Secondary Education

On This Page

Make Your Next Step Your Greatest Yet

The Educational Studies and Teacher Preparation Department in the Graduate School of Education and Allied Professions (GSEAP) offers nationally accredited graduate programs for aspiring middle and high school teachers that are organized around the ideals of reflective inquiry and socially responsible professional practices. The Master of Arts in Secondary Education with initial 7-12 certification prepares students with the knowledge and skills needed for initial teaching licensure in one of five secondary subject areas: English, math, science (biology, chemistry, physics or general science), social studies/history and world languages (French, German, Italian, Latin or Spanish).

For each program, you'll learn within an inclusive environment of faculty, community members and leaders, and experienced, aspiring classroom teachers - providing you a strong foundation on which to help adolescents reach their full potential.

Paid Teaching Internships

Beginning fall 2020

Teach Students By Being One

Information Session

Come meet our deans and faculty to learn more about our graduate programs.

Message From The Director

Dear Prospective Student,

Today's students are living in an increasingly diverse, complex, and interdependent world. Daily we are inundated with media headlines about social issues related to globalization of the economy, global warming, international communications, and technological advances. Now more than ever, the need for teachers who can foster cross-cultural understandings, scientific literacy, critical thinking, and problem solving, as well as prepare students to communicate effectively in a variety of languages and settings, is vital.

The Secondary Education with Initial 7-12 Certification programs at Fairfield University prepare candidates to be effective English, Math, Science, Social Studies, and World Language teachers for students in Grades 7-12.

The following Program Area Coordinators within each content area work closely with graduate students to promote their understanding of teaching and learning, discipline-specific teaching practices and subject area knowledge. Please feel free to contact them via their e-mail links below if you have additional questions.

Secondary English Education Dr. Bryan Crandall
Secondary Math Education Dr. Emily Smith
Secondary Science Education Dr. Emily Smith
Secondary Social Studies Education Dr. Joshua Elliott
Secondary World Language Education Dr. Anne Campbell

Career & Professional Opportunities

Candidates who complete their certification satisfactorily have excellent prospects of beginning positions in teaching. They are helped by Fairfield University's reputation for teacher preparation, broad faculty contacts with the profession, and large number of alumni who are established in school systems throughout Connecticut and nearby states.

Thus, graduates of Fairfield University's Secondary Education programs are highly-competitive applicants for teaching positions in middle and secondary classrooms. English, Math, Science, Social Studies, and World Language candidates have very successful experiences at the annual Fairfield County Job Fair, where local school districts are eager to interview Fairfield University graduates.

Candidates earning their certification in Connecticut can easily earn equivalent licenses in 39 other states as part of the Connecticut NASDTEC Interstate Contract. Visit the CT State Department of Education for more details about transferring a Connecticut license to another state.

Learn more about how the University's Office of Career Planning can support your post-graduate goals, and how Fairfield's tight-knit alumni network can build career and mentoring opportunities that last a lifetime.

Course Offerings

View the course catalog

Program Requirements

Requirements for M.A. in Secondary Education with Initial 7-12 Certification

  1. Complete all core and discipline-specific course work
  2. Complete 24 credits in the required Core Curriculum:
    • ED 429 Philosophical Foundations of Education
    • ED 441 Teaching and Learning within Multicultural Contexts of Education
    • ED 442 Educational Psychology
    • SE 403 Foundations in Research and Evaluation of Psychoeducational Issues in Special Education
    • MD 400 Introduction to Educational Technology
    • SE 565 Evidence-Based Strategies for Inclusive Classrooms
    • ED 499 Introduction to Educational Research OR ED 552 Participatory Action Research
    • ED 512 Contemporary Schooling in Society
  3. Complete 18-24 credits in Discipline-Specific course-work (see below)
  4. Complete master's project: Capstone Seminar (ED 511)


Required Discipline-Specific Coursework


  • EN 405 Literature for Young Adults
  • EN 411 Teaching Writing in the 3-12 Classroom
  • EN 417 Traditional and Structural Grammar
  • ED 459 Developmental Reading in the Secondary School
  • ED 466 English Methods
  • ED 581 Directed Observation & Supervised Student Teaching
  • ED 589 English Seminar


Two graduate-level math courses in Statistics and Geometry (if taken previously; alternate courses can be taken with advisor approval) Courses taken through Fairfield's M.A. program in Math, with advisor approval.

  • ED 455 The Literate Learner: Using Critical and Strategic Literacy in the Content Areas, Grades 5-12
  • ED 464 Math Methods
  • ED 581 Directed Observation & Supervised Student Teaching
  • ED 591 Mathematics Seminar


  • ED 462 Science Methods
  • ED 572 Guided Research in Science
  • ED 573 Instructional Issues in Teaching Science
  • ED 581 Directed Observation & Supervised Student Teaching
  • ED 592 Science Seminar

World Language

  • ED 455 The Literate Learner: Using Critical and Strategic Literacy in the Content Areas, Grades 5-12
  • ED 463 World Language Methods
  • SL 467 Language Acquisition
  • SL 439 Methods of Foreign Language Teaching for Elementary School
  • ED 581 Directed Observation & Supervised Student Teaching
  • ED 593 World Language Seminar

History/Social Studies

  • ED 468 Social Studies/History Methods
  • ED 515 Teaching Economic & Physical Geography
  • ED 581 Directed Observation & Supervised Student Teaching
  • ED 594 Social Studies/History Seminar
  • Select one elective with American Studies with advisor approval


Our caring and committed faculty offer a rigorous course of study, with a broad range of courses that integrate critical reflection, extensive field experience, and the most current research in the field of Secondary Education.

