Master of Science in Education

School of Education

Master of Science in Education Curriculum

Master's Option Courses

  • This course provides an early entry graduate, level overview of research methods used in education with an emphasis on interpreting and critiquing educational research literature. The models and best practices of academic research are coupled with the strategies for developing advocacy relationships. Students engage in initial stages of data collection the field.
  • Issues and historical perspectives as they relate to learning are explored. Cognitive theories and processes of learning are a primary focus. Development and learning will be addressed, specifically as they relate to the neuroscience of learning, content-area learning, and motivation. This course blends theory, research, and practical applications throughout, in order for students to develop a unified view of learning in educational settings within their socio-cultural contexts.
  • Students will explore critical education theory and community organizing perspectives and strategies and develop skills in advocacy and activism in order to engage in critical analysis and transformation of educational systems. Laws and policies will be explored in order to make connections at the local, state and federal levels. Community-based organizations will be examined as effective agents for social change and community mobilization.
  • This course will provide support and guidance to the beginning teacher through critical discussion of the role of the teacher and analysis of classroom-based experiences. It will emphasize the need for inquiry and self-reflection in the learning environment to foster professional development.
  • The focus of this course is upon how assessment data is used to inform instruction and enhance student learning. Outcomes of student learning need to be connected to activism and advocacy for appropriate assessment practices. Consideration of assessment practices and instruments will be in light of students’ diverse needs and cultures and the communities within which they live and learn. Presents the basic principles of development, implementation and assessment of students’ work in light of desired learner outcomes, within the current sociopolitical context. Emphasis is given to a differentiated assessment practices with a focus on problem-based standards-based systems. Discusses statewide accountability systems, the issues surrounding high stakes assessment practices, and the inter-relationships between statewide PK-12 standards, accountability, and teacher quality. Identifies appropriate assessment strategies for diverse needs and populations found within inclusionary educational settings.
  • This course is an action research-based experience intended for preservice educators to gain an applied understanding of how their participation as a change agent can support development and social change within communities and groups. This seminar experience is based upon a reflective process of problem solving, led by individuals working with others in teams or as part of a “community of practice” to improve the way they address issues and solve problems. Building upon the concept of service-learning as a foundational principle, students will take a historical look at how various efforts to create social change have impacted communities. This is a guided experience requiring collaboration with a community agency, with the aim of effecting positive social change in the second semester of the course.
  • In this second of a two-course research sequence, students will select a focus for their research that will inform their immediate efforts at teaching, maintaining an awareness of the impact of the research on the participants and their community. Students will engage in the design of a research study, collect data as defined by their methodologies and report on the study findings. Students begin to reflect on the impact of their research on the communities of interest.
  • Students will determine the relevant nature and purpose of education by examining the appropriateness of various educational policies and practices; analyzing their relationship to and affects on the social inequities of race, class, gender, human rights and access to power; and developing a framework for activism and transformation for social justice in education.
  • This course will help to build a foundation for hope by helping beginning teachers understand and critique commonsense views of schools and conventional practices, while learning how to make choices in their practice on behalf of children and social justice. They will learn how to use classroom inquiry to examine personal teaching practices so as to help all of their students succeed all of the time, resulting in ongoing professional development.
  • The Master’s Project developed for this course is community situated and begins with a topic of research that is of practical relevance to the community members involved and approved by the professor. Students are required to explore a topic/issue in depth as part of a field experience designed to allow for students to develop a greater understanding of the social context of education. Depending on her/his interests and the area of need identified, each student will provide an analysis of the educational issue and policies to be addressed from a sociological perspective (school and community contexts). The Master’s Project is unique to each student enrolled in the course, and the emphasis is placed on meeting the educational needs of the diverse populations being served. A framework will be provided for the student to identify a community situated problem, in order to establish a collaborative, action oriented project aimed at meeting the needs and benefiting those involved.

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