Online programs in curriculum and instruction at KU

If you imagine every class as a chance to build your students’ knowledge, then your curriculum is the blueprint that makes it all possible.

The more you focus on the educational foundations that guide your classroom, the more you and your students will benefit. By developing your strengths as an instructor and learning to build a stronger curriculum, you can give your students the best possible advantage—in the area of education you want to impact the most:

  • Curriculum and instruction
  • Reading education
  • Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)

But before you build the perfect course content for your students, you need to have the right tools. With a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction* from the University of Kansas School of Education and Human Sciences from the Department of Curriculum and Teaching, you'll learn to develop more effective instructional approaches, evaluate how well your students are learning, and integrate new technology and teaching strategies into class time.

KU’s thoughtful training and proven methods will help you lead your classroom with confidence and clarity, giving you more time to focus on your students.

Engage with KU’s leading researchers and experts in education

One of the unique advantages of our program is the caliber of professors and program directors who actively engage in relevant research within the education field. At The University of Kansas School of Education and Human Services (KU SOEHS),
the Department of Curriculum and Teaching Chair, Dr. Heidi Hallman is involved in various research projects that shape the future of education but also directly benefit curriculum and instruction master’s students.

As an associate editor for the Journal of Teacher Education, a leading publication in the field of teacher education, focusing on research, theory, and practice in teacher preparation, Dr. Hallman has a deep understanding of the latest developments in teacher education.

She encounters numerous manuscripts that provide valuable insights into effective teaching practices. Drawing from her experiences, she incorporates virtual collaborative developments into her courses, ensuring that her students are exposed to innovative and relevant teaching methods.

By enrolling in our master of science in curriculum and instruction, you not only gain access to cutting-edge research but also have the opportunity to learn directly from experts like Dr. Hallmann.

In a recent video, Dr. Hallman discusses the merits of KU’s C&I program for today’s educators.

Heidi Hallman, Chair and Professor in the Department of Curriculum and Teaching

Heidi Hallman
Chair and Professor in the Department of Curriculum and Teaching

Course(s) Taught:

  • C&T 741: Comprehension and Study Strategies for Use with Multiple Texts

Research interests:

  • Sociocultural theories of language and literacy
  • Social contexts of language and literacy development
  • At-risk learners
  • Ethnographic and qualitative approaches to research

Challenge yourself to become a better educator, leader, or administrator.

The KU School of Education and Human Sciences offers online master's programs that pair the academic rigor of a highly respected university with a flexible schedule to accommodate your busy life.

To stay ahead of the curve, the online master’s degree in curriculum and instruction blends the latest theories with practical, hands-on implementation. A practitioner-focused approach means everything you learn can be applied directly to your own classroom.

Ultimately, you'll improve not only your own curriculum development skills but also the educational experience of the students whose lives you touch. From there, your positive influence can reach an individual class or an entire school or district, by bringing advanced skills to classrooms in reading education, TESOL, and curriculum and instruction.

Download a copy of our online curriculum and instruction master's program sheet

Thumbnail of C&I master's program sheet

Advancing in education: How a master’s in C&I enhances leadership skills and opportunities

Woman in orange shirt holding chalk at chalkboard

In today's swiftly evolving educational landscape, the demand for educators equipped with advanced skills is more pronounced than ever.

Taking the step to pursue your online master's in curriculum and instruction not only augments your existing teaching capabilities but can also help open doors to leadership roles, paving the way for a transformative impact in schools and beyond.

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) underscored the value of advanced degrees and proper certification in education; With the majority of teachers holding standard state teaching certificates, having specialized training can help you stand out.2

Earning an online Master's degree in C&I at KU provides the unique benefit of delving into specific, in-demand areas of expertise within the curriculum:

Master’s in C&I - Curriculum & Instruction:

Focused on shaping the very heart of the teaching-learning process, this degree specialization hones in on innovative instructional strategies, assessment techniques, and the creation of comprehensive curricula tailored to diverse student populations. As educational institutions grapple with a rapidly changing world, professionals with a strong grounding in curriculum development are pivotal in driving success.

Master’s in C&I - Reading:

Literacy is the cornerstone of education. A specialization in reading emphasizes skills necessary to foster literacy development at all grade levels. It prepares educators to address diverse reading needs, incorporate the latest literacy research into classroom strategies, and serve as reading specialists or literacy coaches. In a digital age where comprehension skills are vital, this specialization ensures students are equipped to decipher, understand, and engage with various texts.

