Department of Education

How to Apply

The Brown Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program seeks candidates who have demonstrated commitment to youth, an understanding of school contexts, strong content knowledge, a record of achievement and a belief that all students can learn and deserve inspiring, skillful classroom teachers who are prepared to disrupt educational inequality.

The MAT Admissions Committee reviews applications holistically. We encourage candidates to share with us their experiences with children and schools in their application essay and interview. In order to gain the clearest understanding of who you are and what you bring to teaching, we recommend that you choose recommenders who know you well and can speak to multiple aspects of your candidacy.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to have some prior experience working with children or adolescents in a role such as a tutor, mentor, or counselor. No prior teaching experience or degree in education is necessary.

The application deadline for 2023 entry was January 17, 2023. The application portal will reopen in early September 2023 for the next admissions cycle.

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Application Process and Materials

The application deadline for 2023 entry was January 17, 2023. The application portal will reopen in early September 2023 for the next admissions cycle.

1000-1500 word personal statement that gives your reasons to pursue graduate work in the field of your study. The statement should include examples of your past work in your chosen field, your plans for study at Brown, issues and problems you'd like to address in your field and your professional goals.

You may scan and upload an unofficial academic transcript issued by the institution(s) from which you obtained your undergraduate (bachelor’s or first) degree and any advanced/graduate degrees. If your transcript is not in English, you must also scan and upload a copy that has been translated into English.

Transcripts and translated transcripts should include the following information: course names, course numbers, dates, grades (including incompletes, failed courses, and withdrawals), and grade modes (pass/fail).

We only require official transcripts from applicants who have been accepted into the program and choose to enroll. 

3 letters of recommendation are required. Within the application portal, you will have the chance to invite references to complete the evaluation form and submit a letter of recommendation. It is important that your recommenders know you well, think highly of your work, and are able to write a thoughtful and informative letter of recommendation on your behalf.

Current Brown undergraduates are allowed to submit 2 letters of recommendation as opposed to 3. 

An application may be submitted by the deadline without all three letters, though an admission decision will not be released until all materials are received.  

Applicants for the MAT-English discipline must submit a writing sample, no more than 5 typewritten single-spaced pages, in addition to their personal statement.

To upload, navigate to the "Personal Statement" section of the application. Below the file upload button for the personal statement is a file upload button for the writing sample (above the "Resume" portion).  

English language exams (TOEFL or IELTS) are required from non-native English speakers who did not earn a degree from an institution where English was the sole language of instruction. 

The MAT program awards both need and merit-based scholarships, with the majority of funds dedicated to need-based awards. All applicants will be considered automatically for limited merit-based funds.

Domestic applicants should submit the FAFSA. The Federal School Code for Brown University is 003401.

International students and students without an SSN should submit the CSS profile to apply for institutional need-based aid. The CSS code for Brown University is 3189. Applicants from Iran and North Korea cannot submit the CSS Profile and should email GS_Financial_Aid@brown.edu for an alternative solution.

Instructions

Graduate and professional students are considered independent students, so when you fill out your FAFSA form or CSS profile to apply for aid, you won't need to provide parent information.

Applicants whose information may be inaccurate (for example, due to the loss of employment, or other recent changes in financial circumstances that would make past financial information inaccurate), can fill out the Special Circumstances form

If you have questions regarding sensitive financial information, please contact the Graduate School's Office of Financial Aid at GS_Financial_Aid@brown.edu or (401) 863-2721.

A non-refundable fee of $100 is charged for processing each application received by the Graduate School. This fee must be paid when the application is submitted. An application will not be processed unless the fee is paid.

APPLICATION FEE WAIVERS

1) The Application Fee is automatically waived for:

  • Current Brown University undergraduates
  • Active duty U.S. Military personnel, as well as U.S. Military veterans. Please be sure to list your status within the application.
  • Domestic or international applicants who have participated in specific programs/events/conferences:
ABRCMS Attendee Big Ten Academic Alliance Breakthrough Collaborative
Brown University Graduate Programs Diversity Preview Day Attendee Cientifico Latino Graduate School Mentor Initiative City Year
Committee on Institutional Cooperation Gates Millennium Scholarship Girls Who Code
Institute for Recruitment of Teachers Leadership Alliance Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation Program (LSAMP)
McNair Scholar Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship National GEM Consortium
National Organization for the Professional Advancement of Black Chemists & Chemical Engineers Conference (NOBCChE) National Society of Black Engineers Conference (NSBE) National Society of Black Physicists Conference
NSF GEOPATHS Peace Corps Public Policy & International Affairs Program
Public Policy & International Affairs Program SACNAS Attendee Society of Hispanic Engineers Conference (SHPE)
Summer Institute for Literary & Cultural Studies Tapia Conference Teach for America/AmeriCorps
Tougaloo College partnership University of Puerto Rico Ivy Plus conference Woods Hole Partnership Education Program

