About This Masters Degree
[[Teacher Preparation Programs in Mathematics]]
The Warner School’s teacher preparation programs in mathematics prepare individuals interested in teaching mathematics for students at various age levels and in a variety of contexts, including NYS public schools, charter schools and independent schools in the U.S., schools outside the U.S., as well as informal settings such as after-school or summer programs. The program aims to prepare teachers of the highest quality and support them in deepening their understanding of mathematics while learning about innovative and effective methods to teach mathematics to their students.
As our world becomes more complex, math is everywhere and it is for everyone. All students need a solid grounding in mathematics—as a foundation for lifelong problem solving and because mathematics is essential to so many jobs that drive our economy. And, our world faces increasingly complex environmental changes that require solid math and science to solve and understand.
Our graduates become teachers who help to make math literacy possible for all students. They help young people discover that math is more than just memorizing formulas and algorithms. Their students learn how to make connections between math, their world, and learning. And, they learn how to apply mathematical concepts and skills to solve real problems.
The mathematics teacher preparation program builds from long-term empirical and theoretical developments in mathematics education and the learning sciences. Core learning principles that guide the design of the program include the need for learners to make sense of mathematics and to interact with others while engaging with rich mathematical tasks. Core teaching principles include the need to inquire into and reflect on student thinking so that students’ informal and intuitive strategies can be transformed into more formal and conventional mathematical concepts. Furthermore, the mathematics education courses highlight the social and cultural dimensions of mathematics education, with a consistent and integrated focus on equity and diversity not just as principles for social justice but as key elements of effective learning communities.
Throughout the program, graduate students engage in collaborative problem-solving activities around a range of mathematical topics using appropriate technology. These intensive experiences are intended to challenge conventional conceptions of mathematics and how people learn math. Ultimately, the goal is to begin the long-term process of building durable perspectives and skills that will help teachers to design engaging, equitable, and rigorous math learning experiences for K-12 students.
On a more practical level, there are multiple opportunities in the program to analyze curricula that are designed to be coherent and comprehensive, which stands in contrast to conventional curricula that suffer from the ‘mile-wide, inch-deep’ phenomenon. These ‘reform’ curricula emphasize a developmental approach to learning mathematics concepts by sequencing activities in a way that builds from students’ intuitive understandings to more conventional and formal representations. The curricula consistently emphasize the connections between mathematical representations, between procedures and concepts, and between instructional units so that key mathematical ideas are developed over the course of weeks, months, and even years. Furthermore, the curricula situate problems in context so that students use everyday situations to develop mathematical forms of thinking. There are several opportunities throughout the program to observe teachers using these curricula.
Depending on the context you would like to teach in, and the credentials you may have already obtained, you may choose among the program options listed below to best meet your career goals and situation.
[[Non-certification program for mathematics teachers:]]
This program has been designed for individuals who are not interested in obtaining or eligible to obtain New York State (NYS) teaching certification – as they are planning to teach secondary students in international, private or charter schools, college remedial programs or support services, or other informal learning settings, such as camps, clubs, or after-school programs. As such, this option does not include field experiences or student teaching, and has more flexibility in terms of curriculum and electives.
- MS – Mathematics Education (without NYS certification) (GM1) https://www.warner.rochester.edu/programs/program/GM1
[[Programs leading to NYS certification in mathematics:]]
To teach mathematics in secondary schools in New York State, you need to obtain initial teaching certification in adolescence education (grades 7-12) as a specialist in mathematics. Professional Certification and a master’s degree are also eventually required. Our Warner mathematics teacher preparation program will provide you with all the coursework needed to apply for both NYS certifications as part of a master’s degree. Provided you have the necessary content background, our program also allows you to pursue more than one certification at the same time and with minimal additional credits.
A key highlight of our mathematics teacher preparation programs leading to NYS certification is how our faculty integrate urban education into the whole curriculum. We make it a part of every course so that students are equipped and prepared to work in all schools—particularly in some of our most underserved school districts where there is a shortage of high-quality and innovative teachers.
No doubt you had a teacher who took a genuine interest, who really opened your eyes to the possibilities. You can become that teacher: The one who creates a classroom where spirits soar and success is the expectation.
At Warner, you’ll grow into a thoughtful practitioner with a deep understanding of your subject and the best way to teach it. You
will develop an approach that is grounded in current research and authentic practices, that promotes social justice and supports students’ growth and development.
And you’ll do it quicker. A teaching degree from the Warner School can be completed in just 15 months. (Most take two years.) Classes begin in May, right after graduation, and run through the following August. And since New York has some of the toughest certifications around, you can take what you’ve learned just about anywhere.
Prerequisites for entry-level teachers teaching mathematics include a bachelor’s degree with a major in liberal arts or science, one course in a language other than English (or equivalent), and 30 credits of coursework (at either the undergraduate or graduate level) in mathematics, including two calculus courses. See https://www.warner.rochester.edu/admissions/