Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT)

The Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) is a licensure option for students who wish to teach in a secondary content area while also earning a Master’s degree. Southern Miss offers convenient schedules and academic preparation at a research-extensive university with a strong history of teacher preparation for more than 100 years.

Applicants should understand that we do not guarantee to meet the licensure requirements of states other than Mississippi. Candidates will be responsible for verifying that your program of study meets your desired state’s licensure requirements. 

For admission, students are expected to apply through the Graduate School. 


Admissions Information 

State of Mississippi mandated admission requirements include:

  1. Official transcripts indicating a Bachelor's degree from a regionally/nationally accredited institution with a major other than education.
  2. Passing Praxis CORE Academic Skills for Educators test results, ACT scores with a 21+ composite score, or SAT equivalent to a 21+ ACT score.  
  3. Passing Praxis II (Specialty Area) Test, from the USM-approved subject area list. 
    • Candidates will be required to secure a teaching position in the subject area that matches their Praxis II Test. One cannot, for instance, pass the Praxis II in Chemistry and then take a position teaching English.
    • Along with the Praxis II requirement, the state requires a cohort GPA of 3.0. Our cohorts average above a 3.0.
  4. Submit to a background check.

University of Southern Mississippi mandated admission requirements include: 

  1. A 2.75+ GPA on the last 60 credit hours of the Bachelor's degree
  2. 3 Letters of Recommendation with the Graduate School application.
  3. Letter of Intent / Statement of Purpose written according to the guidelines provided within the Graduate School application.
  4. A subscription to the Tk20 Assessment System. Tk20 provides an electronic portfolio and storage system for students as well as tracks, stores, retrieves, and analyzes data for accreditation purposes. Subscriptions can be purchased here. Proof of purchase must be provided at first advisement meeting.

The GRE is not required.  

The application deadline for fall enrollment to the MAT program is August 1, 2017. Additional extensions will not be possible. 


Program Information

The program is 33 semester credit hours (see here plan of study  and course descriptions here). The first 9 hours (CIS 603, CIS 570, and REF 632) are offered only in the summer. Upon successful completion ("B" or better in each class) of the first 9 hours, participants apply to the Mississippi Department of Education for a 3-year non-renewable temporary license and seek employment in a Mississippi school district. The Teacher Center at the Mississippi Department of Education may be of assistance in finding employment/internship. Once employment/internship has been secured, the candidate will register for his/her last licensure classes, CIS 694 and CIS 794. Southern Miss faculty will make classroom visits during the year as well and support candidate growth. Once all other coursework is successfully completed, the student can apply through the Mississippi Department of Education for a five-year license and earn their degree. 


Additional Information

There are scholarships and loans available for teacher education programs, and students are encouraged to apply.  

USM approved licensure areas can be found here: About our Alternate Route Programs.

Praxis II and CORE Information:

  • The test codes and minimum score requirements for Praxis CORE and Praxis II can be found online. To register and find dates for tests, visit For additional questions, please contact the University Testing Center at 118 College Drive #5089, Hattiesburg, MS 39406; Walker Science Building, room 217; 601-266-6123. Applications with incorrect or outdated test codes will be denied. 
Contact for More Information:

Dr. Jay Howell, Program Coordinator & Faculty Member - Hattiesburg Campus
Phone: 601-266-6570
Dr. Bridgette L. Davis, Faculty Member - Gulf Coast Campus
Phone: 228-214-3372