Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is the program online?

While the program is predominantly online and does meet the Arkansas established guidelines for an online program, a few of the MAT classes have minimal face-to-face (F2F) meeting requirements and the program has a few face-to-face meeting requirements (see bulleted list below).

The Program of Study indicates which classes have face-to-face requirements and how often they meet. You can also look up class schedules by semester by visiting www.uca.edu/schedule.

Classes that do have face-to-face components primarily occur early in the program of study. We use this time to get to know you, to let you get to know us, and to train you on the technologies required in the MAT program. When classes do meet, they meet in the evenings or on the weekends on the Conway UCA campus in Mashburn Hall. Directions and campus maps are available on the UCA website.

How do I apply? What are the requirements for acceptance into the program?

Please visit the MAT Admission Requirements page on our website.

Is there an application deadline? What is “Rolling Admission”?

Rolling admission means that we accept applications on a continuous basis. You can see start dates by visiting the UCA Academic Calendar webpage. There are also firm deadlines for applications, which are listed on the MAT Admission page.

Is there a minimum GPA to be accepted into the MAT program?

Yes. The MAT program requires a 2.7 cumulative GPA for acceptance into the program. The UCA Graduate School must receive official transcripts from all of your prior institutions, and they will complete an official evaluation and calculation of your GPA.

What classes do I take?

All of the classes you are required to take in the MAT program are listed on the MAT Program of Study. Graduate school considers 9 hours to be full time. Most candidates in the program take two to three classes per semester.

What options do I have for licensure in the program?

You may choose one of the following options for licensure:

  1. Elementary (grades K-6) – You must be the Teacher of Record to complete Internship.
  2. Middle Childhood (grades 4-8) – It is possible to license in up to 4 content areas (Math, Science, English, and Social Studies). You must pass the Praxis II test for at least 2 of these 4 areas. You can only teach the subjects for which you pass licensure, so it may not be possible to be hired in an “all inclusive” classroom if you do not pass all 4 tests.
  3. Secondary (grades K-12, 4-12, & 7-12) – The options for secondary licensure include areas like English, Business, Social Studies, Math, Life Science, Physical Science and so forth. For a complete listing of secondary areas, please refer to the ADE listing.

Do I have to take the GRE? What about Praxis vs. GRE? When do I have to complete these testing requirements?

The tests you are required to take for retention in the the MAT program are listed on MAT Admission Requirements page and on Praxis Exams page. The MAT program will accept either the GRE or Praxis Core exams. We recommend that you take the Praxis Core. You may take up to one semester’s worth of coursework before submitting passing test scores. If passing scores are not received by the end of your first semester of coursework, you will not be allowed to move forward in the program until those scores are received. You will also not be eligible for a provisional until passing Praxis Core or GRE scores are received.

What is a provisional license?

A provisional license is a teaching license that allows you to be hired as and work as a teacher in Arkansas while you are still in the MAT program and completing the MAT program requirements. You may apply for a provisional license for up to two years by which time you need to have completed all of the MAT program requirements. For information on the Provisional license, visit the Provisional License web page.

MAT candidates teaching under a provisional license MUST maintain enrollment in the MAT program and must have required passing Praxis exams on file.

MAT candidates who move schools from year 1 to year 2 of their provisional license must notify the MAT program office by having their new district complete the Provisional License Recommendation letter.

Is Internship required?

Yes. The state of Arkansas requires all teacher candidates to complete a full semester of internship (student teaching) to be eligible for a standard teaching license. This is a full-time, 16-week commitment that must take place in either the Fall or Spring semester. You have two options for fulfilling this requirement. First, you can make room in your life for this requirement and we will arrange for placement for you in a school. Alternatively, you can secure a teaching position through the provisional license option (see above) and can complete the internship requirements in your own classroom. Elementary (K-6) candidates must secure a teaching position prior to Internship.

How much will the MAT program cost?

For the most up-to-date information, please visit the Student Accounts website.

Are there grants or scholarships available to me?

Generally, it is harder to find funding for graduate level studies. You should talk to the Office of Financial Aid for assistance in this regard. There is also a link on the COE webpage to any graduate scholarships available in the UCA College of Education.

  Teacher education candidates in the following licensure areas can now receive the federal TEACH grant to help pay for their college expenses.  Those who receive funds must agree to a four year service agreement to teach in one of these high need content areas.  Additional eligibility requirements are described on the website below.
  • Special Education
  • Family and Consumer Sciences
  • French
  • Spanish
  • Art
  • Mathematics
  • Physical Science/Chemistry/Physics

  The UCA Office of Student Financial Aid has added information about the TEACH grant to their website http://uca.edu/financialaid/federal-teach-grant/.

How long will it take to get through the program?

While you have 6 years to complete the program, most candidates take 5-6 semesters to finish all the required coursework. Please note that if you elect to work on a provisional license (see above), you must complete the program within 2 years of securing that license.

Will this program license me in states other than Arkansas?

No. Every state controls their own licensing requirements. However, once you have a license in Arkansas, you can apply for reciprocity to other states for a transfer of your license.

How do I add areas to my license?

Once you have a standard teaching license, you may add additional content areas by passing the appropriate Praxis content test(s). If you are seeking to add areas such as Special Education, Administration, Gifted, ELL, Counseling, Coaching, etc., then that will require taking additional coursework in an approved program of study (not the MAT program) and meeting the ADE guidelines for those areas.

Who should not enter the program?

If you currently hold a teaching license (provisional or standard) and/or have completed a student teaching internship at this or any other institution, you are ineligible for admission into the UCA MAT program.

What is the difference between the different types of background checks?

For Practicum

You are required to complete a Student Connect background check. This is a very quick, 24-hour background check for students. It lasts for the duration of your MAT program. It will not suffice for licensure/internship. If you have had a background check completed on your own for your provisional license or if you are a school district employee, you will need to provide proof to the MAT Field Coordinator that a you have passed your background check. Concealed Carry background checks do not count.

For Internship

You need a full Arkansas State Police background check. We now offer this service at UCA through the Office of Candidate Services, or you can have this completed at your local education cooperative. This background check must be less than a year old.