Master of ArtsTeaching (MAT)

Teacher speaking with students

Change your career to the rewarding field of teaching with our MAT.


If you hold a bachelor’s degree in any field and want to make a difference in the lives of schoolchildren, the Bellarmine Master of Arts in Teaching program is right for you. Our five-semester, flexible MAT makes it convenient for you to earn your degree while working full time. We offer a variety of focus areas to choose from. Get a prestigious, individualized Bellarmine degree at the same price as the large state schools. Bellarmine MAT teachers are always in demand.

Why earn your MAT at Bellarmine?

The Annsley Frazier Thornton School of Education prepares caring, effective educators in the Catholic liberal arts tradition of Bellarmine University to teach and lead in diverse settings. The Master of Arts in Teaching programs offer a best practice, research-based curriculum with a foundation in the liberal arts. Candidates demonstrate proficient to distinguished performance through the following criteria: individual course assessments, field and clinical evaluations, disposition assessments, benchmark assessments, and standardized exams.

Program Highlights

The Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) degree is open to applicants who hold a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution and are seeking initial teaching credentials at the graduate level. The MAT is an accelerated, outcome-based, cohort program. Classes meet one evening a week and selected Saturdays per semester with the exception of the final professional (supervised teaching) semester.

MAT degrees are available in the following focus areas (click to see curricula and details):

Transcript Review

We can provide feedback about your transcript(s) and coursework. Simply complete the form below by attaching unofficial copies of your transcript(s).

Transcript Review

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How will I fit in the required number of field observation hours while working full time?
A: The Commonwealth of Kentucky requires that each teacher candidate acquire at least 200 field observation hours, roughly 55 a semester, before they enter into their student teaching/professional semester. Students have been able to make this work by requesting time off from their employers, either a half-day a week, or entire days for a full week. Students report a better experience when they are able to go to their assigned field placement at least one time per week, but we are flexible in our expectations because we know that many of our students are working full-time to support a family. Our field coordinator will work with you to ensure you have the necessary number of field hours before your final semester.

Q: What are the requirements for obtaining an alternative certification/temporary credential?
A: Many students are interested in obtaining an alternative certification so they can be hired as a teacher before they complete the full five semesters of the program. Most often, these positions are only available in high needs areas (Science, Math, English) at the middle and secondary level in public schools. To qualify as an "alt-cert" candidate, you must:

  1. have completed at least one semester of the program.
  2. have completed all required content courses.
  3. have successfully completed your content Praxis exam, and all three sections of the CASE exam.
  4. have the recommendation of at least one faculty member at Bellarmine.
  5. meet with our certification officer to complete the necessary paperwork.

It is important to note that moving into an alt cert position without the benefit of the full five semesters of schooling is often very stressful, and is not recommended for all candidates.

Q: Will I get a teaching job when I graduate?
A: It is very likely that you will get a teaching job once you complete our program. 97% of our graduates are successfully employed the year after they graduate.

Q: What does a typical course schedule look like?
A: Our courses are presented in a module format. You will matriculate through five modules. For most of these modules, you will spend one night a week at Bellarmine for a face-to-face class from 6–8:45 p.m. In addition, you will attend five full-day Saturday sessions throughout the semester from 8 a.m.–4 p.m.. In your first module, you will also take an online course in conjunction with the evening class and the Saturday class.

Q: Can I work while student teaching?
A: Your final semester is a full-time student teaching experience where you co-teach an entire semester with a mentor teacher. Because this is a full-time job, we recommend that you do not attempt to juggle an additional job during this semester.

Career Prospects

Make a move to teaching with our Master of Arts in Teaching. The candidate who completes this program:

  • Collaborates with education stakeholders, including parents, teachers, administrators, and the community, to improve student learning and achievement;
  • Reflects on diverse field and clinical experiences, making instructional decisions based on individual learner needs;
  • Demonstrates educator dispositions that value the dignity and unique development of individual learners, and the intellectual, moral, ethical, and professional competencies that characterize effective teaching and leading;
  • Analyzes data to make pedagogical and content based decisions that inform teaching, learning, leading, and achievement in the 21st Century; and
  • Employs Valli’s five reflective processes which include technical, personalistic, deliberative, in and on action, and critical reflection.

