The best teachers are also learners, constantly evolving to meet the needs of diverse, technology-driven classrooms. Earning a Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction is one way to advance your practice or expand your career opportunities.
Of course, teachers are extremely busy. That’s why pursuing an online degree is a helpful, convenient option. These programs focus on action research, enhancing instructional best practices, and learning to develop, implement, and evaluate curriculum that improves student achievement.
If you’re interested in school leadership, these programs are for you. If you’re passionate about effectively teaching every student in your classroom, these programs are for you, too. Learn the latest in curriculum and instruction with one of these affordable online programs.
What kind of affordable online Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction should you get?
Many Curriculum and Instruction programs offer specializations or concentrations. Typically, these emphases are based on your subject area or grade level. Other programs are designed for teachers who want to facilitate online courses or teach Gifted programs. Whatever your goals as an educator, there’s likely a specialization for you.
These programs are offered both on campus and online. Of course, completing your degree online makes it possible to work around your busy schedule. If you’re interested in other online options, read our list of the Most Affordable Online Graduate Schools.
How much money do people make with an online Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction?
The answer to this question depends on your personal career goals. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, instructional coordinators earn a median salary of $63,750.
Classroom teachers earn a median salary of $57,160. However, teachers with a master’s degree earn more than teachers who hold only a bachelor’s degree.
The job growth rate for teachers is around 7 percent, which is typical for the average career. For instructional coaches, the job growth rate is 11 percent, which is much faster than average. It should also be noted that salaries vary by location.
What can you do with an online Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction?
An online Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction enables current teachers to significantly improve their practice and enhance student achievement.
However, the degree can also lead to positions such as instructional coordinator or coach, curriculum specialist, curriculum director, or educational specialist.
Some programs also provide skills and knowledge that can be applied in corporate settings. Additionally, the degree can be a step toward an administrative position in a school or district.
What are the requirements for an online Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction?
Most of these programs require teacher certification. Some either require or recommend two to three years of teaching experience. You will need a bachelor’s degree and may need to submit transcripts, test scores, letters of recommendation, and a personal statement.
The majority of these programs are 30-35 credits and can be completed in two years or less. Some require field experience. Others culminate in a portfolio, final project, or comprehensive final exam.
What are the best affordable online Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction?
The programs listed below were selected based on their net tuition costs. Of course, you’re looking for a program that is both affordable and high-quality. That’s why every school on this list is also accredited. Accreditation ensures that the school has undergone evaluation and met certain academic criteria.
We’ve compiled our research using only trusted sources such as:
- Princeton Review
- U.S. News and World Report
- Bureau of Labor Statistics
- Official college and university websites
Every program on this list is a convenient, affordable route to advancing your career in education.
Florida Atlantic University
Average Net Price: $10,100
Florida Atlantic University is a public university based in Boca Raton, Florida. It has five other campuses located throughout the state. Princeton Review ranks FAU as one of the best public universities in the Southeast. In addition, the school is ranked among the best in the nation by U.S. News and World Report. FAU offers over 170 degree programs across 10 renowned colleges. This includes an online M.Ed in Curriculum and Instruction.
The 36-credit Master’s of Education in Curriculum and Instruction balances theoretical and practical application. Students complete critical writing and research projects related to curriculum, instruction, and assessment. The degree can be finished in two years and also addresses global perspectives and diversity. Courses include:
- U.S. Curricular Trends and Issues
- Design Components of Curriculum
- Program Evaluation in Curriculum and Instruction
- Global Perspectives of Curricular Trends Across Nations
- Educational Research
This degree program is designed for certified teachers and other professionals, not for those seeking teacher certification. Students take core courses, research/statistics courses, and a capstone course. The capstone course requires action research in schools and communities.
Appalachian State University
Average Net Price: $10,473
Located in Boone, North Carolina, Appalachian State University was originally established as a teacher’s college in 1899. Today, the public university serves over 19,000 students. U.S. News and World Report ranks ASU as one of the top regional universities in the South. Its online programs are also ranked as some of the nation’s best. ASU offers over 150 degree programs, including a Curriculum Specialist MA.
