Graduate Catalog 2016-2017

School of Education Graduate Programs

Preparing proactive educators to improve the lives of all children.

Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) AND Master of Arts (M.A.) Programs

Candidates with a Bachelor’s degree seeking initial certification in education fields will pursue the Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) degree. Candidates who already hold a Bachelor’s degree and a teaching certificate or who are employed as a private school teacher are eligible to pursue a Master of Arts (M.A.) degree.

The mission of the School of Education is “Mastering the art of teaching: preparing proactive educators to improve the lives of all children.” The School of Education strives to prepare reflective scholarly, proactive educators. These practitioners effectively educate their own students to become knowledgeable, inquisitive, and collaborative learners in diverse, democratic learning communities.

Graduate study is at a level of complexity and generalization that extends the knowledge and intellectual maturity off the candidate. The curriculum affords the depth of education, the specialized skills, and the sense of creative independence that will allow the graduate to practice in, and contribute to, the education profession.

Graduate M.A.T. and M.A. Program Objectives:

The objectives of the undergraduate education programs apply to candidates seeking initial certification at the master’s level. Additionally, the Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) and Master of Arts (M.A.) programs at Piedmont College continue to provide the graduate candidate knowledge in the social and educational development of students. Through an individualized program of study based on the candidate’s undergraduate program, experience, and professional goals, the programs seek to:

  • provide the candidate with the ability to communicate and teach effectively using an interdisciplinary knowledge base and understanding of multidimensional classrooms;
  • use and facilitate critical thinking skills;
  • enhance candidates’ content knowledge, integrating it with instructional technology;
  • enable candidates to read and become knowledgeable of the literature in their field as well as interpret and assess educational research, conduct their own classroom-based research; and
  • provide experiences that enable candidates to assume roles as proactive, reflective, and scholarly practitioners and develop their skills and abilities as professional teachers.

Admission to Teacher Education

An educator is a professional role model who must adhere to the Code of Ethics published by the Professional Standards Commission (PSC). The School of Education at Piedmont College and the Georgia PSC believe that teachers should be held to the highest moral standards. The School of Education maintains the right to deny a candidate admission to any program for good cause. Appeals may be made to the Dean of the School of Education. Initial Certification candidates must undergo a criminal background check as a part of the pre-service certification process Prior to being hired by a Georgia public school system, an additional background check including fingerprinting, will be conducted by the school system.

All candidates who are seeking initial certification must apply for admission to teacher education during their first semester upon acceptance to the college. A link to the online application will be sent from the Admissions office to accepted candidates and can also be accessed from the School of Education portal in PilgrimNet. The following additional requirements must also be met in order to gain full admission to the teaching program. Advisors assist candidates in this process.

  1. Attendance in EDUC 5599 Graduate Orientation;
  2. Interview with School of Education faculty, assessing oral communication skills. A written assessment is also required in some programs;
  3. GPA of 3.0 (no more than one “C” allowed in program);
  4. Passing score on the GACE Program Admissions Assessment unless exemption filed according to the following criteria: SAT exemption (1000 total with no minimum verbal or math); ACT exemption (43 total by adding English and Math); GRE exemption (297 combined verbal and quantitative or 1030 if taken before 8/1/11).
  5. Evidence of meeting expectations for professional conduct and ethics as documented by completion of the Compliance Director Code of Ethics and Mandated Reporting modules and by passing the Georgia Educators Ethics Assessment (entry level).

    Continuation and completion of all programs is contingent upon demonstration of the knowledge, skills, and dispositions necessary to help all students learn as described in the School of Education Conceptual Framework and Candidate Program Learning Outcomes. Piedmont College reserves the right to withdraw a candidate who fails to meet these outcomes from the teacher education program.

    Candidates must take and pass the appropriate GACE (Georgia Assessments for the Certification of Educators) content tests prior to beginning the student teaching or apprenticeship teaching semester. Individuals who have not passed the GACE tests will not be permitted to register for Internship II. Candidates who do not pass the GACE content tests may elect to change majors and/or apply to receive the Master of Arts degree in Educational Studies. (Forms available in the Dean’s Office.)

Field Experiences

Continuation and completion of all field experiences is contingent upon demonstration of the knowledge, skills, and dispositions necessary to help all students learn as described in the School of Education Conceptual Framework and Candidate Program Learning Outcomes. Piedmont College reserves the right to withdraw or change the placement of a teacher candidate for failure to meet these outcomes or at the request of the host school.

Internship I

M.A.T. candidates without extensive school experience may elect or be required to take Internship I in order to acquire familiarity with schools.

Georgia Assessment for the Certification of Educators (GACE)

In order to register for Internship II or take the capstone course in any program (whichever occurs last), M.A.T. candidates must successfully pass the appropriate GACE (Georgia Assessments for the Certification of Educators) content examinations.

Technology Requirements

As technology continues to evolve in P-12 and in the college classroom, students and faculty of teacher preparation programs are challenged to stay current in the “tools of the day.” This need is reinforced by recent changes in accreditation requirements where the skillset in instructional technology use by teacher candidates is required. Additionally, constant changes in initiatives such as “Bring Your Own Technology” and network-based 1:1 student/technology ratios require that current and future teachers possess strong technology integration skills and cross-platform selection for their P-12 students.

School of Education candidates will no longer be required to purchase, or bring to class, mobile technology, laptops, or other relevant instructional technology tools. However, the School of Education strongly encourages teacher candidates to come prepared with any tools that demonstrate their abilities to apply student engagement activities through related educational Apps, educational games, and educational websites, and other software. Many of these skills are provided in EDUC 2250/ EDUC 6601 Media and Technology for Educators, but Candidates are also charged with the ability to prepare with varied technology-based tools and a working knowledge of a need for compatibility with tablets and laptops from varied platforms. Optimizing student engagement through the use and support of current technologies and online systems is the primary focus of School of Education faculty to enrich education classes and to further make our graduates competitive in the educational arena.

Professional Learning Units

Piedmont College, when appropriate, shall accept the professional learning unit (PLU), teaching internship, and/or other experiences in lieu of same or similar courses for certification, but not for college credit. See note on certificate-only Middle Grades

Foxfire Courses for B-12 Teachers

These courses are available for all graduate level candidates, grades B-12, and all subject areas. Refer to EDUC 7770, The Foxfire Approach.

Residency Requirement

Only six graduate hours from a regionally accredited institution are accepted into a candidate’s program of study. The last 12 academic hours, exclusive of student teaching, must be taken at Piedmont College.

NOTE: While EDUC is the general designator for education courses, the following designators are used to identify courses related to specific majors.

EDEC Education: Early Childhood
EDMG Education: Middle Grades
EDPE Education: Physical Education
EDSE Education: Secondary Education
SPED Special Education
ECPA Education: Early Childhood Program Administration
EDSL Education: School Leadership