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Education 3045
601 University Dr.
San Marcos, TX 78666

Phone: 512.245.3701
Fax: 512.245.7911
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Graduate Degree Programs


The Department of Curriculum and Instruction offers a variety of degrees and programs. Programs have been designed for the certified teacher to receive a master's degree in an area of education that will enhance their current role in an educational setting. Additionally, the Department of Curriculum and Instruction offers programs that allow a post-baccalaureate student the ability to earn a teaching certificate prior to the granting of the master's degree. Some majors and certificates can be completed through programs offered full-time during the day or part-time in the evenings. Before proceeding into any field of education at Texas State, the degree applicant should inquire as to certification requirements associated with or prerequisites to the degree. Applicants must keep in mind that certification requirements and graduate degree requirements may not be related and that the satisfactory completion of degree requirements may not always lead directly to certification. The Master of Education degree offerings from the department consist of a minimum of 36 hours without a required thesis. Semester hour requirements vary within the major and minor areas. It is also possible to earn the degree of Master of Arts (M.A.) with majors in Elementary Education and Secondary Education with a minimum of 30 semester hours including the thesis. Students seeking either a master's degree or certification combined with a master's degree can typically begin their studies without completing background, or leveling classes. An exception to this would be approximately 6-9 hours of college level math, speech communication, computer literacy and 6 hours of English composition necessary for students seeking initial teacher certification. Candidates for the master's degree must complete a written comprehensive examination in the last semester of their master's program. 

General information about graduate studies

Majors And Degrees Offered

Developmental Education, M.A.
This 36-hour Master of Arts (MA) offers 4 options: generalist, literacy (reading and writing), mathematics, or learning support.  The MA degree consists of 12 hours of developmental education courses; 15-18 hours in literacy, mathematics, or learning support specializations; and 9-12 hours of thesis or non-thesis credit hours.  Additionally a 15-hour minor in Developmental Education or Community College Support Programs is available.  The Developmental Education MA program is housed in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction.
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Educational Technology, M.Ed.
The 39-hour Master of Education with a major in Educational Technology consists of 27-semester hours in educational technology and 12-semester hours in Educational Administration.  Graduates will be prepared to teach technology applications, use technology to support student learning of subject-area content, and provide professional development, mentoring, and basic technical and instructional assistance to other professional educators on their campuses and/or in their districts.
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Elementary Education, M.A., M.Ed.
The 36-hour Master of Education with a major in Elementary Education consists typically of 24-27 credit hours in elementary education and an academic minor of nine to fifteen credit hours depending upon the program selected.  An emphasis in Early Childhood or Talent Development is also offered within this major.  The minor can be selected in an approved academic area such as: Developmental Education; Reading; Special Education; Talent Development, or a composite minor grouped under the title of Methods and Materials.  It is also possible to earn the degree of Master of Arts in Elementary Education with a minimum of 36 credit hours that includes the thesis hours.  
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Elementary Education with emphasis in Early Childhood Education, M.A., M.Ed.
The 36 credit hour master's degree program in elementary education with an emphasis in Early Childhood is designed for certified teachers who are seeking a deeper understanding of the education and development of young children, specifically those in pre-kindergarten and kindergarten.  The degree consists of 24 credit hours, with 12 of the 24 hours focusing on courses in Early Childhood Education.  In addition, a minor of at least 12 credit hours is required.  The minor can be selected in an approved academic area such as: Developmental Education; Reading; Special Education; Talent Development; or a composite minor grouped under the title of Methods and Materials.  Candidates may select from a Master of Education (M.Ed.) or Master of Arts (M.A.) in Elementary Education degree.   
*Some of the required coursework for the Elementary Education major with an Early Childhood Education emphasis program is offered on the San Marcos campus, only.
Note: Prospective students wishing to seek initial teaching certification, with a master's degree, should apply for the CMED EC-6 ESL Generalist program.

