Montana State University

Department of Education

For information on undergraduate teacher preparation programs
Please contact Cyndi Meldahl, Education Advising Center, 132 Reid Hall, MSU Bozeman, MT  59717
Phone: (406)-994-1880   or email:

For information on graduate programs, please contact the appropriate Program Leader:
*  Educational Leadership:  Dr. William Ruff, (406)-994-4182 or email
*  Adult & Higher Education: Dr. Carrie B. Myers, (406)-994-4203 or email
*  Curriculum & Instruction: Dr. Elisabeth Swanson, (406)-994-5952 or email

For graduate programs admissions materials and information contact the Program Assistant: (406)-994-6786 or email

Department Head

Dr. Jayne Downey
213 Reid Hall
994-7426 or email


    • L.J. Bruwelheide; library media
    • R.N. Carson; director, Northern Plains Transition to Teaching
    • A. de Onis; reading, language arts

Associate Professors

    • A. Bangert; educational statistic, educational research.
    • M. Brody; science education
    • J. Carjuzaa; multicultural education
    • S. Davis; technology education
    • J. Downey; educational psychology
    • J. Erickson; educational administration
    • J. Herbeck; reading, language arts
    • M. Lockhart; adult & higher education
    • P. Lund; art education
    • B. Palmer; adult & higher education
    • W. Ruff; educational administration
    • E. Swanson; science education

Assistant Professors

    • L. Kelting-Gibson; assessment
    • M. Leonard; science education
    • F. Luo; mathematics education
    • N. Lux; educational technology
    • C. Myers; adult & higher education

Adjunct Faculty

    • L. Baker; higher education
    • W. Freese; instructional media
    • L. Haughey; technology education
    • G. Pease; educational administration
    • C. Rogers Stanton; educational psychology
    • S. Schmitt-Wilson; multicultural education
    • R. Shaffer; educational administration

Professional Faculty

    • P. Ingraham; field placements & licensure

Programs and Degrees Offered

  • College Teaching Certificate
  • School Library Media Graduate Endorsement
  • M.Ed.
  •      • Adult and Higher Education
         • Curriculum and Instruction
         • Educational Leadership
  • Ed.S.
  •      • Educational Leadership
  • Ed.D.
  •      • Adult and Higher Education
         • Curriculum and Instruction
         • Educational Leadership

The department is divided into three units: Curriculum & Instruction, Educational Leadership, and Adult & Higher Education. Doctoral (Ed.D) programs are offered in three majors: Educational Leadership; Adult and Higher Education; and Curriculum and Instruction. Masters degrees also are available in these three majors. A specialist degree is available in  Educational Leadership and Curriculum and Instruction. Additional degree requirements are listed in the For Master's Students and For Doctoral Students sections.

Application Procedures

Application forms, as well as additional program information, may be obtained from the Graduate Programs in Education Office, 215 Reid Hall, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT 59717.  For specific program information contact the Program Leaders (listed above).  For admissions Information and forms contact the Graduate Programs Office (see above).  Admissions materials are reviewed at least three times per year by the individual program screening committees.  Successful applicants are accepted into both the department and The Graduate School.

Adult and Higher Education

This program offers the Master's of Education and Doctor of Education in Adult and Higher Education to admitted students who have varied academic field/discipline and professional backgrounds. Students focus on the theory, research, and informed professional practice in either higher education (academics, administration, or student affairs) or adult post-secondary education. Coursework is divided into two categories: required and electives, and research and statistics. Doctoral students must conduct research and write an original theory-based dissertation. Courses are offered with working students as a target group and are generally offered evenings and week-ends.  Many courses are offered as hybrid courses with a combination of face-to-face and distance delivery.  Some courses are offered 100% online.  

Subject areas of particular interest and supported by the program's current faculty's research agendas include assessment, institutional research, scholarship of teaching,  and distance education. In most cases the diversity of learners and institutions represented in adult and higher education is addressed, and students are encouraged to develop specialization via course assignments. Required courses vary by degree and background of the student. Refer to the Adult and Higher Education handbook located at: for additional and current information regarding courses offered and schedules.

