Interdisciplinary Studies in Education, Master of Education

Master of Education

Program Purpose

The Master of Education: Interdisciplinary Studies in Education degree program is designed for educators who are interested in distinguishing themselves as accomplished, effective educators who have met the most robust standards in the profession. Innovation in teaching has become one of the most sought after skills in the teaching profession. This personalized degree program will undoubtedly enhance the pedagogical skills of the graduate. This degree program consists of two15 credit Areas of Distinction/Certificates* of the candidate's choice and interest, culminating with a Capstone Portfolio.

*If a candidate chooses the Reading Specialist, additional coursework will be required.

These “Areas of Distinction” serve to build in-demand skills with personalized learning experiences leading to more effective teaching practices in the field. Candidates actively engage in applying new skills and knowledge, sometimes within their own classroom settings, while earning an Area of Distinction. While completion of a certain degree, a course of study, or coursework may provide the opportunity to earn a salary supplement based aligned to the content or area in which the educator is employed, increments are based on Delaware’s Code 728. Candidates are encouraged to consult with their HR office for more details prior to enrollment.

Program Design (Choose Two 15-Credit Areas of Distinction/Certificates to make up the degree program)

  • Digital Education (15 credits)
  • Equitable Practices (15 credits)
  • E-Learning Design and Technology (15 credits)
  • ESOL Literacy (15 credits; requires an initial teaching license)
  • National Board Certified Teacher (15 credits; requires an initial teaching license)
  • Reading Specialist (23-26 credits depending on pathway chosen; requires an initial teaching license)
  • Special Education: Autism/Severe Intellectual Disabilities (15 credits; requires an initial teaching license)
  • Special Education: Early Childhood Exceptional Children (15 credits; requires an initial teaching license)
  • Special Education: K-12 Teachers of Students with Disabilities (15 credits; requires an initial teaching license)
  • STEM Education (15 credits)
  • Trauma and Resilience (15 credits)

Program Competencies*

The program competencies adopted for the Master of Arts Interdisciplinary Studies in Education degree program are the Model Standards for Teacher Licensing, Assessment, and Development from the Interstate New Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (INTASC) (2011) by the Council of Chief State School Officers. The degree program is designed to enable candidates to demonstrate their knowledge and skills in the following program competency standards:

Program Competency Standard 1. Learner Development The teacher understands how children learn 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.

Program Competency Standard 2. Learning Differences The teacher uses understanding of individual differences and diverse communities to ensure inclusive learning environments that allow each learner to meet high standards.

Program Competency Standard 3. Learning Environments 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.

Program Competency Standard 4. Content Knowledge 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 ensure mastery of the content.

Program Competency Standard 5. Applications of Content 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.

Program Competency Standard 6. Assessment 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.

Program Competency Standard 7. Planning for Instruction 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.

Program Competency Standard 8. Instructional Strategies 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.

Program Competency Standard 9. Professional Learning and Ethical Practice 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, and other professionals in the community), and adapts practice to meet the needs of each learner.

Program Competency Standard 10. Leadership and Collaboration The teacher seeks appropriate leaderships roles and opportunities to take responsibility for student learning, to collaborate with learners, families, colleagues, and other school professionals, and community members to ensure learner growth, and to advance the profession.

*Some of the Areas of Distinction are aligned to additional program competency standards.  See specific Areas of Distinction for more information.

Outcomes Assessment

Multiple assessments are used to determine candidate growth toward achievement of the knowledge and skills described in the Master of Arts Interdisciplinary Studies in Education degree program competencies and the college-wide graduation competencies. Performance-based assessments are used to evaluate learning activities. Goals, learning outcomes, external assignments, and assessment strategies are linked directly to program and graduation competencies as stated on each course syllabus. Other assessment strategies may include mentoring sessions and observations of candidate performance in authentic settings.  

No matter how candidates personalize their degree when choosing two Areas of Distinction, they must complete MED 8804 Action Research, unless one of the Areas of Distinction chosen is E-Learning Design and Technology that houses its own capstone portfolio. This capstone course emphasizes the role of Teacher-as-Researcher and the value of conducting classroom and school-based action research. This will result in the creation of a personalized research portfolio, directly involving candidates in the process of educational improvement, a hallmark of the College of Education and Liberal Arts.

Core Requirements

Core Requirements

Candidates must first enroll in E-folio so that the College of Education may document mastery of program competencies. Candidates upload core program assessments into efolio and faculty determine whether a candidate has met, not met, or reached the target for the identified elements/standards. The College is held accountable for ensuring that candidates meet these standards in their education programs.


Candidates must also document teaching knowledge, performances, and dispositions through outcome assessments and the creation of a personalized capstone portfolio in MED 8806.

MED 6102 E-Folio

MED 8806 Data in Action

Candidates selecting the E-Learning Design and Technology Area of Distinction may replace MED 8806 with DTL 8000.

Course Requirements (Choose Two Areas of Distinction/ Certificates for the degree program)


Qualification for Degree

To qualify for the Master of Education Interdisciplinary Studies degree, a candidate must successfully complete a minimum of 33 credit hours with a GPA of at least 3.0. The program must be completed within five years. 

This information applies to students who enter this degree program during the 2022-2023 Academic Year. If you entered this degree program before the Fall 2021 semester, please refer to the academic catalog for the year you began your degree program.