April 1 for Summer Semester Admission (classes begin in May)
July 15 for Fall Semester Admission (classes begin in late August)
November 1 for Spring Semester Admission (classes begin in January)
All application materials must be submitted no later than the posted deadline. Applicants typically hear about their admission status four to six weeks after the application deadline.
Requirements to Be Considered for Admissions
Review of applications occurs at two levels:
- at the TE Department level by MATC faculty
- at the university level by the Graduate School Admissions Office.
Applications are reviewed by MATC faculty after the posted deadline each semester. Faculty review the application file and decide whether to recommend, accept, accept provisionally or deny the application based on the following criteria:
- Applicants must possess a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent from an accredited institution. Consideration is given to the quality of undergraduate courses taken and grades earned in one’s major area(s) of study and teaching;
- Applicants must have earned a minimum grade-point average of 3.0 for the final two years of undergraduate study.
- Faculty look for a match between the applicant’s goals and resources, and what the MATC program can offer. Sometimes further clarification is sought from an applicant, and based on that information, they may be accepted, denied or referred to another program that appears to be a better match to the applicant’s stated goals and interests.
- Faculty review all of the other materials required by the MATC program to complete an application file: the applicant’s “goals statement,” professional essay, teaching and professional experiences as represented in the applicant’s résumé, and in the three recommendation letters.
- The GRE (Graduate Record Exam) is not required, but GRE scores will be reviewed if available at the time of application.
How to Apply
Begin your application via MSU’s application management system. Follow the steps listed below:
- Create account and login.
- Start New Application: Select Graduate from dropdown menu and Create Application.
- Provide Personal Background information.
- Under Other Information, select Major Preference, scroll to the College of Education and select Teaching and Curriculum (Online Program) (Masters). Select the first semester you wish to enroll. Provide additional details about Enrollment Information, Communications preferences, and Financial Aid. Providing information on your experiences in the COVID-19 section is optional. Provide responses to Conduct Questions and Other from the dropdown menus and in text boxes where appropriate.
- Include all Academic History information. To begin, click on Add Institution.
- Test Scores: The GRE (Graduate Record Exam) is not required. All international applicants and applicants whose first language is not English must be able to be proficient in English as a condition for regular admission to MSU. Such applicants will be required to demonstrate their proficiency by meeting certain minimum standards. See Multilingual and International Applicants below for more information.
- Employment/Activities Page: Leave blank. You’ll share that information in your resume.
- References: Using Add Recommender, provide contact information for three people who are familiar with your academic and professional accomplishments and potential for success. The portal will then send out recommendation requests to the people you listed. The requests come from email@example.com.
- MATC Supplemental Questions: Provide your Goal Statement and Writing Sample as PDFs. View descriptions for both statements in Required Application Materials below. Select which area of interest you wish to study during your time as an MATC student (view descriptions of each on our website).
- Provide your Signature electronically by typing your full legal name, then select Confirm.
- The Review section will provide you with a list of potential errors if a section has not been completed. Please return to those sections and make the appropriate corrections before finalizing the application and submitting your payment.
- Once you have finalized your application, you will complete the payment ($65 for domestic applicants of $75 for international applicants).
Once you have finalized your application, you will receive a confirmation email. You can then login to the application portal to upload and track your application materials. If you cannot submit the required materials in PDF format or have any questions, please contact the MATC Admissions Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Required Application Materials
To complete your university application, you will need to provide the following information and materials:
Three Letters of Recommendation
In the application portal, provide contact information for three persons who are familiar with your academic and professional accomplishments and potential for success. The portal will then send out recommendation requests to the people you listed. The requests come from email@example.com. Your recommenders must send their letters directly to MSU via the application portal.
In a one- to three-page document, outline your professional goals and how the MATC will help you achieve those goals.
An extended writing sample, the “Professional Essay,” is an essential component to your application.
