School of Leadership, Education & Communication

Master of Science in Elementary Education (Online)

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Inspire the next generation of learners.

Elementary school teachers have the power to open a child's mind to the beauty of the arts, the order of the natural world, and the power of the written word. Make a lasting positive impact in the lives of young students as an elementary school teacher with the skills, knowledge, and experience you gain from St. Thomas University!

Our fully online 36-credit M.S. in Elementary Education degree program gives you the theoretical grounding and leading-edge classroom skills needed to thrive in this rewarding field.

What sets the St. Thomas Elementary Education master's program apart is our focus on 21st century teaching competencies and built-in field experience: Get hands-on classroom training as you learn. Your instructors (all current or former elementary school teachers) lead you through the history and founding principles of elementary education before focusing on specific content-area knowledge (language arts, mathematics, science, social science, the arts, and physical education).

Outcomes

The expected outcome of the online M.S. in Elementary Education from St. Thomas University is to produce elementary school teachers with a deep understanding of how to promote healthy learning and development in young children. Upon completion of the M.S. in Elementary Education, you will be able to:

  • Possess the skills that will help prepare you for the state content-area exams in language arts, mathematics, science, social science, the arts, and physical education
  • Apply principles and methods of effective classroom management
  • Effectively employ multimedia and technology in the classroom
  • Work with diverse student populations, including special needs and limited English students
  • Trace the historical, social, and philosophical foundations of elementary education

Courses

St. Thomas University's M.S. in Elementary Education is a 36 credit-hour online degree program. Courses are five weeks in length, and the time to degree completion is approximately 16 months.

Core Courses

To complete the online M.S. in Elementary Education program, you will take five core education courses (15 credits) that will prepare you to take the Professional Education Test of most states (check with your State Department of Education for its specific requirements for those tests):

  • EDF 660 Social, Philosophical and Historical Foundations of Education
  • EDU 524 Literature and Multimedia in the Classroom
  • EDA 606 Curriculum and Instruction for Diverse Student Populations
  • EDU 530 Educational Measurement
  • EDU 540 Effective Teaching and Classroom Management

Content Area Courses

Your remaining seven courses (21 credits) will explore teaching methods and subject matter specific to each content area within elementary education. These courses will help prepare you for the Subject Area Examination of most states (check with your State Department of Education for its specific requirements for those examinations):

  • EDU 521 Theory and Foundations of Effective Reading and Language Instruction
  • EDU 523 Content and Methods for Teaching Health and Physical Education (Field Experience)
  • EDU 525 Content and Methods for Teaching Language Arts (Field Experience)
  • EDU 526 Content and Methods for Teaching Science (Field Experience)
  • EDU 527 Content and Methods for Teaching Mathematics (Field Experience)
  • EDU 528 Content and Methods for Teaching Social Science (Field Experience)
  • EDU 529 Content and Methods for Teaching the Arts (Field Experience)

M.S. in Elementary Education Course Sequence (36 credit hours)

This course will assist student in examining and explaining the differing social contexts of schooling, the diverse value orientations represented in formal and informal education, and the major historical forces shaping schooling in America.

Children's Literature and Multimedia in the Classroom (3)
This course provides students with a basic understanding of assessment concepts and their application to appropriate test selection, administration, and especially interpretation. It is a survey of assessment tools used to classify, diagnose, and evaluate individuals with disabilities with an emphasis on understanding and interpreting the most recently developed instruments and the development of informal assessments.

Educational Measurement (3)
Students enrolled in this course will research and learn the various genres of Children's and Adolescent Literature by means of the Internet and through traditional means (e.g., texts, journals, classroom instruction, etc.). In addition, students will have opportunities to learn the use of various media for the teaching of Children's and Adolescent Literature (e.g., the computer, video, photography, etc.).

Curriculum and Instruction for Diverse Student Populations (3)
A study of curriculum development and planning with an emphasis on meeting the needs of special need and limited English students. Educational program at all levels are reviewed in light of new federal and state accountability standards. The development of assessment skills related to curriculum evaluation is emphasized. Strategies for curriculum improvement are explored.

Educational Measurement (3)
This course introduces teachers and educational leaders to elements of assessment that are essential to good teaching. It provides students with an understanding of the role of assessment in the instructional process. Students will learn how to construct effective test questions that are aligned with learning objectives and how to evaluate published tests and properly interpret scores of standardized tests as well as how to make appropriate modifications for ESOL students.