Elementary Education-Bilingual/Bicultural, M.A., M.Ed.
The 36-hour Master of Education with a major in Elementary Education-Bilingual/Bicultural usually consists of 24 to 27 semester hours in bilingual and elementary education and a minor of nine to twelve hours in an approved academic area, such as reading, early childhood, secondary education, gifted/ talented education, educational administration, special education, or a composite area.
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Elementary Education with concentration in Mathematics/Master Mathematics Teacher Certification, M.Ed.
The goal of this program is to increase effective math, science, and technology teaching by increasing the number of Texas teachers who are master teachers and who hold a Master's of Education in Mathematics. Program participants are certified EC-4 teachers with a least two years of teaching experience, who are recommended by a school district.   Click HERE for more Information 

Talent Development in Elementary or Secondary Education, M.A., M.Ed.
Master's programs in Talent Development have been designed for teachers who seek to continue their professional growth in education and want the stimulation and support of taking classes with other certified teachers. Teachers in this program typically want to grow in new ways, but they are not interested in becoming a school principal or assistant principal in the near future. They want to further develop their own talents and learn how to support talent development in their students and fellow teachers. Graduate students in Talent Development develop advanced-level knowledge and skills for the continued improvement of teaching practices, for the increase of equity in education, and for thinking critically and imaginatively about educational practices, policies, and trends. 
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Reading Education, M.Ed.
The 36-hour degree consists of 30 hours in Reading (RDG) including courses in language and literacy development, reading and writing theory and research, teaching literacy from early childhood through grade 12, teaching with children's/young adult literature, teaching reading and writing in a multilingual/multicultural environment, literacy assessment, and a two-course reading specialist internship (which can be completed while working full time).  Additionally, students design a 6-hour cognate together with their advisor, selecting additional courses that will help them become successful reading specialists.  Reading Education majors are prepared to meet the International Reading Association professional standards for the Reading Specialist/Literacy Coach and the Reading Administrator.  Certified teachers with two or more years of teaching experience who successfully complete the major and pass the Professional Reading Specialist TExES qualify for the EC-12 Professional Reading Specialist certificate.  Additionally, a 12-hour academic minor is available for those students majoring in other areas.  A 12-hour qualification for the Master Reading Teacher (MRT) exam is also available for certified teachers with at least three years teaching experience. 
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Secondary Education, M.A., M.Ed.
The 36-hour Master of Education with a major in secondary education usually consists of 24 semester hours in secondary education and 12 to 15 semester hours in an academic minor or the Composite minor program.  Students who do not have a teaching certificate may be required to complete specific background courses before beginning graduate course work.  A student may also pursue the Master of Education with a major in Secondary Education with a 12-semester hour specialization in educational technology or a 15 hour specialization in Talent Development.  It is also possible to earn the degree of Master of Arts with a major in Secondary Education.  The Master of Arts consists of a minimum of 30 semester hours including thesis.
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Special Education, M.Ed.
The 36-hour Master of Education with a major in Special Education consists of 24 semester hours in special education.  A 12-semester hour minor is required.
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Graduate Programs with Initial Teacher Certification


Certification and Masters Degree in Education.  36-semester hour option is offered only in the evenings and is not limited in enrollment. Students may begin the program in the fall, spring, or summer semester. Students are urged to take a minimum of two classes each semester in the program. A field experience will be required and may have to be arranged on the student’s own time. The program culminates with student teaching.


Career Alternatives in Special Education Career Alternatives in Special Education (CASE), is a unique program developed to recruit mature individuals, who hold undergraduate degrees, who are interested in a second career to teach public school students who have disabilities.  CASE provides training in teaching methods and special education techniques, and supports CASE participants in teaching positions in central Texas.


Teacher Recruitment Program (TRP)

TRP  is a full-certification program, designed for individuals who already hold a baccalaureate degree. TRP includes 18 hours of graduate course work, typically completed in two semesters of full-time attendance. The coursework may begin in either the fall or spring semesters. The first semester classes are delivered at the Round Rock Higher Educational Center (RRHEC). Field experiences are delivered on-site in area public schools. TRP includes a full semester of student teaching or internship. The Teacher Recruitment Program (TRP) is designed to provide an accelerated pathway to teacher certification in either of two possible areas:

  • Generalist (Early Childhood - 6th Grade)
  • Secondary (Grades 8-12) requires at least 24 credit hours in a teachable subject area.

TRP participants have the option to complete an additional 6 graduate classes for a Masters degree in Education (MEd.) if desired. A student wishing to complete a Masters degree must pass a written comprehensive exam.  MORE


Teaching Residency Program for Critical Shortage Areas (TRP-CSA)

The Teaching Residency Program for Critical Shortage Areas (TRP-CSA) is a competitive program funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Education that results in a Master of Education (M.Ed. degree) within a 14-month period and provides two years of induction support.   The program is designed for individuals who have a baccalaureate degree, have completed a minimum of 24 hours of mathematics or science, and seek 8-12 teacher certification in mathematics, science or special education.  

