Master of Science in Education

Take your education career to the next level.

Master of Science (MS) in Education specializations

Our master's program in education integrates recognized theory and best practices with practical application. Learn in a collaborative environment while gaining advanced experience in your chosen profession. Some specializations require residency and clinical experiences, which allow you to apply what you've learned.

Outcome goals and graduates’ proficiency levels

These results show recent Capella graduates' proficiency levels in the expected learning outcomes for 5 of the 9 Master of Science in Education specializations. Faculty make this assessment in the capstone course—the final course in which Capella students demonstrate what they've learned.

Specializations

Please select a specialization of interest to you

Curriculum and Instruction Specialization

Within the fast-growing field of P–12 education, increase your expertise in curriculum and instruction to improve student achievement. You'll focus on applying current theory, research, and technology to the design of curriculum and instructional models. You will also learn to use assessment, classroom management, and other techniques to strengthen instruction and reduce achievement gaps.

*No learning outcomes data are available for this specialization at this time.

2012-2013 Demonstration of Program Outcomes MS in Ed Curriculum and Instruction

  • Non-Performance
  • Basic
  • Proficient
  • Distinguished

  • 0%
  • 20%
  • 40%
  • 60%
  • 80%
  • 100%

Develop curricula reflecting the local philosophy and mission, professional research, current trends, and community and societal needs.
Instruct, design and assess learning.
Lead in curriculum and instruction.
Collaborate for the improvement of curriculum and instruction.
Evaluate and incorporate research to enrich practice and theory in curriculum.


Outcome Demonstrations
Source: Aggregated outcome assessment results from Q32012 – Q22013 capstone courses



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Early Childhood Education Specialization

Capella's master's degree specialization in Early Childhood Education is recognized by the National Association for the Education of Young Children and is designed to prepare teachers to design, implement, and evaluate developmentally appropriate learning experiences for young children. The curriculum includes course work in such topics as child psychology, classroom management, the early childhood learning environment, family engagement, and strategies for eliminating achievement gaps. Elective course work provides you the opportunity to broaden your knowledge of learning theories or focus on special education or supervisory skills.

2012-2013 Demonstration of Program Outcomes MS in Ed Early Childhood Education

  • Non-Performance
  • Basic
  • Proficient
  • Distinguished

  • 0%
  • 20%
  • 40%
  • 60%
  • 80%
  • 100%

Understand the stages of child development and how children learn.
Create learning environments that nurture the development, learning, and self-esteem of all children.
Design developmentally appropriate curriculum and instruction that encourage individual as well as group learning, skill development, reflection, critical thinking, and inquiry.
Provide equitable, inclusive education in which each student has the opportunity and encouragement to reach his or her potential.
Design assessment-driven, standards-based curriculum and instruction that is age and developmentally appropriate.
Comprehend early childhood content knowledge, its evolution, and its application.
Empower the young child's relationships within and outside of the school setting.
Uphold ethical and professional standards in conduct as an early childhood professional.
Engage in continued professional growth.
Apply critical knowledge of current research and theory to the improvement of instructional and leadership practices.


Outcome Demonstrations
Source: Aggregated outcome assessment results from Q32012 – Q22013 capstone courses



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English Language Learning and Teaching

Capella's master's degree specialization in English Language Learning and Teaching is designed to prepare licensed P-12 teachers to provide effective instruction to English Language Learners; work collaboratively with other administrators, teachers, school guidance staff, and families to ensure the success of every student; and provide curricular leadership to schools and school systems.

*No learning outcomes data are available for this specialization at this time.

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Instructional Design for Online Learning Specialization

Prepare yourself to be a part of the growing field of online education. Study online instructional design in an online environment from a university that is considered one of the leaders in the field. Through a curriculum that balances instructional design, the psychology of learning, and technology, you will focus on the practice of online instructional design, including designing effective instruction, methods of online delivery, software tools, and project management.

2012-2013 Demonstration of Program Outcomes MS in Ed Instructional Design for Online Learning

  • Non-Performance
  • Basic
  • Proficient
  • Distinguished

  • 0%
  • 20%
  • 40%
  • 60%
  • 80%
  • 100%

Bridge instructional design theory and real world opportunities.
Demonstrate skill in instructional design.
Integrate ethical standards in all instructional design and development activities.
Manage instructional design projects.


Outcome Demonstrations
Source: Aggregated outcome assessment results from Q32012 – Q22013 capstone courses



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K–12 Studies in Education specialization

Delve into the research-based knowledge, skills, and attitudes of exceptional teachers in this K–12 education specialization designed around nationally recognized teaching standards. Complement such core courses as leadership, curriculum, assessment, and learning theory with electives chosen to meet your educational, professional, or school-site needs. Throughout the program, you will build a professional portfolio to demonstrate your master's-level competencies to current and future employers.