The Adult and Higher Education Program also offers a Certificate in College Teaching to develop and promote exemplary teaching among graduate students, aspiring faculty, and current faculty wanting to enhance their teaching skills. The goal of the certificate is to make individuals more competitive in the job market as instructors and faculty members at colleges and universities. A total of 12 credits of course work are required to earn the College Teaching Certificate. Taking three credits a semester, participants will be able to earn the certificate in two years. Taking six credits a semester, participants will be able to earn the certificate in a year. Participants may enroll in the program either Fall or Spring.

See course listings on-line at:

Curriculum and Instruction

The program in Curriculum and Instruction offers two degrees:  Master of Education and Doctor of Education.  The Master of Education degree is designed to meet the needs of elementary and secondary classroom teachers, subject matter specialists, subject area supervisors, curriculum coordinators, and educational scholars and researchers. The Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree has three options:

  • Professional Educator option
  • Educational Research option
  • Technology Education option

The Department also offers the School Library Media K-12 graduate endorsement program. This totally online program is offered through the MSU Extended University. It consists of 21 semester credits (7 courses). The program is for teachers who want to add an endorsement in K-12 Library Media to a teaching license or take courses for recertification in Library Media.

The Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) degree is designed to prepare graduates to assume positions in college and university teacher education programs.  Graduates will possess the rich knowledge base in educational theory and practice necessary to conduct research and engage in service to the greater education community.  Students will have multiple opportunities to engage in college teaching, research connected to educational issues of their choice and collaborative activities in diverse educational settings, and with faculty from other disciplines.  Refer to the Curriculum and Instruction program guide located at and click on Graduate Programs, Curriculum and Instruction, for additional and current information regarding courses offered and schedules.

Educational  Leadership

The program in educational leadership offers three degrees: Master's in Education, Education Specialist, and Doctor of Education.

Student programs are developed on an individual basis after a review of previous experience as well as future goals. Programs include courses required for a Montana Class 3 administrative license with a K-12 Superintendent endorsement. Certification requirements of other states can be incorporated into the programs. An internship or field experience is required as a part of each of the above degree programs. Furthermore, understanding and applying research is an integral part of the degree programs. For additional information, please review the Educational Leadership program web pages within the Department of Education website at:

Review all courses at:


Refer to the Admission Policies and Application Requirements sections for specific application requirements and instructions. Successful applicants must be accepted into both the department and The Graduate School. The Education Specialist degree must meet the minimum requirements under the For Doctoral Students section with the following two exceptions: 1) no dissertation is required, and 2) courses over seven years old may not be included on the graduate program. Additional requirements for the Ed.S. degree are available through the Department of Education. All Ed.S. degree candidates are expected to be familiar with both departmental and The Graduate School's requirements.

While many requirements for the Education Specialist degree are the same as those for the Doctor of Education degree, it must be clearly understood that admission to one program does not imply admission to the other. Transfer from doctoral to Education Specialist status will be possible only if the applicant has: 1) earned at least a 3.0 grade point average in all prior work applicable toward the doctorate degree, and 2) has not failed the doctoral comprehensive exam.

Graduate Program

The major program field is selected from one of the degree options in the College of Education, Health and Human Development. However, all candidates must become competent in each of three areas: 1) major area of study, 2) foundations of education, and 3) research and statistics. Refer to the departmental brochures on each of the three areas for minimum credit requirements.

Additional Doctor of Education Requirements

The Doctor of Education degree must meet the minimum requirements in the For Doctoral Students with the following exception: only fourteen (14) credits of dissertation are required. Additional requirements for the Ed.D. degree beyond these minimums are available through the Department of Education. All Ed.D. degree candidates are expected to be familiar with both The Graduate School and Department of Education degree requirements.

Comprehensive Examination

Near the completion of course requirements, the student must pass a comprehensive examination covering the major area of study, foundations of education, and research and statistics. This examination is both written and oral. The comprehensive examination must be taken on the MSU campus. Exceptions are granted only after a written request from the student's advisor is approved by the department head. The department is responsible for making all arrangements for comprehensive examinations. Refer to the section For Doctoral Students for additional requirements.

Dissertation and Final Examination

An individually written thesis is required. It must be an original contribution to knowledge in the field of education, worthy of publication in the field of education. Refer to the section For Doctoral Students for additional information.

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