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M.A.T. in Spanish

General Information – Purpose, Admission Criteria, and Scope:
The Master of Arts for Teachers (M.A.T.) in Spanish is a program designed for an individual 1) who already holds a standard license to teach Spanish or 2) who holds a certificate of eligibility (or equivalent) to teach Spanish while working toward licensure. The program can be completed totally online or in a combination of course platforms – online, hybrid, on-campus, and/or summer study abroad in Spain and Peru ; such offerings allow flexibility in course planning, life demands, personal preference, and program completion timeframe. Online courses are offered year-round, and on-campus and/or hybrid courses are held during summer sessions through the World Languages Institute (WLI) of the Institute for Global Languages (IGL).

An applicant may be admitted to the M.A.T. program based primarily on prior academic and professional performance. The GRE is not required for admission. The applicant must have fulfilled the following requirements and must produce the following information in order to apply to the program :

  • a completed graduate school application, providing official transcripts from all universities, both undergraduate and graduate, that the applicant has attended;

  • one of the following: 1) a Bachelor’s degree in Spanish, or 2) a Bachelor’s degree in which the applicant has taken at least 12 upper division (300 or 400 level) credits in Spanish language, linguistics, literature, translation, culture, or civilization courses, or 3) a Bachelor’s degree and post-baccalaureate transcripts showing that the applicant has taken at least 12 upper division (300 or 400, or graduate level) credits in Spanish language, linguistics, literature, translation, culture, or civilization courses;

  • a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 out of 4.0 total, or equivalent;

  • one of the following: 1) a valid license to teach Spanish, or 2) a valid provisional or temporary license or certificate for an applicant pursuing regular licensure or certification, or 3) relevant work experience of at least three (3) years;

  • three (3) letters of recommendation, two (2) of which should be written by professors with whom the applicant has studied and can assess the applicant’s academic performance;

  • a personal statement, written in Spanish, that expresses the applicant’s purpose and goals in pursuing the M.A.T.; and

  • the TOEFL or IELTS if the applicant’s undergraduate degree has been granted by a non-English speaking university; the Graduate School, New Brunswick website ( gives a detailed explanation of the expectations for this requirement.

Upon submission of all materials, the Spanish Graduate Admissions Committee will review each packet and make the decision regarding the student’s acceptance or rejection following the deadlines of 15 April for summer admission, 15 August for fall admission, and 1 December for spring admission in each calendar year.


Degree Requirements:
A student must complete a total of thirty (30) credits: twenty-seven (27) credits of course work and the three (3) remaining credits dedicated to the development of an individual teaching portfolio based upon course work and work experiences/needs. There is no comprehensive examination. The courses should normally be distributed over the following areas:


  • Nine (9) credits in core courses offered by the WLI (program code 617) – Methods of Foreign Language Teaching (K-12); Theories of Second Language Acquisition and Learning; Technology in the World Language Class (K-12); Assessment in the World

  • At least fifteen (15) credits in Spanish (program code 940) – language/linguistics, literature/culture, or civilization courses specifically tailored to the program, as approved by the Graduate Director;

  • Three (3) credits in an elective – another core or Spanish course, or one taught in a different graduate program at Rutgers, as approved by the Graduate Director; and

  • Three (3) credits of Independent Study (617:599) – Teaching Portfolio.


Before enrolling each term, the student must have the course choices reviewed and approved by the Graduate Director.


Each student is encouraged but not required to participate in a study abroad program approved by the Graduate Director, in which graduate credits can be earned. The Department of Spanish and Portuguese offers summer study abroad programs in Spain and Peru . If the study abroad program is not offered through Rutgers, a student may transfer such credits earned elsewhere as a part of the Graduate School policy to accept up to 12 graduate transfer credits and apply them toward the total.


The M.A.T. in Spanish is a terminal degree. That is, any student who wishes to seek admission to either the Spanish Ph.D. program or the M.A. Option in Translation after having completed the M.A.T. must apply to the appropriate program through the normal application process.


Teaching Portfolio – Basic Guidelines, Committee, and Preparation:
Each student will prepare a teaching portfolio, a three-credit individual project that is to be completed and presented to a two-person committee during the year following the completion of the twenty-seven credits of course work. The student will select a portfolio director, specifically a professor with whom the student has taken courses at Rutgers, and in consultation with that director, choose another of the student’s professors or a pedagogy expert associated with the WLI core program, in order to form a two-person portfolio committee. The portfolio may be presented in person or via appropriate electronic means acceptable to all parties.


The portfolio will consist of four (4) thematic units of ten (10) lessons each based on the communicative approach. It will reflect the student’s own individual teaching situation as well as the application of theory and practice from the twenty-seven credits of course work; furthermore, it will be a compendium of documents, lesson plans, realia, and supplementary teaching materials pertinent to the work situation (teaching level [kindergarten, primary, middle, secondary], class focus, and particular school district).


Two (2) of the four (4) units of the portfolio are to be based on the textbook and teaching situation of the particular student. The other two units should develop age- and grade-appropriate materials that would be the ideal or of particular preference of the student, and do not necessarily reflect the textbook, ideology, and any limitations or restrictions imposed by a school or district curriculum. It is perfectly acceptable, indeed encouraged, to utilize and expand on the portfolio materials that were created as final projects in the courses that the student took during enrollment.


The portfolio should contain an introduction, in which the student provides 1) background information in regard to the type of student taught, 2) the district for which the portfolio was prepared, and 3) the overall organization and logic of the units that are included. All units should contain a web of interrelated ideas and reflect a knowledge and direct application of ACTFL and other national standards for foreign language learning; these standards should be applied not only in the construction of the units and the individual lessons within the units, but also in the assessment tools that accompany each unit. Special attention is to be paid to the different learning styles of individual students, which should be reflected in the individual lesson plans.


After the portfolio director has approved the final version, the student will be required to make a presentation of the project before the two-person committee. For the presentation, which lasts approximately one hour including questions, the student is encouraged to make use of props or technological aids that will demonstrate a facility with the communicative method and the aforementioned standards.


Both the Spanish and Portuguese and the WLI  websites offer support for the portfolio process and promote a more efficient interaction between the student and the portfolio committee. On these pages the student will find information relevant to the preparation of the portfolio, which includes current resources, guidelines, templates, technologies, and exemplary materials.

Click here for the SpanPort Portfolio page 

Click HERE  for the WLI website


**Alternate Route Program
For more information on the Alternate Route program, please contact:
Heather Ngoma
The Center for Effective School Practice – GSE
80 Cottontail Lane, Suite 410
Somerset, NJ 08873
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

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