Our master’s programs are designed to enhance the content knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge, and educational research abilities of our students. All programs are committed to diversity, fairness and equity, a culture of collaboration, and the capacity to improve professional practices as part of a reflective community of learners.

Admission Requirements

The Graduate School makes admission decisions based on a composite of qualitative and quantitative information that include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • applicant’s statement of purpose
  • letters of recommendation
  • the academic standing of the student in program(s) in which the applicant has studied
  • relevant professional activities and achievements
  • recommendation of the faculty
  • Class B certification (for regular MA students; Alternative Certification MA students do not need prior certification)

Not every student whose credentials meet stated standards is admitted. Admission requirements are subject to change without prior notice. A person holding a bachelor’s degree (or who is a senior) from a U.S. regionally accredited institution (or the foreign equivalent for an international applicant) is eligible for consideration for admission to the Graduate School of The University of Alabama.

Application Process

Please apply online for graduate study at the Graduate School’s website.  Interested persons with restrictions that prevent the use of our online application or who have questions about applications should contact The University of Alabama, Graduate School, Box 870118, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0118; telephone (205) 348-5921 or 1-877-UAGRADS; fax (205) 348-0400; or e-mail gradschool@ua.edu.

All applicants, including U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and international applicants, must submit the following materials to the Graduate School using the online application:

  • Applicant data sheet and statement of purpose
  • One official transcript for each US institution of higher education (including community colleges) at which 15 or more credit hours have been completed. For domestic applicants, transcripts must be uploaded by the applicant. For international applicants, transcripts but be submitted directly by the issuing institution.
  • The application fee is $65 for U.S. citizens and permanent residents and $80 for international applicants, payable online. Application fees are non-refundable.
  • Three letters of recommendation. Recommendations may be submitted online by logging in to ‘Manage Supporting Documents‘ or through postal mail. Complete information for the submission of letters of recommendation can be found at http://graduate.ua.edu/prospective-students/apply-now. These should be submitted directly to the department to which the applicant is applying (not to the Graduate School ). Each applicant must have a letter of reference from at least one professor in
    1. his or her undergraduate major, or
    2. the proposed field of graduate study, if any courses have been taken in either area within the last five years
  • Additional application materials (e.g., portfolios, writing samples, responses to essay questions, etc.) required by individual departments. Applicants should contact departments directly for more information and visit ‘Manage Supporting Documents’ for a list of documents may currently be uploaded.

All of the above materials must be received by the Graduate School before an application will be considered. To ensure that no materials are missing, applicants should periodically check the status of their applications online or by telephoning the Graduate School.

Application may be made to only two programs at a time, and at no time may a student be enrolled in more than two programs. A person holding a bachelor’s degree from a U.S. regionally accredited institution (or the foreign equivalent for an international applicant) is eligible for consideration for admission to the Graduate School of The University of Alabama. Seniors who have completed at least 91 undergraduate credits at regionally accredited institutions are also eligible to apply.

If a student applies but does not complete any coursework within 12 months of the requested entrance date, a new application and an accompanying appropriate fee must be submitted.


Program Requirements

The primary purpose of master’s degree programs is to provide students with subject matter at an advanced level in their fields of study.  Master’s degrees are designed to assist students either to continue their graduate studies or to meet the goals of their professions.  In most cases, master’s programs also help students become familiar with methods of independent investigation.

There are two study plans available to students pursuing the master of arts degree. Candidates for the masters degree under Plan I must earn a minimum of 24 semester hours of credit in coursework and must write a thesis. Candidates for the masters degree under Plan II must earn a minimum of 30 semester hours of credit; a thesis is not required.

Masters degree programs leading to professional certification normally require a minimum of 30 semester hours. Courses that are taken for undergraduate credit may not be repeated for graduate credit. In compliance with regulations established by the Alabama Department of Education and outlined in the Alabama Administrative Code, coursework used to meet Class B certification requirements may not be used to meet requirements for Class A certification in any teaching field or area of instructional support.

A student completing requirements for a masters degree during a semester or summer session who does not need a full class load to meet those requirements may, with approval of the advisor and department head, register for additional courses toward a Class AA Professional Certificate, not to exceed the maximum prescribed class load.

Additional details on all other degree requirements are in the Degree Requirements section of this catalog and may be outlined in the individual program descriptions in this catalog. Under each plan (including the nontraditional, alternative program) the student must pass a comprehensive assessment in the field(s) of study at an appropriate time toward the close of the student’s work. The assessment may include, but may not be limited to, an oral exam.

Students who complete the program receive a master’s degree in Secondary Education.


Programs of Study