Master of Arts in Curriculum and Instruction (MA)

Visit the Master's Degree in Curriculum and Instruction.

Visit the Department of Teacher Education.

Visit the College of Education and Health Sciences.

Program Overview

The Graduate Master's Degree Program in C & I is designed to prepare you to accept greater responsibility in your role as an educational leader and an informed decision maker.  This is accomplished by providing you the opportunity to add to your knowledge base, increase your research skills, and inform your attitudes and dispositions.  The C & I Master's Degree Program makes allowances for the diverse needs of early childhood through high school teachers.  Its flexibility makes it possible for you to focus your studies on any one of a variety of Areas of Concentration while at the same time strengthening your skills in technology applications, educational research, legal and social issues, diversity, curriculum theory, instructional theory, instructional design, assessment strategies, and creative contribution options.

Program Requirements

The Curriculum and Instruction Program requires a minimum of 33 semester hours for the Master of Arts Degree.  The program is comprised of the following components:

Professional Core........................................... 15 Hours

Educational Research (3 hours)

Educational Technology Component (3 hours)

Curriculum and Instruction (9 hours)

Directed Elective............................................. 3 Hours

Area of Concentration.................................... 9 Hours

The student must select one 12-hour area of concentration from among the following choices:

Literacy and Reading

Special Education*

Multidisciplinary Education**

* Students in this concentration must enter with either an endorsement or certification in special education.

** Consists of two courses from one of the above areas plus two courses from a second area, or three courses from one area of focus and one course from a second area of focus.

Capstone Option................................................. 3-6 Hours

Option A: 30 hours coursework; ETE 655 Instructional Theory (3); Comprehensive Examination

Option B: 27 hours coursework, ETE 699 Thesis (6)

Option C: 27 hours coursework; ETE 655 Instructional Theory (3); ETE 698 Creative Research Contribution (3)

For more detailed information and course listings, please see the current Graduate Catalog.


The department graduate programs are accredited by the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the State of Illinois.  NCATE accreditation is difficult to obtain, and not every university is successful in achieving it.  It is a mark of distinction and is indicative of the high quality of the programs.

Estimated Time to Complete the Program

Students carrying full-time course loads can reasonably complete the Master's Degree Program in two calendar years.  Part-time students may complete the program in up to five years.

Semester Hours Required

The Master's Degree Program has a minimum requirement of 33 semester hours.

Strength of the Program

The strengths of both the Master's Degree and Graduate Certificate Programs lie in their flexibility, allowing them to be tailored closely to students' needs and interests.  The Areas of Concentration provide students a brief, focused study in targeted content.

Research Opportunities for Students

Students have opportunities for research through several courses, including ETE 550 (Independent Study), ETE 650 (Topics in C & I), ETE 698 (Creative/Research), and ETE 699 (Thesis).  Other courses often offer opportunities for students to engage in small research projects.  In addition, faculty are open to collaborating with students on research projects of interest to both parties.

Faculty and Their Interests

Faculty and their interests are widely varied and span pre-K - Adult levels and in each major education area.  More detail about individual faculty and their interests can be found at the Department of Teacher Education.

Department Contact Information

Graduate Program Coordinators
Dr. Kevin D. Finson, 309-677-3196,
Dr. Helja Antola Crowe, 309-677-2521,
Dr. Celia Johnson, 309-677-3187,

Department Chair

Dr. A. Dean Cantu, 309-677-3190,

Department Secretary

Maureen Kelly, 309-677-3190,