Posted by: Margaret Campbell | December 12, 2010

Teaching credential program cost: question and answer

Today, I received this question via Facebook:

Why go with MAT@USC (Master of Art in Teaching, Multiple and Single Subject Credential track) which is almost 40k when other online programs will bestow the same credential for a fraction of the cost?

And here is the response that I posted:

Taking the courses I could get, at the cheapest cost, to get the teaching credential makes perfect sense. But for some reason, all these years, I have never been able to stomach university education courses (I’ve attempted some of them). They made me nauseous…I’d rather spend my dollars on art or statistics classes, something where I felt I was actually learning something instead of learning whatever, from a system I think is horribly outdated and falling apart.

That said, when I looked at the MAT@USC program, I saw a commitment to changing things, and shaking the system up…at the course level. The first courses have a strong emphasis on the big problems facing our schools (systemic racism, poverty, access gaps, ignorance at admin levels) instead of a focus on “learning how to teach kids” …almost like USC is tackling the problems behind the problems that teachers will face in the classroom…instead of pretending.

I am willing to pay a lot for a subversive, action-oriented, community-based, big-picture classes and teaching staff. That is the reason I invested in the MS from Full Sail University in Education Media Design & Technology before even starting a program for my teaching credential.

I am unwilling to pay anything for what I consider to be non-political or non-social justice or even just uneven and less socially committed approaches to teacher education.

Wow…your question certainly brought out my opinion! But I have thought about this for a long time, and USC is the first “program” that I have respected as an activist for education reform. Other institutions have offered great teachers or great individual teaching experiences…but that was not enough for me. The “cures” for systemic failures have to emerge from healthy systems.


  1. […] Teaching ¬†Credential Program Cost: Question and Answer […]

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