2) If you would like to request an Application Fee Waiver based on high-financial need:

Application fee waiver requests can be found within the application and will be considered if they are accompanied by documentation of need. Acceptable forms of documentation are FAFSA, a letter from a college/university financial aid office, receipt of GRE or TOEFL fee waiver, unemployment verification, or other forms that provide significant documentation of financial hardship. 

The fee waiver request form must be submitted no later than three days before the application deadline. Applicants will be notified by email regarding the outcome of their request and should not submit their application until receiving notification about their waiver.

All students, including U.S. citizens and international students, are eligible for application fee waivers.

Required Background and Coursework

Please see below for each content area's required background and coursework for admission. If you have questions about your previous coursework or would like a transcript analysis, please identify which 8-10 courses on your transcript meet the requirements of the desired content area and send a copy of your transcript to the appropriate faculty member.

English applicants should have a Bachelor's Degree with a major in English or substantial study in a related area of study. Applicants whose areas of study are Comparative Literature, American Studies, African American Studies, Ethnic Studies, Creative Writing or Composition are encouraged to speak with Laura Snyder to inquire about whether their courses meet certification requirements.

Transcript Requirements for English — 
A minimum of 8 courses (or 30 units) in English or related areas is required for admission and should include work in the following: 

  • Theories of writing or theories of teaching writing 
  • Critical theory 
  • Literature of the Western canon, including Chaucer, Shakespeare, and the English romantic poets 
  • American literature 
  • American ethnic literature 
  • Modern and contemporary literature 
  • Literature in translation or world literature 
  • Poetry 
  • Drama 
  • Linguistics, focusing on the structure of language and social influences on language development and use 
  • Media studies

Mathematics applicants should have a Bachelor's Degree with a major in mathematics or have substantial study in related areas. Those with related majors should contact Indira Gil to inquire about whether their courses meet certification requirements.

Transcript Requirements for Mathematics
Applicants should have completed a minimum of 8 courses (or 30 units) in mathematics which include:

  • Linear algebra
  • Differential equations
  • Statistics
  • Geometry
  • Calculus

Science applicants should have a Bachelor’s Degree with a major in biology, chemistry, physics/engineering or substantial study in related areas. Those with related majors should contact Diane Silva Pimentel to inquire about whether their courses meet certification requirements.

Transcript Requirements for Biology  
Applicants should have completed a minimum of 8 courses (or 30 units) before entering the program which include foundations in:

  • Botany 
  • Zoology 
  • Physiology 
  • Genetics 
  • Ecology

Transcript Requirements for Chemistry — 
Applicants should have completed a minimum of 8 courses (or 30 units) before entering the program which include:

  • Organic chemistry
  • Inorganic chemistry
  • Analytical chemistry
  • Physical chemistry
  • Biochemistry

Transcript Requirements for Physics/Engineering — 
Applicants should have completed a minimum of 8 courses (or 30 units) before entering the program which include:

  • Mechanics 
  • Electricity and Magnetism 
  • Optics 
  • Properties of Matter
  • Thermodynamics

Social Studies applicants should have a Bachelor's Degree with a major in history or a social science field (excluding psychology) or substantial study in related areas. Those with related majors should contact John Palella to inquire about whether their courses meet certification requirements.

Transcript Requirements for Social Studies
Applicants should have completed a minimum of 9 courses (or 36 units) distributed in multiple areas of social studies. Applicants should have at least 1 course in each of the following areas: American/U.S. History, Non-Western History, and Ethnic Studies. Their coursework should also show evidence of a breadth of knowledge that encompasses these areas:

  • Western Civilization

  • Anthropology

  • Economics

  • Geography

  • Political Science

  • Sociology  

Other notes:

  • Interview for selected candidates: An interview may be requested of potential candidates for admission. Applicants are strongly encouraged to come to Brown for an interview, but a telephone or virtual interview may be arranged if necessary.

  • The GRE is not required to apply for the MAT program. 

  • Status of Application: Applicants will be notified of admission decisions no later than April 1.


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