The Master of Arts Curriculum Specialist program requires 39-credit hours. It prepares students to become curriculum instructional specialists focused on improving student learning opportunities. The program develops leadership skills and knowledge of instruction, learners, content knowledge, curriculum development, and research. Students take courses such as:
- Supervision of Instruction
- Connecting Learners and Subject Matter
- Curriculum Planning
- Teacher Leadership and School Improvement
- Assessment to Improve Learning and Inform Teaching
Students apply their curriculum specialist skills in site-based leadership and management experiences. They are placed with administrators or supervisors to observe and evaluate curriculum issues in public school or agency settings.
Sam Houston State University
Average Net Price: $11,742
Sam Houston State is a public university in Huntsville, Texas. SHSU’s motto is “The Measure of a Life is its Service.” Its online graduate programs are ranked as some of the nation’s best by U.S. News and World Report. SHSU currently serves more than 21,000 students and boasts over 130 degree programs. The university’s education programs, such as the M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction, are also nationally recognized.
SHSU’s Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction is a 30-credit program. It focuses on research, development, and implementation of curriculum changes that support student achievement. The program can also prepare students to teach at the community college level. In this program, you can expect to take courses like:
- Current Issues in Education
- Research in Teaching
- Curricular Trends for Classroom Teaching
- Assessment of Learning
- Instructional Coaching
For applicants with a 3.0 GPA or higher, the GRE requirement is automatically waived. Students complete research projects and explore a combination of pedagogy, methodology, and theoretical applications.
Florida International University
Average Net Price: $12,219
With an enrollment of 56,886 students, Florida International University is one of the largest universities in the United States. According to U.S. News and World Report, it’s also one of the best. The top-tier research university is known for its diverse student body and varied opportunities. FIU offers more than 190 degree programs, including an MS in Curriculum and Instruction.
The online Master of Science in Curriculum and Instruction is a 36-credit program. It gives students the tools to affect positive change in their classrooms and schools. The program emphasizes curriculum and instruction that meets the needs of diverse learners, both culturally and linguistically. Courses include:
- Curriculum Development
- Learning Styles Applications
- Developing a Global Perspective
- Curriculum Evaluation and Improvement in Urban School Systems
- Action Research for Educators
Applicants must submit two letters of recommendation, a resume, and a statement of purpose. The program is comprised of six accelerated eight-week terms. Students complete an Action Research Project at the end of the program, working to identify and solve curriculum-related issues in a K-12 setting.
University of Texas at Arlington
Average Net Price: $12,533
The University of Texas at Arlington is a public research university enrolling nearly 42,000 students. The university is recognized as one of the “Best in the West” by the Princeton Review and as a Best Value college by Forbes. It’s an educational leader and research powerhouse that values ingenuity, diversity, and excellence. UT at Arlington has an M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction.
The Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction offers concentrations in Literacy Studies, Mathematics Education, and Science Education. The 30-credit program includes core courses on instructional strategies, curriculum design, and diversity in education. Students also complete courses in education research and in their selected concentration. In this program, you can expect to take courses like:
- Advanced Teaching Models for Diverse Learners
- Understanding and Designing Classroom Research
- Implementing and Disseminating Classroom Research
- Effective Teaching and Learning for 21st Century Students
UT at Arlington’s program is fully accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education. It can be completed in 18 months. The program culminates in a final capstone course. No thesis or internship is required.
Western Governors University
Average Net Price: $13,270
The idea for Western Governors University originated from 19 US governors at a Western Governors Association meeting. It was founded in 1997 as a private, nonprofit online university based in Salt Lake City. The student-centered university offers one of the best values in higher education. Courses are designed in partnership with employers in the field, and students can complete coursework at an accelerated pace. WGU offers an MS in Curriculum and Instruction.
The Master of Science in Curriculum and Instruction empowers candidates to develop innovative instructional materials that improve student outcomes. The program is self-paced, with some students finishing in just six months. Tuition is charged per term, so students ultimately control the cost of their degree. Courses include:
- Introduction to Curriculum Theory
- Learning Theories
- Educational Psychology
- Curriculum Design
- Curriculum Evaluation
A teaching license is not required to enroll in this program. The program culminates in a capstone course. WGU is the first university offering all competency-based degrees. This means that students can progress through courses as soon as they demonstrate mastery of the material. Ninety-seven percent of graduates recommend WGU.
