Secondary Teaching: Grades 7-12

Master of Arts

This degree program is nationally recognized and fully accredited by CAEP (Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation) under NCATE Standards (National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education).

The Master of Arts in Secondary Teaching is a Licensure/Certification Program with Admission Restrictions and Exit Requirements.

THIS IS A DELAWARE LICENSURE/CERTIFICATION PROGRAM WITH CONTENT KNOWLEDGE AND PERFORMANCE ASSESSMENT REQUIREMENTS. Students taking courses to satisfy certification requirements are personally responsible for verifying with the Delaware Department of Education (or the appropriate licensure/certification authority in another state) that such course work is applicable and acceptable. Students are also responsible for meeting all state-mandated testing requirements and/or teaching experience requirements, and for applying for credentials.

Content and Performance Assessment Requirements

Content Assessments

This degree program contributes to eligibility for licensure/certification as an educator in Delaware public schools. As such, all candidates must meet the content knowledge requirements set by Delaware’s Professional Standards Board in order to be eligible for a student teaching placement.

The content assessment requirement can be satisfied by taking and passing (using minimum score requirements approved by the Delaware Professional Standards Board) the subject-area appropriate Praxis II assessment for teaching at the secondary school level. A complete listing of those assessments and minimum score requirements can be accessed at the following ETS website.

Please note that state-mandated licensure/certification exams and minimum score requirements are subject to change by the Delaware Department of Education.  Any changes mandated by the Department of Education will be implemented as required by state regulation.

Performance Assessment

The State of Delaware requires new teachers to achieve a passing score on a state-approved performance assessment in order to be fully licensed. The performance assessment may not be scored by any employees of the Educator Preparation Program or Unit. It is scored by Nationally Certified ETS Reviewers not associated with Wilmington University. The assessment used by Wilmington University to satisfy this requirement is the Praxis Performance Assessment for Teachers (PPAT).

Completing this assessment is a student teaching requirement. Candidates must check with their program advisors or program chairs to obtain current and accurate information related to the assessments and minimum scores that are required.

Program Changes

The Master of Arts in Secondary Teaching degree program contributes to eligibility for initial licensure and certification as a Delaware educator and is approved by the Delaware Department of Education. Any changes that are mandated by the Delaware Department of Education or the Delaware General Assembly will be implemented in accordance with state regulations. Students will be notified of any changes that may affect program or degree completion/conferral requirements.

Program Purpose

The Master of Arts in Secondary Teaching degree program prepares teachers to meet the academic and social needs of students in grades 7-12. The program is based on the premises that teachers must be sensitive to varying social demands and expectations; must be able to diagnose and address the individual learning and developmental needs of students, including emotional, physical, social, and cognitive needs; must be able to use technology in all aspects of their profession; must make important decisions about how and what to teach in the face of an overwhelming knowledge explosion; and must reach out more effectively to parents and the community.

Program Competencies

Master of Arts degree programs in the College of Education are designed to prepare educators who demonstrate the following competencies:

Learner Development

The teacher understands how learners grow and develop, recognizing that patterns of learning and development vary individually within and across the cognitive, linguistic, social, emotional, and physical areas, and designs and implements developmentally appropriate and challenging learning experiences.

Learning Differences

The teacher uses understanding of individual differences and diverse cultures and communities to ensure inclusive learning environments that enable each learner to meet high standards.

Learning Environments

The teacher works with others to create environments that support individual and collaborative learning, and that encourage positive social interaction, active engagement in learning, and self- motivation.

Content Knowledge

The teacher understands the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structures of the discipline(s) he or she teaches and creates learning experiences that make the discipline accessible and meaningful for learners to assure mastery of the content.

Application of Content

The teacher understands how to connect concepts and use differing perspectives to engage learners in critical thinking, creativity, and collaborative problem solving related to authentic local and global issues.


The teacher understands and uses multiple methods of assessment to engage learners in their own growth, to monitor learner progress, and to guide the teacher’s and learner’s decision making.

Planning for Instruction

The teacher plans instruction that supports every student in meeting rigorous learning goals by drawing upon knowledge of content areas, curriculum, cross disciplinary skills, and pedagogy, as well as knowledge of learners and the community context.

Instructional Strategies

The teacher understands and uses a variety of instructional strategies to encourage learners to develop deep understanding of content areas and their connections, and to build skills to apply knowledge in meaningful ways.

Professional Learning and Ethical Practice

The teacher engages in ongoing professional learning and uses evidence to continually evaluate his/her practice, particularly the effects of his/her choices and actions on others (learners, families, other professionals, and the community), and adapts practice to meet the needs of each learner.

