Master of education: Middle Grades Education - Math & Science

Admission Requirements | Program of Study | Course Descriptions | Apply Now! | Get Financial Aid | Student Policies

The M.Ed. in Middle Grades Math and Science is an advanced degree, offering in-service middle grades teachers the opportunity to pursue advanced training in their teaching fields. Current certification in Middle Grades Math and/or Science is required for admission to the degree program, in order for the candidate to be considered for a teaching certificate upgrade. The degree is awarded through the NCATE accredited Dewar College of Education & Human Services at Valdosta State University. Top graduate faculty from Valdosta State University and North Georgia College and State University teach the courses. This 12-course program can be completed in four consecutive semesters – about 16 months - with full-time enrollment. Courses are offered on a continuous basis, allowing for part-time enrollment. All course-work, including exams, is done online. No campus visits are required to complete the program.

  • Special Requirements: Students must be employed teachers and hold a clear/renewable teaching certificate in Middle Grades Math and/or Middle Grades Science to be eligible for a certificate upgrade.
  • Delivery: The program is fully online, with no on-campus attendance requirements. Students conduct all work online, including team projects, exams, discussion posts, and case studies. Students have access to online academic resources, such as the library. Courses are asynchronous; there are no scheduled online meetings except those you might make with peers for group work.
  • Technology: Students must have access to a digital video camera to record performance for remote classroom observation. A webcam is an option for this requirement in some cases and can be useful for video conferencing with instructor or peers. Students must purchase the LiveText portfolio assessment application and should have high speed internet access. Additional software may be required.
  • Transfer credit: A maximum of 9 semester hours of graduate coursework may be considered; they must be less than 7 years of age at the point of completing this program. Requests for transfer credit prior to entering the M.Ed. program must be documented in the form of an official transcript during the admission process. Eligibility is determined by the student’s academic advisor.
  • Cost: Please see the Fees / Aid link for details.
  • Financial Aid: Student loans are available through the VSU Office of Financial Aid - 229-333-5935. Though limited, there are potential scholarship opportunities, such as the Teach Grant.

Admission Requirements

It is a sequenced, two-semester admission process. For semester deadlines visit the VSU GOML Calendar

Quick Admit – Semester One - a provisional admission good for only one semester.

  • You only need to submit the online application for admission , including a non-refundable $50 application fee paid by debit or credit card.
  • You must have completed a minimum of a bachelor’s degree from a regionally-accredited institution, with a minimum of 2.75 grade point average on all attempted work.
  • You must hold a clear/renewable teaching certificate (T-4 or higher) in Middle Grades Math and/or Middle Grades Science in the State of Georgia. The Graduate School will verify your certificate through the Georgia Professional Standards Commission (GAPSC).
    • Teachers certified in states other than Georgia may be eligible. To qualify you must hold the equivalent of a Georgia clear/renewable teaching certificate. Please contact the VSU Graduate School at for additional information. VSU reserves the right to request additional documentation, if needed.
  • You are NOT required to take the GRE or MAT.
  • To be eligible for a certificate upgrade from PSC upon completion of the MED in Middle Grades Math and Science, a candidate must hold a certification in Middle Grades math and/or science prior to beginning the program.

If accepted, applicants will be notified of their acceptance by e-mail.

Full Admission - Once Quick Admitted for Semester One, applicants must begin fulfilling the remaining Semester Two requirements. To be reviewed for full admission, applicants must:

  • Submit to the Graduate School official transcripts from each institution of prior enrollment (undergraduate and graduate coursework). Transcripts of coursework completed at VSU will be obtained by the Graduate School. Former VSU students are only required to submit transcripts of all coursework completed elsewhere.
  • Submit to the Graduate School the student information section (top of page) and distance learning exemption (bottom of page), on the VSU Medical Form.
  • To be eligible for a certificate upgrade from PSC upon completion of the MED in Middle Grades Math and Science, a candidate must hold a certification in Middle Grades Math and/or Science prior to beginning the program.

To be reviewed for Semester Two, applicants must complete all requirements prior to the application deadline for that term (VSU GOML Calendar). Students are encouraged to complete Semester Two requirements well in advance of the deadline.  Failing to do so will delay registration and may impact course availability.  The Graduate School requires a minimum of two weeks after the receipt of all materials to process Semester Two decisions. Notification is by postal mail.

Applicants will be notified of their second semester admission decision by postal mail.

Students are not permitted to register for Semester Two courses until they receive full, semester two admission and receive their full admission letter. Students who fail to fulfill all Semester Two requirements prior to the admission deadline will forfeit their place in the program, be required to sit out at least one semester, and will be required to submit a new application and fee for the following term.  Quick Admission for Semester One will not be offered more than once for the same program.

For additional admission information, please contact the VSU Graduate School at (229) 333-5694 or by e-mail All required documents must be submitted prior to close of business on the application deadline.  For semester deadlines visit the VSU GOML Calendar.

