Urban Pedagogy (for Teach For America Detroit corps members)

Degree: Master of Arts in Educational Studies

Percy Bates

Percy Bates teaches an exceptionalities course in the master’s degree program for TFA corps members. Since 1965, he has been a faculty member and has served as an assistant dean, chairperson of the Special Education Program, and division director for Curriculum, Teaching, and Psychological Studies. He has worked with dozens of school districts, assisting them with assessing educational programs as well as dealing with equity, gender, and desegregation issues that teachers and administrators encounter on a day-to-day basis. For 22 years, ending in June 2012, he was the U-M faculty athletics representative; Bates continues to be active with the National Black Coaches Association.

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The Master of Arts in Educational Studies with a pathway in Urban Pedagogy is a unique 30-credit program for TFA-Detroit corps members enrolled in the Interim Certification Program and who are interested in studying issues and practices pertinent to teaching and learning in urban contexts. It is appropriate for those who want to deepen their understanding of teaching and learning during their time in the TFA-Detroit corps and for those who intend to remain in the field of education, whether as a teacher, school leader, or policymaker. Drawing from the Educational Studies MA: Teaching & Learning thread on which this program is built, the Urban Pedagogy pathway “focuses on instructional ‘doing’,” including learning about classroom practices, the development of classroom materials, and ways in which teaching occurs in classrooms. Students will learn how to examine theory and research with a critical eye toward improving the learning experience for all students.

Classes in the MA: Urban Pedagogy program are cohorted and occur at the Ann Arbor campus or at the Dearborn campus in the evenings or on Saturdays to accommodate corps members’ regular work schedules in Detroit-area schools. They are also scheduled so as not to conflict with required interim certification program seminar sessions. Additionally, in this master’s degree plan, eight (8) credits are granted for the successful completion of the interim certification program requirements making it possible to complete both programs within the two years in the TFA-Detroit corps. Classes are held during the fall, winter, and spring terms only. Corps members can, however, opt to take cognate or elective courses during the summer term and/or extend the program over 3+ years for a less intensive course load.

The cost of the MA:Urban Pedagogy program is in addition to the cost of the Interim Certification Program. Both resident and non-resident students receive an $8000 scholarship toward master’s degree tuition, which is a credit of the fees charged for the interim certification program. An additional scholarship of up to $17,000 for non-resident students is provided to increase the affordability of the program. (The amount of the non-resident scholarship is dependent on the number of corps members who enroll in the master's program. Applicants can expect to receive specific scholarship award amounts soon after receiving their offer of admission.) Assuming a non-resident scholarship award of $17,000, the estimated master’s degree program out-of-pocket cost is $21,641 for residents and $34,190 for non-residents (based on 2016-2017 tuition rates).  Note that non-resident students completing a comparable School of Education master’s program would pay close to $60,000. Students may also be eligible for additional financial aid and are encouraged to complete a FAFSA when applying to the program.

Sample Course Sequence

Term (subject to change) Courses (subject to change)
Fall of Year One


Winter of Year One

EDUC 649 Foundational Perspectives on Educational Reform (3 credits)

Cognate: Any non-EDUC graduate course (1 credit)

Spring of Year One

EDUC elective (3 credits)

Fall of Year Two

EDUC 490 Topics in Professional Education: Exceptionalities (3 credits)

EDUC 552 Instructional Leadership in Schools (3 credits)

Winter of Year Two

EDUC 695 Research and Educational Practice (3 credits)

EDUC 606 Developmental and Psychological Perspectives on Education (3 credits)

Spring of Year Two

EDUC 490 Credit for seminar course (3 credits)

EDUC 638 Credit for field instruction and satisfactory field ratings (3 credits)

EDUC 655 Credit for certification program portfolio (3 credits)

Cognate: Any non-EDUC graduate course (3 credits)


Students that are interested in course requirements can view the Course Planning Sheet.

Program Faculty

Program Support

Program Ambassadors

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Teach For America Interim Certification Program
University of Michigan
School of Education
610 E. University Avenue
Room 3112
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Telephone: 734.764.9712
Email: TFACertProgram@umich.edu

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