Education: Master of Education Program (M.Ed.)

Area of Education

Updated Fall 2013

Initial Licensure

The Master of Education (M.Ed.) program includes both initial licensure and advanced degree options. The initial licensure degree is typically a fifteen-month professional educational program that prepares teachers for the high level of competence expected by public and private educational institutions. The initial licensure and advanced programs increase both the quality and quantity of the educational experiences for teachers in professional education.

The M.Ed. initial licensure program is designed for students who have a baccalaureate degree with a strong general education component and one or more specialty or endorsement areas (or majors). This program consists of 45 to 47 semester hours. Available areas of licensure are essentially the same as those listed above for the undergraduate education program. Candidates may finish the M.Ed. program in two summers and one academic year (i.e. fourteen months). Students may also choose to extend course work beyond the typical fifteen-month period.

The master of education initial licensure program supports the following goals of Milligan College:

The primary goal of the M.Ed. program at Milligan College is to produce caring and reflective professional educators who will affect the lives of children in a markedly positive manner. Specific student outcomes for the initial licensure program, based upon standards of the Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (InTASC), are as follows:

  1. The teacher understands how learners grow and develop, recognizing that patterns of learning and development vary individually within and across the cognitive, linguistic, social, emotional, and physical areas, and designs and implements developmentally appropriate and challenging learning experiences;
  2. The teacher uses understanding of individual differences and diverse cultures and communities to ensure inclusive learning environments that enable each learner to meet high standards;
  3. The teacher works with others to create environments that support individual and collaborative learning, and that encourage positive social interaction, active engagement in learning, and self motivation;
  4. The teacher understands the central concepts, tools of inquiry, and structures of the discipline(s) he or she teaches and creates learning experiences that make the discipline accessible and meaningful for learners to assure mastery of the content;
  5. The teacher understands how to connect concepts and use differing perspectives to engage learners in critical thinking, creativity, and collaborative problem solving related to authentic local and global issues;
  6. The teacher understands and uses multiple methods of assessment to engage learners in their own growth, to monitor learner progress, and to guide the teacher’s and learner’s decision making;
  7. The teacher plans instruction that supports every student in meeting rigorous learning goals by drawing upon knowledge of content areas, curriculum, cross-disciplinary skills, and pedagogy, as well as knowledge of learners and the community context;
  8. The teacher understands and uses a variety of instructional strategies to encourage learners to develop deep understanding of content areas and their connections, and to build skills to apply knowledge in meaningful ways
  9. The teacher engages in ongoing professional learning and uses evidence to continually evaluate his/her practice, particularly the effects of his/her choices and actions on others (learners, families, other professionals, and the community), and adapts practice to meet the needs of each learnery;
  10. The teacher seeks appropriate leadership roles and opportunities to take responsibility for student learning, to collaborate with learners, families, colleagues, other school professionals, and community members to ensure learner growth, and to advance the profession;
  11. The teacher candidate combines Christian values, knowledge, and interpersonal skills to reflect the attributes of a Christian educator, ensuring maximum group and individual learning.


Students in all graduate degree licensure-seeking programs are required to develop an electronic portfolio documenting their mastery of applicable Milligan College graduate program outcomes. Initial and continuing candidacy status is contingent upon periodic review of developing portfolios. Students completing degree requirements in May or July must submit the completed portfolio including passing Praxis scores by the last Monday in April. Students completing degree requirements in December must submit the completed portfolio to CASE by the last Monday in November. Students failing to meet this deadline will not receive a passing grade in Education 560 Advanced Capstone Seminar until the portfolio requirement is fully met. Students failing to meet these deadlines will receive a grade of “Incomplete” in EDUC 560A and B Capstone Seminar. This grade of “Incomplete” will delay graduation, program completion, and recommendation for licensure.

Portfolio development and review will continue through the spring semester.