Master’s in C&I - TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages):

With globalization and diverse classrooms, the demand for TESOL specialists has skyrocketed. This specialization equips educators with techniques to support English Language Learners (ELLs) effectively, ensuring they don't lag behind due to language barriers. Culturally responsive teaching, curriculum adaptation, and understanding language acquisition are just some of the invaluable skills acquired.

As educational districts continue to face challenges in filling positions across grade levels and subjects, educators with specialized skills are in high demand.2

Online curriculum and instruction program course highlights

KU’s meticulously crafted curriculum and online learning platform are specifically designed to enhance your expertise in the field of education, focusing on advanced instructional techniques and leadership skills that will give you a competitive edge.

Take a glimpse at some of the courses offered, showcasing the breadth of the program and how it equips you with an integrated executive skill set.

Laptop on table next to notebook with University of Kansas logo and pencil
Course highlight: Pedagogical Considerations in the 21st Century Classroom

C&T 770: Pedagogical Considerations in the 21st Century Classroom delves into the analysis of learning theories and instructional strategies for effective teaching. This course bridges the gap between theoretical knowledge and pedagogical practices. Key topics covered include:
  • Exploring current learning theories and cognitive learning theories
  • Analyzing 21st-century learning environments
  • Implementing instructional strategies
  • Fostering critical thinking skills
Woman seated with male instructor in front of desktop computer in classroom setting
Course highlight: Multicultural Education

C&T 807: Multicultural Education explores theoretical foundations and practical strategies for promoting social equity and educational equality. This course analyzes systematic schooling inequities, examines the experiences of students and communities of color, and addresses forms of oppression. You will gain insights into the social construction of identity and its impact on teaching and learning in diverse public schools.
Female instructor at front of class gesturing toward literature displayed on a projection screen
Course highlight: Constructivist Learning Technologies

C&T 874: Constructivist Learning Technologies explores the design and use of new educational technologies to support constructivist learning. Throughout the course, students will:
  • Get hands-on experiences with emerging educational technologies
  • Examine how the underlying learning theories are reified into concrete learning environment
  • Analyze how the affordances of new technologies (e.g., modeling and visualization) can facilitate constructivist learning processes

Earn your degree in as few as two years

Application Deadline
August 12
Fall 2024 Term
Next Start
August 26
Fall 2024 Term

Master of Science in Education (M.S.E.) in Curriculum and Instruction*

Program details

  • 10 courses, 8 weeks per course, 30 credit hours
  • Graduate in as few as two years
  • Ranked #16 in the nation by U.S. News & World Report1
  • Learn from renowned faculty with extensively published research and diverse real-world experience
  • Create a working instructional portfolio that can be directly applied in your own classroom
  • Complete your coursework anytime, anywhere, through our innovative online format
  • No GRE required for admission
  • There is no practicum or residency requirement for this program

View Admissions Requirements

*This program is an online Master of Science in Education (M.S.E.) degree in curriculum and instruction. It does not lead to initial nor advanced teaching licensure in the state of Kansas.

Prior teaching experience is not required but is strongly recommended.

Note: In order to enroll in this curriculum and instruction master’s program, a bachelor's degree is required. No program can guarantee licensure.

KU’s licensure programs strive to maintain accurate and up-to-date information about the educational requirements for licensure in U.S. states and territories. However, regulations are subject to change and varying interpretations. In addition to possible changes in educational requirements, licensure often includes additional requirements, such as specific examinations and additional training or practicum hours. It is highly recommended that students seek guidance from the appropriate licensing agency before beginning an academic program to ensure they know what is needed to obtain the license/certification/registration in the state in which they intend to practice and/or seek licensure. Visit for more information

Online curriculum and instruction master’s: Course descriptions

Our master’s degree in curriculum and instruction is for current educators and teachers who want to learn more about effective instructional practices and curriculum development to make a difference. Here, you can read more about the courses available to those pursuing a master’s in curriculum and instruction online at the KU School of Education and Human Sciences. All courses listed are worth 3 credits.

Please note: Course list and sequence is subject to change.


Basic concepts and processes of curriculum and instruction, including theories, planning models, resources for decision-making, current trends, research, and proposals for improvement of curriculum and instruction.


In order to provide the student with an understanding of multicultural education, the course will examine the effects of such issues as ethnicity in America, the melting pot theory, separatism, cultural pluralism, legal issues, and bilingual education upon the curriculum and instruction in today's classrooms. It will include an evaluation of materials for bias and stereotypes. Field experiences are a part of this course.

