Master of Arts in Teaching, Mathematics Areas of Study

WGU Master of Arts in Teaching—Mathematics

The Master of Arts in Teaching-Mathematics is a competency-based degree program that prepares students at the graduate level both to be licensed to teach mathematics in grades 5-9 or 5-12 and to develop significant skills in mathematics curriculum development, design, and evaluation. All work in this degree program is online with the exception of the Demonstration Teaching and in-classroom field experience components. Students enter this program with a significant background in mathematics and then proceed through study in the Foundations of Teaching, Instructional Planning and Presentation, Mathematics Education, Preclinical Experiences, Demonstration Teaching, and Research Fundamentals.

Foundations of Teaching

Foundations of Teaching Practice Integration
Foundations of Teaching Practice Integration helps students to review and synthesize foundational teaching concepts including classroom management, human development, assessment, diversity and inclusion, and the historical, legal, and philosophical foundations of education.

Instructional Planning and Presentation

Instructional Planning and Presentation in Mathematics
Instructional Planning and Presentation assists students as they continue to build instructional planning skills. Topics include unit and lesson planning, instructional presentation strategies, assessment, engagement, integration of learning across the curriculum, effective grouping strategies, technology in the classroom, and using data to inform instruction.

Mathematics Education

Mathematics Learning and Teaching
In this course you will develop the knowledge and skills necessary to become a prospective and practicing educator. You will be able to use a variety of instructional strategies to effectively facilitate the learning of mathematics. This course focuses on selecting appropriate resources, using multiple strategies, and instructional planning, with methods based on research and problem solving. A deep understanding of the knowledge, skills, and disposition of mathematics pedagogy is necessary to become an effective secondary mathematics educator.

Mathematics History and Technology
In this course, you will learn about a variety of technological tools for doing mathematics, and you will develop a broad understanding of the historical development of mathematics. You will come to understand that mathematics is a very human subject that comes from the macro-level sweep of cultural and societal change, as well as the micro-level actions of individuals with personal, professional, and philosophical motivations. Most importantly, you will learn to evaluate and apply technological tools and historical information to create an enriching student-centered mathematical learning environment.

Preclinical Experiences

Preclinical Experiences in Mathematics
Preclinical Experiences in Mathematics provides students the opportunity to observe and participate in a wide range of in-classroom teaching experiences to develop the skills and confidence necessary to be an effective teacher. Students will reflect on and document at least 60 hours of in-classroom observations. Prior to entering the classroom for the observations, students will be required to meet several requirements including a cleared background check, passing scores on the state or WGU required basic skills exam, a completed resume, philosophy of teaching, and professional photo.

Over the course of your observations, you will:

  • examine the interaction between instruction and learning,
  • review the impact of culture on learning,
  • reflect on teaching strategies and assessment practices,
  • consider current classroom practices as they relate to the student experience,
  • address the needs of exceptional learners, and
  • analyze general and program-specific instructional methods based on student needs.

Once you have completed a majority of your coursework and your initial preclinical experiences, you will enter and observe a live classroom. This will be an excellent opportunity for you to see real-world examples of the principles you have learned. Theory often diverges from practice when it must be applied in a real-world, dynamic situation. In this course, you will reflect on your previous coursework, and look forward to the requirements still needed in preparation for Demonstration Teaching and graduation.

Demonstration Teaching

Supervised Demonstration Teaching in Mathematics
The Supervised Demonstration Teaching in Mathematics courses involve a series of classroom performance observations by the host teacher and clinical supervisor that develop comprehensive performance data about the teacher candidate’s skills.

Teacher Work Sample in Mathematics
The Teacher Work Sample is a culmination of the wide variety of skills learned during your time in the Teachers College at WGU. In order to be a competent and independent classroom teacher, you will showcase a collection of your content, planning, instructional, and reflective skills in this professional assessment.

Professional Portfolio
You will create an online teaching portfolio that includes professional artifacts (e.g. resume and Philosophy of Teaching Statement) that demonstrate the skills you have acquired throughout your Demonstration Teaching experience.

Cohort Seminar
The Cohort Seminar provides mentoring and supports teacher candidates during their demonstration teaching period by providing weekly collaboration and instruction related to the demonstration teaching experience. It facilitates their demonstration of competence in becoming reflective practitioners, adhering to ethical standards, practicing inclusion in a diverse classroom, exploring community resources, building collegial and collaborative relationships with teachers, and considering leadership and supervisory skills.

Research Fundamentals

Research Foundations
The Research Foundations course focuses on the essential concepts in educational research, including quantitative, qualitative, mixed, and action research; measurement and assessment; and strategies for obtaining warranted research results.

Research Questions and Literature Review
The Research Questions and Literature Reviews for Educational Research course focuses on how to conduct a thorough literature review that addresses and identifies important educational research topics, problems, and questions, and helps determine the appropriate kind of research and data needed to answer one's research questions and hypotheses.

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