Secondary Education

  • Education Building - Cleary Court

    Welcome to the Secondary Education Department

  • College of Education Building

Master's Programs

The Master of Arts in Education program with a specialization in Secondary Education is designed to prepare the secondary teacher for advancement as master teacher, supervising teacher, subject matter teaching specialist, or department chairperson. Four components comprise the program of studies: core requirements and departmental requirements in humanistic and behavioral studies, theory and practice relevant to the teaching field, and academic studies in the teaching field. The Program: Total 30 units

Student Learning Outcomes

Secondary Education MA Candidates will develop as professional educators who demonstrate:

  1. REFLECTIVE PRACTICE by critically examining their subject knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge, and pedagogical skills to improve their diverse students’ learning;
  2. THEORETICAL UNDERSTANDING by reading, synthesizing, and evaluating educational theory and research in their field and applying research findings to their practice in diverse classroom settings;
  3. RESEARCH SKILLS by designing and conducting research ethically and effectively and presenting their findings at a professional level in oral and written forms;
  4. EDUCATIONAL AWARENESS by knowing current discipline-based and general educational issues and how those impact schools; and
  5. LEADERSHIP by influencing policy and practice in educational communities through advocacy and example

General Requirements

I. Core Requirements (6 units)

EDUC 600 Research in Education (3) EDUC 610 Current Issues in Education (3)

II. Departmental Requirements (6 units)

SED 690 Seminar in Education (3)
SED 697 Directed Comprehensive Studies for student selecting comprehensive exam (3)
SED 698 Thesis/Graduate Project (3)

III. Program Options (9 units)

  1. Subject Specialist: For teachers with majors in English, Mathematics, Science and Social Studies who wish to study Secondary Education from the perspective of their respective teaching fields.

    Relevant courses for English Education include: SED 524, SED 525ESL, SED 613, SED 617, SED 619, SED 625ENG, SED 626, SED 528, SED 530, SED 631, SED 695C, SED 695E, SED699. For information about the English Education Cohort, please contact Dr. Ericson or Dr. Rowlands.

    Relevant courses for Mathematics Education include: SED 535MA, SED 618, SED 625MA, SED 640, SED 644, SED 646, SED 685, SED 695D, SED 699. For information about the Mathematics Education Cohort, please contact Dr. Gainsburg.

    Relevant courses for Science Education include: SED 525SSED 646, SED 671, SED 619, SED 625S, SED 695B, SED 699A,BSED 555NSF summer course . For more information, contact Dr. Herr.

    Relevant courses for Social Studies Education include: SED 610, SED 611, SED 613, SED 619, SED 625SS, SED 528, SED 635, SED 685, SED 686, SED 695A, SED 699.

  2. Curriculum and Instruction: For teachers who wish to study curriculum and instruction from the perspective of the total secondary school, relevant courses include: SED 514, SED 528, SED 610, SED 611, SED 615, SED 618, SED 619, SED 625SS, SED 674, SED 685, SED 686, SED 692, SED 695A-H, SED 699.
  3. Reading Improvement (Prerequisite SED 520): For teachers who wish to become reading specialists, relevant courses include: SED 617, SED 620, SED 621, SED 622, SED 622L, SED 623, SED 623L, SED 624, SED 626, SED 699
  4. Crosscultural Language and Academic Development: For teachers seeking preparation in Crosscultural Language and Academic Development, relevant courses include SED 511BL, SED 525ESL, SED 516A, SED 626, SED 636, SED 674, SED 675, SED 699, EED 670.
  5. Computers and Educational Technology: For teachers in all academic areas who wish to develop expertise with instructional uses of the computer, relevant courses inclu de: SED 514, SED 617, SED 618, SED 619, SED 646, SED 671, SED 692, SED 693, SED 699, SED 695.
    For moreinformation, contact Dr. Foley.

IV. Electives (9 units)

For option 5, at least six of these units must come from III.5 above. Nine units from the area of teaching concentration or related fields to be selected in consultation with the graduate advisor. In certain cases, SED 511, SED 514, SED 520, or SED 525 may be used to fulfill this requirement. For the Computers and Educational Technology option, these courses must be computer-related.

V. Culminating Academic Experience

Students in the College of Education can fulfill the culminating academic experience by passing a Comprehensive Examination offered by the Department, or by completing a Master's Thesis or Graduate Project. It is essential that you consult with your graduate advisor and major professor before deciding on any of the following options.

Comprehensive Examination

Each year the Department of Secondary Education offers a comprehensive examination for Master's Degree candidates. Courses SED 690 and SED 697 help prepare students for this exam. Call the Department Office for details.

Master's Thesis

A Master's thesis is based on the results of original research which substantiates a specific view as expressed in a hypothesis, a concept, or a question. A Master's thesis can consist of making a synthesis of existing data and/or the development of new data in the laboratory or in the library.

