Master of Education
Social Science Education

All-in price:
View Tuition Details
Application due date for January 9, 2023 term:
January 6
Estimated time to completion:
17 Months
All-in price:
View Tuition Details
Application due date for January 9, 2023 term:
January 6
Estimated time to completion:
17 Months

Specialize in high-level social science instruction

Our fully online M.Ed. in Social Science Education is designed to help you acquire advanced knowledge in the field of social science at the secondary or college level. Delve into the range of issues related to human interaction within society by exploring sociology, psychology and human development. Understand the theories and standards that shape our current understanding of human engagement and use that foundation to identify the patterns that could affect future ways of thinking.


in the nation for most master's degrees awarded in education*.

Thinking of starting your journey?

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How you'll get there.

  1. Start with four courses focused on the core tenets of effective teaching and learning. Understand how individuals think and learn, effective learning environment design, and best practices for instruction in an online environment.
  2. Explore the different facets of social science through seven core courses that cover everything from theories and research to social groups and movements.
  3. At the end of your program, complete a capstone experience to demonstrate your expertise in science education.

What you can expect along the way.

  • Competitive Pricing We are committed to being a solution to the student debt crisis, not a contributor. With a total cost of $9,500, we provide one of the lowest cost master’s degrees in the nation. Most ACE students are able to pay out-of-pocket per course and graduate with no student debt. Explore our payment options to find the right plan for you.
  • Credit Hour Requirements This program provides the 18 graduate-level credit hours** you may need in a specific content area to teach dual-credit courses or at the college level.
  • Flexible Class Format Our asynchronous online courses enable you to plan your coursework around your life. Each course is five weeks long with a consistent structure, so you always know what to expect.
  • Support Every Step of the Way A virtual classroom means we can provide accessible ways to access support 24/7. All ACE students have a Student Success Coach who is there to help from enrollment to graduation. They’ll answer questions, offer support and point you in the right direction on your student journey. All ACE students also have free access to 7.5 hours of tutoring each month through and a wealth of digital resources designed to facilitate a meaningful student experience.
  • No Textbooks to Buy Say goodbye to pricey textbooks. Our robust online library provides access to your course readings, Harvard Business Cases, journals, periodicals and other resources – all included in the program’s cost. Like everything else we do, there’s built-in support as well. Our librarians are available through live chat, email, text or phone to assist in your research and obtaining non-digital documents you may need for assignments.

**The requirements for endorsement, salary increase, and related employment benefits vary from state to state and district to district and change frequently and without notice. Students are strongly encouraged to check requirements for their state or district.

What it costs

Our tuition and fees have nothing to hide. The total cost you see is your all-in price, without hidden fees, add-ons, and even textbooks. See if you can say the same about other institutions. Go ahead — we’ll wait.

Total Tuition

34 semester credits
x $235 per credit



$50 Application Fee

$1,360 Technology & Library Fee
($40 per credit)

$100 Program Conferral Fee


Total Program Cost1


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On average, see how ACE compares to other online universities.

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Based on information on each institution’s website as of April 9, 2020. Totals include tuition only for M.Ed. in Advanced Studies or comparable programs provided and do not include fees or associated expenses.

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ACE has more than 1,750 education partners that provide a discounted rate and other partner benefits.

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Meet your department chair.

Cathy McKay, Ed.D.

Cathy McKay, Ed.D.

Chair, Professional Educational Studies,
Department of Professional Educational Studies

Read Bio

A degree you can count on.

American College of Education is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission— a federally-recognized accrediting agency. The College’s accreditation includes approval to offer degree programs, in education, healthcare, nursing and business and leadership through distance education via the Internet. Accreditation ensures that an institution’s academic program meets or exceeds acceptable levels of quality and is the most recognized accreditation status for higher education entities. To receive and maintain HLC accreditation and affiliation approval, we must continuously undergo routine peer review cycles and provide proof that our programs meet or exceed HLC accreditation criteria and expectations of quality.


M.Ed. in Social Science Education

Explore the classes you'll take to fulfill this program's 34 semester credit requirement. For more information, a complete list of requirements, and course options, see the College Catalog.

Teaching and Learning Core Courses  (12 semester credits)

3 semester credits
This course examines cognition, specifically the psychological processes of how individuals think and remember as applied to developing judgment and reasoning throughout the learning process. This course will also explore critical thinking as a process reflective of Bloom's Taxonomy incorporating active learning by formulating ideas, gaining knowledge and comprehension, making appropriate applications, and moving into higher levels of learning through analyzing, evaluating, and creating.
3 semester credits
Learners apply psychological theories and instructional design models and principles to a continuum of learning environments, including face-to-face, blended, and online. They demonstrate the ability to manage and adapt learning experiences and instruction to each environment by emphasizing inclusion and collaboration, identifying and analyzing learners and learning tasks, goals, objectives, and assessments. Learners develop products in which they establish learning expectations, promote student-instructor and student-instructor interactions, determine instructional strategies and appropriate materials, and design formative and summative evaluations. Cybersecurity and cyberbullying are addressed within the context of effective learning environments.
3 semester credits
Students will compare theories of teaching and learning with applications to online instruction. Content includes emerging technology and use of Open Educational Resources.
3 semester credits
Students will critique research on social presence and best practices for connecting online with students or colleagues, as well as best practices for social media use within education organizations.