Early Entry Master of Arts in Teaching

The School of Education offers a competitively priced Early Entry programs for our Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) for middle and/or secondary teaching. Bellarmine undergraduate students can begin taking graduate MAT courses their senior year and complete a Masters level teaching certification in a 5th year. Students in the following majors will have the option to complete an Early Entry MAT and teaching certification in their respective content area for middle and/or secondary education: Biology, Molecular Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, English, Physics, or History. Graduates will be leaders in education, serving their communities by helping every child develop to their highest potential.

Bellarmine graduates are highly sought after. Starting salary varies depending on the school district in which one finds employment, though is highly competitive at the Masters level. For example, the 2019-2020 starting salary for a teacher in the Jefferson County School District with a master’s degree is $48,944. In the same district, the average teacher salary is $63,000 with top earners making almost $90,000 per year.

For more information:
Jessica Ivy, Ph.D., Chair

Faculty Profiles

Here is a quick snapshot of a few of our faculty members. Find all of our distinguished faculty here.

Christy D. McGee, Ed.D.

Christy D. McGee, Ed.D. is a Professor of Education. She taught at both the elementary and high school level before beginning her career in higher education. Before coming to Bellarmine in 2005, Dr. McGee was an associate professor of Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Arkansas. She was also a visiting assistant professor at University of Indiana and she directed student teaching at the University of Louisville. She has published over 20 articles in her career exploring children at risk for failure, teacher education reform, student empowerment, and gifted students. She is a national consultant in the process of differentiated instruction. As an active member of the National Association for Gifted Children, she served as chair of the Division of Curriculum and Instruction, chair of the Parent and Community network, a Parent Advisory Committee member, and one of the developers of the highly popular “Mile Marker” CD. She also wrote a column for the journal Parenting for High Potential from 2011–2013.

Dr. McGee is very involved in service to the university. She has served on Faculty Council for extended terms at the University of Arkansas where she served in a variety of positions including secretary, president-elect, and president. She was also a university senator and received the College of Education and Health Sciences award for service. At Bellarmine, she has continued in that tradition by serving on a variety of committees including Rank and Tenure, Handbook Committee, President-Elect of Faculty and Faculty President.

Dr. McGee received her bachelor’s degree from Murray State University in theatre arts and communication with a minor in secondary education, her master’s degree from the University of Louisville in science education, and her doctoral degree from University of Louisville with concentrations in urban studies and science education.

Admission Requirements

The MAT is for people who hold a bachelor’s degree in a field other than education and want to teach in grades P-12. Successful applicants to the MAT program will have a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.75 out of 4.00 from coursework across all undergraduate and/or graduate coursework prior to the MAT, or a GPA of 3.00 out of 4.00 on the last thirty (30) hours of credit completed. For a complete explanation of admission requirements, please visit our admissions page.

Tuition and Fees

Please visit our Graduate Tuition Rates for the most up-to-date tuition and fees information.

Funding Assistance
School districts may apply tuition supports for this program, please contact your school district’s personnel specialist. As a degree seeking student in the MAT program, students should be eligible for federally supported forms of student aid. Financial aid questions should be directed to the Financial Aid Office at Bellarmine University ( or 502.272.7300).


All advanced-level teacher education programs at Bellarmine University's Annsley Frazier Thornton School of Education are recognized by the Kentucky Education Professional Standards Board, and are fully accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation.


Click to view CAEP Annual Reporting Measures

Contact Information

Jessica Ivy, Ph.D., Chair

Sarah Schuble, Assistant Director of Graduate Student Enrollment