Master of Arts in Education Curriculum

Required courses

  • EDU060 Orientation (0)
  • EDU503 Elements of Successful Teaching (3)
  • EDU530 Values, Ethics and Worldview (3)
  • EDU538 Diversity in a Global Society (3)
  • EDU560 Instructional Technology (3)
  • EDU578 Educational Assessment (3)
  • EDU594 Teaching Discouraged Learners/Troubled Youth (3)
  • EDU639 Critical Issues and Advocacy (3)
  • EDU650 Educational Research Methods and Design (4)
  • EDU656 Graduate Thesis (4)

Plus elective courses to total three credit hours

  • EDU510 Navigating the First Five Years of Teaching (2)
  • EDU517 Workshop-Special Topics (1-3)
  • EDU624 Elementary and Middle School Reading (3)
  • EDU625 Secondary Reading (3)
  • EDU690 Individual Advanced Research (1-3)

Master of Arts in Education Course Descriptions

EDU060 Orientation (0)
An introduction to the Master of Arts in Education program.

EDU503 Elements of Successful Teaching (3)
This course focuses on the development of teaching skills and strategies based on elements documented in effective teaching and brain research. Students create plans to apply various techniques and strategies studied to address the needs of their own students.

EDU510 Navigating the First Five Years of Teaching (2)
Open to SAU-certified teachers, this year-long on-line course provides an online mentored networking opportunity for new teachers in the early stages in their career.

EDU517 Workshops – Special Topics (1-3)
To obtain graduate credit from Spring Arbor University for workshops or conferences partnering with SAU, students must complete the School of Education registration form and pay related fees and the published tuition rate for the graduate credit being offered for the workshop by the second day of class. Once students register and pay for graduate credit in conjunction with the workshop(s), Spring Arbor University will not honor withdrawals, drops or tuition refunds under any circumstances. Students who wish to receive graduate credit in conjunction with the affiliated conference or workshop must complete all assignments described in the syllabus by the time specified. Transcripts will be available through Spring Arbor University three weeks after the instructor of record has submitted grades.

EDU530 Values, Ethics and Worldview (3)
In this study of the influence of Christianity on values and ethics in contemporary society, students gain an understanding of the historical influence of Christianity in the development of values and ethics in our nation. This course provides a foundation for and an understanding of the effects of a Christian worldview. Ethical dilemmas for teachers and students are explored.

EDU538 Diversity in a Global Society (3)
Students examine the diversities (including, but not limited to, issues related to race, ethnicity, culture, language, religion, socioeconomic status, gender, and ability) found in American classrooms. Considerations of how these characteristics affect teaching and learning are explored as students investigate and create practical methods of dealing with them in positive ways.

EDU560 Instructional Technology (3)
Instructional Technology has been defined as “the theory and practice of the design, development, utilization, evaluation, and management of the processes and resources for human learning.” The field of Instructional Technology is concerned with the application of technology throughout the educational process. EDU560 is an introduction to the field and theory of Instructional Technology. The course explores the multiple roles of technology in instruction and management of the learning process, with special emphasis on K-12 education. This course assumes the student has minimum competency in technology.

EDU578 Educational Assessment (3)
Participants examine the concept of assessment and evaluation in education, explore the principles underlying the assessment process, and develop the skills needed to implement assessment and evaluation wisely. Participants gain skills needed to develop assessment tools for use in classroom settings and to use assessment to inform instruction. (formerly EDU678)

EDU594 Teaching Discouraged Learners/Trouble Youth (3)
Students study the needs and behaviors of discouraged learners with strategies for teaching and reaching these students. Instructional design based on brain research and these principles provides the opportunity for students to translate current research and theory in this field into practice to increase opportunities for student engagement and achievement. (formerly EDU694)

EDU639 Critical Issues and Advocacy (3)
Students research and explore current topics and issues in education to create advocacy strategies as they consider the interrelationships of curriculum, educational initiatives, contemporary issues, and instruction. (formerly EDU539)

EDU624 Elementary and Middle School Reading (3)
This course for pre-K through 6th grade teachers includes field experiences in the diagnosis and remediation of reading disabilities and provides the educator opportunity to engage with one reader to discover student strengths and needs and develop a case study. Course focuses include interest inventories, English language learning screening, visual and auditory discrimination tools, language expression and processing screening, phonemics, phonics, vocabulary, fluency, comprehension, spelling and writing assessment tools, and instructional strategies. Students will explore current models of reading assessment and support, as well as classroom applications designed to develop effective reading skills and dispositions, including differentiated instruction in response to student needs. For those holding an elementary certificate, this course satisfies the Michigan Department of Education reading requirement for new professional certificates issued after July 1, 2009, per 2007 PA 32, MCL 380.1531(4) (previously PA118). (Offered online).

EDU 625 Secondary Reading (3)
This course for 6-12 grade teachers investigates issues in secondary reading and skill development. Focuses include differentiated instruction, interest inventories, fluency, comprehension, spelling and writing assessment tools, and instructional strategies. The course explores the skills and complexities of the reading process through classroom field experiences. Students will investigate a variety of instructional techniques to facilitate the development of effective readers and learners. The emphasis will be on practical research-based classroom applications. For those holding an elementary certificate, this course satisfies the Michigan Department of Education reading requirement for new professional certificates issued after July 1, 2009, per 2007 PA 32, MCL 380.1531(4) (previously PA118). (Offered online).

EDU650 Educational Research Methods and Design (4) 
Students in this course examine research approaches to learn more about questions in education. Students acquire a broad understanding of the research process, including the ability to read and understand educational research, and the ability to critique methods and finding of selected research. Teacher-researchers identify their personal research focus, craft research questions, and create a research plan. Students review related literature and draft a literature review. Chapters 1, 2 and 3 and the bibliography and appendices of the thesis are addressed in this course. Prerequisite: All previous required courses in the program. (Offered in fall)

EDU656 – Graduate Thesis (4)
In this course, teacher-researchers present, fine-tune, and implement their research plans. Students conduct data collection, analysis, and interpretations leading to recommendations for action based on findings. Chapters 4, 5, and 6, as well as the abstract, table of contents, and tables of figures of the thesis are produced in this course. Students report their research via a bound thesis and a formal academic presentation to a professional audience. In this course, students put action research in context, exploring paradigms, theories, and the transformative nature of teacher research. Prerequisite: EDU 650. (Offered in spring.)

EDU690 Individual Advanced Research (1-3)
This course is designed to allow a student to research a topic of interest to him/her on an individualized basis. Planning for the topic and for the final project and/or paper must be approved by the instructor before the student may register for the class. This course may be taken more than once.