Leadership and Collaboration

The teacher seeks appropriate leadership roles and opportunities to take responsibility for student learning, to collaborate with learners, families, colleagues, other school professionals, and community members to ensure learner growth, and to advance the profession.

Outcomes Assessment

The assessment of content knowledge, pedagogy, learning theory, and performance competencies is accomplished through satisfactory attainment of specific course objectives; satisfactory performance on tests of general and content-related knowledge, as well as performance assessments, successful completion of assignments linked to program competencies and graduation competencies; fieldwork evaluations from advisors and school-based mentors; and evaluations and post-graduation surveys.

Program Design

The Master of Arts in Secondary Teaching degree program is designed for individuals with undergraduate or graduate degrees in content/subject areas taught in the middle level and high schools in our region. The curriculum provides individuals with the professional preparation necessary for licensure and certification as “Highly-Qualified” teachers in the selected content area(s).

To be eligible for the program, a teacher candidate must hold a degree with a major in a secondary content area from a regionally-accredited college or university. At entry, transcripts of prior coursework will be carefully reviewed to determine if content area coursework has been completed that satisfies national standards. Any omissions in such content area coursework must be completed before Student Teaching/Teaching Internship.

Prior to Student Teaching/Internship, the teacher candidate must pass the appropriate PRAXIS II 9-12 high school or middle level content area test(s). Additional content area coursework may be necessary for teacher candidates who have not met content requirements and have not been initially successful in completing the PRAXIS II test(s).

The MAT program is an attractive route into middle level and high school teaching for individuals coming into the field from other professions. In a relatively short period of time, the program will prepare teacher candidates to teach students at the middle and high school level using the teacher candidate’s previously acquired content major. When they complete the program, successful teacher candidates will enter or move forward in the teaching profession (and will be compensated) at the master’s degree level. Through the program, teacher candidates will be prepared to face the challenges of teaching in a middle or high school classroom and will be better able to help students meet the rigorous achievement standards now expected in secondary schools.

Three kinds of teacher candidates will be accommodated through the MAT program. The first will include individuals who are currently employed in middle level and high school teaching positions in the content area(s) of their previous majors and who need licensure and certification. The second will be individuals currently in the Elementary Studies program who desire to obtain secondary credentials. Finally, the third group of teacher candidates will be individuals not employed as middle or high school teachers who are seeking licensure and certification for eventual employment in the teaching profession.

Dual Certification

Teacher Candidates should consider completion of coursework in other certification areas as an enhancement to their initial certificates. For example, completion of specific pedagogical coursework in Special Education, passing the appropriate Praxis II assessment, and completing Student Teaching/Internship placement in an inclusion setting would contribute to eligibility for dual certification.

Contact a Program Advisor or Program Chair/Assistant Chair for specific details.

Praxis Testing Requirements

Candidates must pass (by achieving Delaware minimum scores) the appropriate 9 - 12 "secondary" or middle school PRAXIS II test(s) prior to registration for Student Teaching/Teaching Internship. Teacher Candidates should designate Wilmington University as a score recipient at the time the tests are taken.

Program Requirements

Teacher candidates are expected to complete all requirements associated with the Master of Arts in Teaching degree, including all content course work, master’s course work, and fieldwork/clinical experiences. Pedagogical courses, MAS 8805, Performance Assessment, and the appropriate PRAXIS II content test must be satisfied prior to taking MAS 8801 Student Teaching/Internship. The Praxis II Content Knowledge test must be taken by MAS 7997, Practicum II and passed prior to MAS 8801, Student Teaching/Teaching Internship as a condition of entry into MAS 8801. All courses have one or more goals for both diversity in education and writing across the curriculum.

The College of Education sets a required minimum grade of “C-” for all education core courses as well as courses needed to satisfy the content major. However, an overall GPA of 3.0 is required for program completion.

Teacher candidates must apply to the Office of Clinical Studies for a Student Teaching/Teaching Internship placement for the Fall semester by February 1 or for the Spring semester by August 1. Student Teaching/Teaching Internship applications are to be submitted electronically in Taskstream. Applications do NOT take the place of registering for Student Teaching/Teaching Internship. Registration and payment of all fees, including laboratory fees for Student Teaching/Teaching Internship, are still required. All sections of the relevant PRAXIS II test, a 3.0 grade point average, and approval from the Office of Clinical Studies are required for Student Teaching/Teaching Internship.

