The Master of Arts in Teaching online program starts three times throughout the year (January, May and September). Applications are accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis, and we are happy to help you throughout the application process so that you can be considered for your preferred start date.

Application Deadlines

January 2020

January 2020 Application Deadlines
Early Action Deadline1 October 10, 2019
Priority Submit Deadline October 31, 2019
Final Application Deadline November 21, 2019
Classes Start January 13, 2020

May 2020

May 2020 Application Deadlines
Early Action Deadline February 20, 2020
Priority Submit Deadline March 12, 2020
Final Application Deadline April 2, 2020
Classes Start May 20, 2020

September 2020

September 2020 Application Deadlines
Early Action Deadline May 28, 2020
Priority Submit Deadline June 18, 2020
Final Application Deadline July 9, 2020
Classes Start August 24, 2020
1 If you fully complete your application prior to the Early Action deadline, you will receive an early admissions decision and your application fee wavied. If you apply prior to the Priority Submit deadline, your application fee will be reduced to $50. Please contact an Admissions Counselor for details. Return to footnote reference

Application Requirements

The USC Rossier School of Education maintains the same high admissions criteria for our online programs as for our on-campus programs. We seek candidates whose academic background, professional goals, personal commitment and communication skills meet the demands of a rigorous graduate education program. To be eligible for the Master of Arts in Teaching online program, you must meet the following requirements:

  • A bachelor's degree or its recognized equivalent from a regionally accredited institution
  • A superior scholastic record, normally above a 3.0 GPA
  • The ability to communicate effectively (both written and verbal) as demonstrated by academic performance and/or professional experience
  • A Statement of Purpose that clearly indicates professional career goals and reasons for seeking the degree
  • Official Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores for applicants whose academic work has been in a country other than the U.S., U.K., Australia or English-speaking Canada
  • Registration for at least one California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET) subtest, or for the subject-specific exam required for licensure in another state, is required. Applicants must either register for an exam specific to their MAT online concentration or submit passing scores if they have already taken a subject-specific subtest.

Online Application

The online application includes questions about your personal, academic and professional background. To be considered for admission, you must have a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution, or the recognized international equivalent of a U.S. bachelor's degree. While the Admissions Committee looks for candidates whose academic background demonstrates the capability to succeed in a rigorous graduate program, prior coursework in education is not required.

Personal Essays

The application includes a statement of purpose, which allows the Admissions Committee to gain a deeper understanding of your past experiences and professional goals. Applicants will also complete two short answer questions. In addition to providing information about your background, the essays allow you to demonstrate the written communication skills that are critical for success in the program.

Employment Information

You will be asked to provide information about past employment and upload your most current resume or curriculum vitae (CV).

Letters of Recommendation

A minimum of two letters of recommendation are required. Letters should come from supervisors and colleagues who can comment on significant contributions you have made in your workplace or former instructors who can describe your ability to perform well in graduate-level courses.


Sealed, official academic transcripts must be sent directly from all postsecondary institutions you attended, including any community college coursework. Please send all transcripts to:

Application Processing Services
USC Rossier Office of Admission and Scholarships 
7900 Harkins Road
Suite #501
Lanham, MD 20706

Many schools issue transcripts electronically, either through their own web services or through vendors. If this option is available through the institutions you attended, please specify that your encrypted transcript(s) be sent to This will expedite the delivery of your transcript(s) and the completion of your application.

You will be asked to provide written authorization giving your consent to release your academic records, in compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

Application Fee

The USC application fee is $90.

Credential Test Registration

You are required to register for at least one subject matter-specific test, such as the California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET) subtest, or a subject-specific exam required for licensure in another state.

If you have not yet registered, register for an exam specific to your MAT online concentration. If you have taken and passed a subject-specific subtest, submit your passing scores. You should upload your registration confirmation email or passing score report into the online application, or send these items directly to

Although you only need to register or submit passing scores for one exam in order to apply, students in the program are required to pass all CSET subtests or the subject-specific subtests required for licensure in their state before they begin their student teaching term. It is highly recommended that you pass at least one subject-specific test prior to your first term of classes.

Due to the amount of time required to process exam registrations, it is recommended you register as early as possible for your desired test date.

If you provide proof of registration for a subject-specific exam and are admitted to the May or September 2019 cohorts of either the MAT online with Credential program or MAT-TESOL online with English Language Development (ELD) Credential program, you may be eligible for a $400 scholarship to offset your tuition fees. USC Rossier offers this scholarship to reduce students’ overall program costs and support them in their journey of becoming highly qualified, credentialed educators. For more information, please visit the Tuition and Financial Aid page.

Contact your Admissions Counselor to learn more about exam requirements, as well as the opportunity to receive free test preparation resources.

International Applicants

If your prior study was completed outside of the United States, you must have earned the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor's degree to be eligible for admission.

If your native language is not English and you do not have a bachelor's degree from a U.S. college or university, you will be required to submit a valid score from the TOEFL iBT® (Internet-based test).

The Admissions Committee also may require that you complete an oral interview to assess your English communication skills. Because the program content is delivered in English, it is critical to have the ability to understand course materials and collaborate with classmates and faculty. Oral interviews may be arranged in person, by telephone or through video conferencing.

Learn more about the international admissions requirements.

Confidentiality and Document Submission Policy

Transcripts and all other materials submitted for admission consideration become the property of USC. The university does not return or duplicate materials for any reason whatsoever. The information and materials in your submitted application are made available only to the central Office of Admission and the admission committee of the academic department or professional school to which you have applied.