Directions for professional essay:
- Include a cover sheet with your name and identify which option (below) you selected
- Type your response double-spaced
- Do not exceed 5 pages in length, but be sure to write at least 3 pages
Option #1: Examining a “Problem of Practice”
“Problems of practice” occur regularly in teaching. These “problems” are difficult and reoccurring classroom situations that have no “ideal” solution. Magdalena Lampert, for instance, describes recurring times in her mathematics classroom where she has to choose a course of action, usually in the moment—trying to accommodate individual needs while also weighing the effects on the class as a whole (Lampert, 2001). Yet, frustrating as they may feel, “problems of practice” are also opportunities for learning to become a better teacher. In your professional essay, please examine a “problem of practice” that you have encountered directly in your teaching or observed during your teacher preparation fieldwork or internship. Use the following as a guide for structuring your essay:
- Describe a “problem of practice” you encountered or observed. Provide as detailed an account as possible with examples to illustrate the problem. (Please do not use actual names of students, teachers, administrators, etc.).
- Since problems of practice can be opportunities for learning, both in the short run and for the longer term, what did you learn right away from the problem you described, and what does that problem indicate you might need to learn as a teacher in the longer run? Why?
Option #2: Deepening One’s Understanding of Subject Matter Content
Understanding the discipline and the content that one teaches is an important ingredient of teaching. While teachers learn much subject matter knowledge through content course work and teacher education courses, there is a great deal about content that teachers learn in preparation for and even in the midst of teaching it to students. In fact, many teachers often state that they did not really understand particular content until they had to teach it to their students. Use the following as a guide for structuring your essay:
- Describe in detail, and with examples, a teaching experience in the classroom, tutoring, or as a classroom assistant you have had in which you found yourself relearning, understanding more deeply, or questioning the depth of your understanding about a particular concept or big idea in what you have taught to students.
- Write about the lessons that you took away from this experience about yourself as a teacher and about the intellectual work that is involved in teaching subject matter to students.
Request the registrar of each college or university attended to send one copy of each official transcript. We cannot accept transcripts sent by applicants. Colleges and universities generally require both fees and time to process requests for transcripts. To be considered “official” the transcripts must have a university seal or notarization mark and be sent directly by the institution electronically to firstname.lastname@example.org or to the following address:
MATC Admission Coordinator
620 Farm Lane – Room 347
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI 48824-1034
- MSU will not accept electronic transcripts issued by international universities. If you are applying from an institution outside of the U.S., please have your official transcripts sent via postal mail to the address listed above.
- MSU alumni do not need to formally request official MSU transcripts. Enter your MSU degree information as requested in the application portal and upload unofficial transcripts (which you can access through student.msu.edu).
The application fee ($65 for domestic applicants of $75 for international applicants) is paid within MSU’s applicant portal.
Information for Multilingual and International Applicants
MATC courses are offered in a fully online format, therefore residency in the US is not required to complete this program. If you are an international applicant interested in the program, please note that the MATC program does not fulfill the academic requirements to apply for an F-1 or J-1 visa.
All international applicants and applicants whose first language is not English must be proficient in English as a condition for regular admission to MSU. Such applicants will be required to demonstrate their proficiency by meeting certain minimum standards. Find the most up-to-date information on accepted English language tests for international students on The Graduate School’s website.
English language tests must have been taken within two years of a student’s application. Achieving an acceptable score on one of the tests does not, by itself, guarantee an applicant’s admission to the program.
Applicants should have all test scores sent directly from the testing agency electronically or to:
Office of Admissions
Michigan State University
Hannah Administration Building
426 Auditorium Road, Room 250
East Lansing, MI 48824
International transcripts must be submitted as official documents directly from each post-secondary institution. In most cases, these documents will need to be sent in official, sealed, issuing institution envelopes. Records must show courses taken, grades earned, and must be translated into English if the original records are in another language. Translations must be done by the issuing institution, a certified translator in the country of study, or by an American Translator’s Association certified translator in the US. The original record should be also included.
MATC Virtual Information Session
Register to attend the next MATC virtual information session on March 11 at 4 p.m. EST. Hosted by Program Director Dr. Curtis Lewis, this event will provide an overview of the program, the student experience and the application process. Event attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions and receive an application fee waiver. Register to attend via MSU >>
Curious About the Online Student Experience?
Join our “Ask An Online Master’s Student” event on March 19 at 4 p.m. ET. Hear from current College of Education online students about how they chose MSU, what it’s like balancing a master’s degree while working full time and their strategies for making that balance easier. Register to attend via Zoom >>