Teacher Education Programs

Middle Grades Education

Middle Grades Education Director: Dr. Scott Billingsley

Area Coordinators:

Language Arts: Dr. Roger Ladd

Mathematics: Dr. Raymond Lee

Science: Dr. Rita Hagevik

Social Studies: Dr. Scott Billingsley


Program Description

The advanced Middle Grades Education degree program is designed for experienced teachers who possess or who are eligible to hold an “A” license in middle school education. Building on the background knowledge and experience of the classroom teacher, the program seeks to strengthen advanced academic competence through two teaching concentrations in the disciplines, and to relate advanced understandings of the learner, learning process, curriculum, and instructional strategies to the unique needs and characteristics of the emerging adolescent.

Students pursuing the M.A.Ed. are encouraged to complete the program’s professional studies core within their initial 12 hours of graduate study. The specialty area course, EDN 5260. The Middle School Philosophy, Curriculum, and Instruction, is a capstone experience taken toward the completion of the student’s program of study. All M.A.Ed. candidates are required to construct and present products of learning such as action research projects and professional portfolios which are aligned with the advanced Master’s degree competencies.


Program Goals

The Program will prepare the teacher to

1. Develop an understanding of the history and philosophy of middle grades education and theories about its future development, including organizational components and assessment and evaluation in the middle school setting.

2. Develop an understanding of middle school curriculum and practices appropriate for the emerging adolescent learner.

3. Develop a greater understanding of the theoretical base, research, and exemplary practices of middle grades education.

4. Demonstrate advanced knowledge of the content and pedagogy of the middle school  curriculum.

5. Improve educational practice through self-reflection, self-evaluation, and action research.