VIU Online Education Degree

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Master of Education

Program Highlights

Are you passionate about education? Do you dream of changing the world, one student at a time? Then, the Master of Education (M.Ed.) program at VIU Online is the right fit for you. In their time at VIU Online, our students acquire an excellent grasp of technology in education, cutting-edge teaching methodologies and best practices in education policy.

The degree program is designed to prepare future educators for leading roles in the growing field of education. Graduates from the M.Ed. programs will be able to effectively address challenges and possibilities in their roles as successful teachers, educators, and leaders of their communities worldwide. The Master of Education degree at VIU is usually completed within two academic years.

VIU Online’s M.Ed. Program offers three Content Area Concentrations: Secondary Science, Secondary Mathematics, and Teaching of English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL).

Degree at Glance

Degree at a Glance
Number of Credits 39
Cost per Credit $409.00
Total Tuition* $15,951.00
*The estimated tuition does not include additional fees, supplies, scholarships, or transfer credits. The estimate reflects tuition for the 2014-2015 academic year. For full and current tuition information, please visit the Tuition and Fees page.

Degree Requirements

The M.Ed. degree will be earned by completing the program course requirements of 39 credit hours (12 courses). 30 credit hours (9 courses) of Core Courses, 6 credit hours (2 courses) of Content Area Concentration courses, and 3 credit hours (1 courses) of Specialization Area Elective courses make up the M.Ed. degree. The M.Ed. program also requires a Capstone: Educational Action Research Project/Portfolio within the subject area. This portfolio or research project is worth 6 credit hours of the core courses and is conducted in conjunction with the Virginia D.O.E. required Supervised Classroom Experience Course (EDUC 600). To qualify for the M.Ed. degree, students must meet all credit requirements, as described below.

  1. Students enrolled in the graduate program must maintain a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 (B), out of 4.0, and a minimum of grade not less than 2.0 (C), out of 4.0, in all courses to qualify for the M.Ed. degree to remain in good academic standing and to graduate. The maximum time frame permitted for the completion of any graduate program is 54 semester credits.
  2. Only graduate-level courses may be applied toward the degree. A master's student may transfer up to 18 semester hours of graduate credit earned at other accredited institutions.
  3. Beyond the prerequisites, the student must have completed 39 credit hours, of which 30 credit hours of required core courses, and 6 credit hours of content area courses, and 3 credit hours of elective courses must have been earned
  4. No degree credit is earned by a graduate student for any grade below 2.0 (C), out of 4.0, received in a graduate-level course. However, any grades lower than 2.0 (C), out of 4.0, will be calculated in the grade point average.

The program consists of nine (9) Core Courses, two (2) Content Area courses, and two (1) Elective course.

Area # of Courses Credit Hours
Core courses 9 30
Content Area courses 2 6
Elective courses 1 3
Total 12 39

Program Outcomes

The program outcomes for VIU’s Masters of Education Degree (M.Ed.) Program are designed to enable professional educators to effectively serve in culturally diverse and technologically enhanced educational environments by empowering them with the skills and attributes associated with problem solvers, critical thinkers, and scholars in order to facilitate learning and academic achievement for secondary students others they may serve.

Upon completion of the program, the graduates will be able to:

  • Develop learner environments reflective of best practices for teaching and learning, secondary learners, and culturally responsive pedagogy creating optimal student achievement opportunities
  • Serve as independent researchers with the ability to action research as well as assess and implement research and best practices associated with effective pedagogical practices for secondary learners.
  • Effectively collaborate with others as well as lead the collaborative process for the purpose of better meeting the needs of their student population and the communities in which they serve.
  • Serve as leaders in developing and designing teaching and learning opportunities which are effective and generate learner motivation and academic success
  • Foster teaching and learning environments that are respectful and inclusive as well as reflective of the needs, feelings, and cultural values of the student population and communities they are serving
  • Develop, design, and implement assessment and evaluation strategies which are authentic and encompass student characteristics such as their cognitive abilities, cultural values, academic abilities

Contact

Kevin J. Martin
Director, School of Education
(703) 591-1844, ext. 356
kevin@viu.edu

M.Ed. Core Courses

Core Courses:

VIU’s M.Ed. Program provides a comprehensive core, which is required for all students enrolled in the degree and certificate programs. The M.Ed. degree consists of nine courses (30 credit hours) in the core program.

