Curriculum and Instruction (M.Ed.)

The Master of Education (M.Ed.) in curriculum and instruction provides a different focus, philosophy, and approach for teachers to build classrooms that support student well being, enable meaningful student engagement, and use diversity to enrich learning. M.Ed students will collaborate with a research coach to develop tested strategies to solve real issues relevant to their classroom.

EDUC 5110 Positive Education: Positive Psychology for Teachers and Students (3 hours)

This course draws upon cognitive-behavioral theories and social problem-solving skills. Participants will examine ways to integrate skills of resilience, optimism, and other components into the culture of their classroom. Emphasis will be placed on first developing skills of personal resiliency before examining how to build a classroom characterized by these habits and practices.
Prerequisite(s): Admission to the M.Ed program.

EDUC 5120 Education and the American Dream (3 hours)

Students will explore the historical foundations of education and, in particular, American perspectives on equal opportunity, access, and merit. Social class and economic status have continued to create division in the United States. Students will explore how these social lines relate to educational opportunity, achievement, demographic group stability, and mobility. Topics may include: historical foundations including Supreme Court case rulings, policy, educational initiatives like No Child Left Behind, Race to the Top, and Common Core, disparities in school-funding, the increased call for accountability, and the reliance on standardized assessments. Students will critically reflect on the degree to which our education system is succeeding in preparing students as educated citizens, to what degree current practices and policies are helping or hindering equal educational access to all citizens, and how all of these forces influence the ideal of the American Dream.
Prerequisite(s): Admission to the M.Ed program.

EDUC 5130 Becoming a Reflective Practitioner (3 hours)

In this course, students will focus on the practices of reflecting upon their own teaching in order to, ultimately, improve classroom instruction and better serve the needs of the students. Students will explore the history of reflective practice, the research that supports it, and the benefits of engaging in reflection. In-service teachers will set growth goals, solicit feedback from students and colleagues, and engage in intentional reflective practice strategies to identify strengths, weaknesses, and potential paths for increased teaching success. Course activities may include: completing a self-assessment and growth plan, gathering student feedback, analyzing student data, journaling, observation, video analysis, and creating colleague-coaching relationships.
Prerequisite(s): Admission to the M.Ed program.

EDUC 5140 Instructional Practice and Curriculum Design (3 hours)

Students will develop a philosophical base and the skills needed to discuss and analyze curricula and curricular issues in a school setting. A course project using these skills and perspectives will serve as the launch of the action research project. By the completion of this course, participants will identify a problem, create a research proposal, and choose a research coach.
Prerequisite(s): EDUC 5130 Becoming a Reflective Practitioner.

EDUC 5150 Literacy Instruction in a Digital Age (3 hours)

How has the digital age changed the ways in which people learn to read and write? Today, more than ever, literacy requires skill and fluency in "consuming" and "producing" texts and the ability to recognize and exploit the dynamic interplay between these processes in order to demonstrate one's comprehension. This course will explore the ways in which reading and writing traditionally have been taught and incorporated into content area classes and consider what research demonstrates about technology's role in these efforts.
Prerequisite(s): Admission to the M.Ed program.

EDUC 5160 Content Area Strategies for Meaningful Student Engagement (3 hours)

This course introduces theory and instructional strategies for learning written and oral texts across academic disciplines in order to increase student participation and enhance learning. Emphasis is placed upon being reflective, scholar-practitioners, utilizing personal past experiences along with professional literature in scaffolding future teaching activities. Critical readings and analysis will encourage this reflective attitude to embrace professional educator development while creating interdisciplinary lessons and activities.
Prerequisite(s): Admission to the M.Ed program.

EDUC 5210 The Challenge and Opportunity of Diversity (3 hours)

This course examines the cultural, social, historical and personal factors that interact with the educational environment and impact student experience, opportunity and success in school settings. While exploring issues such as poverty, ethnicity, race, and gender, students will learn how schools in general, and teachers in particular, include or exclude students. Participants will critically examine institutional policies and paradigms and learn how to create healthy, academically rigorous, and inclusive environments where all students can find success. This course could include practicum experiences.
Prerequisite(s): EDUC 5140 Instructional Practice and Curriculum Design or permission of the program director.

EDUC 5220 Reaching All Learners (3 hours)

In the first half of this course, students will explore the concept of resilience as a process of adapting to and thriving in adverse and stressful conditions. The course will utilize current research, teaching strategies, and the ACES (Adverse Childhood Experiences) curriculum to learn how to effectively create a trauma sensitive classroom. The second half of the course will explore best practices with regard to teaching both high ability and special needs students. Throughout the course, students will review and learn how to apply resilience skills in a variety of situations. Students will explore how to promote, instill and encourage resilience in their classrooms.
Prerequisite(s): EDUC 5110 Positive Education: Positive Psychology for Teachers and Students or permission of the program director.

