ACU will offer a new master’s program in education next year. The first cohort is set to begin this spring semester.
Graduate programs are already offered in education, but a Master of Education in Teaching and Learning has now been added to the options.
Dr. Dana Kennamer Pemberton, chair of the Department of Teacher Education, said the program is set up as a four-plus-one-year program, which will be available to current students in any field of education.
Pemberton said the program is set up as a 36-hour program in a block tuition system. However, students will have the last six hours of their undergraduate degree “forgiven” and will have to pay for only 30 of the 36 hours.
The program is designed for students who have not completed the initial Texas Teacher Certification program. During this program, students will participate in a year’s worth of student teaching to provide them with hands-on experience.
“The new program includes a full year of student teaching. It has a strong emphasis on modifying instruction for a variety of learners,” Pemberton said.
Alec Finch, senior social studies major from San Antonio, said he is pleased with the program’s convenience and capabilities.
“I’m interested in the program because it gives me the opportunity to get a master’s degree without having to take the GRE,” Finch said.
The master’s program offers several other benefits, Pemberton said. For example, undergraduate students can carry merit scholarships over into the graduate program.
“This program allows a graduate to meet the needs of many different learning process, because a graduate leaves the program with their ESL [English as a second language] and special education certifications,” Pemberton said.
“This program allows me to student teach as well as research during that time,” Finch said.
Pemberton said students coming in with dual-credit hours who have more than 30 hours could potentially graduate within four years with a master’s.
“I feel that this program offers me the chance to be the most qualified and prepared teacher I can be, and if I were going into any other profession, I would want to be as qualified as possible,” Finch said.