Teaching of Social Studies MA

Master of Arts in the Teaching of Social Studies

This program shapes teacher-leaders in social studies education in middle and high schools.  

This program is designed for current public and private school teachers looking to improve their practice and step deeper into the field of social studies education. It is also serves recent graduates who want more experience before taking a full-time position.  The program has required coursework but enough flexibility to support the growth and interests of individual students. Students take courses in social studies teaching and social studies content. They also create a set of professional development coursework that support their interests and needs.  The program culminates with a thesis activity related to teaching practice.  

Most students either complete the program in one year as a full-time student or two years as a part-time student.

A graduate student listens to a student in her cohort.

Admissions Information

Master of Arts

  • Points/Credits: 32
  • Entry Terms: Summer/Fall


  • Non-Certification Track

Application Deadlines

  • Spring: N/A
  • Summer/Fall (Priority): January 15
  • Summer/Fall (Final): Rolling

* For details about rolling deadlines, visit our admission deadlines page.

Supplemental Application Requirements/Comments

  • Interview required

Course Requirements

Master of Arts (M.A., 32 points)

Master of Arts (M.A., 32 points)

This program is designed for experienced teachers who need an MA for professional certification and non-certified teachers engaged in private school teaching. It requires a minimum of 32 points and a master’s integrative project. This degree program focuses on social studies teaching in middle and high schools and fulfills the requirements for New York State Professional Certification. Points are distributed as follows:

Social Studies Core Courses (11 points):

Required courses:

  • A&HW 5031 Teacher education in social studies
  • A&HW 5232 Fieldwork: Social studies teacher education
  • A&HW 6530 Curriculum development, research, and supervision

Students should also take one of the following courses:

  • A&HW 5030  Diversity and the social studies curriculum
  • A&HW 5035  History of the social studies since 1880
  • A&HW 5037  Advanced methods of teaching social studies
  • A&HW 5530  History of American social thought

Social Studies Content Courses (12-15 points):

In consultation with an advisor, students should select courses to round out their knowledge of the subject matters taught in secondary schools. Courses taken at Teachers College include attention to both content and pedagogy. Courses can also be taken at Columbia University.

Professional Development Courses (6-9 points):

Three Teachers College courses (2-3 points each) outside the Social Studies Program, chosen with advisor approval.

Further Requirements:

Students must also complete a master’s integrative project, selected with advisor approval. 


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