MEd in Elementary Education

The Master of Education (MEd) in Elementary Education (non-certification) is designed for students who seek to deepen their understanding of teaching and learning, without preparing for K-8 teaching certification. The program of study anchors coursework in learning theory, instructional design, and the principles of assessment, as well as provides for elective coursework to support the student’s unique professional goals. The MEd core requirements set the study of elementary education in the context of a diverse world with varied philosophical starting points, and considers the manner in which knowledge in the field is unearthed.

In addition to the non-certification program, MEd in Elementary Education students may pursue two concentrations:

For more information, visit the Educational Leadership, Learning and Curriculum Department website.

Program of Study

  • Master’s Core Component – 9 credits
  • 3
    Seeks to examine the manner in which the behavior, feelings, or thoughts of one individual are influenced by the behavior or characteristics of others. Topics to be considered include social perception, attitudes, gender, social cognition, conflict, social influence, intercultural awareness, prejudice, discrimination, aggression, and group behavior. Fall, spring, and summer.
  • 3
    A study of the historical, philosophical, and social-philosophic foundations of education. Emphasis is placed upon the ideas of the classical, medieval, Enlightenment, and post-Enlightenment periods that have influenced types of American educational systems relative to their mission and purpose. Analysis of how these systems have defined ethics and the characteristics of the virtuous person.
  • 3
    Knowledge and understanding of the commonly accepted research designs. Study of research instruments and statistics used in educational research. Wide reading in various types of research design. Critical analysis of research design.
  • Learning Theory Component– 9 credits
  • 3
    An overview of current theories concerning the brain, development, and learning. Analysis of developmental concepts from birth through adolescence and adulthood. Discussion of language acquisition, thinking and learning styles, multiple intelligence, and creativity. Topics include teaching, learning, and assessment issues related to cultural diversity, technology, and learning differences.
  • 3
    Focuses on providing students interested in elementary or secondary teaching with prerequisite skills necessary for successful student teaching. Students will demonstrate competence in: knowledge of curriculum, lesson and interdisciplinary unit planning, organizing and delivering instruction, adjusting instruction for diverse learning styles, individual needs and cultures, evaluating outcomes of instruction and use of a variety of classroom management strategies. Seminars will address issues related to teaching and emphasize student reflection and evaluation of their teaching. All students will be required to complete directed observation, participation and teaching in an assigned school. Discussions of ethical practices and professionalism will permeate the course. Prerequisite: ED 5270.
  • 3

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    • Elective Component – 3-18 credits

With your advisor, you’ll choose electives appropriate for your program of study.

  • Capstone Component – 3-12 credits
  • 3-12
    The purpose of the graduate capstone is to apply knowledge learned in previous coursework through an approved project. Capstone projects should focus on the following questions: How will the theories learned throughout the program be integrated into a coherent project or experience? How will this work enhance individual career goals? Who are the stakeholders and how will this work assist them? How does this work serve the professional community? How will this work help move the profession forward? Process: Students should plan for approximately 40 hours of work per credit to be earned. The total number of credits earned must be approved by their advisor and noted on their program contract. Candidates must submit Graduate Capstone Project forms with their registration and Capstone Projects must be approved by candidates' advisors and the Associate Vice President for Graduate Studies. Once completed, candidates are expected to present their final products to their adviser and/or PSU faculty members. Students who anticipate working on their project for more than one term should register for the appropriate number of credits in each term so that they remain registered throughout the course of the project.
  • Minimum for MEd in Elementary Education – 33 credits

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For information on the Elementary Education (non-certification program) or  K-8 Certification concentration, contact:

For information on the Elementary Education, Montessori concentration, contact:

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