Dec 02, 2021  
2021-2022 University of Wyoming Catalog 
  
2021-2022 University of Wyoming Catalog

Science & Mathematics Teaching Center Master’s Degrees


Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Degree Programs

Science and Mathematics Teaching Center

Office of Graduate Education
Old Main 310
Phone: (307) 766-4128
Website: http://www.uwyo.edu/smtc/
Email: smtc@uwyo.edu

Program Director: Sylvia Parker
 

The Science and Mathematics Teaching Center (SMTC) was established in 1970 and is committed to excellence in science, mathematics, technology and STEM education. As part of the Office of Graduate Education in Academic Affairs, the SMTC, in cooperation with the Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) and the Professional Teaching Standards Board (PTSB), serves as a resource and professional development center for the state. The SMTC offers transdisciplinary graduate degree programs with multiple degree concentrations, certification options, and endorsement options. All of the programs emphasize both strong content knowledge and instructional practices. The affiliate faculty for the SMTC includes faculty from the Colleges of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Arts and Science, Education, and Engineering and Applied Science, and the Haub School of Environment and Natural Sciences.

The SMTC provides extensive off-campus professional development that serves teachers, students, administrators, school districts and communities throughout Wyoming and the region. SMTC in-service and extension courses, workshops, institutes, and conferences are designed collaboratively to improve science and mathematics teaching in Wyoming.

The SMTC administers and supports five master’s degree programs:

(1) the Master of Science degrees in Natural Science with concentrations in Middle Level Math (MMA) and

(2) Middle Level Science (MSC); these programs are designed for Wyoming’s in-service elementary, middle, and high school teachers. They focus on general science and mathematics content with an emphasis on teaching middle school level learners. The course work leads to middle level endorsement provided by the Wyoming PTSB. Teachers must have two years of teaching experience to participate in these programs.

(3) Master of Science in Teaching - Natural Science (MST - Natural Science). This is a self-directed master’s degree program working with the SMTC, SER, and the Haub School as well as other colleges. The program is developed individually with the guidance of a graduate committee based on the interests of the graduate student.  This program may be used by teachers to take the 18 graduate-level credits often needed to teach Advanced Placement and community college courses. 

(4) Master of Science - Natural Science (MS - Natural Science). This is a self-directed master’s degree program working with the SMTC, the College of Arts and Sciences, SER, and the Haub School and other colleges. The program is developed individually based on the interests of the graduate student and may emphasize formal or informal learning settings.  Interdisciplinary study is encouraged.

(5) Master of Science in Natural Science with a concentration in Natural Science Education (NED). This Master’s degree program is designed for students pursuing careers as environmental and natural science educators in non-public school or non-formal education settings. These students spend one year at the Teton Science Schools (TSS) in Jackson. A long-standing MOU between the SMTC and TSS allows students to use 15 graduate credit hours earned at TSS towards a master’s degree if they are accepted into the second year at UW within the SMTC.

SMTC Student Learner Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the MS degree program in Natural Science, a student will be able to:


• Engage in teacher research to transform STEM instruction:

  - Design and implement a research project that asks and answers a question using appropriate materials, concepts and methods, and ethical practices, and
  - Effectively communicate all aspects of the research project in both oral and written forms.

• Use professional and academic standards to ensure high-quality interdisciplinary instruction (i.e., place-based, culturally relevant, and/or social justice pedagogy) to maximize learning for all students.

• Engage in mathematical and/or scientific discourse and scientific thinking as active participants in communities of practice.

• Use emerging technology and science investigations as tools to engage students.

Program Specific Admission Requirements

For the MSC, MMA, MST and MS-Natural Science Master’s Degrees:

Two years of teaching experience and a valid teaching license (required for MSC and MMA; may be waived for MST and MS-Natural Science)

Application Fee, unless a UW Graduate

Official Transcripts from all Institutions attended and Bachelor Degree conferring institution

3.0 undergraduate grade point average; provisional admission with a lesser GPA only with consent from Academic Affairs

GRE (minimum 292 score) or an Alternative Portfolio including evidence that supports the potential success of the candidate as a graduate student and a document that interprets the evidence (These items are not required of applicants who hold a prior master’s degree)

Writing Sample in response to three provided questions

Resume

Three Letters of Recommendation including a letter from the teacher’s principal and two other colleagues.

 

The NED Degree - First Year Application:

Official Transcripts from all institutions attended and Bachelor Degree conferring institution Application Fee, unless a UW Graduate

Acceptance and admission by the Graduate Program at the Teton Science Schools in Jackson, WY

The NED Degree - Second Year Application:

GRE (minimum 292 score) or an Alternative Portfolio including evidence that supports the potential success of the candidate as a graduate student and a document that interprets the evidence

Writing Sample in response to three provided questions

Resume

Three Letters of Recommendation including a letter from a TSS Graduate Program Faculty Member, one from another TSS employee such as a Classroom Instructor or Field Instructor, and one from the first year application

Applicants complete a UW graduate application and upload all of the information on the Admissions Office website (http://www.uwyo.edu/admissions/apply.html).  Application packets are reviewed by SMTC Admissions Committees and recommendations for admissions are submitted to the University of Wyoming Admissions Office.  Any of the above requirements plus the university’s minimum 3.00 grade point average may be waived if proper documentation and reasoning are given by the SMTC and approved by the Associate Vice Provost of Graduate Education.