2012-2013 Demonstration of Program Outcomes MS in K–12 Studies in Education

  • Non-Performance
  • Basic
  • Proficient
  • Distinguished

  • 0%
  • 20%
  • 40%
  • 60%
  • 80%
  • 100%

Possess a deep understanding of subject matter, its place within the discipline, and its connection to other disciplines.
Use multiple instructional models, resources, management, and pedagogical strategies to meet the needs of and engage diverse learners.
Apply knowledge, skills, and attributes needed to provide equitable, inclusive schools in which all students have the opportunity and encouragement to reach their potential.
Understand assessment-driven, standards-based curriculum and instruction that is age and developmentally appropriate.
Work as practitioner-scholar by applying current research and theory on content, pedagogy, child development and other education-related topics for the improvement of instructional and leadership practices.
Conduct classroom and/or school-based research to improve practice, programs and student outcomes.
Demonstrate informed thinking, planning, and teaching with appropriate data and data-driven strategies.
Apply standards of ethical leadership and management, including knowledge, dispositions, and performances, in classrooms, schools, districts, and communities.
Understand the attributes and skills necessary to lead and manage schools as complex, adaptive systems.
Engage in reflective practice for continuous professional growth and improvement of instructional and leadership practices.
Write clearly and communicates effectively with educational constituents in a variety of ways appropriate to purpose and context.
Engage in thinking, analysis, and problem solving that reflects scholarly intellectual standards, incorporates sound reasoning, and strives for equity and fairness.
Use technology effectively to improve instruction, student learning, productivity, and professional practice.
Initiate and participate in communities of practice and other collaborations with education professionals, parents, and community members to mobilize resources to best meet student needs, and to enhance professional growth.


Outcome Demonstrations
Source: Aggregated outcome assessment results from Q32012 – Q22013 capstone courses



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Leadership in Educational Administration specialization

Prepare to lead students and teachers to success through P-12 leadership. This specialization is nationally recognized by the Educational Leadership Constituents Council (ELCC). With an emphasis in School Leadership, you'll study curriculum that focuses on translating theory into effective leadership practice at the school level. Through your course work, you'll build the leadership, management, and problem-solving skills needed to become an ethical and innovative leader who can meet the challenges of an ever-changing P–12 educational system.

2012-2013 Demonstration of Program Outcomes MS in Ed Leadership in Educational Administration

  • Non-Performance
  • Basic
  • Proficient
  • Distinguished

  • 0%
  • 20%
  • 40%
  • 60%
  • 80%
  • 100%

Facilitate the development of a shared vision of learning.
Promote the success of all persons.
Lead the development of a culture of learning.
Manage effective learning environments.
Effectively collaborate with multiple stakeholders.
Lead the field of education in an ethical manner.
Advance the field of education through influence.


Outcome Demonstrations
Source: Aggregated outcome assessment results from Q32012 – Q22013 capstone courses



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Reading and Literacy specialization

Capella is unique among online universities in offering a master's specialization in Reading and Literacy that is state-approved, which is a requirement for licensure in some states. Developed around national reading standards, this specialization is designed to prepare P–12 classroom teachers to assess literacy, and to develop, implement, and adapt reading curriculum to accommodate diverse learning styles.

2012-2013 Demonstration of Program Outcomes MS in Ed Reading and Literacy

  • Non-Performance
  • Basic
  • Proficient
  • Distinguished

  • 0%
  • 20%
  • 40%
  • 60%
  • 80%
  • 100%

Have content expertise in the subject matter or discipline of one's profession as a teacher, administrator, counselor, or school psychologist.
Understand concepts, theories, and research about effective teaching and learning and the interaction of subject matter and pedagogy; use multiple strategies to help students learn subject matter.
Understand the context of schools, education, and learning; design and deliver assessment-driven standards-based curriculum, instruction, training, or administrative practices.
Use data, especially about learners, to plan instructional, administrative, counseling, or consultative strategies and activities.
Use information technology effectively to improve learning, productivity, and professional practice.
Have the knowledge, skills, and dispositions (that is, competencies) to work successfully with diverse learners, their families, and other professionals.
Assess and document that one's professional activities as a teacher, administrator, counselor, or school psychologist have a positive impact on P-12 learners.
As a practitioner-scholar, apply current theory, research, and best practice to improve one's professional practice as a teacher, administrator, counselor, or school psychologist.
Engage in critical thinking, analysis, and problem solving that reflect scholarly intellectual standards and incorporate sound reasoning.
Engage in reflective practice that leads to continuous professional growth and improvement.
Collaborate successfully with families, other professionals, and community members to mobilize resources for both learners and one's own professional growth.
Have professional attitudes, values, and beliefs that support student learning and development.
Demonstrate the vision and skills necessary to lead and manage classrooms and schools as complex adaptive systems in a changing world.
Write clearly, speak articulately, and communicate effectively with learners, their families, and other professionals in a variety of ways appropriate to purpose and content.