Background Check and Fingerprinting Requirement

Fingerprinting and background checks are required for certification programs. Please contact your course instructor and/or program director for updated information.


Admission Requirements

Applicants for the M.A. in Secondary Education must hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college or university (or the international equivalent) and give promise of meeting the standards set by the School.

Formal Admission Process

Students seeking admission must submit:

  • A completed online application
  • A Non-refundable $60 application fee paid by credit card.
  • A Professional Resume. Applicants are required to submit a current resume that includes employment and education history (submit online).
  • An Admission Essay. Students should describe why they want to undertake graduate studies in Secondary Education.  (submit online).
  • Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended demonstrating a cumulative GPA of at least 2.67 (or receive a GPA waiver from the department, available on a case by case basis). You must hold a bachelor's degree with an approved subject major or interdisciplinary major. (All foreign transcripts must be evaluated by an approved evaluating service.
  • Two Recommendation Forms and Letters, one of which must be, preferably, from a current employer or supervisor. The Recommendations are completed online. At the time of application you will need to provide your two Recommender's names and e-mail addresses.
  • Participation in an Admission Interview.


Students from Non-English Speaking Countries

Students from non-English speaking countries are required to submit a Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score report. A TOEFL composite score of 550 for the paper test, 213 for the computer-based, or 84 on the Internet-based test (iBT) with a minimum score of 21 in reading and 23 in writing is strongly recommended for admission. Fairfield's ETS code is 3390.


All application materials for formal admission should be sent to:

Office of Graduate and Continuing Studies Admission
1073 North Benson Road
Fairfield, CT 06824-5195
Phone: (203) 254-4184
Fax: (203) 254-4073


How to Apply

Financial Aid

To be considered for financial aid, Fairfield University requires students to complete a FAFSA form. For further information, visit the Office of Financial Aid.

Frequently Asked Questions

When are applications due?


What are the application requirements?

Our Office of Graduate Admissions is available to explain the application requirements and to help you get your application together. You may contact them by submitting a request for information or by phoning (203) 254-4184 or toll-free (888) 488-6840.


Do I need to take the GREs?

The GREs are not required.


Are any other tests required?

Students need to provide documentation of scores on the Praxis Core, SAT, ACT, GRE, or equivent test.


My grades in college are not very good (I was a late bloomer). Am I ineligible for admission?

The overall GPA requirement for admission is 2.67 with a 3.0 average in the subject area (licensure area) coursework. Candidates who do not meet the overall GPA requirement can apply for a GPA waiver if their GPA is not below 2.4. Candidates whose subject area coursework is below 3.0 may be required to take additional coursework.


How much does it cost?

Tuition and fees for our graduate programs


Do I have to be a full-time student?

Our programs are designed to accommodate students who want to attend part time because most of our students are working at least part time. Some of our students attend full time, however.


When are courses offered?

Most of our courses are offered in the evening and a few are offered on the weekends. Weekday courses generally meet once a week for two hours.


What is the average class size?

We keep our classes small. The typical maximum class size is 20, but class sizes range from 10 to 20.


Do I need to have earned an undergraduate degree in psychology to be eligible for admission?

Our students come from a variety of undergraduate and graduate backgrounds, which adds to the richness of our interactions in class. Though an undergraduate degree in the content area is strongly recommended, candidates with other related majors are strongly encouraged to apply. Candidates for 7-12 teaching certification must have a minimum of 30 approved credits in the content area. Candidates who do not have a minimum of 30 credits are advised to meet with program faculty to identify appropriate coursework to take before beginning the M.A. program.


Do I need previous teaching experience or education coursework to be eligible for admission?

Applicants are not required to have previous teaching experience or education coursework to be admitted to the program. Candidates spend a significant amount of time in school settings as part of their planned program. That said, if you have not been in a school setting for a long time, it is useful to visit a classroom to familiarize yourself with schools today and ensure this is the right career path for you.


How long does it take to complete the degree?

Students who attend full-time take 9 credits each Fall and Spring semester and up to 6 credits in the summer sessions. For full-time students who start in the Fall semester, the program can be completed in about 2 years.  For students who attend part time, the time will vary based on how many courses are taken at a time. Students are required, however, to complete their degree within six years after they begin their first course.


What financial aid is available?

Our financial aid office can best answer that question for you. You may reach them by phoning (203) 254-4125 or by e-mailing them, and you can visit the Financial Aid website.

Our graduate assistantships provide tuition credit for work. Please see the Graduate Assistantship page for more information.

Contact Us

For more information about Fairfield University's graduate programs, please contact:

Office of Graduate Admission
Fairfield University
1073 North Benson Road
Fairfield, CT 06824

Call (203) 254-4184 or email

Search Results