In addition to the core courses listed below, the six curricula that lead to the M.Ed. degree and initial licensure include the early childhood program, elementary program, middle grades program, the secondary program, the special education program, and the K-12 specialty programs in physical education, theatre, visual arts or music. These programs require 45 to 47 hours of graduate credit. Each curriculum described below may be completed in one academic year and two summers (15 months).

Core courses for all curricula (25 hrs)
(required for each initial licensure program)


Early Childhood Education courses (22 hrs)

Elementary Education courses (22 hrs)

Early Childhood Education/Elementary Education courses (Combined PreK-3/K-6 licensure) (25 hrs)

Middle Grades Education courses (20 hrs)

Secondary Education courses (21 hrs)

K-12 Music, Theatre, Visual Arts, and Physical Education courses (21 hrs*)

*An elementary level (K-6) methodology course in the major is also required for licensure.

PreK-3 Special Education courses (22 hrs)

Joint Special Education, Preschool/Early Childhood Education Licensure Program

Adding PK-3 Special Education endorsement to a PK-6 licensure will take more than 15 months.

Advanced degree

The M.Ed. advanced program is designed for licensed teachers who teach at the early childhood, elementary, middle grades, or secondary level and who wish to develop professionally. The advanced program increases both the quality and quantity of the educational experiences for teachers in professional education. Students may finish the 36-hour advanced degree program in two years, including fall, spring, and summer courses. Students may also choose to extend course work beyond the typical two-year period. Courses may be taken on-line or in a traditional classroom.

The advanced degree master of education program supports the following goals of Milligan College:

Student outcomes for the advanced licensure program are based upon the following principles of the National Board for Professional Teacher Standards (NBPTS):

  1. Teachers are committed to learning;
  2. Teachers know the subjects they teach and how to teach those subjects to students;
  3. Teachers are responsible for managing and monitoring student learning;
  4. Teachers think systematically about their practice and learn from experience;
  5. Teachers are members of learning communities;
  6. Teachers combine Christian values, knowledge, and interpersonal skills to reflect the attributes of a Christian educator, ensuring maximum group and individual learning.

The program integrates theory, action research, and reflective practice. Program outcomes are based upon National Board for Professional Teacher Standards (NBPTS) and are documented in professional portfolios.

The 36 credit hour advanced master of education program consists of a 24 credit hour core and 12 elective credits. Participants may also add an additional endorsement concurrent with their enrollment in the program. Additional endorsements may require more than twelve elective credits, however.

Program Characteristics and Curriculum

Application, admission, and retention policies and procedures for the advanced degree program are parallel to those noted above for the initial licensure M.Ed. program. Comprehensive examination procedures are also parallel. The advanced degree curriculum consists of core courses, research, and electives as follows:

Core courses (18 hrs)

Research (6 hrs)

Electives (12 hrs)

Twelve hours of elective course work are required for degree completion. Electives may be selected from graduate courses offered in the initial licensure program. Students are encouraged to select electives based upon a professional growth plan. An additional endorsement may be a part of this plan. Below are the suggested elective courses by area:

Licensed ECE or Elementary Teachers

* Required for those adding PreK-3 endorsement to elementary licensure

Licensed Middle Grades or Elementary Teachers

*Required for those adding Middle Grades (4-8) endorsement to PreK-3 license.

Licensed Secondary Teachers

Transitional Licensure

Milligan College has agreements with most of the local education agencies in this area to offer the middle grades and secondary Transitional Licensure programs. To be recommended for licensure by Milligan College, transitional licensure candidates must:

*EDUC 553 may be completed in the candidate’s teaching setting.
**EDUC 553 may not be required if the candidate has had prior teaching experience.
***EDUC 560 is required only if the student takes EDUC 553 to complete the M.Ed.

Candidates pursuing the Transitional License must provide documentation of 100 hours of mentoring conducted by the local education agency for the first school year of enrollment in the Milligan program and 50 hours for each subsequent year on the transitional license. This documentation must be submitted to the education adviser on June 1 of each year of enrollment and should include a detailed list of the date mentoring offered, nature of mentoring (observation, one-on-one, conference, in-service, etc.), and numbers of hours.