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About Our Program - M.Ed. Elementary

Master’s students (teacher candidates) in Elementary Education  begin coursework in June with an intensive eight-week experience that combines:
  • An introduction to the social, historical, and political context of elementary education, emphasizing the values of equity, access, and inclusion;
  • Subject matter foundations and methods in science, social studies, and math; and
  • Clinical experience in high-quality summer programs for children with inquiry focused academic experiences

During the fall, teacher candidates focus on subject matter foundations and methods in English Language Arts (and continue with mathematics).  Coursework is grounded by a practicum experience in schools serving significant numbers of English Language Learners and students from economically disadvantaged communities.  From January through May, teacher candidates complete student teaching, and during May and June, take courses linked thematically by a focus on serving learners with specific learning needs in the areas of reading and science. Candidates begin developing their Masters Capstone projects in the second part of the spring semester, and submit and present their projects in June.

The reconfigured program not only aligns with The Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (InTASC) and State standards, but also enacts Peabody’s abiding commitment to equity, access, and inclusion.  Woven throughout the program is a seven-hour course strand called “Learning Ecologies” that is designed to help candidates make sense of these commitments and translate them into socially just practice. Cutting across academic terms and learning contexts, the Learning Ecologies strand:

  • Situates course-based and field-based experiences within the broader social, cultural and historical contexts of schooling, and
  • Supports candidates in drawing thoughtful connections among theory, research and practice.

The values of equity, access and inclusion mediate the programmatic emphasis on children’s thinking, the learning and teaching of disciplinary knowledge and practice, and the social contexts of learning and teaching.


Program Design Principles

The Peabody’s Master's Program in Elementary Education brings together talented and dedicated individuals from the United States and beyond, preparing them to teach children in grades K-5 and to continue to learn and grow throughout their careers. Our program is designed around four educational principles that are grounded in theory, supported by research, and focused on practice:

Student thinking is the most important resource available to a teacher.   
Effective teachers pay attention to students’ emerging ideas and understandings, building and bridging from students’ initial thinking toward deeper and more sophisticated understandings of subject matter.  Through video assignments, practica and student teaching, elementary teacher candidates develop and refine their skills in eliciting, interpreting, building strategically from student reasoning to advance student learning in language arts, mathematics, science and social studies, as well as the arts.

Subject matter matters. 
The subject areas that constitute the school curriculum are characterized by distinct forms of discourse, norms, and practices.  Subject specific foundations and methods courses help candidates unpack these elements, and develop the instructional vision and skills to foster children’s learning of literacy, numeracy and scientific thinking practices, along with more cross-cutting social-emotional and creative skills and dispositions.

Diversity is an asset, not a barrier. 
In combining careful attention to learners’ sense-making and knowledge of subject matter, effective teachers capitalize on the variation in students’ academic, cultural, and linguistic experiences and skills to promote both individual and group learning. As they progress through our program, teacher candidates learn to design instructional tasks that have multiple points of entry, as well as to identify and build from productive points of difference in student reasoning that can support learning.

Learning to teach occurs continuously, in relation, in, and through practice.  
Learning to teach is a complex process that happens in interaction with students, colleagues, and others over time.  Such learning requires opportunity to act, space to reflect, so that one may draw connections between and among practical experience, defensible theory and sound research.   As teacher candidates grow increasingly skilled they take on increasing responsibility in their classrooms – becoming competent and trusted members of their school communities.

ELEM Master's Course Sequence 2017-2018

Year at a Glance 2017-2018


Financing Your Education

Peabody College offers multiple ways to meet the cost of your education. Click here for more information.