EDUC 5230 The Psychology of Teaching and Learning (3 hours)

During this course, we will discuss these psychological principles and theories, focusing on how the principles/theories could be used to help teachers help students reach their learning goals. The course will end with a final project. Students will choose several psychological principles and design a presentation that communicates how and why they will use these principles in their classrooms.
Prerequisite(s): EDUC 5130 Becoming a Reflective Practitioner and EDUC 5140 Instructional Practice and Curriculum Design or the approval of the M.Ed. program director.

EDUC 5240 Classroom Assessment and Instructional Decisions (3 hours)

This course examines assessment principles related to classroom assessments. Large-scale, classroom, and norm-referenced assessments will be addressed. Discussion topics include assessment development, measurement goals, formative and summative processes, feedback and feedback use, and the relationship between assessment and “rigor.” Students (teachers) will learn how classroom assessment practices relate to the goals they have for their students, and how assessments relate to and influence other important learning factors (such as motivation, grading, goal-setting, curriculum development, lesson planning, and communication with parents). For their final project, students will design a classroom assessment and grading system they plan on implementing in a future classroom.
Prerequisite(s): EDUC 5130 Becoming a Reflective Practitioner and EDUC 5140 Instructional Practice and Curriculum Design or approval of the M.Ed. program director.

EDUC 5980 Professional Development Capstone Seminar (2 hours)

This capstone course serves as a companion to EDUC 5990 Master’s Thesis and provides students the opportunity to review their work in the program, prepare for their public presentation of their thesis, and extend their professional development by
exploring ways of promoting their action research projects through publication and oral presentations and their candidacy for positions and grant funding through career-based documents (cover letters, resumes, grant proposals). During
weekly meetings, students will hear from various faculty members in the program and engage in activities to prepare them for post-program professional engagement.
Prerequisite(s): EDUC 5230 The Psychology of Teaching and Learning and EDUC 5240 Classroom Assessment and Instructional Decisions or approval of the M.Ed. program director.

EDUC 5990 Master’s Thesis (4 hours)

This course is the companion to EDUC 5980 Professional Development Capstone Seminar and provides students the opportunity to write and complete their master’s thesis. The thesis will be based on the action research data collected and analyzed during previous classes.
Prerequisite(s): EDUC 5230 The Psychology of Teaching and Learning and EDUC 5240 Classroom Assessment and Instructional Decisions or the approval of the M.Ed. program director.

EDUC 5110 Positive Education: Positive Psychology for Teachers and Students (3 hours)

This course draws upon cognitive-behavioral theories and social problem-solving skills. Participants will examine ways to integrate skills of resilience, optimism, and other components into the culture of their classroom. Emphasis will be placed on first developing skills of personal resiliency before examining how to build a classroom characterized by these habits and practices.
Prerequisite(s): Admission to the M.Ed program.

EDUC 5120 Education and the American Dream (3 hours)

Students will explore the historical foundations of education and, in particular, American perspectives on equal opportunity, access, and merit. Social class and economic status have continued to create division in the United States. Students will explore how these social lines relate to educational opportunity, achievement, demographic group stability, and mobility. Topics may include: historical foundations including Supreme Court case rulings, policy, educational initiatives like No Child Left Behind, Race to the Top, and Common Core, disparities in school-funding, the increased call for accountability, and the reliance on standardized assessments. Students will critically reflect on the degree to which our education system is succeeding in preparing students as educated citizens, to what degree current practices and policies are helping or hindering equal educational access to all citizens, and how all of these forces influence the ideal of the American Dream.
Prerequisite(s): Admission to the M.Ed program.

EDUC 5130 Becoming a Reflective Practitioner (3 hours)

In this course, students will focus on the practices of reflecting upon their own teaching in order to, ultimately, improve classroom instruction and better serve the needs of the students. Students will explore the history of reflective practice, the research that supports it, and the benefits of engaging in reflection. In-service teachers will set growth goals, solicit feedback from students and colleagues, and engage in intentional reflective practice strategies to identify strengths, weaknesses, and potential paths for increased teaching success. Course activities may include: completing a self-assessment and growth plan, gathering student feedback, analyzing student data, journaling, observation, video analysis, and creating colleague-coaching relationships.
Prerequisite(s): Admission to the M.Ed program.

EDUC 5140 Instructional Practice and Curriculum Design (3 hours)

Students will develop a philosophical base and the skills needed to discuss and analyze curricula and curricular issues in a school setting. A course project using these skills and perspectives will serve as the launch of the action research project. By the completion of this course, participants will identify a problem, create a research proposal, and choose a research coach.
Prerequisite(s): EDUC 5130 Becoming a Reflective Practitioner.

