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Prepare to teach STEM disciplines in grades 8-12 with a Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT).  

You will need an undergraduate degree (or recognized equivalent) in a STEM discipline to be admitted. This program is designed as a hybrid online/on-campus format and gives students three options:

1. one-year pathway

2. two-year pathway

3. Option 6, university-based alternative route to certification. 



This is a 31-credit-hour program. The required coursework will include a sequence of methods/seminar classes, as well as classes in core education areas such as educational psychology, special education, education policy, literacy, and assessment. You will also need to complete six elective credits from options within the College of Education or the College of Arts & Sciences, to be approved by the appropriate program chair. 

  • Full-Time MAT program model: The program follows a clinical model and provides ample practical experience with a sequence of university research / industry externships, diverse field placements, and student teaching.  

  • Option 6 Program: Through Kentucky’s university-based alternative route to certification known as Option 6, you may work in a full-time teaching position within a Kentucky-accredited school while enrolled in the STEM Master of Arts in Teaching certification program. A temporary provisional certificate (Rank III) would be issued to you and would be valid for one year. The provisional certificate must be renewed each year, up to a total of three years. The MAT program is taken as a part-time student (6 semesters) while working in a full-time teaching position. 

You will need to successfully complete the Praxis exam in your area of certification while in the program, as well as the Principles of Learning and Teaching (PLT) Praxis and the master’s exam. You will also be required to complete an online portfolio of key assignments.  


Who is this program for?

This program would be appropriate for those who want to teach mathematics, science or engineering at the high-school level. You must have a degree in a STEM field related to traditional certification areas (mathematics, biology, chemistry, earth science, engineering, physics). If you do not have a degree in a STEM field, then undergraduate hours equivalent to that degree will also be accepted, which is typically around 30 hours of coursework in one area. 


Why You Should Enroll

The full-time MAT program is the most compact program of its type in Kentucky. In the Master of Arts in Teaching program at the UK College of Education, you will have unique opportunities for industry job-shadowing, university research or informal STEM teaching experiences that many other programs do not offer. You will have access to both urban and rural schools in which to complete your required field experiences. Further, you will have the opportunity to choose a one-year program, complete your degree in two years, or complete your degree through an Option 6 program, depending on your unique career and personal needs. 


What career opportunities does this program offer me?

There is a critical need nationwide for teachers with expertise in the STEM fields. If you have a passion for STEM, you could inspire the next generation of mathematicians, scientists, engineers, programmers, and more. As a STEM teacher, you will have more diverse professional growth opportunities than teachers in other areas. STEM teachers are in high demand, and over the last several years, the job placement rate has been 100 percent for graduates of the University of Kentucky College of Education’s master’s degree program leading to initial certification in STEM subjects. 


Program Details

Delivery Method: Hybrid Online/On-Campus

Credit Hours: 31

Number of Courses: 8 core courses, 2 electives

Number of Semesters:

  • One year pathway: 3 consecutive semesters (summer, fall, spring)
  • Two year pathway: 6 consecutive semesters (summer, fall, spring, summer, fall, spring)

Tuition Cost: See the University of Kentucky Tuition information.


Curriculum Info

  • Introductory methods course combined with externship (research or informal STEM teaching experience)
  • 2 elective courses
  • Embedded methods course combined with diverse field experiences
  • Cohort classes in educational psychology, special education / classroom management, and school policy
  • Rotating methods course combined with full-time student teaching
  • Assessment course and possibly final elective
  • Praxis content exam taken in summer or fall
  • Principles of Learning and Teaching taken in spring
  • Master’s exam (applied knowledge)

You will be certified to teach STEM courses in grades 8-12, at any school in Kentucky. To learn more about reciprocity agreements, visit our Certification by State page.

For information regarding refunds, please visit the UK Student Account Services website. It is there you can find tuition refund policies, deadlines, amounts, and other important information.


How to Apply

Required Materials:

  1. Cumulative Undergraduate GPA requirement of 2.75. If this requirement is not met a student can use an overall GPA of 2.75 in their last 30 hours instead. Secondly, a content GPA of 2.75 in the area of certification (mathematics for example) is also required.
  2. Official transcripts: official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended must be submitted to the Graduate School (send to The Graduate School, Attn: Admissions Office, 201 Gillis Building, Lexington, KY 40506-0033) – unofficial transcripts can be submitted to initiate application process, but all admissions are contingent upon receipt of official transcripts
  3. A short statement about your career goals and interests
  4. Three letters of recommendation (the online system will email your references to submit their letters)
  5. Interview with STEM Ed faculty specializing in your area of interest (Interview will be scheduled upon completion of application materials)
  6. Onsite writing sample prior to interview
  7. $65.00 admissions fee paid in full (international students: $75.00)

Gather the required materials and submit an application to the Graduate School.

Applications are accepted throughout the academic year. In order to guarantee accept/deny decision and time to enroll, domestic applications must be submitted AT LEAST one month prior to the beginning of the semester in which you wish to enroll. International applications must be submitted by April 15 (to start during the fall) and by September 15 (to start during the spring).

The onsite writing sample and interview can be conducted virtually in cases where applicants are not living within driving distance of UK.

When applying, select master’s degree for the admission category, select secondary STEM Education for program, and select summer for intended start date.

I'm Ready to Apply! 



Feel free to contact us with any questions you might have regarding this program. We can’t wait to hear from you!

Jennifer Wilhelm

Professor and Director of Graduate Studies



State Authorization & Licensure

If you plan to complete a University of Kentucky online program while living outside of Kentucky, you should check the Out-of-State Students page to determine if the University of Kentucky is authorized to provide this program in your state of residence. If you plan to use the degree to seek licensure, you should also determine if the degree meets the educational requirements for licensure in your state.

Refund Policies

You can find tuition refund policies, deadlines, amounts, and other important information on the UK Student Account Services website.