We’re grateful to the Teach.com website for highlighting PLP voices in their resourceful blog, where they provide useful information and ideas aimed at new and prospective teachers as well as veteran educators. We asked them to tell us more about the site and about how teachers can contribute to the Teach.com blog.


1. We’re curious about the origin and goals of Teach.com.

Teach.com evolved out of the need to offer regionally specific information about teaching and teacher certification to students of the MAT@USC program located all around the country. During the process of building out this information we began to ask ourselves larger questions about the qualities, goals and actions that help to define great teachers and great teaching. The MAT@USC wanted to make the fruits of this research available, at no cost, to anyone who was interested. Aside from acting as a comprehensive informational resource for teachers , Teach.com aims to discover, discuss and encourage great teaching across the country.

2. Teach.com highlights the Master of Arts in Teaching program offered online by the University of Southern California. Who’s mostly likely to benefit from the program? Why would someone choose MAT@USC over other online opportunities? And what’s the learning experience like for participants?

Aspiring and current teachers who are interested in making a difference in the 21st century classroom will benefit most from the MAT@USC.  Choosing the MAT@USC is not the same as choosing just any online program – we offer current and aspiring teachers a unique blend of field-based teaching experiences and highly interactive online learning which includes live classes via an Adobe Connect classroom.  We’ve also eliminated the constraint of geography for our students not living in the Los Angeles area.  Our students hail from around the world; 43 states and 28 countries so we are able to build upon the on-campus student experience by providing diversity, a user-friendly platform, USC professors and a student support team that is available to help our students 24/7.

3. Let’s say I live on the East Coast. My state expects me to have a preservice teaching experience in a live classroom — and I feel like I need that, too. How does the MAT@USC program help me meet that need?

All of our students must under-go field-based teaching experiences in their own community.  We have a Placement Team which assists our students in finding a school that will fit their needs as well as the program needs.  The field experiences our students take on are an integral part of the program that will help them apply the theories and instructional methods they have studied by observing and practicing in local classrooms under the guidance of mentor teachers.

4. Teach.com is a great information site. What are some of the resources that teachers and potential teachers can find in your Web space, beyond the specifics of the MAT@USC degree opportunity?

Teach.com offers a state-by-state break down of teaching statistics, teacher certification information and more. From education, to certification testing to the formal credentialing process, Teach.com provides the resources to simplify the process of becoming a teacher or advance your teaching career in the hopes of increasing the number of highly trained, educated and dedicated teachers available to students everywhere.

5. Final thoughts? Guest bloggers?

One of Teach.com’s current focuses is the need for exceptional STEM education policies and teachers around the country. STEM education encompasses necessary foundational knowledge for students to be competitive in our technology laden world.

Additionally, we’re always looking for guest blogger contributions from teachers or aspiring teachers who are passionate about something they’re doing that they think is unique, effective or just plain fun. If  you’re an aspiring, current or retired teacher interested in writing for Teach.com please send your topic ideas to Sarah Fudin: sfudin@teach.com.  You can also tweet us: @Teachdotcom. And we’d like to hear your ideas about our Great Teachers feature, too.

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Sheryl is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Powerful Learning Practice. She works with schools and districts from around the world helping them to infuse technology into their curriculums and by leading other digital conversion efforts. Sheryl also consults with governments, educational organizations and non-profits in development of their various professional learning initiatives. Sheryl is a sought-after presenter at national and international events, speaking on topics related to digital and online learning, teacher and educational leadership, online community building, and other educational issues impacting children of poverty. Sheryl served on the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) Board of Directors for six years. She co-authored The Connected Educator: Learning and Leading in a Digital Age with Lani Ritter Hall. Sheryl has four children and four grandsons, Luke, Logan, Levi and Tanner and a trio of dachshunds. You can find out more on her blog and on Twitter @snbeach.

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