The MAE degree is designed specifically for educators who wish to assume leadership roles within and beyond the classroom, but who are not interested in obtaining an administrative endorsement. It is characterized by lectures, text reading, discussions, and projects, with emphasis on reflection and writing. Courses include studies in teaching, leadership, research, curriculum/instruction, methodology, best practices, school improvement, technology use, and a master’s closure project. Courses meet the requirements for teacher certificate renewal. A total of 40 semester credit hours are required for program completion.

What You Can Do With This Degree

The Master of Arts in Education degree prepares educational leaders for the classroom, as well as community education positions across the globe. Our graduates are:

• teacher mentors

• instructional coordinators

• technology coordinators

• community college instructors

• trainers in the military, police force and fire prevention occupations

Positions in related fields include:

• technology trainers

• curriculum directors

• human resource managers

• business managers/leaders

• training and labor relations managers and specialists

• archivists and museum technicians


The Master of Arts in Education (MAE) degree requires 20 credit hours of required coursework and 20 credit hours of elective coursework, (students may pursue one of the endorsements or certificates offered through the program) for a total of 40 credit hours. While applicants should be active in some form of education, a teaching certificate is not required for admission. Prospective students should apply through the University of Illinois Springfield homepage.

To be eligible for full admission, a student must have completed a bachelor’s degree with a grade-point average of 3.0 or better on a 4.0 scale. A student can be conditionally admitted if the GPA is between 2.50 and 3.0. Conditional admission means the student must achieve a GPA of 3.0 or better in the first eight hours of coursework. If a student achieves the required GPA within those first eight hours, he or she will be fully admitted. Transfer credit is evaluated on a course-by-course basis with the Online Coordinator and approval of the Department of Educational Leadership (EDL) Chair.

Graduate Overview


Advising for MAE is conducted by the MAE Coordinator in consultation with the department chair. Initial advising must be completed by the end of the student’s first semester. The MAE Coordinator assists the student in planning his/her program of studies, and an academic advisor provides assistance on the student’s academic path/courses and provides career counseling.

Grading Policy

A passing grade in an MAE course is considered to be B or above. A failing grade is given for work below that level. A maximum of eight hours of C (2.0) grades is applicable to the degree (grades of C- or lower are not accepted), provided that a minimum GPA of 3.0 is reached at the time of graduation and an approved Student Petition is on file in the Office of Records and Registration.

Degree Requirements

There are four core area requirements for the MAE degree:

Admissions Requirements

Program taught in:
  • English

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Last updated March 19, 2019
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