A. Advising Instruction

Welcome to the Master of Science in Science Education (MSSE) degree program!

The MSSE Director and Associate Director are your academic advisors. We are your primary “point people” on campus.  Visit with us first about any question or concern.  We are always happy to help!

This MSSE Advising webpage provides advising information to assist your start in the MSSE degree program. Your input will help us to improve the provided information for future students, so be sure to let us know if anything is vague or unclear!

The Health History/Immunization and TB screening forms are required by MSU Student Health Services prior to registration for a graduate course. Please visit with your health professional and file these forms with MSU Health Services as soon as possible!  NOTE:  If you completed an undergraduate degree from MSU Bozeman, you only need to alert Student Health Services to lift the hold placed upon graduate admissions.

If you are registered for four or more credits in a semester, you may be billed for the MSU Student Health Insurance plan. If you would like to waive the health insurance fees you can do so in My Info. For instructions on how to waive the health insurance and fees, please click here. If you are unable to waive the fees online or have any questions about the Student Health Insurance plan, please call the Student Health Insurance office at (406) 994-3199. For more information about the Student Health Insurance plan, please visit http://www.montana.edu/health/insurance.php.

We look forward to working with you as you begin this degree program.  Again, please feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns.

Best Regards,

Peggy Taylor

Diana Paterson
Associate Director

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 B. Registration, “MyInfo”, Ordering Transcripts

How Do I Register?

Course listings and web registration information for our campus or distance courses can be found on the MSSE website:


The MSU Registrar's Office handles MSSE campus and online course registration.  Typically an e-mail from the MSSE office will alert you about the opening of registration.  Be sure to register early for any grant supported classes, as they always fill quickly!


Course descriptions may be accessed on the MSSE website under the current semester or session. Read the course description carefully and order any required texts or materials.  

Your payment options will be: check, credit card,  or Financial Aid or Third Party (such as loans, fee waivers, scholarships, or school district payments).

Check Option: You will send your check to Business Services.  An address will be provided if you select this option. 

Credit Card Option: When you register through MyInfo, your credit card information and then you will be registered for the course you selected.

Pay Online with MyInfo: When you select this option, you will not pay when you register for your courses.  Instead, your registration will be transferred to your MSU Student Account and then you will pay your bill online prior to the first day of class.  The University Business Services assesses a $10 service charge for this option at point of payment. 

Financial Aid/Third Party:  If you expect to receive a financial aid award from MSU or your institution is paying for your course, select this option.  Your bill will be transferred to your MSU Student Account and await the posting of your financial aid award or payment from your institution.


Use the “Comment Box” to alert the Registration Coordinator about any special circumstances.  For example, use the “Comment” Box if you have a scholarship, school district tuition support, grant money or other source of tuition payment.  This will alert the Registration Coordinator to contact you via email to confirm any special circumstances.  When you are registering for EDCI 504, EDCI 505, or EDCI 509, indicate your instructor preference.  Your choices are Eric Brunsell, John Graves, or Walt Woolbaugh.  If you do not have a preference, an instructor will be assigned.

Contact the registration coordinator if you need an invoice or bill for your tuition, outreach@montana.edu or by phone at 406-994-7027 or 800-282-6062.

Contact the MSSE Office (406-994-5679 or dianap@montana.edu) if you have any questions and/or concerns about course choices.


The MSU "MyInfo" is a secure area for you to see your student account and unofficial transcript.  This is also the place to make changes in contact information (i.e. address, phone, email).  Remember to let the MSSE office know of any changes too!

For “MyInfo”, go to this website:  www.montana.edu

Click on “Enter Secure Area.”* On the User Login page, enter your Social Security Number (without dashes) or your Student ID Number (including the preceding dash, e.g. -00000000) as your User ID, and then enter your PIN number.

  1. If you have logged into My Info previously and have forgotten your PIN, please enter your Student ID Number in the User ID box, select the “Forgot PIN” button and follow the directions.
  2. If this is the first time you have ever logged into the "MyInfo" system, your initial PIN will be set as your date of birth with a format of ddmonyyyy. For example, if your birthday is January 1, 1970, your initial PIN will be 01jan1970. Please enter your month of birth in lowercase. 
  3. a. After entering your User ID and PIN, if you receive a message indicating “Your PIN has expired,” please re-enter your initial PIN (i.e. your date of birth) in the “Old PIN” box and then create a new PIN, which must be between 8 and 15 characters long, and contain at least one letter and one number. Note: If you add a special character to your PIN such as $,*, %, @, #, or &, you can use your PIN as your password for logging into Desire2Learn. Please remember your PIN for future use and note that your PIN will expire in 180 days.
          b. If you receive a message indicating “Authorization failure”, try using your Social Security Number (without dashes) as your User ID and                 01janXXXX, with ‘XXXX’ being the last four digits of your student ID as your PIN. Please note that your Student ID and Social Security

          Number are not the same number. If this does not work, please call (406) 994-7798 for assistance.