Course Code Course Name Credit Hours
EDUC 500

Prerequisite: None

As the initial course in the Masters of Education program, this course provides students with a comprehensive understanding of public education in the U.S. Through this course students will review the inception of public education through the 21st century. Additionally, students enrolled in this course will be introduced to educational research and the role quantitative and qualitative research serves in shaping the educational landscape. Students are required to perform literature searches and conduct reviews of a variety of educational topics, demonstrating a thorough understanding of said topics, while simultaneously demonstrating their research capabilities.

3
EDUC 510

Prerequisite: None

Through this course students will be introduced to a variety of pedagogical practices specific to teaching and learning for secondary students. Students enrolled in this course will be exposed to the two major philosophies of teaching and learning, namely teacher-centered instruction and student-centered instruction. Each of these philosophies will be independently investigated, revealing the various methods and strategies associated with each philosophy. Additionally, students will be required to demonstrate their understanding of the various approaches to teaching and learning through their development of unique and specific teaching and learning scenarios, allowing them the opportunity to implement a combination of select and appropriate methods and strategies.

3
EDUC 520

Prerequisite:None

Through this course students will be presented with critical content regarding the human growth and development process. Content for this course includes information regarding genetics, heredity, conception, gestation, birth, and early development of young children. This course will also address cognition, motor skills, and the emotional, psychological, and social development of humans. Designed specifically for secondary teachers, a great deal of this course focuses on adolescence and the physical, emotional, psychological, and sexual development middle and high school students undergo as they move from youth to young adult. Other issues addressed in this course include brain development, male and female learner characteristics, and other important findings associated with teaching youth and young adults during this major transitional period of their lives.

3
EDUC 530

Prerequisite: None

Through this course, students will be introduced to the issue of diversity and the implications of being a diverse learner in U.S. schools. Those enrolled in the class will be provided a clear and meaningful definition of diversity, which will serve as a major component of the operational paradigm for the course. Students will also be introduced to various aspects of diversity and educated regarding the complexity and nuances of these aspects, the ideas and ideals surrounding each aspect, and how these aspects are commonly made more challenging as they intersect and are commonly combined. Students enrolled in this course will be introduced to research-based strategies for teaching in a diverse setting.

3
EDUC 540

Prerequisite: None

Through this course, students will have the opportunity to explore the issues surrounding teaching students with identified exceptionalities. Initial content for this course includes a review of the history of special education, which leads to the inception of federal guidelines and practices protecting students with identified exceptionalities and ensuring equal access to education. This course provides an overview of the numerous exceptionalities currently identified and the traits and characteristics associated with each exceptionality, including intellectual, emotional, physical, social, and psychological diagnoses. Finally, this course provides students with a comprehensive understanding of their role as teachers in serving students with identified exceptionalities and provides research-based strategies for the inclusion and effective teaching of students with identified exceptionalities.

3
EDUC 550

Prerequisite: None

This course examines classroom-management models and theoretical and empirical approaches to classroom management. The course helps students develop appropriate classroom-management skills, including decision-making and problem solving, exploring the merits and limitations of each classroom-management model, and examines when each approach to classroom management is most appropriate. The course also presents concepts of extrinsic and intrinsic motivation; the concept of self-motivation; assertive, positive, and cooperative discipline; and examines the relationships among classroom environment, classroom behavior, and learning. In this course, students will focus on implementing interventions for preventing and managing routine and disruptive discipline problems in a practical manner to include establishing effective classroom rules and procedures, relationships, role of parents, and helping students contribute to a positive learning environment relevant to their lives.

3
EDUC 560

Prerequisite: None

This course focuses on how to write, construct, and use assessments in the secondary classroom. The course provides a balanced approach to assessment, involving both traditional and innovative techniques. It includes the development and use of written tests, informal assessments, portfolios, and performance assessments. Prospective teachers will find this balanced approach to assessment incredibly useful once they enter the classroom. Additionally, this course provides students with the ability to review and select assessment strategies appropriate for the variety of learner characteristics commonly represented, including levels of cognition, learning styles, ability levels, and student interest, as well as culturally relevant assessment strategies. As a result, students in the course will have the ability to select and/or develop assessment strategies that motivate learners and increase the overall achievement for secondary learners.