East Carolina University
Average Net Price: $13,327
Established as a small teacher’s school in 1907, East Carolina University is now South Carolina’s third largest university. ECU serves over 29,000 students and is located in Greenville, South Carolina. ECU is devoted to innovation, excellence, and service. The university is comprised of 12 colleges offering more than 250 degrees and certificates. One option is an MA in Curriculum and Instruction.
ECU’s Master of Arts in Education in Curriculum and Instruction is a 39-credit program. It provides advanced study in curriculum and instruction with concentrations in English Education and History/Social Studies Education. Candidates are prepared to become district or school leaders in their selected educational field. They complete courses such as:
- Understanding and Engaging in Educational Research
- Introduction to Differences in Human Learning in Schools
- Addressing Differences in Human Learning in Schools
- Leadership and Communication Skills in Education
- Directed Research Project
Students conclude the program with a directed reading and research project. This program leads to eligibility for 9-12 English advanced licensure or 9-12 Social Studies advanced licensure. The College of Education accepts applications year-round, so students can begin the program at almost any time during the year.
Arkansas State University
Average Net Price: $13,420
Arkansas State University was founded in 1909 in Jonesboro, Arkansas. The public university is a catalyst for progress in the region. Its mission is to enrich lives, enhance intellectual growth, and educate leaders. A-State, as the school is commonly called, enrolls 14,085 students and offers 150 areas of study. Students can take advantage of an online MSE in Curriculum and Instruction.
A-State’s Master of Science in Education in Curriculum and Instruction is designed for practicing teachers. The degree enhances professional growth and leadership, enriches best practices, and prepares teachers to evaluate and improve curriculum. The 36-credit program can be completed in as few as 20 months. Courses include:
- Philosophies of Education
- School and Community Relations
- Theories of Instruction
- Supervision and Evaluation of Teaching
- Curriculum Management
Applicants must have two years of teaching experience. Students complete a seven-week curriculum internship. They participate in clinical activities and help solve authentic problems, applying the skills they’ve learned and sharpening their leadership skills. Graduates often go on to work as professional curriculum specialists.
Ball State University
Average Net Price: $13,535
Based in Muncie, Indiana, Ball State is a public research university with two additional locations. The university was founded in 1918 as a teacher’s college. Today, Ball State enrolls about 22,000 students. For over a decade, it has appeared on the Princeton Review’s list of the best universities in the Midwest. Ball State offers over 300 degree programs, including an MA in Curriculum and Educational Technology.
The Master of Arts in Curriculum and Educational Technology is a 30-credit program delivered fully online. It prepares students to effectively develop curriculum and integrate technology to meet the diverse needs of students. Candidates select a specialization track in either curriculum or educational technology. All students take 21 credits in common, with the remaining nine focused on their area of specialization. Courses include:
- Principles and Procedures of Curriculum Development
- Curriculum Integration of Learning Technology
- Evaluation of Educational Programs
- Staff Development to Strengthen Curriculum
- Problems in Curriculum
Students may opt to earn a Computer Education License add-on or Certificate in Computer Education during the program. This program is part of Ball State’s Teachers College, which is one of the top twenty-five in the nation. Courses are taught by the same distinguished professors who teach on-campus courses.
Chadron State College
Average Net Price: $13,740
Founded in 1911, Chadron State College is a public college in Chadron, Nebraska. It’s part of the Nebraska State College System. It enrolls 2,737 students and offers 60 degree programs. Eighty-four percent of faculty hold the highest degree in their fields. Chadron State is accredited by the HIgher Learning Commission. The school offers an online M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction.
Students can earn a Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction for Elementary, Secondary, Early Childhood Special Education, PK-12 Reading Specialist, or K-12 Special Education. Students gain advanced knowledge of administration, research, assessment, curriculum, and supervision. Core courses include:
- Research Design & Data Analysis
- Curriculum Development
- School Law
- Educational Philosophy
- Advanced Methods of Performance Assessment
Applicants must either hold a teaching certificate or be eligible for a teaching certificate and have earned a degree with a GPA of 2.75 or better. Students complete a total of 36 credits, comprised of 21 credits of core coursework and 15 hours in the selected concentration.
