Graduate Studies

Educational and Interdisciplinary Studies

Admission | Courses | Program | Requirements | Certificate | Profile

Chairperson:  Gloria Delany-Barmann
Graduate Committee Chairperson: Thomas J. Cody
Office: Horrabin Hall 115
Telephone: (309) 298-1183 Fax: (309) 298-2786
Location of Program Offering: Macomb, Quad Cities

Graduate Faculty

  • Thomas J. Cody, Ph.D., Southern Illinois University-Carbondale
  • Tracy L. Davis, Ph.D., University of Iowa
  • Katrina Daytner, Ph.D., Indiana University
  • Gloria Delany-Barmann, Ed.D., Northern Arizona University
  • Georg Gunzenhauser, Ed.D., North Carolina State University
  • Eric Mansfield, Ph.D., University of Northern Colorado
  • Gregory P. Montalvo, Jr., Ph.D., University of Oklahoma
  • Carla Paciotto, Ed.D., Northern Arizona University

Associate Professors

  • Gary Daytner, Ph.D., Indiana University
  • Yuki Hasebe, Ph.D., University of Illinois-Chicago
  • Andrea Hyde, Ph.D., University of Pittsburg
  • James LaPrad, Ph.D., University of Virginia
  • Debra Miretzky, Ph.D., University of Illinois-Chicago
  • Sharon Stevens, Ph.D., Arizona State University

Assistant Professors

  • Joanne Sellen, Ph.D., Washington State University

Associate Graduate Faculty
Associate Professor

  • Ronald Williams, Ph.D., Tennessee State University

Assistant Professor

  • Sarah Schoper, Ph.D., University of Maryland

 Program Description

The Department of Educational Studies is characterized by the array of options it provides students in developing a focused sequence of course work, drawing from a variety of academic disciplines.  The department is currently the home of two distinct programs.  A Master of Science (M.S.) in College Student Personnel is offered for those whose career goals include working in areas such as college admissions, housing, and student affairs (see College Student Personnel). The Master of Science in Education (M.S. Ed.) in Educational and Interdisciplinary Studies permits students to pursue one of three interdisciplinary foci: Language, Culture and Education; Interdisciplinary Studies; or Transdisciplinary Studies‡.

The department recognizes that the issues facing society and its institutions are complex and that complex problems typically require complex solutions. Inquiry into and the resolution of such problems are, therefore, enhanced when multiple perspectives are employed. The Department of Educational Studies is comprised of scholar-practitioners representing several core disciplines including educational psychology, sociocultural studies, philosophical/historical studies and college student personnel. Faculty members utilize their distinctive disciplinary orientations and accompanying methodologies to collectively address pressing educational, intellectual, and social concerns. It is the union of an unusually diverse faculty and an uncommon approach to inquiry that makes the department and its degree options interdisciplinary.

With the assistance of their advisor students are able to pursue specific tracks of their own choosing designed to enhance their professional preparation and expertise and affording them the opportunity to explore, understand, critically examine, and solve problems pertaining to their lives as professional practitioners thereby enabling them to impact and empower the lives of their students, peers, and others in positive, productive and powerful ways. 

The objectives of the program are achieved by providing degree candidates:

  1. The opportunity to construct a discipline-grounded knowledge base regarding contemporary psychological, sociocultural, and philosophical theories and research as they pertain to educational problems and related areas of concern;
  2. The opportunity to develop the knowledge and skills necessary for the consumption, analysis, and evaluation of scholarly literature and make data driven decisions pertaining to specific programs and problems within one’s profession;
  3. The opportunity to explore and investigate educational and related relevant topics, skills, programs and issues beyond one’s current area of professional expertise;
  4. The opportunity to grow personally and professionally through in-depth analyses of issues and problems in contemporary education and related areas of concern;
  5. The opportunity to extend, activate, and apply one’s knowledge and skills through either an action-based or theoretically-driven culminating investigation of a student-selected research problem, or practical or programmatic issue or question.

 Admission Requirements

Students seeking admission must formally apply to the School of Graduate Studies declaring Educational and Interdisciplinary Studies as their area of study. Students must meet general admission requirements of the School of Graduate Studies and have a minimum cumulative GPA for all undergraduate work of 2.75. Prior to consideration for acceptance into this degree program by the Departmental Graduate Committee, a student must interview with a member of the Graduate Committee or the department chairperson and must submit a rationale statement identifying the degree suitability to his/her personal and professional goals and objectives.

 Degree Requirements

The 32–34 hour M.S. Ed. requires that all learners complete 18 semester hours of core course work offered by the department. The remaining course work will be specific to one of three student selected tracks: Language, Culture and Education; Interdisciplinary Studies; or Transdisciplinary Studies‡. The tracks are intended to serve as the basic framework for a program of study. Substitutions of coursework will only be permitted with the approval of one’s advisor and that of the Graduate Committee or the department chairperson.