Outcome Demonstrations
Source: Aggregated outcome assessment results from Q32012 – Q22013 capstone courses



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Special Education Teaching specialization

Prepare yourself to help children with learning disabilities achieve academic and lifelong success with this state-approved Special Education specialization. The curriculum, developed around national special education standards, is designed to help you effectively teach children who have a variety of learning disabilities and come from diverse populations. You will study the latest strategies, practices, and techniques for teaching children with learning disabilities, and participate in field experiences that will allow you to apply your skills in real-life situations.

*No learning outcomes data are available for this specialization at this time.

2012-2013 Demonstration of Program Outcomes MS in Ed Special Education Teaching

  • Non-Performance
  • Basic
  • Proficient
  • Distinguished

  • 0%
  • 20%
  • 40%
  • 60%
  • 80%
  • 100%

Understands the role and structure of special education within the educational system.
Collaborates effectively with all stakeholders to support the individuals with exceptional needs.
Ethically and professionally applies policies and procedures for individuals with exceptional needs.
Plans, implements and evaluates curriculum and instructional strategies to enhance and promote.


Outcome Demonstrations
Source: Aggregated outcome assessment results from Q32012 – Q22013 capstone courses



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Training and Performance Improvement specialization

Increase your career potential by earning the only master's Training and Performance Improvement specialization that includes valuable certification in ROI Methodology™ from the ROI Institute™. Based on the American Society for Training and Development's (ASTD) Human Performance Improvement Model, this online program is designed to teach you how to apply human performance technology to improve organizational productivity. Course topics include analyzing systems performance; selecting, designing and implementing performance improvement solutions; and evaluating return on investment data to support training and performance improvement efforts in the workplace

2012-2013 Demonstration of Program Outcomes MS in Ed Training and Performance Improvement

  • Non-Performance
  • Basic
  • Proficient
  • Distinguished

  • 0%
  • 20%
  • 40%
  • 60%
  • 80%
  • 100%

Analyze systems performance.
Select and design interventions.
Implement interventions.
Support training and performance improvement in the workplace.
Evaluate training and performance improvement interventions.
Lead training and performance improvement processes.


Outcome Demonstrations
Source: Aggregated outcome assessment results from Q32012 – Q22013 capstone courses



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Quality and Professional Relevance

  • Capella's School of Education is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). NCATE-accredited programs are recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation for the preparation of P-12 teachers and other professional school personnel. Graduates of these programs are highly regarded by many school districts, licensing authorities, and teaching professionals.
  • More than 1,000 colleges and universities have employed Capella learners and alumni as faculty and administrators.
  • Capella University offers the only online enrollment management specialization through which students can also earn the Noel Levitz professional certificate.
  • More than 5,000 adults have chosen Capella's P–12 graduate specializations to advance their careers.
  • State approvals: The Leadership in Educational Administration and Reading and Literacy specializations are state-approved and may lead to licensure endorsement1.

1Capella University cannot guarantee licensure, certification, or endorsement. State regulations vary regarding professional licensure and salary benefits. It is the learner's responsibility to understand and comply with requirements for their states. Where applicable, teachers are advised to contact their individual school districts as to whether a program may qualify for salary advancement. For more information on licensure, see: http://www.capella.edu/education-degrees/licensure/ (Washington state learners are advised to go to: http://pathway.pesb.wa.gov/outofstate for more information).

2Applicants in KY and WI are advised that the Reading and Literacy specialization is not pre-approved for specialist endorsement/licensure and should verify home state and local district requirements prior to enrollment. Individuals seeking endorsement must perform a transcript review with their state upon completion of their program.

3Kansas regulations require that Kansas residents must first be granted a license for early childhood education in Minnesota before applying for a Kansas license. They can then apply to add Early Childhood, Prekindergarten through grade three (general education only—no special education), as an endorsement on their Kansas license.