Core Courses  (22 semester credits)

3 semester credits
Utilizing theories, standards, and practices in the field, learners explore contemporary issues in sociology using an experiential approach guided by research. Through analysis and evaluation of behavior, social issues are investigated which shape understanding of personal, social, national and global relationships, processes, and interactions. Learners analyze the nature, dimensions, causes, and characteristics of selected social problems of major interest. Consideration is given to theories, research, and programs for prevention and treatment.
3 semester credits
Culture is an aspect of human interaction. It is a collection of values, attitudes, behaviors, and social mores expressed by a collection of individuals within a society, organization, institution, or country. The underlying philosophy or principles held by a culture are examined in this course to understand how productivity and performance, personal and professional relationships are established and maintained. These include the influence of organization and power structures and control systems which incorporate procedures and process along with routines and individual stories. Emphasis is placed on diverse learners, collaboration with stakeholders, data analysis and interpretation and its influence on culture, the impact of instructional models, and the role of social-emotional learning.
3 semester credits
This course explores the nature of sociological theories and how these relate to real-world applications and explanations of social phenomena. Specifically, learners trace the historical development of major ideas in sociology and the work of important sociologists. Students gain an understanding of sociological research and basic quantitative and qualitative methods sociologists use to gather and analyze evidence and how to analyze and interpret data presented in graphic formats. Emphasis is placed on the emergence of sociology as a social science, ethical considerations in sociological research, the use of reference materials and electronic technologies, and the communication of sociological information in written form. 
3 semester credits
This course addresses the development of personal identity and sense of self and the ways in which social groups and institutions impact individual and social needs and provide a context for social interactions. The effects of social, cultural, and economic factors on individual values, beliefs, and attitudes and group dynamics are explored. Topics include race, ethnic, and gender relations and the impact of stereotyping, ethnocentrism, acts of altruism, and discrimination on group interactions; formal organizations and factors influencing their evolution, and the characteristics of bureaucracies. Emphasis is placed on the basic social institutions of family, economics, religion, education, health and medicine, and politics.
3 semester credits
This course addresses the causes, functions, and effects of social stratification and inequality including social class, gender, race, ethnicity, and age. Students explore theoretical explanation of deviance, normality, and crime in diverse social and cultural contexts and the sources of conformity, social order, and social control from a global perspective in different types of societies. Current topics include male-female differences and gender issues; aging and the sociology of death and dying, and the types and functions of social mobility in contemporary world societies. 
3 semester credits
The purpose of this course is to understand the theories, forms, development, and consequences of social and political collectiveness and movements on contemporary social life and how they are related to the changing nature of society. Topics include birth, death, migration, and other demographics; reasons for population growth and decline; the social and cultural effects of urbanization and industrialization; causes of conflict; the role of the mass media; modernization, and globalization and their impacts on diverse contemporary societies. Connections are made to social psychology and to other fields of study, such as economics, business, and government.
3 semester credits
This course enables students to become informed consumers of research and to develop skills to prepare them to carry out action research in their professional organizations. An emphasis is placed on providing students with knowledge 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. The course places action research within the context of various types of research and examines research in terms of basic concepts and various purposes, methods, data, and paradigms. Emphasis is placed on how research can become a vital and relevant tool for professional practice.
1 semester credit
The Capstone Expereince is designed for candidates to demonstrate and document the impact of their knowledge and competencies gained throughout and as a result of studies related to the various Professional Education Studies programs. 

Admission Requirements

M.Ed. in Social Science Education

ACE General Admission Requirements

  • Complete and submit all application components including the admission application, the enrollment agreement, and the payment agreement.
  • Submit the nonrefundable application fee.*
  • Provide official transcripts from a regionally accredited institution indicating successful completion of the level of education required for entry to the program.**

*The application fee is valid for one year from date of submission.
**Additional evidence may be required to fulfill state requirements, including but not limited to verification of professional experience, test scores, or an interview.

Program Admission Requirements

  • Bachelor's or Highest Post-Baccalaureate degree earned
  • Minimum Grade Point Average 2.50 on a 4.00 Scale for full admission
  • Minimum Cumulative Grade Point Average of 2.00 on a 4.00 Scale for Provisional Admission
  • Applicants must achieve and maintain a 3.0 GPA throughout their program

A Note About Licensure:

While this program provides a comprehensive understanding of the intended program outcomes, it does not lead to licensure, certification, or endorsement. ACE offers several programs that do provide a pathway to licensure, certification, or endorsement and they can be found here.

1This is an estimated value of the cost for tuition and fees. Amounts may vary depending on number of transfer credits applied to the selected program hours or program pathway credit hours, the pace and satisfactory completion of the selected program or program pathway credit hours, receipt of, or eligibility for, institutional or non-institutional scholarship and/or grant amounts, and adjustments to tuition or fees as described in the Catalog Right to Modify Tuition section.

State of California Student Tuition Recovery Fund (STRF)

It is a state of California requirement that a student who pays his or her tuition is required to pay a state-imposed assessment two dollars and fifty cents ($2.50) per one thousand dollars ($1,000) of institutional charges, rounded to the nearest thousand dollars, for the California Student Tuition Recovery Fund. For more information and to see if you must pay the state-imposed assessment for Student Tuition Recovery Fund (STRF) click here.

For information on international transcript requirements, see the Admissions Information section of the College Catalog.

For English as a second language applicant information, see the Admissions Information section of the College Catalog.

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