  1. You should next be asked to create two security questions in case you forget your PIN. Please create two security questions and answers.
  2. Once inside the Secure Area of My Info, click on the tab labeled “Personal Information”, and then click on the link labeled “View IDs”. Please take note of your MSU IDs (MSU, D2L and NetID). To log into Desire2Learn, you may use either your D2L ID or NetID as your Username. At this point, you can log out of My Info. Remember to click “exit".
If you encounter problems accessing your student record or come across a “HOLD”, contact the Registrar’s Office (406-994-2601).  They will help you determine the reason for the “HOLD” and will direct you to the appropriate office.  If you are unable to resolve the problem, then call the MSSE office.

To Order an Official Transcript

To hear the Registrar’s Office recorded announcement of transcript policy, please call 1-406-994-6666. This office only processes requests sent via standard mail, ordered through the online Clearinghouse ( "Online Orders"), or submitted in person.  To order an official transcript, go to: Registrar’s Office website.

Transcript requests are generally processed in 3 to 5 working days, but if you have a specific due date please include that information in your request.

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 C. Financial Aid

Student Loans

The MSU Financial Aid office will assist you with loan information.  Visit them at their MSU Financial Aid website or call 406-994-2845.

To qualify for financial aid you must (1) have admissions into a graduate program of study (or teacher certification) and (2) be registered for a minimum of 6 credits per semester for campus and/or online classes.

For summer term two applications must be completed:
You must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and, in addition, complete a MSU Summer Supplemental Application Form.  Late June is the deadline set by the federal processor.

Student Loan Deferment

You are classified as a “part-time student” (for the purpose of loan deferment) once you are (1) admitted to the MSSE degree program or have non-degree graduate status for “Teacher Certification; and (2) enroll in a minimum of six credits in any semester. Credits may be any combination of campus and/or online courses.

MSU enrollment qualifies you for student loan deferment as a part-time student in any semester with a minimum 6 credit registration.

MSU participates in a web-based Loan Deferment Clearinghouse that shows enrollment for any semester, with a minimum of 6 credits.  However, some loan institutions require that you file their specific student loan deferment form with the MSU Registrar.  If your loan institution requires such a form, please (1) secure the required form, (2) complete “student” section, and (3) sign.  Include the address where the completed form is sent, e.g., your loan institution or organization.  Typically, this address is found on the back of a two-sided form.

Send your completed form to:
Intercollege Programs for Science Education (IPSE) Department
401 Linfield Hall,  PO Box 172805
Montana State University, Bozeman, MT 59717-2805

The "In-School Deferment Request" forms are processed by the Registrar’s office.  Once your mail request is received, the form will be forwarded to the MSU Registrar, who will then process for your loan institution.

Most loan institutions use the WEB Clearinghouse, which means you will be covered by an automatic system triggered by your 6 credit per semester MSU registration.

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 D. Sample Classes by Department

See MSSE Course Catalog for Course Descriptions.:  

Biology/Ecology/Plant Science

  • BIOE 513 Terrestrial Ecology of Plains and Prairies (1 cr, online, summer)
  • BIOE 516 Terrestrial Ecology of the Northern Rocky Mountains (2 cr, campus, summer)
  • BIOE 519 Biology of Riparian Zones and Wetlands (2 cr, online, summer)
  • BIOE 520 Understanding and Managing Animal Biodiversity in the GYE (2 cr, campus, summer)
  • BIOE 522 Birds of Prey of the Yellowstone Ecosystem (2 cr, campus, summer, odd yrs)
  • BIOE 523 Wildlife Ecology of the Northern Rocky Mountains (2 cr, campus, summer, even yrs)
  • BIOE 591 Advanced Ecology (2 cr, campus, summer)
  • BIOE 591 Alpine Ecology (2 cr, campus, winter)
  • BIOE 591 Ecology & Conservation of World's Marine Ecosystems (2 cr, online, fall)
  • BIOL 591 Anatomy & Physiology (3 cr, online, summer)
  • BIOL 591 Examining Life in Extreme Environments (2 cr, campus, summer)
  • BIOL 591 Land Use Issues in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem (2 cr, campus, summer, even yrs)
  • BIOL 591 Teaching Evolution (3 cr, online, TBA)
  • PSPP 548 Flowering Plants of the Northern Rocky Mountains (2 cr, campus, summer)
  • PSPP 580 Plants, People, and Health (2 cr, campus, summer)
  • PSPP 580 Biomimicry: the Technology of Biology (2 cr, campus, summer)

