MAT Field Experiences

General Field Experience and Placement Information


Every course in the MAT program has at its core several field experiences. The documents linked on this page provides an overview, course by course, of what types of experiences the teacher candidate should expect when taking each course, and guidelines for setting up field observations. It is the teacher candidate’s responsibility to be prepared to engage in the field experiences. In many school systems, this will often entail having to complete specific forms and paperwork in a timely manner, having background checks, and even being fingerprinted.  Each school system is different. 


The "Guidelines for Setting Up Field Experiences" provide an information to help you get started with setting up field experiences, including information on what is required in certain counties.  Please take the time to review this document before you begin contacting schools to set up visits.


The "Overview of MAT Field Experiences" provide descriptions of the current field experiences and related assignments required throughout the MAT program, including the number of hours required for each experience and in each course. Attached at the bottom of this page are related documents referenced in field experience descriptions in EDTP 600, EDTP 639, and EDTP 645.


The "Letter of Introduction" (also attached below) is a template letter from the Education Department that you may email and/or bring to schools in which you'd like to observe.  It may be used throughout the program and verifies your affiliation with UMUC and the MAT and explains what you will need for your observations.  (It includes the maximum number of hours to observe in any class throughout the program.  Each particular course, and field experience, of course, will vary.)


Please note that these are living documents and are subject to change.


Tk20, ePortfolio, and Field Experience Demographics/Verification


Please make sure that you purchase Tk20 before you begin your first class.  You will use Tk20 in every course throughout the program, to submit key assessments and course projects, verify field experience observations, and to collect and store artifacts by InTASC standads in your eportfolio.


Each semester, you will enter into the Tk20 Field Experience Placement Location Form the details about the schools where you complete each of your school-based field experiences.  You can watch short videos on how to access/submit your field experience school and demographic details and other Tk20 items here: http://umuctk20support.yolasite.com/MAT-Student-Support.php


Each time you conduct an observation, you will bring a copy of the "MAT Field Experience Observation Verification Form" with you and have the teacher you observe sign off verifying your time.  You will then attach the signed form to the Field Experience Placement Location Form in Tk20 for the particular experience, along with entering the school's demographics.

MAT Diversity Policy and Tracking

Candidates in the MAT program are required to observe in diverse school settings.  Candidates are expected to have field placements in at least two different schools, along with other  field experience. By the end of EDTP 639 (the third of five courses), candidates must have exoerience placements which are diverse in terms of race/ethnicity, socioeconomic status, exceptionalities, and English Language Learners (ELL). (Note: ELL was optional for candidates who took EDTP 600 prior to Fall 2016; students taking EDTP 600 are required to experience ELL diversity.) 

Candidates will enter the demographics for each school in which they observe into the Tk20 Field Experience Placement Location Forms associated with each school-based experience. Criteria for a diverse school setting include:

    • Race / Ethnicity (schools with two or more of the following race/ethnicity groups: Black, Asian/Pacific Islander, Hispanic, Native American or Alaska Native, white, and ≥25% non-white) 
    • Socioeconomic Status / Free and Reduced Meals (schools with 25% FARM students)
    • Students with Exceptionalities (schools with 10 students with special needs)
    • English Language Learner (ELL) Students (schools 10 English Language Learners)

      Candidate who began the MAT program in Fall 2015 and after will track completion of experiences in diversity settings on the MAT Diversity Tracking Form (note there is one form for candidate who began EDTP 600 prior to Fall 2016 and a different version for candidates who began EDTP 600 in/after Fall 2016; both are also attached below).  Please read the instructions on the form carefully and thoroughly. 


      As mentioned, for every school you visit for an observation, you will be looking up and entering the school's demographic information in the Tk20 Field Experience Placement Location Form.  Each time you observe in a school that meets the classification as a “diverse setting,” as defined above, you will also then enter that school’s information into the MAT Diversity Tracking Form under the appropriate diversity category.  For example, if you observe at Tom John High School and the school's demographics show that the school meets the criteria for diversity in both race/ethnicity and exceptionalities, you will enter the school demographic information into the MAT Diversity Tracking Form under “Race/Ethnicity Diversity” and “Exceptionality Diversity.” The MAT Diversity Tracking Form will be submitted into Tk20 at the end of EDTP 639 and all required categories should have schools listed that meet the particular diversity requirement.


      For schools in Maryland, the best source for demographic data is the Maryland School Report Card, which has all demographics for all Maryland schools.  Almost all out-of-state schools also have School Report Cards that provide demographics for all state schools. (A quick Google search for "Name of State" School Report Cards" can quickly help you identify the database.) 


      Note, though, that school report cards do not provide the "locale setting" and "locate setting size" needed on demographics table.  For these two items, you will need to look up the schools through the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES).  This site has demographics for schools nationwide.  While NCES does provide other demographics, it does not, however, provide ELL or exceptionality data, so candidates do still need to use other resources, like school report cards.  Also, NCES data is usualy 2-3 years old, so it is preferable to use the state's School Report Card for demographic numbers and just use NCES for "locale setting" and "locate setting size."


      Should you have any questions about setting up field experiences, please contact Kristin Kubik, Director of MAT Student Support, kristin.kubik@umuc.edu.


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