View Full Description


Analysis of models of teaching which represent distinct orientations toward students and how they learn. The application of these models is complemented by the study of research evidence on effective teaching strategies. Prerequisite: C&T 709.


This course introduces the concepts and skills involved in understanding and analyzing research in education and related areas. The course provides an overview of basic, general knowledge of various research methodologies for the remainder of the curriculum and instruction master’s program.

Students should expect to study much of this material in greater depth through additional coursework before being fully prepared to conduct independent research. However this course should enhance their ability to locate, read, comprehend, and critically analyze research articles and reports. Topics in the course include quantitative and qualitative methods and designs, historical and descriptive research, and program evaluation.


This course is designed for educators interested in expanding curriculum and instruction to accommodate diverse learners in the K-12 classroom. Topics include models, methods, and resources for differentiating curriculum and instruction; designing and modifying differentiated curriculum; evaluating student learning; and introducing students, parents, and colleagues to differentiation. This is an evidence-based, practical course for teachers, administrators, and support personnel.

View Full Description


This course explores the design and use of new educational technologies to support constructivist learning. Throughout the course, students will (1) get hands-on experiences with emerging educational technologies, (2) examine how the underlying learning theories are reified into concrete learning environments, and (3) analyze how the affordances of new technologies (e.g., modeling and visualization) can facilitate the constructivist learning processes. This course is suitable for students who wish to develop greater knowledge about the ways emerging computer technologies can empower constructivist learning.

View Full Description


This course focuses on organizing and managing curriculum development in educational settings. Curricular decisions such as writing philosophies, setting goals and objectives, selecting and organizing content, and designing and monitoring evaluation procedures will be emphasized. Providing leadership for the collaborative process of curriculum planning in organizational settings will receive attention.


This course will explore the current theories and capabilities of instruction in the 21st century classroom and will bridge the theories with pedagogical practice and considerations. We will examine relevant theories of instruction, analyze 21st century learning environments, and identify and practice instructional strategies for student engagement, critical thinking and collaboration in the classroom.

View Full Description


The course will emphasize the latest research and practice related to school improvement. Students will function as a member of a school improvement team to assimilate and synthesize research and practice into the development, revision and/or assessment of a school improvement plan for a specific school site.

View Full Description

C&T 890 - Bridging Theory to Practice: Capstone Portfolio

This capstone course provides a space and opportunity for students to reflect on their learning in the M.S.E. online programs. Students will create a digital portfolio demonstrating their knowledge and skills related to the C&T learning outcomes. Students will demonstrate their engagement with relevant literature and explain how they can use, share, or apply their learning from the program to their current or future context.
Frequently asked questions: Online curriculum and instruction master’s program

Why should you obtain an online C&I MSE?

  • Enhanced instructional skills: KU’s C&I online MSE program improves your instructional approaches and integrates new technologies to deliver high-quality education
  • Career advancement: An advanced curriculum and instruction degree opens opportunities for career growth and positions you for leadership roles in education
  • Specialized expertise: Develop expertise in curriculum development, instructional design, and pedagogical approaches for impactful teaching
  • Influence student outcomes: Create inclusive learning environments and address diverse student needs for improved student outcomes

Why should you elevate your curriculum and instruction capabilities?

  • Make a difference: Shape the lives of students and have a positive impact on their learning and development
  • Influence future generations: Impart knowledge, skills, and values to help students become informed and responsible global citizens
  • Lifelong learning: Teaching encourages continuous learning, exploring innovative methods, and staying up-to-date with research and trends
  • Job satisfaction: Experience fulfillment by witnessing student growth and knowing you've contributed to their development

Who is this degree for?

  • Educators and teachers: Deepen knowledge and expertise in curriculum and instruction
  • Aspiring leaders: Prepare for leadership roles in curriculum development, instructional coaching, or department leadership
  • Instructional specialists: Specialize in designing effective strategies to meet diverse student needs
  • Passionate educators: Stay ahead in the field by learning the latest theories and practices in curriculum and instruction
  • Others: Those interested in teaching and learning outside of traditional educational contexts.

Content and resources

Admissions requirements

Review the necessary admissions requirements for the master’s in curriculum and instruction online.

Tuition information

Take a look at costs per credit hour and total estimated costs for our online graduate programs.

Online experience

Discover how students collaborate and develop their professional potential through our online classroom.


Application Deadline
August 12
Fall 2024 Term
Next Start
August 26
Fall 2024 Term


  1. Retrieved on February 8, 2024, from
  2. Retrieved on July 17, 2023, from