Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction

M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction

American College of Education offers an online Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction that provides educators with the skills and knowledge to improve their teaching effectiveness and enhance student achievement.

Through this graduate program, candidates learn research-based strategies and best practices for developing effective instructional programs and managing safe, supportive learning environments. Candidates also develop leadership skills to engage the community in support of student learning and to advocate for the success of all students.

The program curriculum is based upon the National Board for Professional Teaching Core Propositions.

Become a master teacher with this online degree program. Start your application, or check admission requirements.


Subject-area focuses of study


The M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction can be tailored to your classroom's needs, and to your specific career goals when you select a focus of study track to enhance your Curriculum and Instruction courses. To view the focus of study tracks available, please click here. Prospective students who intend to select a focus of study track must declare their focus of study at the time they apply for admission to the College. Please note that students may change their focus of study at a later date should their goals or circumstances change.

Who should apply


The M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction is intended for P-12 educators who wish to have a positive impact on student achievement, advance their career to a leadership role in teaching, and realize their vision for learning.

Dual degree


Graduates of American College of Education with an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership or M.Ed. in Elementary Education may continue their knowledge and development with a dual degree in Curriculum and Instruction.

Students who complete an M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction may continue their knowledge and development with a dual degree in Educational Leadership.

Program Summary

The M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction program provides P-12 educators with a thorough background of current scientific research and pedagogy. All courses are infused with instructional technology, address real-life instructional challenges in today’s diverse P-12 classrooms, and are designed with a "learn; apply; assess" model to maximize effectiveness and lead to significant gains in student performance. The courses detail how to apply evidence-based instruction, assessments, national and state standards, and comprehensive accountability measures to help teachers transform their practice.

If you were admitted to this program prior to Feb. 22, 2016, please click here for program information. View our faculty here

Program Outcomes

  • Design developmentally and culturally appropriate curricula and instructional units to improve equity and academic achievement for 21st century learners.

  • Utilize academic theory, standards, and frameworks to guide the selection of content, delivery of evidence-based instruction, enhancement of critical thinking and inquiry, and the development of original research.

  • Design and implement research-supported assessment plans and strategies that lead to continuous improvement of student achievement.

  • Analyze student data and apply research to adapt instruction and to select appropriate materials to improve student performance and enhance inquiry and critical thinking.

  • Apply research-based principles to establish positive, safe, and secure student-centered learning environments that value effective communication and collaboration.

  • Engage in leadership opportunities, research, and participate professionally in ongoing learning.

  • Apply research-based instructional strategies to develop competency in multiple literacies, and knowledge and skills in reading/language arts and all content areas.


(3 semester credits each unless noted otherwise)

Initial Courses (3 semester credits each, except if noted otherwise)

These Course to be taken at the beginning of program

CI5033 Creating Safe and Supportive Classrooms
LEAD5393 Teacher Leadership

Remaining Courses (3 semester credits each, except if noted otherwise)

Classes to be taken during remaining terms (order based on availability)

LIT5203 Strengthening Literacy (non-Michigan students)  OR
LIT5233 Prescriptive Intervention for Reading Difficulties (Michigan students)
RES5153 Research Methods
CI5103 Curriculum and Instructional Design for Diversity
CI5333 Student Engagement
CI5353 Standards-Driven Learning
CI5091 Capstone Experience for Curriculum and Instruction (1 semester credit)
ED5023 Assessment Strategies

Focus of Study Options

Students may select one of the following nine focuses of study:

Curriculum and Instruction (3 semester credits each)

ED5123 Diverse Learners
ED5053 Community Engagement, Outreach, and Collaboration
CI5423 Community of Learners

Differentiated Instruction (3 semester credits each)

CI5203 Differentiated Instruction: Theory to Practice
LIT5373 21st Century Literacies
CI5223 Differentiated Instruction: Principles in Action

Digital Learning and Teaching (3 semester credits each)

DL5013 The Digital Learner
DL5023 The Digital Educator
DL5103 Instructional Models for Digital Learning

Effective Classroom Management  (3 semester credits each)

CI5503 Principles and Practices of Classroom Management
CI5513 Developing Student Self-Management Skills
CI5523 Interventions for Behaviorally Challenging Students

Elementary Literacy (3 semester credits each)

LIT5053 Emerging Literacy for Elementary Teachers
LIT5073 Developing Literacy: Integrating Skills for Elementary Teachers
LIT5143 Social Studies and Reading/Language Arts for Elementary Teachers

English Language Arts K-6 (3 semester credits each)

LIT5153 Exploring Foundations of ELA
LIT5163 Establishing Communication in ELA
LIT5173 Extending Connections Beyond ELA

English Language Arts 6-8 (3 semester credits each)

Investigating ELA Fundamentals
LIT5193 Integrating ELA Concepts
LIT5123 Implementing ELA in Context

Mathematics K-6 (3 semester credits each)

MATH5203 Number Sense, Operations, Algebraic Thinking, and Problem-Solving
MATH5213 Measurement, Data, Geometry, and Problem-Solving
Fractions, Decimals, and Problem-Solving

Mathematics 6-8 (3 semester credits each)

MATH5843 Mathematical Structure
MATH5853 Mathematical Reasoning
MATH5863 Mathematical Models and Tools

Science (3 semester credits each)

SCI5203 Foundations of Integrated Science Education
SCI5213 Engaging Diversity in the Science Classroom
SCI5223 Modern Learning and Integrated Science Education

Secondary Literacy (3 semester credits each)

LIT5323 Investigating Literacy Fundamentals
LIT5333 Integrating Literacy Concepts
LIT5343 Implementing Literacy in Context

Total for M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction: 34 semester credits

ED5123 Diverse Learners

This course reviews data related to the effectiveness of educational initiatives emphasizing evidence-based instructional design models used to assess and instruct students with diverse learning needs. Special attention is given to inclusion of traditionally underrepresented learner populations, i.e.: special education, LEP, economically disadvantaged, and ethnic minorities.