Fieldwork Requirements

Practicum Courses (Practicum I, II, III)

Each of these three courses require 50 hours of field experience in an approved school setting plus 30 hours of required seminars. Although Practicum courses only require candidates to register and pay for one (1) credit for each course, the courses are actually structured as three (3) credit courses. The reason for this approach is to keep the total credit hours required for the degree as low as possible and still meet state certification requirements. Otherwise, candidates would have to register and pay for an additional 6 credits. This benefit represents a tuition cost savings of more than $2,000.

All practicum placements are arranged by the Office of Clinical Studies in accordance with school district partnership agreements and placement protocols. Final placement decisions are made by school district officials. Candidates are not permitted to seek or make arrangements for their own placements.  The 50 hours of field experience required for each practicum will usually take place in the county where the candidate attends the seminars, although this may vary depending on availability of practicum placement classrooms.

To be considered for placement in a K-12 school setting, teacher candidates must complete the Practicum Fieldwork application in Taskstream by the deadlines of February 1 for placement in Fall and August 1 for placement in Spring.  At the time of application, a sealed Federal and Delaware CBC (Criminal Background Check) Report, a recent TB/PPD (less than a year old) and a completed CPR (Child Protection Registry Form) are required.

Capstone Clinical Experience (Student Teaching/Internship)

Student Teaching/Teaching Internship

The capstone clinical experience is a full-time, full-day, Monday through Friday placement of 80 school days in an approved setting and in a content area/grade level that corresponds to a candidate's program concentration. A full immersion, Yearlong Residency option may also be available. Check with a Program Advisor, Chair or Assistant Chair for more information.

Teacher candidates must apply to the Office of Clinical Studies for a Student Teaching/Internship placement for the Fall semester by February 1 or for the Spring semester by August 1. Student Teaching/Teaching Internship applications are to be submitted electronically in Taskstream. Applications do NOT take the place of registering for Student Teaching/Internship. Registration and payment of all fees, including laboratory fees for Student Teaching/Internship, are still required. At the time of application, a new and sealed Federal and Delaware CBC (Criminal Background Check) Report, a new TB/PPD, a completed health form, and a completed CPR (Child Protection Registry Form) are required.

Placement and registration requirements include the following: Passing scores on the relevant PRAXIS II exam, a 3.0 grade point average, a completed application in Taskstream and all required clearance items.

All placements are arranged by placement specialists in the WilmU Office of Clinical Studies in accordance with school district partnership agreements and protocols. However, final placement decisions are made by school district officials and are based on school and district needs and the availability of school-based mentors who are rated as highly-qualified and effective. Candidates are not permitted to seek or make arrangements for their own placements.

Course Requirements

Secondary Teaching: Grade 7-12

MED 6102 E-Folio

MAS 7204 Teacher Leadership and Collaboration

MAS 7601 Education of Diverse Populations and Exceptional Children

MAS 7602 School in a Multicultural Society

MAS 7603 Instructional Strategies in Secondary Education

MAS 7604 Technology for Instruction

MAS 7651 Adolescent Growth and Development

MAS 7652 Reading in Content Areas

MAS 7701 Classroom Culture and Student Behavior

MAS 7801 Practicum/Pedagogical Approaches to Teaching in the Middle and High School

MAS 7996 Practicum I

MAS 7997 Practicum II

MAS 7998 Practicum III

MAS 8801 Student Teaching/Internship

MAS 8805 Performance Assessment

MAS 7701: Prerequisite MAS 7603 Strategies for Effective Teaching

MAS 8805: co-requisite with MAS 7997

NOTE: Registration for MAS 8801, Student Teaching/Internship requires a 3.00 grade point average, and an approved application from the Office of Clinical Studies.

NOTE: Teacher candidates needing to complete course work in their content major must provide an official transcript of courses taken to satisfy the content major as indicated by information on the Student Contact Record Form maintained by the University prior to registering for MAS 8801.

Qualifications for Degree

To qualify for the Master of Arts in Secondary Teaching degree, a candidate must complete the course work and clinical experiences, including successfully passing the Performance Assessment for Teachers, with at least a “B” average (a cumulative grade point average of 3.0). An electronic portfolio—E-Folio—is required. The portfolio must demonstrate a mastery of graduation and program competencies based on the Delaware Professional Teaching Standards and related to the College of Education Conceptual Framework. The program must be completed within five years.

This information applies to students who enter this degree program during the 2018-2019 Academic Year. If you entered this degree program before the Fall 2018 semester, please refer to the academic catalog for the year you began your degree program.