4Learners seeking licensure in Arizona must secure a Structured English Immersion endorsement (SEI). Capella University has an alliance with Rio Salado College regarding course work for the SEI endorsement. Learners needing this endorsement should contact Academic Advisement to discuss the necessary courses and the application process at Rio Salado College.

5This specialization has not been reviewed or approved by Pennsylvania; Pennsylvania residents will have to apply and meet requirements for certification as out-of-state candidates.

6North Carolina learners completing this specialization may not be qualified for licensure in Educational Technology (concentration in Computer Specialist-077).

7North Carolina residents are currently not eligible to enroll in this specialization

8This master's specialization does not match Kansas licensing requirements in special education and will not lead to endorsement or licensure in Kansas.

9Kansas residents are advised that state regulations require a special review process for state licensure. Graduates of this master's specialization need to be granted an administrator license in Arizona first, and then apply for a Kansas license through a review by the licensure committee. This review process cannot guarantee a license will be issued.

10The Iowa Board of Educational Examiners requires graduates to first earn a Minnesota license and (if applicable) endorsement prior to applying for an Iowa license or endorsement. Capella assists learners seeking an Iowa license with understanding the Minnesota requirements and contacting state educator licensing offices. An Iowa resident seeking subsequent licensure from the Iowa Board of Education Examiners must contact that Board for licensure requirements in Iowa. See the education licensure site at www.capella.edu/licensure_ed for contact information.

11The Iowa Board of Educational Examiners requires graduates to first earn an Arizona license prior to applying for an Iowa license or endorsement. Capella assists learners seeking an Iowa license with understanding the Arizona requirements and contacting state educator licensing offices. An Iowa resident seeking subsequent licensure from the Iowa Board of Education Examiners must contact that Board for licensure requirements in Iowa. See the education licensure site at www.capella.edu/licensure_ed for contact information.

12This specialization is not currently state-approved and will not lead to endorsement or license (as applicable) until state approval is received.

13North Carolina, Maryland, and Wisconsin residents are currently not eligible to enroll in this specialization.

School of Education Master's Degree Graduates

Data from graduates across all Education masters programs have been combined for these Career Outcomes results.

Master's degree graduates from Capella's School of Education report satisfaction with their tasks and responsibilities and with salary and benefits. Two thirds of the respondents work in education - 39% in higher education and 31% in P-12 education.

Satisfaction with Capella Eduation Master's Graduates

Percentage of respondents who answered "satisfied" or "very satisfied"
Source: Responses to the Alumni Outcomes Survey one year after graduation. The data were collected during Q2 2012 – Q1 2013.

Many of our School of Education master's degree alumni report advancing in their careers or receiving a salary increase. They also indicate they have assumed a leadership role or received a promotion.

Improvement in Skills & Abilities Education Master's Graduates

Percentage of respondents who indicated they had accomplished each item
Source: Responses to the Alumni Outcomes Survey one year after graduation. The data were collected during Q2 2012 – Q1 2013.

School of Education Master's Degree Graduates

Data from graduates across all Education masters programs have been combined for these Student Experience results.

Most graduates of the School of Education master's degree programs report that earning a master's degree has helped them meet program and career goals. They are likely to recommend Capella to friends and family.

Satisfaction with Capella Eduation Master's Graduates

Percentage of respondents who answered affirmatively
Source: Responses to the Alumni Outcomes Survey one year after graduation. The data were collected during Q2 2012 – Q1 2013.

School of Education master's degree graduates say that they gained valuable skills and abilities which are applicable in a range of professional settings.

Improvement in Skills & Abilities Education Master's Graduates

Percentage of respondents who rated themselves as "proficient" or "distinguished" on ability to demonstrate the skill or ability on the job.
Source: Responses to the Alumni Outcomes Survey one year after graduation. The data were collected during Q2 2012 – Q1 2013.

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Capella believes in being clear about the real cost, time, and value of a Capella degree The Gainful Employment disclosures, required by the US Department of Education (DOE) (under 34 CFR 688.6 ), provide some information about completion, expenses and occupations based on learners who graduated between July 2012 and June 2013. Most of our students are part-time so they might not take a full course load or attend all 4 quarters each year. We took that into account in calculating these data. For example, we define program length for certificates and master's and doctoral degrees as the number of calendar quarters it takes a typical student to complete a program. The DOE has defined time to complete for a Bachelor's degree as 4 years. Program cost is based on the specific pricing structure for each program which is either a cost per credit or a cost per active quarter.

Other related information may be found on the Learning Outcomes, Career Outcomes, and Student Experience tabs on this page.

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Learn more about these values and how they are calculated»

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Alumni Success Story Quote

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