International applicants,who are not native English-speakers, must submit TOEFL or IELTS scores. If an international applicant wishes to be considered for Graduate Assistantship funding, the applicant should also submit the results of an Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI). Please contact the UW English Language Center (http://www.uwyo.edu/elc/) for more information.

Please see the Graduate Admissions and Graduate Student Regulations and Policies entries in the front section of the UW Catalog for more information.

Application Due Dates for Master of Science - Natural Science with Concentrations in the following areas:

Middle-level Science (MSC): applications are accepted on an ongoing basis; new students may begin only in summer each year; final due date for admission in summer is April 1.

Middle-level Mathematics (MMA): applications are accepted on an ongoing basis; new students may begin any semester (fall, spring, summer); final due date for admission in fall is July 1; summer is April 1; spring is November 1.

Natural Science Education (NED): applications deadlines for Year 1 are established by Teton Science Schools (https://www.tetonscience.org/programs/graduate-program/admissions/); due date for admission to begin Year 2 in the fall at UW is February 1. 

MST and the MS- Natural Science Masters Degree: applications for these self-designed programs are accepted on an ongoing basis; new students may begin any semester (fall, spring, summer); final due date for admission in fall is July 1; summer is April 1; spring is November 1.

Graduate Assistantships and Scholarships

The SMTC often has scholarships and graduate assistantships available for graduates accepted for the above Master’s degree programs. More information upon admission and acceptance.


For the Master of Science in Natural Science Master’s Degrees

Plan B (non-thesis)

  • 30 Credit Hours of graduate-level coursework is required in all of the programs.  This includes 24 credit hours in required coursework depending on the program plus 6 credit hours of additional coursework that may include a research class, Plan B independent research and an elective.
  • The Middle Level Science (MSC) concentration is a 3-year program, for the required coursework, in the summers only on UW’s main campus. Courses are offered on a 3-year rotation cycle; students may enter the program in any year. 
  • The Middle Level Math (MMA) concentration is a 2-year program with classes offered virtually in the fall and spring and in-person on the main campus in the summer, for the required courses. Students may enter the program in any semester. 
  • The Natural Science Education (NED) concentration is a 2-year program with classes offered in the graduate program at the Teton Science Schools in Jackson, WY, in year 1, and additional classes offered at the UW main campus in year 2. 
  • The MST (Master’s of Science in Teaching) and the MS- Natural Science Master’s Degrees are Main campus degrees. They are self-directed master’s degree programs designed individually based on the student’s interests and needs. 
  • All students must complete and defend a Plan B research project. 
  • A Plan A (thesis) may be completed with an extra year of research.

NOTE: Middle-Level Science & Middle-Level Mathematics; 24 credit hours in the core courses are required for institutional recommendation for WY middle-level endorsement from the Professional Teaching Standards Board, PTSB.

NOTE: *NASC 5810 Middle-Level Science and Mathematics 3 credit hour course Practica (required course for teachers without previous coursework or experience teaching middle-level students. Offered spring semester in even years only).

Other Degrees and their Requirements

The MST in Natural Science and the MS - Natural Science programs are self-directed master’s degree programs designed individually based on the student’s interests and needs. The programs require 30 graduate level credits plus a Plan B research project that is defended publicly. Requirements are based on the university minimum requirements.

For the NED Concentration - Year 1 (at Teton Science Schools)

These students spend their first year at the Teton Science Schools in Jackson, Wyoming. Students earn 15 credits that may be used towards the master’s degree at the University of Wyoming in Year 2.  

For the NED Concentration - Year 2 (at the University of Wyoming)

Plan B (non-thesis)

  • This is a one-year program on the main campus.
  • 30 credit hours of coursework is required for the master’s degree, of which 15 credit hours of agreed upon courses are earned at TSS in year 1. The other 15 credit hours include two required courses: NASC 5650 (3 credits) and a graduate level research class (minimum 3 credits).  Additional courses in environmental science and science pedagogy classes are chosen by the graduate student and their advisor.
  • A concurrent major in Environmental and Natural Resources is an option with this Master’s program.
  • Students must complete and defend a Plan B research project.
  • A Plan A (thesis) may be completed with an extra year of research.

Middle-Level Science Concentration and Master’s Degree


Middle-Level Mathematics Concentration and Master’s Degree (courses in this program are cross listed with other departments)


Natural Science Education (NED)


Courses


Return to {$returnto_text} Return to: Degree Programs