Interdisciplinary Studies Track

I. Educational Research Core: 9 s.h.

EIS 500 Methods of Research (3)
EIS 503 Introduction to Data Analysis (3)
EIS 504 Qualitative Educational Research (3)

II. Educational Foundations Core: 12 s.h.

EIS 501 Philosophy of Education (3)
EIS 523 Advanced Measurement and Evaluation (3)
EIS 536 Seminar in Cognition (3)
EIS 585 Seminar in Social Foundations Education (3)

III. Electives: 9 s.h.

EIS 427G Foundations of Education for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Populations (3)
EIS 440G Sociolinguistics (3)

Select 6 hours from courses listed below:

EIS 502 Advanced Educational Psychology-Cognition and Instruction (3)
EIS 507 Social Change and Multicultural (3)
EIS 512 Learning through Adulthood (3)
EIS 540 Motivating Students to Learn (3)
EIS 570 Seminar in College Teaching (3)
EIS 580 Current Problems in Education (2)
EIS 586 Adult Education and the Culturally Diverse (3)
EIS 587 Advanced Educational Psychology-Human Growth and Development (3)

IV. Select one of the following exit options: 4 s.h.

EIS 584 Action Research in Interdisciplinary Studies (4)
EIS 601 Thesis (4)


Language, Culture and Education Track

I. Educational Research Core: 9 s.h.

EIS 500 Methods of Research (3)
EIS 503 Introduction to Data Analysis (3)
EIS 504 Qualitative Educational Research (3)

II. Educational Foundations Core: 15 s.h.

EIS 427G Foundations of Education for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Populations (3)
EIS 435G Cultural Studies of Second Language Learners in the Classroom (3)
EIS 536 Seminar in Cognition (3)
EIS 585 Seminar in Social Foundations Education (3)
EIS 453G Assessment of Bilingual and ESL Students (3)

III. Electives: 7 s.h.

EIS 430G Methods and Materials for Teaching in Bilingual Programs (3)
EIS 440G Sociolinguistics (3)

EIS 502 Advanced Educational Psychology-Cognition and Instruction (3)
EIS 587 Advanced Educational Psychology-Human Growth and Development (3)

Choose from any combination of the following:

EIS 457G Methods and Materials of Teaching English Language Learners (3)
EIS 458G Linguistics for the Teacher of English Language Learners (3)
EIS 547 TESOL Listening, Speaking and Pronunciation Methodologies (2)
EIS 548 Computer Assisted Language Learning for TESOL (1)
EIS 599 Independent Study or Electives (1-4)

IV. Select one of the following exit options: 4 s.h.

EIS 584 Action Research in Interdisciplinary Studies (4)
EIS 601 Thesis (4)


Transdisciplinary Studies ‡ (for cohort groups only)

Directed curriculum

TOTAL PROGRAM: 32-34 s.h

* Course selection to meet educational foundations core requirements will be based on concentration track selection.

† Course selection may depend on area of endorsement sought and will be advised by program coordinator.

‡ Transdisciplinary Studies curricula will be designed and selected by cohort director and coordinator.

Regardless of the track chosen, each learner will conclude her/his program with a culminating action research project or thesis. Students must complete the program within six consecutive years.

Note that no more than 50% of the degree plan may be at the 400G level.

A Degree Plan must be developed in consultation with the student’s advisor and approved by the Department Graduate Committee no later than completion of 15 semester hours of course work. Any substitutions for courses on the degree plan must have the approval of the advisor prior to enrollment in the course. Substitutions must be proposed by petitions, approved by the advisor, and submitted to the Departmental Graduate Committee for final approval.

A maximum of nine hours of graduate course work completed before a student is admitted to the Educational and Interdisciplinary Studies program may count toward meeting the requirements of this master’s degree, subject to approval by the Departmental Graduate Committee. Only nine total hours of transfer credit from another institution will be accepted.

Students in the M.S.Ed. Educational and Interdisciplinary Studies degree program must complete all requirements in an incomplete course in accordance with Graduate School policies.

Students who have taken courses, but have not been actively enrolled in course work in the last three years, will be placed on inactive status and will be required to petition the Graduate Committee for reactivation.

Post-Baccalaureate Certificate Program

The department offers a post-baccalaureate certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL).  For program details, go to the post-baccalaureate certificates page.

 Course Descriptions  

Educational and Interdisciplinary Studies (EIS)

401G Educational Law and Policy. (2) An analysis of formal legal and ethical problems that will allow students to critique contemporary debates in educational policy, law, and ethics. The course will examine the tension between competing philosophical theories and the construction and function of educational policy. Prerequisites: Special permission required.