Participants selected for the program are eligible for a $35,000 living stipend while enrolled in graduate coursework and tuition assistance (through the TEACH grant program), both of which are 100% forgivable for candidates who complete three years of employment in a high-need school.  MORE

Graduate Program Supporting Teachers in Their Induction Year

The Teacher Fellows Program specializes in personalized induction and mentoring of new teachers. Each beginning teacher is immersed in teaching in a central Texas participating school district while completing a 36-semester hour M.Ed. in Elementary Education. The program provides an integrated curriculum focused on principles of constructivist learning, teacher research, project-based learning, and performance assessment. Please click here to learn how you can earn a Master's degree with substantial financial support.

Supplementary Certificates (Endorsements) These certifications may be added to a teaching certificate:

Supplementary certificates (formerly called Endorsements) are offered in addition to majors and specializations associated with the degree programs in Bilingual/Bicultural, Educational Diagnostician, Educational Reading Specialist, Gifted and Talented Education, and Special Education.  Satisfactory performance on a State Board for Educator Certification (SBEC) test is required for provisional or professional certificates in educaion.

Bilingual Education Certificate.  The following courses are required for Bilingual Education: RDG 5331, CI 5336, 5374, and 5387.

Generic Special Education Certificate.  These courses are required for generic special education: SPED 5311, 5313, 5326, 5327, 5334, 5360, 5375, and 5389.

Gifted and Talented Education Certificate.  These courses are required for recommendation for gifted and talented education: CI 5308, 5324, 5310, 5311, and 5319.

Student Fitness and Performance

Program Standards -- Students enrolled in all academic programs in the Graduate College must maintain high scholastic standards and develop a mastery of the knowledge and methods of their respective discipline.  Students are expected to demonstrate emotional and mental fitness in their interactions with others, use skills and methods that are generally accepted by others in the profession and conform to the code of ethics of their respective discipline, and the university's honor code.  A student's acceptance in any program does not guarantee the student's fitness to remain in that program.  The faculty is responsible for verifying that only those students who continue to meet program standards are allowed to continue in any program.

Evaluation of Student Fitness and Performance -- Members of the faculty, using their professional judgments, evaluate student fitness and performance continuously.  The criteria used by the faculty to make such judgments include instructors' observations of student performance in class or in activities related to courses, evaluations of student performance on these and practica, site supervisors' evaluations of student performance in practica, and the codes of ethics noted above.  Students who are not making satisfactory progress or who are not meeting program standards should consider withdrawing from the program.

Student Review Process -- If a faculty member believes that a student is not making satisfactory progress or meeting program standards, he/she should discuss the situation with the student.  If the faculty member believes that the student's performance cannot improve to acceptable standards, the faculty member should refer the student to the Program Standards Committee of the appropriate department.  The Program Standards Committee consists of three faculty members appointed by the department chair in consultation with the department's senior faculty.

The Committee will notify the student of the reasons that he/she is not making satisfactory progress or meeting program standards and will give the student an opportunity to meet with the Committee to respond and to present information and witnesses to the committee.  The Committee will also meet with the faculty member who referred the student to the Committee.  After considering the matter, and within ten working days of meeting with the student, the Committee will report its decision to the student and the department Chair, stating that the student should either remain in or leave the program.  The committee may make other deisions, such as placing restrictions or conditions on the student's contuing in the program.  Within ten working days of receiving the Committee's decision the student will notify the department Chair of the student's acceptance or rejection of the committee's decision.  If the student rejects the committee's decision, he/she may appeal to the department Chair.

Within ten working days of receiving the student's appeal, the Chair will make a decision as to the student's continued presence in the program.  Before making the decision, the Chair will meet with the student.  However, the Chair need not meet with the student before making a decision if the student was given a reasonable opportunity to meet, and the student either failed or refused to meet.  The Chair will notify the student of the deision.

If the student is dissatisfied with the Chair's decision, he/she may appeal to the Dean of the appropriate college.  However, in order for the Dean to consider an appeal, the student must submit a written notice of appeal to the Chair and the Dean within ten working days of receiving the Chair's decision.  The Dean will consider the matter based on information compiled by the Chair and notify the student of the decision within ten working days of the Dean's receipt of the appeal from the Chair.  The Dean may meet with the student and give the student an opportunity to address the issues.  The Dean's decision is final.