Graduate Project

A graduate project involves the development of original educational resources such as the educational software, computer-based curriculum, or Internet curricular resources in your discipline.




  1. Department Application
    • Find the appropriate application for your program on the individual program page.
  2. University Application, using either



You may be admitted as a graduate student in one of four categories: classified, conditionally classified, post-baccalaureate classified, or post-baccalaureate unclassified.

  • Classified graduate students are those who have met all criteria for classification in their respective programs. The criteria for classification may be more stringent in some departments, but are never less than the minimum criteria fisted below under Classified Status.
  • conditionally classified graduate student is one who has been accepted into a degree program but has not yet met all classification criteria. You must request classification with the Request for Classification form available from the Graduate Coordinator.
  • post-baccalaureate classified student is one who has been accepted to a credential program in the School of Education. All credential students are advised to contact the Credentials Preparation Office.
  • If you are admitted as a post-baccalaureate unclassified (PBU) student, you have been admitted without a degree or credential objective and are taking prerequisite courses or courses for personal or professional enrichment. If you are admitted in this status and wish to seek admittance to a graduate program, you must file the Change of Objective form with the Office of Admissions and Records.

Conditional Classification

After your University application has been processed, you will be notified by the Graduate Studies Office (677-2138) concerning your classification status. If you are conditionally classified, you need to carefully note which requirements are necessary for you to become a fully classified graduate student.

Full Classification

After you are conditionally classified, it is your responsibility to fulfill the University requirements to become fully classified.

  • If you are required to take the Upper Division Writing Proficiency Exam (UDWPE), call the Testing Center at 677-2369 to sign up. There is a fee for this exam.
  • If you are required to take the Graduate Record Exam (GRE), please call the Educational Testing Service (ETS) in Princeton, New Jersey at 609-771-7670 to make an appointment. Application may be made by mail. There is a fee to take the GRE. In general, applications with a undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher are not required to take the GRE
  • Additional testing information or clarification can be obtained from the Testing Center at 677-2369 or the Graduate Studies Office at 677-2138. Please realize that these testing requirements must be fulfilled prior to taking 12 units of study in the Master's program.
  • Please contact the Department of Secondary Education at 677-2581 as soon as you receive the test results required for your full classification. At this time, you must complete a Request for Classification form, available in Education 1208.
  • The Graduate Studies Office will notify you of your fully classified status as a graduate studentA formal program (contract) must be completed at this time. Forms are available in Education 1208. The Graduate Advisor can answer general questions about the form, but you have the responsibility of choosing courses for your program of study. Suggested courses are listed in the University catalog, but you should check with the Secondary Education Department Secretary to learn when the courses are taught.

Getting Started Early: If you wish to start taking credit classes prior to admission to the university, you may be able to do so through the Open University at CSUN.

Candidacy & Graduation


You and the department Graduate Coordinator will prepare your formal program at the time of classification. When your program is approved and filed with Graduate Evaluation Services, you are advanced to Approved Candidacy. At the time that the program is formulated, you will also receive approval of a plan for a thesis, graduate project, artistic performance, or the comprehensive examination. After the formal program is approved, you should file the Application for Graduation with the Office of Admissions and Records.

Graduate students are required to be enrolled during the semester of graduation. Students graduating during the summer must be enrolled for at least one semester unit or, with departmental approval, petition the registration requirement. You should also make certain that your committee members will be available to give their final approval to your culminating experience. In the spring and fall semesters, having fulfilled all other requirements, you may receive permission from your Graduate Coordinator to register under the Special Master's Registration option. A substantial reduction in fees may be possible through this special registration process.

When a thesis is involved, the student must file the Thesis/Graduate Project Planning Form with Graduate Evaluation Services. Format guidelines for the preparation of theses or projects are available in the Graduate Studies Office, Administrative Park 706.

Rules and Regulations

Full explanations of the following rules and regulations can be found in the current University Catalog. As a graduate student, it is your responsibility to know the rules and regulations governing your graduate program.

  • No more than 12 units of course work approved for your program are to be completed prior to classification.
  • The Upper Division Writing Proficiency Examination is a classification criterion.
  • Courses completed more than seven years prior to the date on which all requirements for the degree are met cannot be counted to meet unit requirements unless the student can show competency in the content of the outdated courses. Course validation requires departmental approval. A maximum of nine units taken in residency at CSUN may be validated in this manner.


  • Application for graduation: Apply for graduation one year prior to your anticipated date of graduation. Forms are available in Education 1208 and from the Graduate Studies Office, 677-2138.
  • Remaining Requirements: The University Graduate Studies Office will send you a document describing the remaining requirements to be completed prior to graduation. Complete each prerequisite.