3
EDUC 570

Prerequisite: None

This course is designed to introduce and train students on how to provide effective reading and writing instruction within their content teaching areas. As pre-service teachers, it is critical that all teachers have a strong appreciation for the importance of teaching reading to secondary students in all disciplines as well as in English and language arts classes. Cross-curricular literacy approaches are often an important catalyst in secondary students’ engagement or disengagement in non-language-arts content areas and serve as a major indicator in their overall success in these classes. This course provides engagement strategies, various approaches to introducing challenging reading materials, and proven strategies for increasing literacy among secondary learners.

3
EDUC 600

Prerequisite: All Core Courses

The supervised classroom experience course represents a Virginia State Department of Education requirement of all Masters of Education majors. Through this supervised classroom experience, students will have the opportunity to implement the theory and practical knowledge they have gained throughout the Masters program in a functioning classroom setting appropriate to the content area and/or grade level they anticipate teaching upon graduating. A major component of the capstone course requires students to develop a Comprehensive Action-Research Portfolio (CARP) reflective of their coursework from the program, issues they have identified during their supervised classroom experience, and plans of action for resolving the identified issues supported by empirical research associated with the issue. The CARP should encompass a minimum of 5 of the 9 course courses and 1 course each from the content major and elective specialization area, comprising a total of 7 individual topics. Students will present their CARP to the VIU campus community. Mandatory sessions designed to assist students with their Capstone CARP are held throughout the term.

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Content Area Concentration Options:

Students enrolled in the M.Ed. Degree Program will be required to complete two courses (6 hours) in one of the three Content Area Concentrations.

Course Code Course Name Credit Hours
ESOL Education Concentration
EDUC 610

Prerequisite: None

This course provides a comprehensive review of selected topics focusing on instructional methods and best practices in secondary science education reflective of learner characteristics and learner needs. Through this course, students will explore content- specific pedagogical approaches for teaching biology, chemistry, earth science, and physics. Topics for this course focus on constructivist teaching and learning, including inquiry teaching and learning, concept mapping, scaffolding, student learning styles, authentic assessment, and a variety of approaches documented as effective strategies for increasing student achievement in secondary science instruction.

3
EDUC 615

Prerequisite: EDUC 650

This course provides an advanced review of selected topics and the research focusing on the methods and theory for best practices in secondary science education reflective of learner characteristics and learner needs. Through this course, students will explore content-specific pedagogical approaches for teaching biology, chemistry, earth science, and physics. Topics for this course focus on constructivist teaching and learning, including inquiry teaching and learning, concept mapping, scaffolding, student learning styles, authentic assessment, and a variety of research approaches documented as effective strategies for increasing student achievement in secondary science instruction.

3
Math Education Concentration
EDUC 630

Prerequisite: None

This course provides a comprehensive review of selected topics focusing on instructional methods and best practices in secondary mathematics education reflective of learner characteristics and learner needs. Through this course, students will explore content- specific pedagogical approaches for teaching algebra, geometry, calculus, and trigonometry. Topics for this course focus on constructivist teaching and learning, including inquiry teaching and learning, concept mapping, scaffolding, student learning styles, authentic assessment, and a variety of approaches documented as effective strategies for increasing student achievement in secondary mathematics instruction.

3
EDUC 635

Prerequisite: EDUC 630

This course provides an advanced review of selected topics and the research focusing on the methods and theory for best practices in secondary mathematics education reflective of learner characteristics and learner needs. Through this course, students will explore content-specific pedagogical approaches for teaching algebra, geometry, calculus, and trigonometry. Topics for this course focus on constructivist teaching and learning including inquiry teaching and learning, concept mapping, scaffolding, student learning styles, authentic assessment, and a variety of approaches proven effective for increasing student achievement in secondary mathematics.

3
Science Education Concentration
EDUC 650

Prerequisite: None Also offered as: TSL 510: Methods of Teaching

This course provides students with an introduction to the current theories and practices of TESOL instruction and pedagogy. While enrolled in this course, students will receive pedagogical training specific to secondary ESOL populations, including the two major philosophies of teaching and learning, teacher-centered instruction and student-centered instruction in an ESOL class. Additionally, students will be required to demonstrate their understanding of the various approaches to teaching and learning through their development of unique and specific ESOL teaching and learning scenarios, allowing them the opportunity to implement a combination of select and appropriate methods and strategies for a secondary ESOL population.

