Master of Arts in Education Curriculum

Within the online format based on an Engage/Apply/Reflect framework, the MAEd degree will require 30 (or 36 with licensure) education course hours over 5 academic semesters with 16-week courses each semester and eight-week courses during the summer session. These hours are inclusive of a three-hour culminating action research project. Additional emphasis will include exploration of requirements for National Board Certification.

Embodying the College's vision of preparing innovative learners and transformational leaders to impact the world, graduate students can expand their skills as teachers to transform their teaching practice and to demonstrate leadership in and beyond the classroom. Courses have been developed upon an Engage/Apply/Reflect framework, so student learning is the top priority with an Engage/Apply/Reflect framework for each weekly lesson.


Fall Year One
EDU 5323 3 SH
EDU 5213 3 SH
Spring Year One
EDU 5143 3 SH
EDU 5243 3 SH
Summer Year One
EDU 5113 3 SH
EDU 5123 3 SH
Fall Year Two
EDU 5333 3 SH
EDU 5233 3 SH
Spring Year Two
EDU 5343 3 SH
EDU 5133 3 SH

Course Descriptions

EDU 5113: Advanced Educational Psychology
This course is an advanced study of the physical, emotional, social, and cognitive characteristics, in addition to speech and language development, of Prek-12 students; principles of learning theories will be examined as they apply to teaching, learning, motivation, and classroom environment. Prerequisite: PSY 1013 Introduction to Psychology or EDU 2003 Human Growth and Development for Education

EDU 5123:  Education and Society
This course focuses on the ever-changing landscape of education. Students will develop an understanding of the historical, philosophical, and sociological foundations underlying the role, development, and organization of public education in the United States using research in current events to analyze modern education structures in view of their foundations.

EDU 5133: Foundations of Special Education
This course centers on knowledge of the foundation for educating students with disabilities, including historical perspective, characteristics of children and youth with disabilities, influence of family and community, ethical issues and standards of professional behavior. Students will also gain an understanding and application of the legal aspects, regulatory requirements, and expectations associated with identification, education, and evaluation of students with disabilities.  Prerequisite or Co-requisite:  EDU 5113 Advanced Educational Psychology

EDU 5143:  Teaching Strategies for Student Learning
This course centers on effective teaching for a variety of learners using media, technology, and other educational materials. Students will develop and demonstrate teaching strategies based on education theory, best practice research, and differentiation related to student differences.

EDU 5213:  Assessment and Evaluation for Student Growth
This course focuses on the relationships among assessment, instruction, monitoring student progress, and student performance measures in grading practices.  Students will construct and interpret valid assessments using a variety of formats in order to measure student attainment of essential skills in a standards-based environment. Students will also analyze assessment data to make decisions about how to improve instruction and student performance.

EDU 5233:  Understanding and Implementation of Curriculum
The course is an advanced application course to guide Pre-K-12 and 6-12 teachers through the design, implementation, and assessment of a standards-based curriculum from the analysis of standards, creation of assessments, design and delivery of instruction. In order to understand the contextual considerations of instructional design and implementation, the course also examines the changing needs of students in the context of best instructional practices and philosophies of education

EDU 5243:  Classroom Management and Behavior in a Diverse Society
This course focuses on the understanding and application of classroom and behavior management techniques and individual interventions based on educational theory and best practice research. Students will develop means of improving communication between schools and families and ways of increasing family involvement in student learning at home and in school. This course will address these approaches within the context of home and community.

EDU 5323: Research in Education
In this course, students will examine educational research (both qualitative and quantitative) and statistical methods in light of current research on effective teaching, school practices, and data-driven decision making. Candidates locate, read, and critique research and develop a research proposal relative to important classroom and school issues which will be applied when completing their culminating research project in the research class following this course.

EDU 5333: Teachers as Leaders
In this course, students will examine models of teacher-leadership in the classroom, the school, community, and beyond. They will gain strategies for goal-setting, planning, implementing, evaluating, and revising plans for improvement. Communication, networking, and motivation skills will be emphasized within a framework of persistence.

EDU 5343: Action Research in Education
Candidates identify a specific classroom, school, or community-based educational problem, then design and conduct a research project written in formal academic APA style that addresses the candidate’s integration of the professional knowledge and the School of Education's conceptual framework in the non-thesis graduate program. The project is completed independently in consultation with a project advisor. (Candidates must be eligible to graduate in the subsequent academic term.) Prerequisite: EDU 5323 Research in Education

EDU 5223 Content Learning Through Reading and Writing 3 SH
EDU 5553 Field Experience (100 hours of field observation) 3 SH
EDU 5556 Student Teaching/Internship (one 16-week semester) 6 SH

Course Descriptions

EDU 5223:  Content Learning Through Reading and Writing
This course centers on understanding language and literacy processes as they apply to teaching and learning of content at the secondary level. Understanding a variety of texts, developing a working vocabulary, developing writings kills for learning and communication, and effective speaking will be emphasized in instructional strategies for the success of all learners. Research perspectives and best practices for literacy instruction will be examined and applied to planning, teaching, and reflecting.

EDU 5553:  Field Experience Practicum
Licensure candidates are placed in a public school classroom for practical experience as an observer/participant under the supervision of classroom teachers and college faculty. Licensure candidates will attend class seminars as scheduled and will spend 100 hours in a public school classroom.  Prerequisites:  EDU 5113 Advanced Educational Psychology and one other graduate level education course. License assessments required by the Commonwealth of Virginia must be passed prior to beginning the course. Background check requirements must be completed prior to enrolling in any EDU course requiring field experience hours. Membership in the Student Virginia Education Association is required for placement.

EDU 5556: Student Teaching Internship
Student teaching internship is a semester of continuous full-time professional activities in a public school under the supervision of public school and college personnel. Licensure candidates assume the role of teacher to plan and implement instruction, to manage the classroom, and to facilitate record-keeping. Licensure candidates also compile a professional teaching portfolio based on the InTASC Model Core Teaching Standards developed by the Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium of the Council of State School Officers (CCSSO), published April, 2011.  Prerequisites: License assessments required by the Commonwealth of Virginia must be passed prior to beginning the course.  Background check requirements must be completed prior to enrolling in any EDU course requiring field experience hours. Membership in the Student Virginia Education Association is required for placement. Formal admission to student teaching. Licensure candidates must make at least a C (not C-) in Student Teaching in order to be recommended for licensure. (6 credit hours)


From textbook and journal reading, to PowerPoint presentations, podcasts, videos, discussion boards, live chat, interactive games, and additional ever-emerging strategies, effective instruction will be explored.


From formal papers to measuring the results of strategies, from student surveys to interviewing colleagues, from developing school, community, or classroom projects to reviewing online learning games, and from doing library research to presenting topics in various formats, course assignments will connect with the classroom.


From discussion boards and emails, from telephone calls to texts, from journals to essay questions, from web logs to formal papers, and from self-evaluations and article critiques, continual growth as a teaching professional will be encouraged.