Emporia State University
Average Net Price: $14,013
Founded in 1863, Emporia State University is the third-oldest institution of higher learning in Kansas. The public university is located in the city of Emporia. ESU aims to prepare students for leadership, rewarding careers, and lifelong learning. It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Emporia State enrolls 5,796 students and offers many challenging and engaging programs, including an MS in Curriculum and Instruction.
The Master of Science in Curriculum and Instruction is a 34-credit program. Students may select concentrations in Curriculum Leadership Pre-K-12, Effective Practitioner Pre-K-12, or National Board Certification Pre-K-12. Candidates build the skills needed to develop, evaluate, and restructure curriculum that facilitates student learning. Courses include:
- Curriculum Leadership: Models and Strategies
- Beliefs, Values, & Issues in Educational Practices
- Developing Authentic Assessments
- Cultural Awareness for Educators
- Restructuring Classrooms with Technology
All students participate in a practicum experience that develops their abilities as a teacher-leader. Students in the National Board Certification program complete a National Board Certification portfolio and school-based project.
University of Colorado Denver
Average Net Price: $14,586
The University of Colorado Denver is one of the top public urban research universities in the nation. Ambitious research, creative innovation, civic engagement, and quality academics are the foundation of the school. Located in the heart of downtown Denver, CU Denver educates over 14,000 students. The university offers over 100 degree programs, such as an MA in Curriculum and Instruction.
The 30-credit Master of Arts in Curriculum and Instruction is designed for licensed educators. It features a concentration in Reading and Literacy. Students may choose to develop a 15-hour specialization in reading and writing and customize the other half of the program, or they may choose a track that leads to a Reading Teacher endorsement. In this program, students complete courses like:
- Research in Schools
- Classroom Assessment
- Seminar and Practicum in Literacy Professional Development
- Literacy Assessment & Informed Instruction
- Reading Development, Instruction, and Assessment
The program offers up to six scholarships annually. CU Denver’s MA in Curriculum and Instruction emphasizes the importance of multiple literacies, including home, school, community, and mainstream. Students finish the program with a capstone course.
Central Michigan University
Average Net Price: $14,675
Central Michigan University is a public research university based in Mount Pleasant, Michigan. The university was established as a teacher’s college in 1892. Today, with an enrollment of over 23,300 students, CMU is one of Michigan’s largest universities. At least 9,000 of these students are enrolled online or at one of 30 satellite locations across the country. Among CMU’s student-centered, innovative programs is an MA in Education with a focus on Curriculum and Instruction.
Students in the MA in Education in Curriculum and Instruction program complete core courses, program requirements, and then a selected emphasis. This emphasis may be in Instruction, Mathematics, or Reading. The program prepares effective educational leaders and requires a minimum of 30-34 credits. Courses include:
- Methods of Educational Research
- Current Educational Issues
- Strategies and Techniques for Teaching
- Advanced Educational Psychology
- Theory and Practice in Curriculum Development
Students who select the Instruction emphasis complete a practicum in systematic curriculum development. This involves developing curriculum for a particular content area. An integrating experience is required in the form of a thesis, field study, or capstone project.
Black Hills State University
Average Net Price: $14,807
A public liberal arts university, Black Hills State is located in Spearfish, South Dakota. Seventy-eight percent of the university’s 4,500 students receive some form of financial aid. The university is committed to providing quality education that is both affordable and flexible. To make education more accessible to working professionals, BHSU provides many distance learning opportunities. Its 83 degree programs include an online M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction.
BHSU’s Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction offers multiple areas of specialization and areas of emphasis. These include both subject areas and grade levels to customize your degree. All tracks connect theory and practice, enhance research abilities, and prepare candidates to be successful teacher leaders who effectively shape curriculum. Core courses include:
- Educational Collaboration and Research Methods
- Applying Learning Theory to Instructional Design
- Curriculum Development and Instruction
- Cultural and Linguistic Diversity in Schools
- Action Research in Schools: Technology
Students complete a practicum related to their area of emphasis/specialization. The program also culminates in a capstone seminar. Applicants should have graduated with a GPA of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale.
