In order to earn a Master of Education degree students must maintain a minimum cumulative 3.0 GPA, complete at least 36 credit hours of graduate-level coursework including a 6-credit practicum, have successfully presented a research thesis, and have passed each gateway.
Gateway 1: Entrance
Occurs for M.Ed. candidates at the time they make initial application to the M.Ed. program. Candidates move to Gateway 2 when all conditions for admissions have been met.
Gateway 2: Pre-Practicum
Requires that candidates meet with the program director to discuss assessment requirements of the appropriate specialized professional association., The program director ensures that candidates have proper clearance to work in schools and that program requirements have been maintained. (Professional associations based on program include: International Literacy Association, International Society for Technology Education, or Educational Leadership Constituency Council)
Gateway 3: Transition
Occurs midway through the practicum when candidates submit a log of experiences and reflections to the university supervisor. Through a comparative analysis of the appropriate specialized professional association standards with the log of experiences and reflections, a plan for the remainder of the practicum is developed.
Gateway 4: Program Completion
Is the successful completion of the practicum (with a rubric score of 2.0+), research capstone and defense (2.0 or better), and all program assessments and requirements as determined by a transcript analysis.
Program Completion Thesis/Portfolio
M.Ed. students are required to complete a graduate research capstone. MEDUC 524 /MEDUC 630 and MEDUC 525 /MEDUC 631 support capstone development. Guidelines on the research process and completion of capstone are published in the manual: “Policies, Procedures and Guidelines for Successful Completion of Master of Education Capstone” (www.msmary.edu/medrequirements)
Admission and Advancement to Candidacy
Advancement to candidacy may be awarded to those who have fulfilled all admission requirements. Upon advancement to candidacy, M.Ed. and MAT students have five years to complete their program. If necessary, students may petition the Graduate Committee for an extension. All graduate students must maintain a 3.00 GPA
Admission and Advancement Decision Appeals
Applicants who wish to appeal a decision regarding special student enrollment or advancement to candidacy decisions must submit a written request to the Chair of the Education Department (for MAT students) or to the M.Ed. director (for M.Ed. students).
If a student has a strong undergraduate background or significant professional experiences in a field, he or she may request to have a core course waived by the chair (MAT)/MEd director. A waiver is not an award of credit, but it permits the student to substitute an approved higher-level course in place of the course requirement. Waivers are awarded to strengthen a student’s academic program.
Students interested in pursuing a course waiver may request an application for waiver from the Education Department.
Sessions are offered on a year-round basis.
Fall Semester: Fall I Session and Fall II Session Spring Semester: Spring I Session and Spring II Session Summer Semester: Summer I Session and Summer II Session Fall and spring sessions are each 8 weeks. Summer sessions are 5 weeks each.
Professional Development School (PDS)
A Professional Development School (PDS) is a collaboratively planned and implemented partnership for the academic and clinical preparation of teacher candidates and the continuous professional development of both school system and institution of higher education faculty. The focus of a PDS partnership is improved student performance through research-based teaching and learning.
The university enjoys a long-standing PDS partnership with elementary, middle, and high schools in Frederick County, Md. The standards for Maryland PDSs hold that all teacher candidates be provided equitable access to an extensive internship (at least 100 consecutive days) in a PDS. Our field placement coordinator, working in concert with our PDS liaison and building principals, arranges internship placements in PDS. A mentor teacher and professor in residence or university supervisor support candidates’ professional development toward meeting our benchmarks. Upon graduation, candidates are expected to demonstrate standards-based teaching that is measured through evaluation of teaching performance and portfolio assessment. The Education department uses the standards of the Interstate New Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (InTASC) in its benchmarks. Teacher candidates are also expected to demonstrate the personal dispositions that relate to successful teaching.
Some graduate courses require several field experiences. The field experience course requirements will usually be met at one of the established Professional Development Schools (PDS) in Frederick County, Maryland.
Master of Education students culminate their program of study with a practicum. A practicum provides prospective reading specialists/ technology facilitators/instructional leaders with scaffolded opportunities to experience the multiple roles of the reading/technology/instructional specialist. With an experienced reading/ technology specialist or school administrator as a mentor and a university supervisor, participants will develop a Professional Development Plan so as to further develop and demonstrate their proficiency with the International Literacy Association (ILA) for Reading Specialists, International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) for Technology Facilitation or Educational Leadership Constituencies Council (ELCC) for Instructional Leadership. Each practicum requires 90 hours of on-the-job work and approximately 270 hours of preparatory time. Lab fee applies.
Mount St. Mary’s University emphasizes the integration of technology into teaching as outlined by the International Society for Technology Education (ISTE) and their National Education Technology standards for students (NETS-S) and educators (NETS-E). Coursework models best practice in uses of technology as tools to enhance student learning.
The Mount uses Canvas as its course management platform and offers coursework both online and in hybrid formats. MAT candidates use Chalk and Wire, an e-portfolio system, to develop their program completer portfolio.
Program Completer Status and Certification
In order to apply for certification through the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE), a teacher candidate must be a program completer. To be a program completer, the teacher candidate must have completed all program requirements, including the submission of official qualifying Praxis II scores for the state of Maryland. It is imperative that students designate Mount St. Mary’s University and the MSDE as score recipients. For specific details about seeking Maryland Certification, consult the Maryland State Department of Education Certification Branch (www.marylandpublicschools.org/MSDE/divisions/Certification).
Teaching Certification (Initial Licensure)
Obtaining MSDE certification requires that candidates:
- Complete an approved program.
- Meet Maryland’s qualifying scores on the basic skills test and Praxis II.
- Send a cover letter with name, Social Security number, complete mailing address, phone number, area of certification seeking, and requisite fee. The student must also submit official transcripts for all coursework taken and send test scores for the required teacher certification tests.
For specific details and possible additional requirements, log on to http://certification.msde.state.md.us