Rossier Audiences

Master of Arts in Teaching – On Campus

The on-campus Master of Arts in Teaching program offers a full-time/part-time program start in June 2016 and an accelerated full-time track beginning in September 2016.

Please note: The on-campus application process, deadlines and start dates differ from the online Master of Arts in Teaching program.

Deadline Notification by
Round 1 December 1, 2016 February 15, 2017
Round 2 January 15, 2017 March 15, 2017
Round 3 March 15, 2017 May 15, 2017

Applicants who submit a complete application early will receive primary consideration for USC Rossier Scholarships.

Review the Application FAQs

Application Requirements

 A complete application includes all of the following:

  • Online application
  • $90 non-refundable application fee (on-campus)
  • Resume
  • Essay and two short answer responses
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Scanned copies of university-issued official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended (regardless of whether credit or a degree was earned)
  • CBEST and CSET exam scores (required prior to enrollment)
  • TOEFL or IELTS scores (international applicants only)

Begin Application Process


Online Application

You must create an Apply Yourself (AY) account in order to apply to a graduate program at USC. Please set aside 45 to 60 minutes to complete the online application. Alternatively, you may save your information and continue it at a later date. If you are applying to multiple programs (including dual degrees), you will need to create a separate account for each application you wish to submit.

To begin the online application, visit the USC Graduate Admissions website.


A resume or CV highlighting your personal and professional experiences is required. Your resume should be detailed enough to help the Admissions Committee understand the various experiences – extracurricular, leadership, or volunteer – that have shaped your interest in the MAT program.

Essay Responses

Essay responses will be used to evaluate an applicant’s personal, professional and educational experiences and the ability to effectively communicate ideas and organize written thoughts. Applicants are required to submit three essays. Essays should be double-spaced and a maximum of two pages in length.

  1. Please describe your educational background and interest in teaching. Why do you want to teach a specific grade level(s) and particular subject matter? Explain your views on teaching in urban or high needs schools and your reasons for wanting to enter the teaching profession. How will you use your learning and life experiences, subject matter knowledge, and other skills to contribute to learning in an urban or high needs school setting?
  2. Referring to your experience as a learner, please describe a significant challenge that you have encountered in your efforts to earn academic achievement in a school setting. How did you address this significant challenge? How did this life experience contribute to your interest in pursuing a teaching credential in this program?
  3. Describe an experience that led to you changing your views on a significant topic or person in your life. Please briefly share your beliefs about what prompted the change in your thinking and how you think this change may affect the teacher you may become.

Letters of Recommendation

Two letters of recommendation are required. Ideally, your recommendations should come from current and former supervisors who can comment on the value you have added to your workplaces, or former instructors who can describe your ability to perform well in graduate-level courses. Recommenders will receive an email with a password and directions to upload a letter. Recommenders must write a letter. Simply completing the recommender cover sheet will not suffice. It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure recommenders submit an actual letter.

Official, Sealed Academic Transcripts

You may request and send transcripts prior to submitting the online application. You must send official transcripts from all colleges or universities attended, regardless of whether or not credit or a degree was obtained. If the name on your transcripts is different than your current name, please include your current name on your transcript.

Electronic transcripts are preferred as long as they are from a U.S. institution. Please send transcripts to USC Rossier at

(NOTE: While the USC Office of Graduate Admissions also accepts electronic transcripts at, you do not need to submit transcripts to both offices. One copy sent to USC Rossier will suffice for your application.)

Hard copies should be sent to:

USC Rossier School of Education
Office of Admission and Scholarships
1150 South Olive Street
Suite 2100
Los Angeles, CA 90015

Admissions Criteria and Information

MAT Applicants Seeking a California Teaching Credential

On-campus applicants may seek a California Teaching Credential. Passing scores on the California Basic Educational Skills Test (CBEST) and California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET) are required for enrollment in the program.

California Educational Basic Skills Test (CBEST)

The CBEST tests proficiency in basic reading, writing and mathematics. The test is available Paper-Based and Computer-Based.  Candidates living outside of California may take the CBEST at a Pearson Vue Testing Center in your home state.