Cleveland State University
Average Net Price: $15,320
Cleveland State University is a public research university founded in 1964. It’s based in downtown Cleveland, Ohio and serves over 17,000 students. The university conducts important research and is recognized for providing upward mobility to its students. It’s consistently ranked one of the nation’s best public universities by U.S. News and World Report. CSU offers over 175 academic programs across ten colleges and schools, including an M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction.
The Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction has multiple specializations, such as Gifted and Talented Education, Educational Technology, and Educational Research & Assessment. Each specialization has its own unique purpose, focus, and goals. However, students take common core courses like:
- Curriculum, Theory, and Instruction
- Philosophy and Education
- Comparative and International Education
- Social Issues and Education
- Educational Research
Students participate in a practicum experience related to their area of specialization. They also complete an action research project. Some specializations lead to endorsements, such as the Computer and Technology Endorsement and the Gifted Education Endorsement.
Texas Tech University
Average Net Price: $15,820
Texas Tech University is nationally recognized for providing high-quality, low-cost education. It consistently appears on national rankings by both U.S. News and World Report and Princeton Review. TTU is also named a Best Value college by Forbes, and PayScale ranks the university for its high return on investment. The public university was founded in Lubbock, Texas in 1923. TTU’s 36,500 students have the option of earning an M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction online.
The Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction is a 36-credit program. It focuses on curriculum theory, development, design, delivery, assessment, and evaluation. Concentrations are available in Curriculum Studies/Teacher Education, Language and Literacy Education, STEM, and Blended Learning/Personalized Learning. All students complete core courses like:
- Action Research
- Practical Applications of Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment
- Instructional Theory and Design
- Curriculum Theory: Design and Development
- Designing and Assessing Project-Enhanced Environments
Requirements include 18 hours of core coursework, 12 hours in emphasis courses, and either two electives in consultation with an advisor or six thesis hours. Students who don’t complete a thesis are also required to take a comprehensive evaluation component. This may include portfolio, final project, or comprehensive examination.
University of Nebraska at Kearney
Average Net Price: $15,909
The University of Nebraska at Kearney is a public university founded in 1905. U.S. News and World Report considers it one of the top 10 universities in the Midwest. UNK current enrolls 4,843 students and offers over 170 academic programs. U.S. News and World Report also recognizes UNK for its excellent online graduate programs. Among these high-quality programs is an MAE in Curriculum and Instruction.
UNK’s Master of Arts in Education in Curriculum and Instruction is designed for practicing K-12 teachers. The 36-credit online program offers 11 concentration areas, including Instructional Effectiveness, Elementary Education, Secondary Education, English as a Second Language, and STEM. These concentrations give teachers the opportunity to advance in a given discipline or address a particular instructional concern. Required courses include:
- Education Research
- Philosophy of Education
- Curriculum Development in Multicultural Education
- Overview of Assistive Technology
- Practicum/Field Experience
Admission requirements include GPA and either a Professional Biography or the Graduate Record Examination. This program does not lead to certification. Only the ESOL concentration leads to an additional endorsement. Successful completion of a comprehensive examination or project is required.
State University of New York at Albany
Average Net Price: $16,100
SUNY Albany is a public research university with campuses in Rensselaer and Albany, New York. An additional campus is located in the Township of Guilderland. The university was named one of America’s Top Colleges by Forbes. SUNY Albany is known for providing student-centered services, an innovative curriculum, and top-notch faculty. It also offers over 100 academic programs, such as an online MS in Curriculum Development and Instructional Technology.
The flexible, 30-credit Master of Science in Curriculum Development and Instructional Technology program is available both online and on campus. It provides students with the opportunity to explore curriculum and instructional design in 21st century, technology-infused environments. In this program, expect to take courses such as:
- Communication, Technology, and the Knowledge-Building Enterprise
- Learning in the Academic Disciplines
- Cooperative Learning and Instructional Technology
- Systematic Design of Instruction
- Integrating Technology Across the Curriculum
SUNY Albany’s CDIT program has been ranked the sixth-best in the nation by U.S. News and World Report. Students complete courses in Foundations of Education, Instructional Theory and Practice, Curriculum Development OR Instructional Technology, five Supporting Courses, and a three-credit Capstone Seminar.