405G Classroom Management. (2) Study of classroom management models applied to educational settings. Organization and management to facilitate learning. Legal policies, procedures, and strategies for dealing with behavior, disruption, and conflict resolution. Prerequisite: Prior or concurrent prestudent teaching instructional field experience or concurrent student teaching.

427G Foundations of Education for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Populations. (3) An introduction to the historical, philosophical, political, social, and educational issues that have contributed to policy regarding public school services for language minority populations. Clinical experience-15 hours required.

430G Methods and Materials for Teaching in Bilingual Programs. (3) Acquaints students with methodology and materials, with instruction in the preparation of audio and visual teaching aids, lesson plans, objectives, and the inquiry teaching methods for the bilingual/ESL classroom. Portion of content presented in Spanish.  Clinical experience-15 hours required.  A grade of C or higher must be earned for teacher licensure. Proficiency in Spanish required.

435G Cultural Studies of Second Language Learners in the Classroom. (3) The study of historical and contemporary social and cultural issues affecting selected ethnic groups, with particular emphasis on the impact of culture, learning, and schooling on second language learners in US schools.  Clinical experience-15 hours required.

440G Sociolinguistics. (3) Exploration of foundational work in the field of sociolinguistics and current issues in the field. This course will emphasize the culture-language interface at the level of social relationships with special emphasis on educational settings.

453G Assessment of Bilingual and ESL Students. (3) Selection, administration, and interpretation of measurement instruments. Description of testing: multicultural, bilingual, ESL, language competency tests; language proficiency/achievement testing; linguistic/cultural aspects of intelligence testing; assessment in classroom. Clinical experience-20 hours required. 

457G Methods and Materials of Teaching English Language Learners. (3) Analysis of language learning processes of bilingual children. The appropriate order for learning basic skills in two languages will be discussed and techniques of teaching English as a second language will be introduced and practiced. Clinical experience-15 hours required.  A grade of C or higher must be earned for teacher licensure.

458G Linguistics for the Teacher of English Language Learners. (3) The study of linguistics applied to teaching limited-English-speaking students. Includes English and non-English phonology, syntax, analysis, and application of linguistic theory. Clinical experience-20 hours required.

500 Methods of Research. (3) An introduction to the nature and techniques of contemporary social scientific research (including educational and human service). Emphasis placed on developing research literacy through critically reading, examining, and evaluating the characteristics of both quantitative and qualitative research. Additional emphasis on the critical issue of the nature of the relationship between research and its application to practice. Prerequisite: Some exposure to the basic nature of statistical reasoning recommended before enrolling in the course.

501 Philosophy of Education. (3) Historical and analytical study of philosophic schools of thought regarding teaching, learning, curriculum, social structure and other educational issues from various philosophical viewpoints, ancient to modern.

502 Advanced Educational Psychology-Cognition and Instruction. (3) Introduction to the relationship between psychological theory and educational practice through critical examination of current theories and models in the field.

503 Introduction to Data Analysis. (3) Introduction to the practice of data analysis in contemporary social science.  Topics include exploratory analysis, measures of central tendency, measures of variability, probability, correlation and regression, chi square, analysis of variance, and data-driven decision making.

504 Qualitative Educational Research. (3) An introduction to the forms of research falling under the umbrella of "qualitative educational research."  Includes discussion of how qualitative research is fundamentally grounded in theories of knowledge and translated into research practice aimed at illuminating educational problems and issues. Prerequisites: EIS 500 or permission of the instructor.

507 Social Change and the Multicultural Aspects of Schooling. (3) Designed to provide students an in‑depth examination and evaluation of important views of society and social change as they relate to schooling. Theories will be examined with attention to their possible influences on schooling. The multiethnic and multicultural aspects of schooling will be studied in their relationship to contemporary issues.

512 Learning through Adulthood. (3) Study of psychological development and instructional theory applied to adult learners. Special emphasis on skills, perspective, and cognitive, affective, and social challenges encountered by learners throughout the adult years.

523 Advanced Measurement and Evaluation. (3) Study of theories and applications of measurement in education including testing and evaluation. Attention to measures of central tendency, data collection, and analysis.

533 Special Problems in Education. (1–3, repeatable to 6) Designed to provide students the opportunity to enhance professional growth and development by gaining familiarity with current thinking in the field in regard to specific educational problems as they pertain to actual educational settings.

535 Adolescent Psychology for Educators. (3)  Study of developmental theory focusing on specific issues/concerns facing early, middle, and late adolescents in today’s classroom.  Emphases include social/emotional, cognitive and physical development with particular attention to the affective elements of adolescence. 

536 Seminar in Cognition. (3) An examination of contemporary cognitive models of learning, problem solving, and cognitive factors (beliefs, ability, strategies, etc.) that mediate learning and problem solving, including their application to the design and delivery of classroom instruction. 

