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Frequently Asked Questions 

Master of Arts in Teaching with a Concentration in Science Education


 Who should apply for this program?

We seek K-12 teachers who are interested in exploring how to teach and learn science more effectively. You do not need to be a science expert to join the program. You do, however, need to have an interest in furthuring your knowledge of how children think about science, how science instruction can empower all children rather than an elite few, and how research can improve instruction. The program consists of 30 units of coursework, although one may apply 6 units of graduate coursework (including graduate
credential coursework) completed within the past five years.


What are the program goals?

By the end of the program, faculty expect that students have

  • enhanced their practices related to science learning, teaching, and assessment to support their students’ learning of the Next Generation Science Standards. In particular, instruction begins with eliciting students’ scientific ideas to inform their instruction;
  • developed skills to help other teachers learn about science teaching, learning, and assessment;
  • examined and/or changed their beliefs and knowledge about science, who can do science, and how to teach science; 
  • learned to conduct and read about research in service of enhancing their teaching practice; and
  • identified ways to continue learning after the program has ended by reading research, participating in local and/or national professional communities, and listening to and learning from their students.
Who are the program faculty?

SDSU’s School of Teacher Education has a diverse mathematics and science education faculty, including Dr. Nadine Bezuk, Dr. Lisa Lamb, Dr. Randy Philipp, Dr. Donna Ross, Dr. Rafaela Santa Cruz, Dr. Melissa Soto, and Dr. Meredith Vaughn.


What are the program courses and when will I take these courses?

The entire program spans two years and requires a total of 30 units, although one may apply up to 6 units from credential or other graduate work completed within the last 5 years. We begin a new cohort every two years in the fall of even-numbered years. Teachers will take two courses each fall and spring semester. Each course is three units and requires three hours of class time per week. Fall and Spring courses will be offered from 4:20 - 7 PM on Mondays and Thursdays. Four of the classes will be science specific and the other four will address issues in mathematics and science.


Course Sequence:

Fall 2016
Curriculum Development in
Mathematics and Science
Issues in Curricular
 Spring 2017
The Maker Movement
 Mathematics and Science
Pedagogies for Diverse
 Fall 2017
Seminar in Learning
 Mathematics and Science
Measuring and Assessing
Student Achievement
 Spring 2018
Action Research
 Mathematics and Science
Seminar in Teacher
I am a full-time teacher.  Will I be able to complete this program?
We have structured the program to accommodate the schedules of full-time teachers. For example, all classes are scheduled to begin after 4:00 PM. In addition, you will be able to integrate much of the coursework into your own classroom instruction.


Are there easier or faster ways to complete my Master of Arts degree in Teaching?
There are faster ways (most of which cost more money), but our program is designed to help you deeply explore the teaching and learning of science so that you can make sound changes in your teaching. We are excited about the program we have put together and look forward to interacting with a cohort of thoughtful teachers.


What are tuition costs?

For information about tuition, registration and parking fees at San Diego State University, please check the website at


Am I eligible for financial aid or scholarships?

The Financial Aid and Scholarships Office encourages students to apply.  For more information, contact SDSU’s Financial Aid and Scholarship Office at 619-594-6323 or click on the link below to search for scholarship opportunities. Select Major/Credential of Educational Research, or All Programs.$scholarshipSearch Also, try
 What are the major components that are required to complete this program?

Thoughtfully complete the appropriate coursework (30 units total) and maintain your GPA in those courses to a level acceptable by program directors and university guidelines. Take and pass a required Comprehensive Examination. You will take the exam some time in your last 2 semesters of the program. Project Directors will provide you with guidelines regarding the exam and will provide suggestions for studying. Complete a Master of Arts final project as part of your coursework.


 Do I have to take the GRE?

Yes, GRE scores for the general test are required, and you need to take the test before you can be admitted to the university and begin the program. Scores from previous years are acceptable. You will need to provide a copy of the scores sent to you by the Educational Testing Service ( or request that they send official GRE scores directly to San Diego State University. The institution number for San Diego State University is 4682. The GRE is now offered on the computer, and there are test administrations regularly. You can take the exam on campus (619-594-0968) or at the Prometric Test Center at 5075 Shoreham Place, Suite 180, San Diego, CA 92122 (858-866-2120). If you took the exam in past years, you may also mail a copy of the scores to the Graduate Admissions Office. To get additional information, you can call 1-800-GRE-CALL or go to their web site at