Master of Arts in Education
As a student entering our Master of Arts in Education program, we recognize your achievements: you’ve already accomplished much as an educator, and through your rich academic experiences, you’ve formed your basic professional identity.
Goddard College’s graduate program will guide you to the next level, allowing you to grow your professional identity further, and in the direction you desire. Our dedicated faculty will collaborate with you to clearly define individual short- and long-term goals, and to help you design a personalized learning plan to meet those goals.
The self-directed personalized learning plan you create will build logically on your inherent talents and experience, while drawing on new tools and skills to help you become a more self-reflective and intuitive educator, especially responsive and adaptable to changing conditions with individual students and in the classroom.
In the Master of Arts, you choose your topic of inquiry. Then you work with advisors and mentors to craft an interdisciplinary program of study based on your personal learning style, focused on the essentials that will contribute most to your professional growth, and to the enrichment of your students.
Your studies at Goddard ultimately lead to the completion of a thesis: a holistic, living document, aimed at meeting your educational goals, empowering your students, and enriching your community. Creating your thesis will be far more than an academic exercise: it will serve as a blueprint for your next steps and future growth as a professional educator.
The Education Program faculty are deeply committed to offering a holistic, interdisciplinary and student-centered approach to learning that is personally and socially relevant.
Our faculty is comprised of national and international scholar practitioners with extensive experience supporting students taking charge of their learning.
Goddard’s Education Program offers full- and part-time study leading to the following degrees:
Students pursuing the Bachelor of Arts can focus their studies in the following areas:
Students pursuing the Master of Arts can focus their studies in the following areas:
The Bachelor of Arts in Education program is open to students who have already completed approximately 60 liberal arts credits and who wish to extend their knowledge in the field of education to meet personal and/or professional goals. Transfer credit and/or credit awarded for prior learning up to a total of 75 credits can be applied to the 120 semester hour credits required for the degree.
Students with less than 60 credits can begin their studies in Goddard’s Individualized Bachelor of Arts and then transfer to the BA in Education.
A minimum of three semesters of enrollment in the BA in Education program is required for graduation.
At the start of the semester, students attend an intensive eight-day residency in Vermont or Washington, followed by 16 weeks of independent work and self-reflection in close collaboration with a faculty advisor. Goddard pioneered this format nearly a half century ago to meet the needs of adult students with professional, family, and other obligations seeking learning experiences grounded in the real-world.
Residencies are a time to explore, network, learn, witness, and share with peers, staff, and faculty. Students work with advisors and peers in close-knit advising groups to forge individualized study plans that describe their learning objectives for the semester.
Working closely with their faculty advisors, and supported by fellow learners, students identify areas of study, personal goals, relevant resources, and avenues to achieve these goals. Students also attend and are invited to help organize workshops, keynote addresses, celebrations and other events intended to stimulate, inspire, and challenge.
This low-residency model combines the breadth of a collaborative community with the focus of personalized learning, enhanced by insightful exchanges with a faculty advisor.
Students in the Education Program may choose to attend residencies in either:
- Plainfield, Vermont, on Goddard’s historic main campus, located just outside Montpelier, the state capital. It’s a former farm with a manor garden, surrounding forests, and period architecture.
- Seattle, Washington, which is a community campus located at the Martin Luther King Center F.A.M.E. Community Center, and where residencies are conducted in Spanish and English.
When you apply, you’ll select one of these two sites for the duration of your studies.
Goddard College programs operating in Washington State are authorized by the Washington Student Achievement Council. For more information, please refer to Accreditation and Approvals.
Residencies are a rich time of exploration, connection, and planning. A residency is comprised of:
- New-student orientation
- Individual and group advising sessions
- Workshops, presentations, mini-courses, and panels
- Peer work groups
- Planning sessions related to teacher licensure
- Information sessions (assessment of prior learning; financial aid; how to do research; planning your final semester etc.)
- Co-curricular activities (support groups, art shows, films, movement workshops, meditation space, etc.)
Writing the semester study plan is an important focus of the residency. Working closely with your faculty advisor, and supported by fellow learners, you articulate your educational and personal goals for your studies within the context of degree criteria and program requirements. The study plan is your detailed and individualized map and will address the following:
- The semester’s learning goals
- The resources the student plans to draw on (e.g., books, journals, conferences)
- The methodology the student plans to use (e.g., library or field research, interviews, creative production)
- The specific learning activities the student will undertake (e.g., creative and critical reading and writing, observations, field work, keeping a journal)
- The academic work the student will produce (e.g. essays, visual art work, workshop reports, poems, interview transcriptions, annotations)
- A bibliography of reading the student plans to do during the semester
Following the residency and over the course of 16 weeks of study and reflection, you will submit your work to your faculty advisor. Typically, there are 5 submissions for full-time students and 3 submissions for part-time students. Evidence of the work completed can include essays, critical and creative writing, sample curricula, classroom materials, documentation of art practice/works, book annotations, and a cover letter in which you reflect on the learning process.
Your advisor responds promptly in writing to your materials with a detailed letter addressing the various components of your work and containing appraisal, feedback, and suggestions.
Through the regular exchange of work and responses, a sustained, meaningful dialogue takes place centered on your learning and goals. Students often describe this dialogue as transformative and empowering.
At the end of the semester, in lieu of grades, students and advisors write comprehensive evaluations of the student’s learning.
Throughout your course of study, you are expected to deeply engage with the degree criteria, working toward a full and sustained demonstration of them by graduation. Students graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Education will have successfully completed the Goddard undergraduate degree criteria and will also successfully have accomplished the following:
- Gained an understanding and actualized the essential concepts of progressive education; namely, inquiry-based learning, reflection and critical thinking, and student-focused curriculum;
- Prepared themselves to work toward the creation of a more just, humane, democratic, and sustainable world;
- Produced a culminating project in the form of a senior study in an area of interest; for example, curriculum development, multicultural education, alternative education, environmental education, critical pedagogy, democratic schooling, collaborative teaching, feminist theories of education, or authentic assessment.
Goddard’s Education Program is approved by the Vermont Agency of Education and the Vermont Standards Board for Professional Educators for preparing licensure-seeking students to receive a Vermont Initial License in one or more of six endorsement areas. Vermont participates with all other states, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Puerto Rico in the National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification’s Interstate Agreement, which governs licensure reciprocity.
Goddard College is authorized by the Washington Student Achievement Council and meets the requirement and minimum educational standards established of degree-granting institutions under the Degree-Granting Institutions Act. This authorization is subject to periodic review and authorizes Goddard College to offer specific degree programs. The Council may be contacted for a list of currently authorized programs. Authorization by the Council does not carry with it an endorsement by the Council of the institution or its programs. Any person desiring information about the requirements of the act or the applicability of those requirements to the institution may contact the Council at PO Box 43430, Olympia WA 98504-3430.
The Seattle Education program is not intended to lead to teacher certification. Teachers are advised to contact their individual school districts as to whether this program may qualify for salary advancement.