Experience, Exploration, Implementation & Inquiry

Beginning from and building upon the ongoing legacy of the IMPACT intern teacher program, the Teachers College of San Joaquin was founded. Teachers College of San Joaquin is the only WASC accredited institution of higher education that is a department within a county office of education. Since its inception in 2009, has graduated more than 500 master's candidates. With a vision to develop a workforce of innovative and reform-minded educators, the college includes opportunities for veteran educators to advance their understanding of the needs of 21st century learners and refine their practice as they earn a master’s degree in education. Graduate candidates are challenged to consider and design new models of schools, carry out action research, develop curriculum, hone leadership skills, and reflect on the outcomes of their practice.

The master's degree program at Teachers College of San Joaquin includes a set of core courses that are required within all M.Ed. concentrations. These courses are designed to prepare students to explore innovative teaching and leadership practices; engage with reform models of schools; use Design Thinking to create curriculum; and, gain knowledge in research methods in order to design and implement individualized teacher action research. Students become masters in their research area and are informed agents to lead change within their school communities.

CURR321 Research Methods and Application (3) / STEM320* Research in the STEM Classroom (3) The purpose of the Research Methods and Application course is to expose candidates to the role of various types of research literature and learn to be informed consumers of research. Topics in this course that help candidates deepen understanding of techniques of research design include, but are not limited to, empirical research constructs, review of evaluation research and policy analysis, how to read quantitative and qualitative research reports, descriptive and inferential statistics, and basic understandings of the scientific method (problem, hypothesis, data collection, and data analysis). Candidates develop a research proposal in this course with essential elements of effective research methodologies.

CURR341 Preparing Students for the 21st Century (3) Exploration of the context of 21st century learning environments are researched, observed, and discussed. The recent reforms and innovations in P-12 education, especially focusing on college and career readiness initiatives and implications to schools, are examined. Design Thinking is used to challenge candidates to reimagine solutions to complex educational issues and invent innovative models of schools and classrooms. What would a truly innovative, reform oriented, 21st century classroom look like? What are the implications to teachers who need to prepare students to be engaged in civics and global awareness? These issues are among the topics and questions considered in this course.

CURR343 Curriculum for the 21st Century (3) / SPED343a* or SPED343b* 21st Century Curriculum and Instruction for Students with Special Needs (3) Candidates extend their understanding of how to transition from conventional teaching practices to identifying and practicing strategies necessary to design 21st century learning environments. Application of Design Thinking for the development of integrated, real-life, inquiry based Project Based Learning units provide the major focus of the course. Candidates consider topics such as authentic assessment and how to embed rigor, relevance, reflection and relationships to enhance P – 12 students’ learning. Candidates are challenged to reflect on the critical need to reinvent how TK-12 students are prepared for their futures.

CURR345 Teacher Action Research (3) The purpose of the Teacher Action Research course is to help candidates understand a research that is defined to be any effort towards reflective and disciplined inquiry. Course content includes learning the processes of action research, how to conduct action research, and that research can involve a wide array of methods derived from both the quantitative and qualitative domains. The focus of the action research project will be defined by the candidate and will follow guidelines related to the teaching and learning process, be within an appropriate scope of influence, and with a purpose of initiating action to understand or solve a problem.

CURR384 Writing the Literature Review (2) Candidates will participate in conversations with faculty, experts, and colleagues on a variety of topics related to the development of a literature review. Specific attention will be paid to topic development, keyword searches, adequate sources, writing style, development of an outline, and correct citing of research in accordance to the American Psychological Association (APA).

*CURR321/STEM320 is a prerequisite for CURR345.
**CURR345 is a prerequisite for CURR384

Program Highlights

  1. Rolling admissions; begin the program when the time is right for you
  2. Learn from experienced teachers and administrators in the field
  3. Develop an individualized academic plan with an advisor to meet your needs
  4. Understand and have the ability to work collaboratively with others
  5. Apply theory and knowledge
  6. May be eligible to transfer 8-12 units of equivalencies

TCSJ offers 6 M.Ed. Program concentrations that range from 32-38 units. Learn more about the individual concentrations below.

Masters Project

M.Ed. Candidates: Candidates pursuing their M.Ed. in Early Education, Educational Inquiry, Educational Leadership and School Development without an Administrative Services Credential, Environmental Literacy, Special Education, or Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM); are required to complete a Masters Project as their capstone assignment for the master's program. Each candidate will work with an advisor to determine an appropriate culminating project. The project will culminate in a written document suitable for an educational audience. This project will be presented to his/her masters committee for evaluation prior to graduation. The masters committee will include the candidate’s advisor, two faculty members, a member of the greater educational community, and at least one fellow student.

Continuous Enrollment for the Masters Project: It is expected that most students will complete the Masters Project in 1-2 semesters. Enrollment in CURR385, EADM385, ECED385, SPED385, or STEM385 (4 units) is for those semesters. Students who require more time must pay for and enroll in CURR385a, EADM385a, ECED385a, SPED385a, or STEM385a (1 unit) for each additional semester needed to complete the Masters Project. Enrollment must be continuous. This option is not available for students who received a failing score on a completed project. In the event of a failure, students may re-enroll in CURR385, EADM385, ECED385, SPED385, or STEM385 and complete a new project.

Candidates in the Educational Leadership and School Development with an Administrative Services Credential M.Ed. are required to complete a Literature Review (CURR384) on a related topic appropriate for administrators, as well as pass all three cycles of the CalAPA.

2021-23 Masters Schedule Graduation Requirements FAQs