540 Motivating Students to Learn. (3) The course examines theories of motivation and the personal and social factors that serve to hinder or promote its development and operation.  It focuses on the principles and strategies for motivating students to learn.

547 TESOL Listening, Speaking and Pronunciation Methodologies. (2) Designed to allow students to examine the articulation of English sounds, the rules that govern their use in speech, and explore ways of applying this knowledge to the teaching of pronunciation. Additional emphasis will be placed on teaching listening/speaking strategies in the Teaching of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) environment.

548 Computer Assisted Language Learning for TESOL. (1) Students explore how the use of technology can enhance language learning and use online tools to design language learning lessons in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). Prerequisite or corequisite: EIS 547.

550 Professional Workshop. (1–3, repeatable to 6) Course is for graduate students only. Workshops deal with topics in the broader areas of educational and interdisciplinary studies. Students will participate in a variety of activities including reading, research, reports, etc.

570 Seminar in College Teaching. (3) Designed for new faculty and graduate students who are interested in preparation for college teaching. Topics will address ethical issues, instructional strategies, and other components for effective practices.

580 Current Problems in Education. (2) Course is designed to acquaint the student with current issues in today's educational programs; to analyze trends in the development of teaching methods; to evaluate techniques, to evaluate curriculum planning, to consider educational leadership; and to examine critically the significant issues and problems of contemporary educational practice.

584 Action Research in Interdisciplinary Studies. (1-4, repeatable to 4) Applied research specifically focused on solving site-specific, practical problems using the conceptual and methodological tools of the researcher. Enrollment is contingent upon approval of the departmental graduate coordinator and completion of a proposal.

585 Seminar in Social Foundations of Education. (3) An examination of the social foundations of education in relation to democratic society, social change and the evolution of the educational enterprise.

586 Adult Education and the Culturally Diverse. (3) Analysis and critique of U.S. historical, cultural, linguistic, demographic, sociological, economic, and political issues impacting the education of culturally diverse adult learners.

587 Advanced Educational Psychology-Human Growth and Development. (3) An examination of contemporary developmental theory in psychology and its application to students, education, and educational institutions and problems in modern society.

592 Field Experience in Education. (1–4, repeatable to 4) Supervised field experience in off‑campus education situations including public or private school or alternative education programs. Prerequisites: Permission required. Prior or concurrent course work appropriate to the assignment.

599 Independent Study. (1–4, repeatable to 4) Investigation of problems related to the student's major area. A substantial written report, as well as informal oral report, will be required. Students will meet with an instructor during the course on a periodic basis.

600 Internship in Teaching. (5–6, repeatable to 10–12) A culminating, 10-12 week, school-based clinical experience in the student’s major area(s) of specialization under the supervision of a department faculty member and a senior teaching professional.  Prerequisites: EIS 507, EIS 535, EIS 536, EIS 538, EIS 539, and EIS 592; 100 clock hours of clinical experience; and recommendation of EIS Graduate Committee.

601 Thesis. (1-4, repeatable) Capstone project that integrates the knowledge and skills gained through the program by investigating a problem or extending the current state of knowledge, employing formal quantitative or qualitative methodology. Enrollment contingent upon approval of graduate coordinator and completion of proposal.

602 Interdisciplinary Studies Portfolio. (0) Upon the completion of 28 graduate credit hours, interdisciplinary studies students will submit examples of work completed in the program. The accompanying narrative will note the alignment between the student’s state objectives and degree plan and the objectives of the program. The narrative also will justify the inclusion of particular items. Three members of the department graduate faculty will review the document for both personal and professional growth, for an understanding of core knowledge, for an understanding of relevant scholarly literature, and for an application of evolving skills to pressing issues in the field of education. Graded S/U. Prerequisite: Approval of the Department Graduate Coordinator.

607  Implications of Diversity for Educational Leaders.  (3) Rapidly changing demographic patterns hold implications for school policy.  Effective educational leaders understand diverse cultures and communication styles, and practice collaboration and dialogue.  This course will provide resources necessary for administrators to establish themselves as facilitators who offer an inclusive educational vision for the community.  Prerequisites: EDAD 600, EDAD 640, and admission to candidacy in the Education Specialist program, or permission of instructor.

701 Quantitative Research and Statistics II. (3) This course builds upon students’ knowledge and skills in Quantitative Research and Statistics I. The courses addresses factorial ANOVA, repeated measures of ANOVA, multiple regression, and reliability analysis to prepare students for reading research and for conducting doctoral research. Prerequisite: Acceptance into the Ed.D program in Educational Leadership.

747 Education for Social Justice: Politics, Ethics and Policy. (3) Explores the complexities of social justice and intercultural competence related to educational organization. Students will acquire knowledge of political forces and ethical issues that impact social justice and intercultural competence along with skills to address social and intercultural issues. Prerequisites: EDL 711 or permission of the instructor.