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MAE - 33 or 54 credit program of study

The Master of Art Education Program is approved by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to offer Initial and Professional Licensure. The graduate program in Art Education is dedicated to increasing its graduates' capacity to question issues related to teaching, thinking, learning, and producing in and through the visual arts.

The MAE is a 33 credit program (for those who hold an Initial License or the equivalent in comparable course work), leading to a Professional License. The MAE program offers both traditional and innovative opportunities for the professional art teacher. The Art Education Department offers a 54 credit program for students seeking a first-time post-baccalaureate Initial License and a Professional License--21 credits to be earned first in the post-baccalaureate Initial License and 33 credits to be earned in the Master of Art Education Professional License.

Graduate studies are tailored to individual interests and career goals. Whether the objective is to teach in public or private schools or community settings--such as day care centers, hospitals, welfare agencies, museums, alternative schools, geriatric centers, or vocational rehabilitation centers--the program provides the necessary experience. Opportunities for supervised fieldwork exist in each of the above mentioned areas.

The MAE program offers a sequence of practical, theoretical, and studio-based experiences through which students build on their knowledge, skills, and confidence as arts educators. Interstate recognition makes art teacher coursework earned at UMass Dartmouth reciprocally valid in many other states. The program also emphasizes professional development and lifelong learning for teachers who already hold teaching licenses in the arts or related fields.

MAE Graduate Program Progress Towards Degree Sheet

Overarching MAE Program Standards

The overarching learning outcomes for this program of study were developed to meet the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (ESE) standards, by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD), and the National Art Education Association (NAEA).

The MAE program goal is to better prepare teachers to use 21century technology, national standards and MA Curriculum Framework, and teach in public or private schools or community settings.

MAE Program Objectives

Students will:

  1. Develop reflective practices.
  2. Read and analyze literature in the field of art education.
  3. Translate aspects of important research into classroom practice.
  4. Align curriculum and meaningful assessment to the needs of K-12 learners.
  5. Implement research skills.
  6. Collect and analyze data to inform decision making about best practices in art teaching.
  7. Increase studio, art history, critical literacy and evaluation skills.

Requirements for Admission

Candidates should demonstrate strong potential as artist/educator. A bachelor's degree from an accredited institution, in either studio art or art education, and a portfolio which demonstrates capability for advanced work within a chosen discipline are required. Applicants must pass both the Communications and Literacy and the Visual Arts portions of The Massachusetts Test of Educators Licensure (MTELs) before making application to the MAE program. MTEL scores must be reported to the Office of Graduate Studies. Applicants who are licensed in another state and do not seek a Massachusetts teaching license, are required to make a written statement that the applicant will not seek Massachusetts licensure but must, instead, pass the National Praxis Exam.

To apply applicants submit materials to the Office of Graduate Studies. To complete your application, a portfolio of 20 images of recent work must be submitted to For more detailed information go to Portfolio Requirements. For further detail see the Graduate Catalog.

Applicants' foundation of knowledge from teaching, gained through having at least initial licensure or comparable course content, is evaluated in deciding to offer admission to either the 33- or 54-credit program.

Please direct questions to:
Dr. Cathy Smilan,
Director of the Master of Art Education Program
Office: 155 CVPA
Phone: 508-910-6594


The Art Education Department has a student chapter of the National Art Education Association. Its members are active and participate in community service programs.