3
EDUC 665

Prerequisite: EDUC610

This course explores advanced issues surrounding the current theories and current practices of TESOL instruction and pedagogy. While enrolled in this course, students will connect research and best pedagogical practices specific to secondary ESOL populations. Through this advanced course, students acquire the skills to move beyond implementation of TESOL instruction to gaining the skills necessary to modify and design effective TESOL instruction reflective of the research. Students in this course will be required to demonstrate their understanding of the various approaches to teaching and learning through their development of unique and specific ESOL teaching and learning scenarios, allowing them the opportunity to implement a combination of select and appropriate methods and strategies for a secondary ESOL population.

3

Elective Course Options:

VIU Online’s M.Ed. Program offers three Specialization Area Electives: Educational Technology, Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment, and Educational Leadership and Policy. Students enrolled in the M.Ed. Degree Program will be required to complete one course (3 hours) in one of the three Specialization Area Electives.

Course Code Course Name Credit Hours
Educational Technology Specialist
EDUC 680

Prerequisite: None

This course provides an overview of the design, development, integration, and evaluation of instructional technologies and associated instructional strategies. Ethical and legal issues, communicating and accessing information, and evaluating hardware/software are reflected in course projects. This course provides students with opportunities to develop and use a wide variety of electronic resources in order to increase their understanding, knowledge, and skills with instructional technologies. This course ensures, through projects and discussions, that students are effective users of instructional technologies and are prepared to take leadership roles in various environments.

3
EDUC 682

Prerequisite: EDUC 680

This course explores emerging and assistive technologies with appropriate application of learning theories. Students investigate and analyze innovative instructional technologies to determine their value in learning environments for all student populations. Assistive technology and its application within instructional programs to assist those with disabilities are examined in addition to emerging instructional technologies. Students identify, design and explore best practices associated with technology-based instruction and information as it relates to emerging and assistive technologies.

3
Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment Specialist
EDUC 684

Prerequisite: None

The course provides a theoretical foundation and framework to promote academic rigor, relevance, and relationships that support student learning. Through this course students will explore curricula issues such as planning, implementation, and evaluation of curriculum at all levels of learning. The course comprehensively addresses philosophies of education, teaching and learning, pedagogical practices, teacher supervision, and educational policy. Students in this course are required to explore various philosophical and educational frameworks, which are regarded as traditional and controversial, as they reflect on the implications of each paradigm and develop their unique view of public education and its future.

3
EDUC 686

Prerequisite: EDUC 684

This course emphasizes the use of learning principles in developing strategies for creating and improving instruction through inquiry and assessments, while ensuring access and participation of all students to achieve high academic standards. The purpose of this course is to develop students’ abilities to design and conduct classroom-based inquiry related to teaching and learning. It is also designed to make students knowledgeable consumers of academic research. Projects and class activities will enable students to narrow their research focus, formulate a research question, select an appropriate methodology, conduct a literature review, and begin to collect data as part of a pilot project designed to field-test their proposals. Emphasis will be given to different models for conducting research, research design, and the teacher’s role as researcher, investigator, and interpreter of educational research.

3
Educational Leadership and Policy Specialist
EDUC 688

Prerequisite: None

This course provides a comprehensive examination of the policies, which shape, surround, and govern public education. Through this course, students will increase their understanding of the role politics and the various political constituents, including parents and students, play in the consistently changing educational arena. This course also provides insight into the correlations between educational policy and the financing of education. Additionally, this course examines various policy systems such as the school districts themselves, administrators and their roles in policy development and implementation. Lastly, it delves into the trickle-down implications of federal, state, and local policy as they are implemented in the classroom, thus impacting the provision of academic programs, funding and resources, and the professional lives of teachers.

3
EDUC 690

Prerequisite: EDUC 688

This course is designed to provide a comprehensive understanding of the critical role community and school partnerships play in building effective, productive, and high- achieving learning communities. This course emphasizes techniques of improving instruction through application of research on effective schools and models of schools and teachers developing meaningful and collaborative relationships with the communities their schools serve. Topics covered include community building and shared decision- making, consensus building, establishing group buy-in, collaborative professionalism, and intentionally creating schools that demonstrate respect and value for the students, their families, and the community. Additional topics include instruction regarding the foundations of leadership, collaborative curriculum and instructional design practices, authentic assessment strategies, professional development for leadership and supervision, leadership for communication and community partnerships, and leadership for organizational management.

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