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Secondary Education, MA

Offered in: CHICAGO

The secondary education program is designed for students seeking teacher licensure at the high school levels in biology, chemistry, business, English, history, and mathematics. The requirements for the Illinois teaching license for grades9 through 12 are integrated with the program. Additional courses must be taken to earn an endorsement to teach at the middle school level.


Applicants to the program must have a minimum grade point average of 2.7 on a 4.0 scale for the entirety of their undergraduate course work, a minimum of 120 semester hours of credit at the undergraduate level, and a passing score on the Illinois Test of Academic Proficiency. Professional dispositions also must be demonstrated. Applicants who have taken other graduate-level course work must have a minimum 3.0 GPA in these courses. Students may earn admission to the program without an undergraduate major in biology, chemistry, business, English, history, or mathematics, but must complete the equivalent of an undergraduate major in one of these areas in order to earn licensure and the MA degree in secondary education.


To be awarded the MA in secondary education, students must successfully complete a 32 semester-hour program of study, and all requirements for the Illinois teaching license. For the license, 26 semester hours of education courses are required; students may earn the license before completing the MA degree.

To earn the teaching license, students must complete an approved student teaching experience, a minimum of 100 clock hours of pre-student teaching field experiences, all of the requirements for an academic major in one of the approved programs, and any additional course work or tests needed to satisfy accreditation, State of Illinois, and/or Roosevelt University requirements.

All graduate students must maintain a 3.0 GPA in their graduate courses, and no grade below C is acceptable for certification or the MA degree (C- grades are unacceptable).

At the time of admission, advisors review transcripts and evaluate all course work completed at other colleges or universities. Advising plans are developed and any deficiencies related to licensure requirements are noted. If additional course work is needed, the student’s advisor will indicate the course work needed to gain major equivalence for licensure. Each student must confer with his/her assigned advisor before enrolling in the program and during each advising period to ensure that all requirements are being successfully completed.

The following courses are required to earn licensure and complete the MA in secondary education:

Core courses

  EDUC 407 Topics & Issues in Human Development .....3
  READ 463 Teaching Language & Literacy Across the Content Areas .....3
  SEED 401 Secondary Education .....4
  SEED 450 Field Experience in Secondary Education .....4
  SPED 419 Exceptional Children & Youth .....3

One course in methods in area of certification selected with an advisor

  SEED 421 Methods of Teaching Secondary Business Education .....3
  SEED 422 Methods of Teaching Secondary Science .....3
  SEED 423 Methods of Teaching Middle School and Secondary Mathematics .....3
  SEED 426 Methods of Teaching Secondary Social Studies .....3
  SEED 427 Methods of Teaching Secondary English .....3

Required for the MA only

  One course in multicultural perspectives in educational practice (EDUC 449, 459, or CHS 411) .....3
  EDUC 480 Inquiry in the Classroom .....3

Student teaching

  SEED 460 Student Teaching & Seminar in the Elementary School .....6

Field experience
First-hand experiences with diverse learners in middle school and high school classrooms are required. Students are enrolled in courses that include field experiences; in these courses, they participate in classrooms as observers, tutors, and participants in large group activities. Field experiences involve both urban and suburban placements and must include schools with traditionally underserved populations. SEED 401, SEED 450, and SPED 419 are field experience courses. Students who are currently employed as full-time teachers or who have completed field experiences in other programs may petition to have these hours considered for meeting requirements. However, all petitions must be directed to the entire faculty of the program, through the program director, and all petitions must be received at the time of admission and initial enrollment in the program.

Student teaching
A 15-week student teaching experience is arranged in accordance with professional standards and with consideration of each student's needs and interests. Student teaching is open only to those who have completed all general education courses, an academic major, the Basic Skills Test or Test of Academic Proficiency and the appropriate content exam, professional education courses, and other requirements for admission to student teaching. Formal application two semesters prior to student teaching is required.

Applicants are expected to be in good physical health, free from severe, chronic, or persistent personal or emotional difficulties, and well prepared in general education, the academic major, professional dispositions, and professional education. A College of Education faculty member and a resident cooperating teacher supervise each student. Students are required to submit various assignments via Taskstream that document their growth, instructional orientation, and impact on student learning.

Student teaching assignments are not appropriate or approved in a school where a student has full-time employment, whether as a teacher, an aide, or in any support or administrative capacity. Student teachers may not engage in outside employment or take any additional course work while they are student teaching. Student teaching is a full-time responsibility of no less than 15 weeks. The State of Illinois requires all students enrolled in traditional teacher preparation programs to complete unpaid student teaching assignments.

Before issuing a license, the Illinois State Board of Education requires passing performance on the Test of Academic Proficiency, the content area test appropriate to the endorsement that the teacher candidate is seeking, and the edTPA. Students must consult with their assigned advisor to determine which courses taken at Roosevelt and at other institutions are acceptable for meeting state licensure requirements.

In secondary education, a general education course is required of all candidates:

  • A three semester-hour course in non-Western/Third World history, culture, or educational practice.