Submit all documentation to:
Graduate School
Valdosta State University
1500 N. Patterson Street
Valdosta, GA 31698-0005
Fax: 229 -245 -3853

Apply Now! | Get Financial Aid

Program of Study

Professional Education Core  (15 hours):
MGMS 7200: Conceptualizing Middle Level Learning & Diversity In Context
MGMS 7240: Instructional Leadership, Curriculum & Assessment
MGMS 7300: Building Professional Learning Communities 
MGMS 7100: Research Methodology in Education
MGMS 7000: Professional Development Seminar
---------Math Content (9 hours):
MATH 5180: Mathematics for Middle School Teachers
MATH 5190: Algebra and Geometry for Teachers
MATH 6161: Mathematical Reasoning
---------Science Content (9 hours):
MGMS 7400: Physical Science
MGMS 7401: Chemistry, Earth Science, & Astronomy
MGMS 7402: Life Science & Natural History
---------Capstone Course  (3 hours)
MGMS 7650: Teaching Practicum

TOTAL Semester Hour Credits:


Course Descriptions

MGMS 7000 Professional Development Seminar I 3 cr.
The self-assessment of individual student understanding and application of master teacher outcomes. Provides the basis for an individual program of study based on individual needs.

MGMS 7100 Research Methodology in Education 3 cr.
This course provides a study of methods used to conduct educational and educationally related research and includes critical analysis of selected research articles and research design. Emphasized is the ability to use research and research methods to improve practices in educational and educationally-related settings.

MGMS 7200 Conceptualizing Middle Level Learning and Diversity in Context 3 cr.
Examination of concepts, principles, theories, and research that support the tenets of the middle school philosophy as well as current trends in middle level education. Focus will be on the unique nature and development of the middle-level learner. Candidates will analyze their own practice, investigate the impact of media on young adolescent developmental issues, and generate research-based professional resources.

MGMS 7240 Instructional Leadership and Assessment 3 cr.
Advanced knowledge and skill in the areas of curriculum, instruction, and assessment. Multiple approaches to assessment will be emphasized as related to programmatic and content issues, learner outcomes, and teaching performance. Focus will be the advancement of best practices utilizing data to help make decisions about curriculum, instruction, and assessment within a content-based classroom

MGMS 7300 Collaboration and Professionalism 3 cr.
Collaborative skills among teachers, and between teacher and student, community, parents, and support professionals. Application to the graduate students' work-sites will be emphasized.

MATH 5180 Mathematics for Middle School Teachers 3 cr.
Concepts and processes that provide the foundation for the middle-grades mathematics curriculum (5-8). Includes an in-depth study of the real number system with emphasis on the rational number system and axiomatic differences among number systems. Other topics include relations and functions, geometry (including coordinate geometry and graphing), measurement, and elementary probability and statistics.

MATH 5190 Algebra and Geometry for Teachers 3 cr.
An in-depth study of the concepts and processes underlying the middle and secondary school mathematics curriculum, with special emphasis placed upon the integrated development of algebra, geometry, and analytical geometry. Problem solving and historical context serve as unifying strands.

MATH 6161 Mathematical Reasoning 3 cr.
An in-depth study of concepts and processes underlying the P-8 school mathematics curriculum, with special emphasis on informal and formal mathematical reasoning. Problem solving and historical context serve as unifying strands. The analysis and remediation of student errors manifested in the application of conceptual and procedural mathematical knowledge will also be addressed.

MGMS 7400 Physical Science for Middle School 3 cr.
An integrated math and physics course with special emphasis on conceptual physics. The assigned work will include the laws of physics, theories, and problem solving, including a review of the basic math required to be a successful problem solver.

MGMS 7401 Chemistry, Earth Science, and Astronomy for Middle Grades 3 cr.
An integrated math and science course with special emphasis on an understanding of chemical processes related to earth science and astronomy, including a study of physical chemistry, earth processes, and the chemical evolution of the universe.

MGMS 7402 Life Science and Natural History for Middle Grades 3 cr.
A life-science course with special emphasis on ecology, biomes, classification, phylogenetic trees, and evolution and natural selection, including a study of the biosphere, biochemistry, genetics, and evolutionary processes.

MGMS 7650 Teaching Practicum 3 cr.
To complete the practicum a candidate must be in the role of teacher in a classroom. One of the requirements for the practicum is the completion of a Teacher Work Sample, an extensive task that includes a pre-test, teaching a unit, and a post test. Also the M.Ed. portfolio, a requirement for graduation, is completed in this course.

Retention, Graduation, Dismissal & Readmission Policies

  1. The maximum time allowed for completion of the master’s degree is seven calendar years.  No work completed more than seven years prior to degree completion will be accepted toward the degree, except with special permission from the candidate’s  advisor, Dean of the College of Education & Human Services, and approval from the Dean of the Graduate School.
  2. No more than 9 semester hours of academic work may be transferred from another institution into the M.Ed. program.  Transfer credit will be evaluated after admission, by the academic advisor.
  3. To graduate from this program, a student must have a cumulative institutional graduate GPA of 3.0 or higher.
  4. Earning grades below “B” in graduate courses will result in the following consequences:
    • Students admitted Fall 2011and thereafter will be dismissed from the Graduate School if they accumulate three or more academic deficiency points unless otherwise indicated by individual program policy. A grade of “C” (although it may be credited toward a degree) equals one deficiency point. A grade of “D,” “WF” or “F,” or “U” (none of which will be credited toward a degree) equals two deficiency points.
    • Candidates admitted BEFORE Fall 2011 and receiving two grades below “C” (“D”, “F”, “WF”,“U”) will be dismissed from the program. One grade below a "C" results in a warning.
  5. If dismissed from the program a student must not be enrolled for two semesters. Application for readmission may be initiated during the second semester. Readmission is not guaranteed, and prior academic performance and student conduct/disposition in the program will be considered. The academic program reserves the right to place specific conditions and contingencies on any offer of readmission.