Course Descriptions

MEd - CORE CURRICULUM

EDU 520: Education Law and Governance (3 credits)

This course is designed to provide the Principal/Teacher Candidate with knowledge about policies, laws and regulations enacted by state, local and federal authorities that impact schools. The Candidate will use skills to influence lawmakers and advocate for equitable learning opportunities and success for all students. The Candidate will understand that educators, business people, politicians, media, parents and the public at large attempt to influence educational policy to degrees. The candidate will explore varying perspectives on educational improvements and use statute, policies, research, data and ethical standards in the decision-making process.

EDU 521: Societal Frameworks in Education (3 credits)

The Principal/Teacher Candidate will understand human rights and implement guidelines that establish a school where all students, staff and community, regardless of background, are afforded equal access and opportunity to a quality education. The Candidate will understand the complexities of poverty and its influence on learning, promote the success of every student and act with integrity, fairness and in an ethical manner.

EDU 522: Transformational Leadership (3 credits)

This course is designed to provide Principal/Teacher Candidates with knowledge, skills and dispositions that will enhance motivation, morale, and performance of staff and students. Candidates will know how to create a culture for learning, serve as a role model, inspire, develop leadership in others and help build and support an inviting school culture that meets the needs of students, the community being served and the staff.

EDU 523: Continuous School Improvement (3 credits)

This course is designed to help Principal/Teacher Candidates with the knowledge and skills to lead in the development, implementation, evaluation and revision of short and long term goals that promote continuous and sustainable school improvement. Candidates will know how to collect and analyze data pertinent to the educational environment that promotes learning and leads to continuous quality improvement. There will be a focus on a systematic continuous improvement process (e.g.; Nebraska Department of Education, Advanced Ed.).

EDU 524: Action Research and School Improvement (3 credits)

This course is designed to introduce action research in support of the school improvement process and high-quality teaching/learning environment. Emphasis will be placed on three primary areas: 1) helping candidates become critical consumers of educational research, 2) providing foundational instruction and guidance in planning, conducting and reporting action research, and 3) applying professional writing skills.  This course will provide Candidates with the knowledge and skills that help them identify and explore research issues related to leading, teaching and learning particularly as it relates to school improvement. The Candidate will learn the requirements/framework for the Action Research Project (ARP) and begin collaborating with a School Administrator Mentor or National Board Certified Teacher (NBCT) Mentor to identify school, or classroom needs that support school improvement.

EDU 525: Curriculum, Instruction, Assessment and Programming  (3 credits)

This course is designed to provide Principal/Teacher Candidates with an understanding that curriculum, instruction, assessment and programming represent a set of desired goals that are activated through a developmental process and culminate in successful learning experiences for students. The Candidate will understand that comprehensive, rigorous and coherent curriculum; instruction, assessment, and program development are essential responsibilities of a school leader. The Candidate will know how to implement district, state and federal initiatives and assure legal compliance. The Candidate will understand emerging trends in education, use best practices research, establish curriculum and instructional expectations and accountability measures, know how to lead curriculum reviews, use data to monitor student achievement and support and develop staff.


 

MEd - EDUCATIONAL ADMINISTRATION-PRINCIPAL ENDORSEMENT

EDU 620: Operational Leadership (3 credits)

This course is designed to provide the Principal Candidate with knowledge and skills to create systems that support the mission, vision, strategic and school improvement plans of the school with a focus on supporting quality instruction and student learning. Principal Candidates will know the importance of having supporting systems, structures and processes to improve learning, create efficiencies and provide safe and effective learning environments. The Principal Candidate will understand the business of the school, including communication and public relations, facilities and operations, budgeting, finance and other support services. The Principal Candidate will spend a minimum of 25 clock hours in school-based experience(s).

EDU 621: Strategic Leadership  (3 credits)

This course is designed to provide the Principal Candidate with knowledge about developing a compelling vision and a mission that provides direction for the growth and success of students. The Candidate will understand the change process and know how to formulate, implement and evaluate strategic plans. The candidate will understand motivation theory, be able to provide direction for, build ownership in and facilitate collaboration among stakeholders in the planning process. The candidate will spend a minimum of 25 clock hours in school-based experience(s).

EDU 622: School-Based Experience and School Improvement Action Research (3 credits)

Prior to the start of the course the Principal Candidate will coordinate with the Midland Advisor/Instructor and School Administrator Mentor and develop and submit a plan for the school-based experience with a minimum of 25 clock hours preferably in his/her home school (must be accredited or approved in Nebraska).  The plan should detail observations, participation and leadership in activities related to school improvement. The majority of these hours should provide experiences that are related to and will enhance the Principal Candidates action research.  The Principal Candidate will work through the initial planning process for the Principal Action Research Report (PARR) including crafting a working proposal, formally seeking required support/approvals and feedback, outlining possible research questions, writing an initial review of literature, selecting the action/ intervention including suggested methods and data collection techniques.

