College of Education and Human Development

Department of Curriculum and Instruction

Social studies education MEd and teaching license

Earn your license to teach social studies in grades 5-12 and your master’s degree in just over a year. Our accelerated program will prepare you to start teaching with solid classroom experience. You will complete all of the required teaching hours through our unique co-teaching practicum model and required coursework in 13 months. The license to teach in Minnesota is highly transferable to other states and our candidates are sought after by local school districts. This is a graduate-level, full-time program.

94.4% of social studies MEd graduates found teaching jobs within a year of graduation (2021-2022 cohort)

Quote from Eli Singer, MEd 2020

The amount of individualized support we get within this program truly surprised me. Because of the small size of the cohort, all of your professors not only know you personally but also provide very strong individualized support. This not only comes in the form of feedback on assignments but also in helping you design lessons, mitigate issues that might arise in the classroom, and more.

Eli Singer, MEd 2020 Jewish Culture Humanities Teacher Colegio Einstein Quito, Equador

About the program and coursework

To look at the core curriculum and electives for the program, visit the University course catalog teaching MEd page under the Social Studies education sub-plan

Master's of education

We offer our teacher preparation programs at the graduate level because it affords you the opportunity to master your content knowledge in your undergraduate degree, allowing for an accelerated program that focuses on teaching. Combining an MEd with your teaching license offers the following advantages:

  • Teachers who have a master's degree will see a roughly $7,000 annual salary increase [Teacher.org]
  • Though the salary increase with a master's degree will vary, Minnesota teachers are on the higher end of the payscale, especially in STEM-focused fields. The annual mean Minnesota teacher salaries were $64,790 for middle school teachers and $64,960 for high school teachers in 2019 [Bureau of Labor Statistics].
  • Teachers with advanced degrees are seen as experts. You can be promoted to a school administration position and mentor other teachers based on your graduate training.

Student experience

Our unique co-teaching program and cohort experience will help you gain the confidence you need to start in your own classroom with plenty of support. Learn more about the student teaching experience .

Timeline

In this accelerated 13-month program you will complete all your required licensure coursework, student-teaching hours, and MEd completion credits.

Program orientation is in May. Courses start in the summer and finish the following summer. After completing the program and taking the licensure exams, you will earn both your MEd and your 5-12 social studies teaching license and be ready to start in your own classroom in the Fall.

teachers taking a selfie

Teacher scholars of color program

Do you identify, or are you identified, as a non-majority racial group? Consider participating in the Teacher Scholars of Color program. Students admitted to the MEd and initial teaching license programs have the opportunity to join a community of prospective teachers of color and get paired with a faculty mentor. International students are also welcome to this program. Find out more about the TSoC program.

How to apply

    Application deadline and instructions

    • October 1: MEd/ILP application opens
    • October 4: Scholarship application opens
    • November 30: Priority deadline for a transcript review/prerequisite evaluation
    • December 15: Priority application and scholarship application deadline, elementary education program accepting applications through January 15
    • January 15
      • Deadline for Arts in Education and Elementary education program
      • Final scholarship application deadline
    • March 15 - April 30: Admissions notifications will be sent on a rolling basis between March 15 and April 30. Students waitlisted may receive a notification after April 30.

    Prerequisites

    You must have foundational coursework in one of the following areas to choose as a concentration: African and African American Studies, American Indian Studies, American history, Asian American studies, anthropology, applied economics/economics, geography, gender studies, history, LatinX and ChicanX studies, political science, psychology, and sociology. See the required prerequisites.

    Tuition and funding

    To get you started, we have created a tutorial to review your scholarship and financial aid options. Watch the scholarship video tutorial.

    Tuition costs

    All master's degree programs have the same cost per credit hour. The University of Minnesota tuition operates on a credit band where there is a flat rate for tuition each semester when taking 12 - 24 credits.