California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET)

The CSET is appropriate to the course of study to which candidates are applying. All sections of the CSET must be passed prior to enrolling in the program and cannot be waived. The CSET tests subject matter in specific fields.

The appropriate CSET Subject Matter Requirements are:

  • Multiple Subject (K-6)
  • Single Subject (7-12) – English
  • Single Subject (7-12) – Mathematics
  • Single Subject (7-12) – Science
  • Single Subject (7-12) – Social Science

CBEST/CSET Preparation Assistance

The USC Rossier School of Education provides free CBEST/CSET practice assessment and online courses to prospective on-campus students in partnership with Teacher’s Test Prep, a nationwide leader in credentialing exam preparation. Teacher’s Test Prep participants have a 93-98% success rate, depending on the particular exam.

To be eligible for online test prep courses, an individual must either: complete an application to the USC Rossier School of Education MAT program or be enrolled in the Summer 2016 MAT program. Follow these simple steps to participate:

  1. Complete your application to the USC Rossier School of Education. You may leave the information regarding CBEST/CSET scores blank.
  2. Contact Assistant Director Pedro Vasquez to obtain login credentials for the Teacher’s Test prep practice assessment.
  3. After you complete the practice assessment, the admissions team will contact you to review your scores and recommend appropriate Core Plus Online Prep courses, based on the your likelihood of passing the exam.
  4. You will be provided six months access to your assigned Core Plus Online Prep courses at no cost to you ($65-$195 regular price for each course).

Prerequisite Coursework

Admission to the MAT program requires successful completion of specific coursework prior to enrolling in the program.

Elementary Education (Multiple Subject)

There are no prerequisite majors, although applicants must have completed at least three units each with grade of “B” or better in the following subject areas:

  • English
  • Math
  • Science
  • Social Studies

Secondary Education (Single Subject: English, Mathematics, Science, Social Science)

There are no prerequisite majors, although a bachelor’s degree in the candidate’s chosen subject is preferred. All applicants must have completed sufficient prior academic work to demonstrate familiarity with their subject. Completed coursework must average to a minimum grade of “B” or better. Minimum requirements are listed below:

  • English – 12 semester units of college level coursework in Literature and Writing.
  • Mathematics – 12 semester units of college level coursework in Mathematics, including one year of single variable Calculus.
  • Science – 12 units of college level coursework in Biology, Chemistry, Geo-science, or Physics.
  • Social Science – 12 units of social science, including History, Sociology, Psychology, Economics, Anthropology or Political Science.

International Applicants

  • The USC MAT program welcomes international applicants. If you are a citizen of a country other than the United States, please be aware that you are subject to U.S. government regulations regarding entry into the United States and enrollment in programs that include online instruction. These policies may affect your eligibility to enroll in either MAT On-Campus or MAT Online. Please consult the following table for specific information:
I Plan to Study in the United States I expect to hold the following visa during my study Am I eligible for MAT On Campus? Am I eligible for MAT online?
Yes Student Visa (F-1) Yes No
A non-student visa that allows full-time study in the United States Yes Yes
A visa that does not allow full-time study in the United States No No
No A visa is not necessary if you plan to study outside the United States. No Yes, if a fieldwork placement can be arranged at a school in your local area that operates according to an American system. Please contact an MAT online admissions counselor for more information.

U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident Living Outside the U.S.

*If you are a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident living outside the U.S., you may be eligible to enroll in MAT Online if fieldwork can be arranged at a school in your local area that operates according to an American system. Please contact Rossier Online for more information.

Review Timeline

Once your application is submitted and processed you will receive regular email updates (to the email address you provided on your application) indicating which documents have not been received. If you submitted a complete application by the deadlines listed above you will receive your admission decision by the corresponding notification date. In rare cases we may need additional information from you. If this is the case, our office will be in contact with you to ensure timely processing of your application.

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Contact Us

If you have any questions, please contact:

Pedro Vasquez
Assistant Director, Office of Admissions and Scholarships
(213) 740-0224