Michigan State University
Average Net Price: $16,684
Founded in 1855 as a prototype for land-grant universities, Michigan State has a long history of excellence. The public research university is located in East Lansing, Michigan. MSU is considered one of the top research universities in the world. According to U.S. News and World Report, 25 of the university’s degree programs are in the top 20 nationally. MSU offers more than 200 academic programs, including an MA in Teaching and Curriculum.
MSU’s Master of Arts in Teaching and Curriculum helps current educators improve their practice, become teacher leaders, and engage in critical inquiry. The 30-credit program offers seven concentrations, including educational psychology, educational technology, literacy instruction, and K-12 educational administration. The curriculum is highly customizable, but students can expect to take courses like:
- Diverse Learners and Learning Subject Matter
- Inquiry Into Classroom Teaching and Learning
- Philosophical Inquiry and Contemporary Issues in Education
- Designing Interdisciplinary Curricula
- Issues of Culture in Classroom and Curriculum
The program culminates in both a portfolio and a synthesis paper. The synthesis paper is 8-10 pages and tells the “story” of the student’s MATC experience. The portfolio includes several online artifacts, including evidence of self-reflection, feedback from faculty and peers, and evidence of progress. Students receive support and guidance in creating these components, including optional peer review.
Kansas State University
Average Net Price: $17,465
Located in Manhattan, Kansas, Kansas State is a public research university opened in 1863. It was the first public institution of higher education in the state. K-State frequently appears in the top 10 in Princeton Review rankings. The school prides itself on preparing students for success, and the job placement rate is 96 percent. KSU serves nearly 24,000 students and offers over 250 academic programs. This includes an online MS in Curriculum and Instruction.
Students must earn a minimum of 31 credits to complete K-State’s Master of Science in Curriculum and Instruction. The program emphasizes recent developments in educational research, theory, and practice. Students can choose from six areas of study, such as Educational Technology, English as a Second Language, Reading Specialist, and Learning Skills/School Improvement. Sample courses include:
- Contemporary Issues in Teaching and Learning
- Educational Technology for Teaching and Learning
- Action Research in Education
- Teaching Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners
- Effective Teaching Methods
This program focuses on four areas of professional commitment: exemplary instruction, dissemination of useful research and scholarship, provision of leadership, and the celebration of diversity. The program is intended for teachers who want to improve their practice, earn additional endorsements, or progress toward school leadership.
Average Net Price: $17,820
A private Christian research university, Regent University is based in Virginia Beach, Virginia. It was founded in 1978 to prepare innovative leaders with a Christ-centered education. One of the fastest-growing schools in the country, Regent offers 132 areas of study. The university’s online programs are ranked by U.S. News and World Report as some of the nation’s best. One of these programs is an M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction.
Regent’s Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction emphasizes strategic planning and evaluation, project-based learning, and curriculum improvement. A STEM concentration is embedded into the program. It also offers concentrations in Adult Education, Teacher Leader, Christian School, and Gifted & Talented. Courses include:
- Research Design
- Classroom Management
- Instructional Strategies for At-Risk Students
- Philosophical Foundations in Education
- Technology in Education
Graduates are prepared to develop and deliver curriculum in settings including higher education, private schools, public schools, and the workplace. They may work as content specialists, lead teachers, department heads, and curriculum development. Graduates are also employed in administrative, corporate, and non-profit settings.
Concordia University Chicago
Average Net Price: $17,846
Concordia University Chicago is a private Christian liberal arts university in River Forest, Illinois, about 10 miles outside of downtown Chicago. It’s one of the Midwest’s most affordable private universities. Concordia was founded as a teachers college in 1864. Today, it’s a comprehensive university accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Concordia offers over 100 degree programs that prepare students practically, academically, intellectually, and ethically for meaningful careers. The university has an online MA in Curriculum and Instruction.
The Master of Arts in Curriculum and Instruction is a 30-credit program that shapes master teachers. Students build knowledge of curriculum models and theories, contemporary educational issues, effective instruction and leadership, action research, curriculum development, and more. Courses include:
- Curriculum Construction
- Assessment, Evaluation, and Data-Driven Decision Making
- Curriculum and Instructional Development for the Differentiated Classroom
- Instructional Coaching and Mentoring: Teacher Leadership
- Socially, Culturally, and Linguistically Diverse Students: Perspectives for Practitioners
Concordia’s Curriculum and Instruction program can be completed in 12 or 24 months. Students must submit a culminating project that demonstrates growth, reflective practice, and proficiency. It also shows the candidate’s ability to integrate technology and interpret theory into practice.