    Financial aid

    • Apply for financial aid and scholarships when you submit your application
    • Each year we award partial scholarships to qualified teaching candidates. Teaching candidates received over $600,000 in scholarships from CEHD last year.
    • If you intend to teach a high-need subject in a public or private elementary or secondary school that serves low-income families, you may be eligible to receive grants of up to $4,000/year. Learn more about the TEACH grant on Onestop under Employment or Service Related.
    • If you plan to teach full-time for five complete and consecutive years in schools that serve low-income families, you may be eligible for loan forgiveness of up to $17,500 through a program administered by the federal government.
    • Learn more about teacher loan forgiveness

    Application requirements

    What we look for

    • A commitment to social justice and equity through working with diverse populations and underrepresented, or marginalized, group
    • A capacity for critical self-reflection
    • How teaching is a thoughtful and informed career choice

    Requirements

    1. Prerequisite evaluation. Prior to applying you will want to work with an MEd advisor to have your transcripts reviewed. The MEd advisors will evaluate your coursework and determine which classes meet licensure-specific prerequisites. (Elementary Education Foundations majors do not need to complete this step).
    2. A bachelor's degree from an accredited U.S. institution, or a comparable degree from a recognized college or university in another country, is required.
    3. A 2.80 GPA or above is required for immediate consideration of your application. If your GPA is less than 2.8, your application will require special review. In this situation, an Extenuating Circumstances statement may be appropriate.
    4. Transcripts. Unofficial transcripts from all previous institutions. Official transcripts aren't required until after you are admitted.
    5. Resume. Tailor your resume to highlight your experiences and achievements working with children and youth.
      Essay. Describe the world you come from--for example, your family, community or school. Tell us about a time when your worldview has informed and/or been challenged by working with children or youth. Reflecting on this and other experiences, how do you hope to grow as a reflective teacher through our program? Please submit an essay that is no longer than five pages, standard font-size, and double-spaced. Include your name at the top of each page.
    6. Letter of recommendation. Ask someone to write your letter of recommendation who can speak to your experience working with children or youth, or who can vouch for your commitment to educational equity. When you apply, list the name and email of your recommender. We will email them with instructions on how to submit their letter into the UMN application system.
    7. Diversity statement. Given the well-documented racial, ethnic, and/or cultural differences between teachers and the students they teach in K-12 spaces, what have you done to further your knowledge and understanding about equity and diversity? How have you demonstrated your learning? Please submit a response that is no longer than two pages, standard font-size, and double-spaced. Include your name at the top of each page.
    8. Extenuating circumstances statement (optional). While this is not required, if there is something on your transcript that does not accurately reflect who you are as a student, please write no more than 500 words documenting unusual circumstances or hardships you have faced and the ways in which you have overcome or responded to them.
      Application fees are $75 for US applicants and $95 for international students.

    The GRE is not required.

    Additional admissions information

    Prerequisite evaluations

    Each MEd program requires prerequisite coursework based on content area. View a list of the prerequisites by program area that are required for admission to each teaching MEd and initial teaching license program.

    Submit your unofficial transcript via email to the following contacts based on licensure area:

    Elementary Education Foundations majors do not need to complete this step.

    Transcript evaluations can take up to four weeks to complete; please plan accordingly and request a transcript evaluation well in advance of the November 30 deadline.

    Application instructions

    Utilize the resources below to ensure you have all the required forms and documents needed to apply.

    We are here to help! If you have questions, please contact the advisor who completed your prerequisite evaluation. Email addresses are listed in the prerequisite section above.

    Note: The Dual Language and Immersion license has a separate application process.

    International applicants

    You must get a NACES-approved member organization to complete a course-by-course evaluation of your transcript. Please send the official evaluation to: Department of Curriculum & Instruction c/o Foreign Transcript Evaluations Peik Hall, 125 159 Pillsbury Dr. SE Minneapolis, MN 55455

    Non-native English speakers must submit an official score from one of the following exams: TOEFL, IELTS or MELAB.

    Fore more information on this requirement and how to subnit your scores, please visit the Graduate School's English language proficiency page.

    Request information

    We’re here to help. Simply complete one of these forms and a member of our department will be in touch