EDU 623: Instructional Leadership for the Principal  (3 credits)

This course is designed to provide the Principal Candidate with an understanding of the strong correlation between instructional leadership, teacher effectiveness and student achievement. The Candidate will know how to analyze the critical attributes of teacher effectiveness and supervise and evaluate with an emphasis on continual growth and accountability. The Candidate will know how to observe for good instruction and provide effective feedback on instructional strategies, classroom management, curriculum and assessment. The Candidate will be familiar with the Nebraska Teacher Evaluation Framework and know the legal responsibilities when deciding for nonrenewal of a teacher contract. The Principal Candidate will spend a minimum of 25 clock hours in school-based experience(s).

EDU 624: Principal Internship  (3 credits)

The Principal Candidate will coordinate with the Midland Instructor and Administrator Mentor and submit an internship plan that will engage him/her in opportunities to apply and extend leadership knowledge and skills through more intensive/authentic practice in a school setting. The Candidate will be involved minimally in observing and participating and primarily in leadership type activates. The internship is a minimum of 135 clock hours.

EDU 699: School Improvement Action Research Project / Capstone (3 credits)

The culminating project is a Principal Action Research Report (PARR) and two presentations. The Principal Candidate will present to a Midland panel of instructors and to an authentic audience. The PARR will synthesize coursework, experiences, and research throughout the Principal Endorsement program related to his or her school’s improvement plan. Candidates will have worked closely with a Midland University instructor and his or her school district mentor to plan action research that leads to school improvement. The Principal Candidate will spend a minimum of 15 clock hours in school-based experience(s). 


 

MEd - NATIONAL BOARD CERTIFICATION PREPARATION

EDU 630: Introduction to NBPTS Candidacy  (3 credits)

The Midland Teacher Candidate (MTC) will become acquainted with the process for applying for “Candidacy” for National Board of Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) Certification and begin to examine, in detail, the MTC’s teaching practices. The MTC will learn how to organize and obtain the resources for aligning practices with the Standards and engage in meaningful discussions with the cohort/learning community about effective teaching. The MTC will understand the Five Core Propositions and assess readiness and commitment level for applying for National Certification and develop a personal set of goals and timeline for the application and submission process.  The MTC will practice required skills for successful application to NBPTS certification.

EDU 631: Effective Teaching  (3 credits)

The Midland Teacher Candidate (MTC) will demonstrate understanding of students and their learning needs and how the MTC makes decisions in response to student needs.  The MTC will demonstrate that effective teachers are also learners who draw upon theory and research to expand use of instructional and assessment strategies to effectively manage and monitor student learning. The MTC will become more confident with videotaping, analyzing and reflecting on the MTC’s teaching, practices including the connection between thoughts and actions in order to improve student learning. These reflection will be written and part of course discussions with feedback. The MTC will understand the requirements for Component 2: Differentiation in Instruction, Component 3: Teaching Practice and Learning Environment and Component 4: Effective and Reflective Practitioner.

EDU 632: Differentiation in Instruction  (3 credits)

The Midland Teacher Candidate (MTC) will work on portfolio requirements for Component 2 and receive feeback on their writing throughout the course. For Component 2 work, the MTC will discuss instructional decisions for planning differentiated activities to promote student learning. The MTC is required to collect and analyze artifacts of student work that illustrate student growth in their certificate area. By the end of the course, the MTC is expected to have a complete draft Component 2. The MTC will apply professional writing skills of description, analysis and reflection throughout the course. 

EDU 633: Effective and Reflective Practitioner  (3 credits)

The Midland Teacher Candidate (MTC) will work on portfolio requirements for Component 4 and receive feedback on their writing throughout the course. The MTC will understand how to use the resources available for assessment, colloboration, and overall knowledge of their student population as these relate to the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS). The MTC will participate in reflection and professional development that increases their knowledge and pedagogy. The MTC will focus on the determination of students' needs and their own professional learning needs to increase student achievement.

EDU 634: Teaching Practice and the Learning Environment  (3 credits)

The Midland Teacher Candidate (MTC) will work on portfolio requirements for Component 3 and receive feedback on their writing throughout the course. For their Component 3 work, the MTC will analyze a classroom video(s) to discuss classroom climate, student engagement, and relationships amongst classroom participants. By the end of the course, the MTC is expected to have a completed draft of Component 3. The MTC will apply professional writing skills of description, analysis and reflection throughout the course. 

