Teaching & Foundations

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Make Your Next Step Your Greatest Yet

The Educational Studies and Teacher Preparation Department offers programs for educational professionals who wish to deepen and expand their knowledge of teaching and learning in a socio-cultural context. Organized around reflective inquiry and socially responsible professional practices, these programs are committed to educating instructors who have the knowledge, skills, and initiative to enact meaningful connections between theory and practice, and advocate for quality education for all students.

Whether you pursue a Master of Arts in Teaching and Foundations or a Sixth Year Certificate (SYC) you'll learn within an inclusive environment of faculty, community leaders, and experienced, aspiring classroom teachers - providing you a strong, nurturing education to empower K-12 students to reach their full potential.

Information Session

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

Career & Professional Opportunities

Fairfield graduates of our MA and SYC. programs in Teaching and Foundations are highly regarded and well received throughout the state and the region. Most of our MA graduates begin or continue careers as K-12 public or private school classroom teachers in Connecticut and the surrounding region. Graduates of both programs establish or continue careers as community educators with local or regional organizations. Many serve in leadership positions in their schools or community organizations.

Our graduates become:

  • Master teachers
  • Curriculum specialists
  • Administrators
  • Community activists
  • Educational entrepreneurs
  • Teacher educators
  • Policy makers

Course Offerings

View course catalog

Program Requirements for the MA Degree in Teaching and Foundations in Education

  1. Complete a minimum of 36 graduate credits.
  2. Complete 18 credits of foundational core requirements: 3 credits in each of the following foundational areas, with approval of faculty advisor.
    • Philosophical Foundations
    • Social Foundations
    • Multicultural Foundations
    • Curriculum Foundations
    • Technology Foundations
    • Learning and Development Foundations
  3. Complete a 12 credit concentration/cluster of 4 courses with approval of faculty advisor. Clusters include:
    • Curriculum Studies
    • Literacy, Language and Culture
    • Integrating Technologies
    • Individualized Concentration/Clusters
  4. Complete a six-credit Integrative Inquiry/Advocacy Sequence:
    • ED 552 Participatory Research and Advocacy in School and Community Settings
    • ED 511 Educating for Social Responsibility and Civic Engagement: A Capstone Seminar


Program Requirements for the SYC Degree in Foundations in Education

  1. Complete a minimum of 30 graduate credits.
  2. Complete the following foundational core requirements (12 credits):
    • ED 493 The Educational Imagination
    • ED 540 Ethics and Advocacy in Educational Contexts
    • ED 534 Theories of Learning
    • ED 565 Principles of Curriculum Development and Evaluation
  3. Complete a 12-credit concentration in one of the following areas:
    • Curriculum Studies
    • Literacy, Language and Culture
    • Individualized Concentration/cluster with approval of progam advisor
  4. Complete a 6-credit integrated inquiry/advocacy sequence
    • ED 552 Participatory Research and Advocacy in School and Community Settings
    • ED 590 Reflective Research Practicum in Teaching

Core Faculty


Admission Requirements

Applicants for the MA in Teaching and Foundations in Education must hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college or university (or the international equivalent) and show promise of success in their graduate studies.

Applicants for the SYC must hold a bachelor's and master's degree from a regionally accredited college or university (or the international equivalent) and show evidence of success in their graduate studies.

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 Teaching & Foundations.  (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.


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 meet the learning needs of full and part-time students.


When are courses offered?

Most of our courses are offered from Monday-Thursday in the late afternoon and evening. A few are offered on the weekends. Weekday courses generally meet once a week for two hours. Weekend courses tend to be full day courses that meet for four or five weekends or weekend days over the semester. We also offer summer courses from late May through early August.


What is the average class size?

We keep our classes small. The typical maximum class size is 20, but class sizes range from 6 to 20.


What undergraduate degree or courses do I need to be eligible for admission?

Our students come from a variety of undergraduate backgrounds and have majored in a wide variety of disciplines. Most have teaching certifications. For our C.A.S., you must have a bachelor's degree and a master's degree to be eligible.


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 programs 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. 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 gradadmis@fairfield.edu.

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