EDUC 5150 Literacy Instruction in a Digital Age (3 hours)

How has the digital age changed the ways in which people learn to read and write? Today, more than ever, literacy requires skill and fluency in "consuming" and "producing" texts and the ability to recognize and exploit the dynamic interplay between these processes in order to demonstrate one's comprehension. This course will explore the ways in which reading and writing traditionally have been taught and incorporated into content area classes and consider what research demonstrates about technology's role in these efforts.
Prerequisite(s): Admission to the M.Ed program.

EDUC 5160 Content Area Strategies for Meaningful Student Engagement (3 hours)

This course introduces theory and instructional strategies for learning written and oral texts across academic disciplines in order to increase student participation and enhance learning. Emphasis is placed upon being reflective, scholar-practitioners, utilizing personal past experiences along with professional literature in scaffolding future teaching activities. Critical readings and analysis will encourage this reflective attitude to embrace professional educator development while creating interdisciplinary lessons and activities.
Prerequisite(s): Admission to the M.Ed program.

EDUC 5210 The Challenge and Opportunity of Diversity (3 hours)

This course examines the cultural, social, historical and personal factors that interact with the educational environment and impact student experience, opportunity and success in school settings. While exploring issues such as poverty, ethnicity, race, and gender, students will learn how schools in general, and teachers in particular, include or exclude students. Participants will critically examine institutional policies and paradigms and learn how to create healthy, academically rigorous, and inclusive environments where all students can find success. This course could include practicum experiences.
Prerequisite(s): EDUC 5140 Instructional Practice and Curriculum Design or permission of the program director.

EDUC 5220 Reaching All Learners (3 hours)

In the first half of this course, students will explore the concept of resilience as a process of adapting to and thriving in adverse and stressful conditions. The course will utilize current research, teaching strategies, and the ACES (Adverse Childhood Experiences) curriculum to learn how to effectively create a trauma sensitive classroom. The second half of the course will explore best practices with regard to teaching both high ability and special needs students. Throughout the course, students will review and learn how to apply resilience skills in a variety of situations. Students will explore how to promote, instill and encourage resilience in their classrooms.
Prerequisite(s): EDUC 5110 Positive Education: Positive Psychology for Teachers and Students or permission of the program director.

EDUC 5230 The Psychology of Teaching and Learning (3 hours)

During this course, we will discuss these psychological principles and theories, focusing on how the principles/theories could be used to help teachers help students reach their learning goals. The course will end with a final project. Students will choose several psychological principles and design a presentation that communicates how and why they will use these principles in their classrooms.
Prerequisite(s): EDUC 5130 Becoming a Reflective Practitioner and EDUC 5140 Instructional Practice and Curriculum Design or the approval of the M.Ed. program director.

EDUC 5240 Classroom Assessment and Instructional Decisions (3 hours)

This course examines assessment principles related to classroom assessments. Large-scale, classroom, and norm-referenced assessments will be addressed. Discussion topics include assessment development, measurement goals, formative and summative processes, feedback and feedback use, and the relationship between assessment and “rigor.” Students (teachers) will learn how classroom assessment practices relate to the goals they have for their students, and how assessments relate to and influence other important learning factors (such as motivation, grading, goal-setting, curriculum development, lesson planning, and communication with parents). For their final project, students will design a classroom assessment and grading system they plan on implementing in a future classroom.
Prerequisite(s): EDUC 5130 Becoming a Reflective Practitioner and EDUC 5140 Instructional Practice and Curriculum Design or approval of the M.Ed. program director.

EDUC 5980 Professional Development Capstone Seminar (2 hours)

This capstone course serves as a companion to EDUC 5990 Master’s Thesis and provides students the opportunity to review their work in the program, prepare for their public presentation of their thesis, and extend their professional development by
exploring ways of promoting their action research projects through publication and oral presentations and their candidacy for positions and grant funding through career-based documents (cover letters, resumes, grant proposals). During
weekly meetings, students will hear from various faculty members in the program and engage in activities to prepare them for post-program professional engagement.
Prerequisite(s): EDUC 5230 The Psychology of Teaching and Learning and EDUC 5240 Classroom Assessment and Instructional Decisions or approval of the M.Ed. program director.

EDUC 5990 Master’s Thesis (4 hours)

This course is the companion to EDUC 5980 Professional Development Capstone Seminar and provides students the opportunity to write and complete their master’s thesis. The thesis will be based on the action research data collected and analyzed during previous classes.
Prerequisite(s): EDUC 5230 The Psychology of Teaching and Learning and EDUC 5240 Classroom Assessment and Instructional Decisions or the approval of the M.Ed. program director.

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