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Master of Arts
Location: Gladys L. Benerd School of Education

Programs Offered

Master of Arts (MA) in Education with concentrations in:

  • Educational Entrepreneurship
  • Organizational Learning and Effectiveness

Admissions Requirement

  1. A cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better for the last 60 units of college or post-baccalaureate work
  2. A Bachelor's degree from an accredited university
  3. A complete application portfolio to the Graduate School, an essay following departmental guidelines; official transcripts from all college-level coursework including official verification of the awarding of degrees; and three letters of recommendation that attests to the candidate's ability to undertake graduate studies
  4. Departmental interview, if required.
  5. Evidence of qualities and character in keeping with the philosophy and standards of this University and the School of Education

For experienced educators who desire to prepare for positions as supervisors, consultants, vice principals, principals, or district office staff, the School of Education offers programs meeting the requirements for the Preliminary  Services Credentials. The credential programs may be combined with the master’s degree or the doctorate in education.  The MA in Education, Teaching concentration, or Special Education concentration, offers programs for earning a Multiple Subject, Single Subject, in selected content areas, and Education Specialist, Mild-Moderate; Moderate/Severe Disabilities credentials. 

Master of Arts in Education

The Master of Arts (MA) in Education requires a minimum of 32 units, of which 18 units must be in courses 200 or above and from the Benerd School of Education, with a Pacific cumulative grade point average of 3.0.  Based upon state and federal laws, additional units and requirements may be necessary for those students electing to earn a credential, certification or license along with the graduate degree (e.g., teaching credential, and administration credential).  Students interested in earning a credential, certification or license should work closely with their advisor and the credential staff.  The requirements of some concentration options may also be guided by external standards that direct completion of specified courses and achievement of specific learning outcomes.

I.  Theoretical Core:

Select one of the following:2-4
Transformational Teaching and Learning
Productive Learning Environments for Diverse Secondary Classrooms
Pluralism in American Education
Seminar: Social Class Effects in Education
Leading in Diverse Contexts
Select one of the following:2-4
Teaching and Assessment
Adolescent Development
Curriculum Theory
Nature and Conditions of Learning
Organizational Learning

II.  Field Experience and/or Research:

Select 4-6 units from the following:4-6
Research Course Options:
Techniques of Research
Statistical Thinking and Communication
Research in Second Language Acquisition
Teaching as Reflective Inquiry I
and Teaching as Reflective Inquiry II
and Teaching as Reflective Inquiry III
Action Research
Integrative Capstone in Innovative Leadership
Program Evaluation
Other approved research courses
Field Experience Course Options:
Professional Practice
Professional Practice Music
Directed Teaching: Mild/Moderate
and Directed Teaching: Special Education (Mild/Moderate)
Directed Teaching: Moderate/Severe
Internship: Mild/Moderate
Internship: Moderate/Severe

Note:  1.) Students will not receive credit for EDUC 170 /EDUC 270 and EDUC 171/EDUC 271.  2.)  Students will not receive credit for SPED 198M/SPED 298M  and SPED 198S/SPED 298S.

III.  Capstone Experience

Students will be required to complete a capstone experience (e.g., oral exam, portfolio, thesis, action research project and/or written comprehensive exam).  The capstone experience will be determined within each concentration.  Some concentrations integrate the Field Experience and Capstone into a course (e.g. EDUC 296).  For students who do not elect not to earn a concentration, his or her advisor will select an appropriate capstone experience.

IV.  Concentration

Students may elect to concentrate in one or more specific areas.  In order to earn a concentration, students must fulfill the general requirements listed above as well as specific concentration requirements listed below.  A single course may be used to fulfill requirements in two or more concentrations.

Core Area Concentrations

Educational Entrepreneurship
EDUC 215Creativity and Ideation3
EDUC 279Innovation in Education3
EDUC 287Educational and Social Entrepreneurship3
EDUC 377Design Thinking & Lean Startup for Social Impact3
Organizational Learning and Effectiveness
EDUC 235Design Thinking for Organizational Analysis3
EDUC 236Prototyping for Organizational Improvement3
EDUC 238Organizational Change and Consulting3
EDUC 372Program and Organization Evaluation3

Note:  1.) Specific courses are subject to change as per state requirements.  Students must meet all state requirements in order to earn a credential.  2.) Minimum of required 12 units with specific courses determined by state credential requirements and advisers' approval required.  Although the Master of Arts in Education requires a minimum of 12 units, credential programs may require additional units.  3.)  *If these courses were taken in the undergraduate program, then electives will be required as substitutions.

V.  Of the required 32 units a minimum of 18 units must be from the Benerd School of Education

VI.  Of the required 32 units a minimum of 18 units must be taken at the 200 or 300 level


  1. Students will be able to locate appropriate resources of and critically evaluate educational research literature.


  1. Students will be able to critically analyze how the presence of diverse populations influences policy and practice.

Teaching and Learning

  1. Students will be able to develop learning outcomes (e.g. individual group, organizational, or system) by synthesizing knowledge, skills, and reflective practice of human learning processes.