 2015-16 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 the societal change we all want to see.

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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.