South Dakota State University
Average Net Price: $18,204
Founded in 1881, South Dakota State is the largest and longest-operating university in South Dakota. The public research university is located in the city of Brookings. Academic programs are flexible and emphasize affordability and experiential learning. About 12,000 students are enrolled at SDSU. With nearly 200 program offerings, the university has something for everyone. For you, there’s an online M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction.
The Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction helps educators develop a more effective, personalized, and productive approach to teaching. Students choose between four specialties: Early Childhood Education, Elementary Education, Secondary Education, or Adult and Higher Education. They also select a coursework only plan or a plan that combines less coursework with a research project. Courses include:
- Educational Assessment
- Curriculum: Theory Into Practice
- Current Issues in Education
- Effective Teaching: Theory Into Practice
- Advanced Educational Psychology
Applicants must submit a resume, two letters of professional reference, and a goal statement. Students develop skills and knowledge through lectures, research, practicums, and internships. The coursework only option requires 35 credit hours, while the research option requires 32 credit hours, including Research Problems.
University of Massachusetts Lowell
Average Net Price: $18,375
The University of Massachusetts Lowell is a mid-sized public research university located north of Boston in Lowell, Massachusetts. UMass Lowell is committed to providing quality, affordable education that prepares students to solve problems and help people in their careers. More than 17,000 students take advantage of the university’s 170 outstanding degree programs. One of these programs is an M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction.
The 10-course Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction is designed for teachers who want to enhance the contributions they make to education. Students broaden their professional knowledge by taking 30 credits related to curriculum design, teaching strategies, and history and theory. Students take courses such as:
- Educating Diverse Populations
- Dynamics of Curricular Change
- Curriculum Design K-12
- Models of Teaching
- Assessment of Learning
This program is ranked one of the nation’s best online graduate programs by U.S. News and World Report. It culminates in an Action Research Capstone project. Students may pursue a Science Education option or an Autism Studies option. Additional credits are required for these options.
George Mason University
Average Net Price: $18,629
Virginia’s largest research university, George Mason is a young university that has made rapid progress in a short time. U.S. News and World Report has named George Mason one of the top up-and-coming schools to watch. It’s also recognized by Forbes as one of “America’s Best College Buys.” Enrollment numbers over 34,000 students, and the school has five campuses in total. George Mason offers an affordable online M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction.
George Mason’s Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction features a concentration in Blended and Online Learning in Schools. It’s designed for educators who want to plan and teach online courses, blend online and face-to-face instruction, or evaluate online programs. In this unique 30-credit program, you’ll take courses such as:
- Blended and Online Teachers and Learners
- Models of Blended and Online Learning
- Tools for K-12 Blended and Online Learning
- Designing K-12 Blended and Online Learning
- Blended and Online Communication
Students complete two project development practicums. All students in the program are paired with a faculty advisor for one-on-one support. The curriculum is based on the International Association for K-12 Online Learning’s (iNACOL) National Standards for Quality Online Teaching.
Average Net Price: $20,707
Greenville University is a Christian liberal arts university in Greenville, Illinois. It was founded in 1892 by the Free Methodist Church. Today, Greenville University’s mission is to empower students for lives of character and service. It provides Christ-centered education from distinguished, caring faculty. The university offers over 50 academic programs on campus, at partnership locations, and online. One of these programs is an online MA in Curriculum and Instruction.
Greenville’s Master of Arts in Curriculum and Instruction can be completed in 24 months. Students learn the most up-to-date theories and methods in learning assessment, curricular design, educational technology, leadership, and literacy. The curriculum also integrates Christian values and prepares students to serve a culturally diverse world. Courses include:
- Managing Change in Education
- Trends and Issues in Education
- Assessment for Learning
- Curricular Design
- Literacy for Today’s Society
A teaching certificate is not required to enroll in this program. Students learn to implement effective methods of curriculum and instruction in corporate as well as educational contexts. Candidates complete a hands-on capstone research project that involves designing and implementing improvement in their school, district, or organization.