Effective Teaching and Classroom Management (3)
Practical teaching methods, activities, and strategies will be emphasized to introduce the research on effective teaching. Psychological factors affecting the behavior of students in regular, special, and inclusive classrooms will be studied along with local codes of conduct. Participants must apply knowledge of classroom management practices, school safety, professional ethics, and educational law to meet the instructional needs of all students.

Theory and Foundations of Effective Reading and Language Instruction (3)
This course provides a theoretical and practical framework for understanding issues related to teaching reading. It addresses theories and models of reading and focuses on the application of this knowledge to literacy instruction for all learners. This course provides students with knowledge of language structure, function, and cognition for each of the 5 major components of reading and is based on the Florida Reading Endorsement Competencies and IRA standards. This course will target the recent research and best practices for instruction in culturally responsive literacy approaches.

Content and Methods for Teaching Health and Physical Education (Field Experience) (3)
This course uses a competency-based, research focus to identify appropriate content and methods in the area of children's health and physical education. It will explore the physical, social, and emotional growth and development, personal health and wellness, community health and safety issues, instructional practices, subject content, and appropriate curriculum design and assessment strategies in teaching physical education in elementary school.

Content Methods of Teaching Language Arts (3)
This course provides students opportunities to learn and demonstrate skills in current practices of Language Arts instruction (K-12). Emphasis is placed on the use of technology to teach the four basic components of Literacy: Reading, Writing, Speaking, and Listening. The diversified curriculum is based on current research in teaching elementary language arts that responds to national and state competencies and standards.

Content and Methods for Teaching Science (Field Experience) (3)
This course focuses on the methods, materials, and approaches for teaching science, including developmentally appropriate introductions to the physical, earth, and life sciences. Emphasis is given to exemplary processes and projects. This course is designed to prepare outstanding teachers who will perform effectively with elementary students in the current professional climate of diversity and restructuring. The diversified curriculum is based on current research in teaching elementary science that responds to national and state competencies and standards and satisfies states' certification or licensure requirements.

Content and Methods for Teaching Mathematics (Field Experience) (3)
This course focuses on methods, materials, and approaches for teaching mathematics, including numeration, number systems, problem solving, measurement, informal geometry, and computational algorithms. Emphasis is given to the teaching and assessment of concepts. This course is designed to prepare outstanding teachers who will perform effectively with elementary students in the current professional climate of diversity and restructuring. The diversified curriculum is based on current research in teaching elementary mathematics that responds to national and state competencies and standards and satisfies states' certification or licensure requirements.

Content and Methods for Teaching Social Science (Field Experience) (3)
This course focuses on recent trends and issues in curriculum development and instructional practice in elementary social studies. Models of social studies programs will be examined. Emphasis is on the areas of concept and skill development as they relate to the needs of children living in a multicultural society. This course is designed to prepare outstanding teachers who will perform effectively with elementary students in the current professional climate of diversity and restructuring. The diversified curriculum is based on current research in teaching elementary social studies that responds to national and state competencies and standards and satisfies states' certification or licensure requirements.

Content and Methods for Teaching the Arts (Field Experience) (3)
This course focuses on the skills and techniques, cultural and historical connections, and creation and communication in the visual arts. Emphasis is placed on aesthetic and critical analysis of the visual arts and design and use of appropriate assessment strategies. This course is designed to prepare outstanding teachers who will perform effectively with elementary students in the current professional climate of diversity and restructuring. The diversified curriculum is based on current research in teaching art that responds to national and state competencies and standards and satisfies states' certification or licensure requirements.

Licensure/Certification

With an M.S. in Elementary Education degree you may be eligible to apply for initial licensure as an elementary school teacher in the state of Florida (check with the Florida Department of Education for specific requirements for elementary school teachers).

Careers

The online M.S. in Elementary Education from St. Thomas University is designed to prepare you for a rewarding career as an elementary school teacher in Florida.* The following are just a few of the jobs available to graduates:

  • Elementary Grades Teacher (K-6)
  • Elementary Language Arts Teacher
  • Elementary Math Teacher
  • Elementary Social Science Teacher
  • Elementary Science Teacher
  • Elementary Health and Physical Education Teacher
  • Elementary Art or Music Teacher

* Students seeking initial licensure as an elementary school teacher in states other than Florida should determine the licensure requirements in the state(s) in which they will be seeking certification. Written approval that this program will be acceptable for licensure by their state's teacher licensing agency should be obtained prior to beginning the program.


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