Teaching, M.A.T. (Early Childhood - Non-Licensure)

Degree Program

The Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) (Non-Licensure) is a highly practical and flexible graduate degree designed to help you thrive as a classroom teacher. Ideal for both current and aspiring educators, this master’s program will equip you with the advanced skills and knowledge you need to become more effective and impactful in the classroom. With many specialization options, the M.A.T. (Non-Licensure) allows you to choose a route that is tailored to your specific educational background and career interests.

The Early Childhood Specialization prepares students who desire to deepen their knowledge and develop teaching skills in the field of early childhood education. 

Students enrolled in courses where fieldwork hours are completed in a setting that does not align with California Commission on Teacher Credentialing's clinical hours guidelines may not receive verification for credential/licensure.

Program Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the Master of Arts in Teaching (Non-Licensure), students will be able to:

  1. Analyze, evaluate, and apply knowledge of current educational issues, settings, and legislative requirements from a biblical perspective (ULO 1).
  2. Identify personal assumptions and generalizations related to diversity (e.g., gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, and [dis]abilities) while affirming that all students are valued as image bearers of God (ULO 2).
  3. Exhibit growth in one’s professional practice by utilizing professional databases, conducting empirical research, and articulating findings through effective communication in both speaking and writing. (ULO 1, 2, 3).  
  4. Synthesize knowledge, skills, and perspectives from concentration-specific content of the master of teaching program to determine implications for professional practice (ULO 2).

Each Program Learning Outcome (PLO) listed above references at least one of the University Learning Outcomes (ULO 1, 2, 3), which may be found in the General Information section of this catalog.

Admission Requirements

  • Applicants must have completed all bachelor's requirements prior to the start of the program and must have a bachelor's degree conferred from a regionally accredited institution prior to the start of the second term.
  • Out-of-state / out-of-country applicants must contact the School of Education prior to the admission process.
  • Foreign transcripts must be evaluated by an approved organization and verified equivalent to a U.S. bachelor's degree.
  • Have a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA on a 4.0 scale.
  • Writing proficiency will be evaluated for each applicant in one or more of the following ways: a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or above; an academic paper, the application essays, or the GRE. A proctored placement exam may be required.
  • Applicants for whom English is not a primary language must verify a score of 100 iBT on the TOEFL exam.
  • Complete Biola University's Graduate Education Application.
  • Interview with a member of the School of Education.

Official documents presented for admission or evaluation become part of the student's academic file and normally cannot be returned or copied for distribution.

Graduation Requirements

  1. M.A.T. (Non-Licensure) core courses and Capstone must be passed with a grade of B or higher.
  2. Candidates must complete the Master of Arts in Teaching (Non-Licensure) with a 3.0 cumulative GPA.
  3. Candidates must successfully complete SEED 594 Action Research, and all professional requirements (e.g., conference requirement, concentration reflection) related to the coursework and Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs).
  4. Candidates must demonstrate professional behavior as an important aspect of their preparation to effectively impact the field of education (inside and beyond the classroom). For candidates on probationary status, or where a candidate has struggled with professional dispositions (scores of 1 or 2), these concerns may prevent the candidate from moving forward in the program and graduation.
  5. A minimum of 30 credits is required for the Master of Arts in Teaching (Non-Licensure).
  6. Candidates must complete the program within five years of continuous enrollment. Candidates who are not continuously enrolled must complete the program within eight years total.
  7. Candidates must meet with a department advisor and graduate academic records and degree specialist in the Office of the Registrar one semester prior to graduation to declare intent to graduate. (See Graduate Graduation Check description in the Admission, Enrollment and Graduation Requirements section).

Transfer of Credits

Students transferring from an accredited graduate program may transfer a maximum of 6 approved credits for their M.A. in Teaching (Non-Licensure). Courses transferred must be equivalent to Biola University's and have direct applicability to the student's program design. Only courses with a grade of B (3.0) on a 4.0 grade scale or higher will be considered for transfer towards the M.A. in Teaching (Non-Licensure) degree; a grade of B- is not transferable. Credits considered for transfer must have been taken within five years prior to the date of admission.

Curriculum Requirements

Offered on campus and online.

Program Courses
Courses must be passed with a grade of B or higher.
SEED 501Philosophy and Values in Schools and Society3
SEED 524Research in Culture and Intercultural Instruction3
SEED 554Professional Writing and Research 13
SEED 7320The Life of Christ for Educators3
Select one of the following:3
Behavior and Classroom Management
Learning, Motivation, and Student Engagement
Capstone Course
Course must be passed with a grade of B or higher.
SEED 594Action Research 23
Specialization Courses 3
SEED 535Child Development: Birth through Adolescence3
Select 9 credits from the following:9
Curriculum in Early Childhood Education
Early Childhood Partnerships Among Schools, Families & Communities
Early Childhood Classroom Management
Early Childhood Observation and Assessment
Total Credits30

Successful passage of SEED 554 is required for advancement in the program. Writing support and documentation may be mandatory for some students.


To produce quality research, it is recommended to be the only course taken in the final semester.


Students enrolled in courses where fieldwork hours are completed in a setting that does not align with California Commission on Teacher Credentialing's clinical hours guidelines may not receive verification for credential/licensure.