Average Net Price: $20,753
Located in Boiling Springs, North Carolina, Gardner-Webb University is a private Christian university founded in 1905. The student-oriented, Christian-centered university enrolls nearly 4,000 students and offers more than 80 fields of study. Ninety-seven percent of students would recommend GWU to others. Thirty percent of students take courses exclusively online. One of GWU’s online program options is an affordable MA in Teacher Leadership in Curriculum and Instruction.
The Master of Arts in Teacher Leadership in Curriculum and Instruction is designed for teachers who want to enhance their career opportunities and leadership abilities. The five-semester program focuses on the design, implementation, and evaluation of curriculum and instruction. Students also learn to conduct, interpret, and apply research. Courses include:
- Issues and Models in Curriculum
- Instructional Leadership
- Assessment and Evaluation
- Reform and Change Theory
- Research Design and Methods
Three years of teaching experience is strongly recommended for this program. Each semester, candidates take one module comprised of six or seven integrated semester hours. Students complete a one credit-hour internship during the third, fourth, and fifth semesters.
University of Cincinnati
Average Net Price: $21,050
According to U.S. News and World Report, the University of Cincinnati is one of the top-tier public universities in the United States. Founded in 1819, the public research university currently enrolls 44,000 students. Students enjoy a combination of real-world experience and academic excellence. The university offers a diverse array of courses both in person and online. This includes an online M.Ed in Curriculum and Instruction.
The Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction is for K-12 teachers dedicated to improving learning outcomes. Students select one of three concentrations: General Studies, Gifted, or STEM. Coursework helps candidates develop a broad understanding of the American education system and how they can build opportunities for effective learning. These courses include:
- Educational Research
- Curriculum and Instruction: Theories and Trends
- Teaching and Learning in Diverse Classrooms
- Improving Instructional Effectiveness
- Attitude Formation and Change in the Classroom
The curriculum for this program is frequently updated to reflect the latest research, methods, and trends in education. The program consists of 30 credit hours, and each course is seven weeks long. It can be completed in just five semesters. Students complete a clinical experience.
Average Net Price: $21,607
Ohio University is a public university based in Athens, Ohio. The school also has multiple regional universities and varied opportunities for distance learning. In total, OU serves 29,985 students. U.S. News and World Report counts Ohio University among the best public universities in the country. It also ranks several of the school’s undergraduate and graduate programs as some of the nation’s best. Ohio University offers an Advanced Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction.
The Advanced Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction helps current educators advance their skills and knowledge. Teachers complete coursework and clinical experiences in their own classrooms. The program emphasizes innovation in curriculum development, pedagogy, assessment, leadership, student learning, teaching, action research, and community involvement. Students take courses like:
- Formative Instructional Practices
- Advanced Differentiated/Instructional Adaptations
- Principles of Curriculum
- Emerging Technologies for Teaching
- Teacher as Action Researcher
Students must submit a portfolio and a master’s research project. The program is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation. It is also aligned with national standards for teacher preparation and ongoing professional development.
Penn State World Campus
Average Net Price: $25,346
Penn State World Campus is Pennsylvania State University’s digital campus. It’s also referred to as “Penn State Online.” Courses are both developed and facilitated by the award-winning, distinguished faculty at Penn State. Launched in 1992, the World Campus serves about 20,000 students. Many of its programs are recognized as some of the nation’s top online programs by U.S. News and World Report. One of these excellent programs is an M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction.
The Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction is a 30-credit program that prepares students to effectively manage contemporary challenges in education. It offers five emphases, including STEM Education, Curriculum and Supervision, and Social Studies. Courses in the online program replicate those in Penn State’s prestigious residential program. Courses include:
- Curriculum Design: Theory and Practice
- Learning Processes in Relation to Educational Practices
- Overview of Contemporary School Curriculum
- Teaching as Inquiry
- Strategies in Classroom Management
Each emphasis includes a designated number of core courses, as well as suggested emphasis and elective courses. The program concludes with a master’s paper. In addition to the emphases described above, students have the option to customize their own program in collaboration with an adviser.