ED5013 Assessment Strategies for Improving Learner Outcomes

This course develops competencies in utilizing formative and summative assessment practices and data to inform and guide curriculum development and instruction. Classroom and school-based assessment tools provide teachers with the knowledge and skills required to meet the needs of diverse learners. Embracing assessment is the first step toward "data-based" decision making in education.

ED5053 Community Engagement

How can those within the community support the established teaching and learning goals set by the school? This course provides a foundation for developing relationships among stakeholders in the school community—students, school, parents, and the community at large—for the express goal of supporting student learning. In addition to examining research findings, students will explore family engagement, mutually beneficial community relationships, and student advocacy. The course culminates with a plan for continuing school improvement and professional growth.

LIT5203 Strengthening Literacy (Non- Michigan version of LIT5233)

This course prepares students to implement a school-wide leadership initiative to improve a comprehensive range of literacy skills. Specific principles and theories of reading instruction are evaluated in relation to currently employed practice so teachers can immediately strengthen instruction. Students examine the scientific research base underlying different models of reading instruction. Special attention is given to curriculum mapping, alignment, and the development of an implementation plan to strengthen literacy.

ED5153 Research Methods

This course enables students to become informed consumers of educational research and to develop skills that prepare them to carry out action research in their schools and classrooms. An emphasis is placed on providing students with knowledge that they can apply in determining whether particular research findings are relevant to their leadership and instructional practices and to distinguish between trustworthy and non-trustworthy research. Throughout the course, students identify the elements that scientifically-based research and action research share. Emphasis is placed on how research can become a vital and relevant tool for teachers and school leaders.

CI5033 Creating Safe and Supportive Classrooms

Through classroom application of course content, this course provides students with substantial practical experience as they master and implement preventive and positive classroom management strategies. In addition, students acquire both theoretical and practical knowledge about the relationships between school-wide systems and behavioral development, learning, and achievement among students with diverse needs.

CI5313 Curriculum & Instructional Design for Multicultural Classrooms

This course assists students in developing rigorous, appropriate curriculum and instruction. Multiculturalism, culturally relevant pedagogy, differentiated instruction, and thematic, interdisciplinary unit planning are emphasized. Using a curricular framework, students plan, evaluate, reflect on, and adapt curricula experiences that build successful learning environments for all learners including English language learners.

CI5333 Student Engagement

This course prepares teachers to establish high expectations for all students and to effectively evaluate and implement theories of motivation and cognitive engagement in classroom learning. Emphasis will be placed on different theories of motivation and how classroom, school, work, and social environments shape and influence student motivation.

CI5353 Standards-Driven Learning

This course focuses on the major theories, strategies, and applications utilized in P-12 standards-driven learning environments. Participants review and apply current literature and educational research studies concerning standards-based curriculum and implementation strategies and tools.

CI5393 Teacher Leadership

This course explores the critical roles teachers play in decision-making through the perspective of multiple stakeholders. Learners engage in leadership interactions to develop problem-solving skills and the ability to become change agents for continuous school improvement.

CI5423 Community of Learners

This course prepares students to implement strategies for building a learning community. An emphasis is placed on the application of the learner-centered principles, cooperative and problem-based learning strategies, and the promotion of integrated curriculum and critical thinking.

CI5453 Learning with Technology

This course examines the use of computer technology for managing 21st century classrooms and providing differentiated instructions to 21st century learners. Learners will evaluate their own use and their school district’s use of technology and develop action plans for integration and change.


Students will select from one of nine focus of study tracks. To review course detail for each focus of study, click here.

CI5091 Capstone Experience for Curriculum and Instruction (1 semester credit)

The Capstone Experience is designed for candidates to demonstrate and document the impact of their knowledge and competencies gained throughout and as a result of the Curriculum and Instruction program.

Semester Credits Tuition Per Credit Total Tuition
34 $235 $7,990

Applicable fees

  • Application fee: $50
  • Technology and library fee: $10.00 per credit hour (for a total of $340)
  • Program conferral fee: $100

2016 total program cost: $8,480. For more information, visit the tuition section.

American College of Education's Professional Education Program, M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction, which is designed to provide graduate students with the knowledge, skills, and abilities to become instructional leaders in their classrooms, schools, and/or district, is granted Accreditation by the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) for a period of seven years, from May 3, 2013 to May 3, 2020. This accreditation certifies that the forenamed professional education program has provided evidence that the program adheres to TEAC's quality principles.

In addition to mentoring new teachers at my school, earning a degree at ACE makes me eligible for new teacher mentorship positions at the district and regional level.

Donna Patten M.Ed. Curriculum and Instruction 2011