EDU 698: School Improvement Action Research Project-Capstone  (3 credits)

The culminating project is a Principal Action Research Report (PARR) and two presentations. The Principal Candidate will present to a Midland panel of instructors and to an authentic audience. The PARR will synthesize coursework, experiences, and research throughout the Principal Endorsement program related to his/her school's improvement plan. Candidates will have worked closely with a Midland University instructor and his or her school district mentor to plan action research that leads to school improvement.


English as a Second Language Endorsement

ESL500: Introduction to ESL (3 credits)

This course examines theories of language acquisition, history, and legal implications of ESL in the United States. Students will become familiar with local and national standards of ESL. This course provides a general overview of strategies and techniques effective for teaching English Language Learners.

ESL550: Cross-Cultural Communications (3 credits)

This course examines the implications of serving diverse cultures present in an ESL setting, including cultures of race/ethnicity, religion, and poverty. Students will identify the characteristics of different cultures and effective strategies to use when working with students and families of diverse populations. Students will examine their own cultural biases and biases of others in educational settings. Students will interact with students and/or adults who are not native English speaking.

ESL600: Methods-Assessment-and Evaluation of ESL Learners (3 credits)

This course provides in-depth experiences in the methods, assessment, and evaluation of ESL students. Methods of instruction will include a variety of models, techniques, and strategies that are effective with ESL students. Practice with models of sheltered instruction will prepare Teacher Candidates in the areas of planning, instruction, review, and assessment to work in classrooms with English language learners. 

ESL655: Linguistics for ESL (3 credits)

Students will know, understand, and use the major theories and research related to the structure and acquisition of language to help English Language Learners (ELLs) develop language, literacy, and achieve in the content areas. Students will also use evidence-based practices and strategies related to planning, implementing, and managing standards-based ESL and content instruction.

ESL 698: ESL Practicum & Study (3 credits)

This course provides Candidates an opportunity to complete a practicum of 45+ hours in an ESL setting. Candidates will select from a variety of assignments related to their practicum experience. The grade levels for the practicum must correspond with field or subject endorsement the Candidate currently holds. If a Candidate is seeking a PK-12 endorsement, the practicum must be completed at the level not on the current endorsement (if applies).

EDU 695: Capstone (3 credits)

This course represents the culmination of your master's degree. In this course you will complete a substantial research synthesis project. In the project you will synthesize the knowledge, skills and attitudes developed throughtout your indentified program of study. The project will demonstrate competence in conducting an extensive research reviw, writing professionally and applying theory to future practice. 

*This course is only required if you are seeking a master's degree in education along with an ESL endorsement.


HAL Endorsement

HAL 500: Introduction to Educating High Ability Students (4 credits)

The purpose of this course is to provide a comprehensive introduction to gifted education and talent development, aligned with national standards in knowledge and skills in the field. The course takes advantage of a variety of sources of information and asks participants to apply new understandings and skills in practical ways. Assignments are differentiated for different roles in schools today; participants will develop knowledge and skills essential for successful teaching, counseling, or coordinating gifted/talented programs. 

HAL 510: Psychology of Giftedness (4 credits)

This course will explore theories of learning, child development and motivation. Issues unique to the field of giftedness such as underachievement in high ability learners, cognitive and affective needs of gifted learners as well as creativity, gender and cultural issues surrounding the needs of high ability learners. There is a minimum of 20 hours of practicum required in this course.

HAL 520: Programming for the High Ability Learner (3 credits)

This course will explore different programming models for high ability learners. A major focus of this course will explore curriculum concepts in the realm of high ability learner education as well as differentiation, acceleration, advanced placement as well as current readings and research in the field of high ability education. 

HAL 530: Administration and Supervision of High Ability Learner Programs (3 credits)

This course will review policy issues regarding high ability learner education programs. Students will become familiar with program evaluation, staff development for high ability learner programs and leadership in high ability learner education. 

HAL 599: HAL Practicum/Seminar (4 credits)

This course provides candidates with a clinical experience of 70 hours in a Gifted and Talented setting at both the elementary and secondary levels. Students will demonstrate, reflect, and evaluate their proficiency in many of the program outcomes.  Students will be involved in a book study and strengthen their understanding of high ability learners thru an in-depth study.  

EDU 695: Capstone (3 credits)

This course represents the culmination of your master's degree. In this course you will complete a substantial research synthesis project. In the project you will synthesize the knowledge, skills and attitudes developed throughtout your indentified program of study. The project will demonstrate competence in conducting an extensive research reviw, writing professionally and applying theory to future practice. 

*This course is only required if you are seeking a master's degree in education along with an HAL endorsement.