Chemistry & Biochemistry

  • CHMY 594 Science Lab Safety and Risk Management (1 cr, campus, summer)
  • CHMY 505 Critical Concepts in Chemistry (3 cr, campus, summer)
  • CHMY 506 Integrating Computers into Laboratory Instruction (2 cr, campus, summer, even yrs)
  • CHMY 591 Atoms-First Primer for AP-IB Chemistry (3 cr, online, fall)
  • CHMY 591 Chemistry of the Environment: Water, Air, Earth (3 cr, online, summer)
  • CHMY 591 Examining Life in Extreme Environments (2 cr, campus, summer)
  • CHMY 591 Exploring Biochemistry for Teachers (3 cr, online, spring)
  • CHMY 591 Exploring Biochemistry for Teachers II (3 cr, online, spring)
  • CHMY 591 Exploring Chemistry for Middle & High School Teachers (3 cr, onlline, summer)
  • CHMY 591 Exploring Organic Chemistry for Teachers (3 cr, online, fall)
  • CHMY 591 Special Topics in Chemistry: Kinetics, Equilibrium, & Thermodynamics (3 cr, online, spring)

Civil Engineering

  • ECIV 591 Snow and Avalanche Physics for Teachers (3 cr, online, spring)

Earth Science

  • ERTH 594 Field Geology Seminar (1 cr, campus, summer)
  • ERTH 516 Northern Rocky Mountain Geology (2 cr, campus, summer)
  • ERTH 519 Hydrology of Streams and Lakes (3 cr, online, summer, TBA)
  • ERTH 591 Historical Geology (3 cr, online, fall)
  • ERTH 591 K-14 Earth System Science (2 cr, online, fall)
  • ERTH 591 Geology of Glacier National Park & Surrounding Areas (2 cr, campus, summer, TBA)
  • GEO 521 Dinosaur Paleontology of Hell Creek Formation (2 cr, campus, summer)
  • GEO 522 Advanced Paleontology for Teachers (2 cr, campus, summer, even yrs)
  • GEO 560 Geology of the Yellowstone Volcanic Center (2 cr, campus, summer)
  • GPHY 591 Global Warming, Climate Change, and our Environment (3 cr, online, TBA)

Education(Required Core)

  • EDCI 501 Inquiry through Science & Engineering Practices (2 cr, online, summer and fall)
  • EDCI 504 Evaluation and Measurement in Education (3 cr, online, fall or spring)
  • EDCI 505 Foundations of Action Research in Science Teaching and Learning (3 cr, online, spring only)
  • EDCI 509 Implementing Action Research in Teaching and Learning (3 cr, online, fall semester only)
  • EDCI 575 Capstone Project/Symposium in Science Education (3 cr, campus, summer)


  • EDCI 518 Master Teaching Strategies for Science Educators (3 cr, online, spring)
  • EDCI 536 Construction of Curriculum (3 cr, online, summer)
  • EDCI 537 Contemporary Issues in Science Education (2 cr, online, summer, odd yrs)
  • EDCI 591 Technology in the Science Classroom (3 cr, online, summer)
  • MSSE 591 Capstone Data Analysis (2 cr, online, summer)
  • MSSE 591 Integrating Literature in the Science Classroom (3 cr, online, spring)
  • MSSE 591 Web Tools for Teachers (3 cr, online, summer)
  • MSSE 591 Science Across Cultures (3 cr, online, spring)

Electrical Engineering

  • ELEE 591 Solar Cell Basics for Teacher (2 cr, campus, summer)

Health and Human Development   

  • HDFN 524 Teaching Adolescent Nutrition (2 cr, online, summer)
  • HDFN 526 Nutrition for Fitness and Performance (3 cr, online, fall, even yrs)

Land Resources and Environmental Science

  • LRES 557 Thermal Biology in Yellowstone National Park (2 cr, campus, summer)
  • LRES 569 Ecology of Invasive Plants in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem (2 cr, campus, summer)
  • LRES 580 Streamside Science (3 cr, online, summer)
  • LRES 591 Twelve Principles of Soil Science (3 cr, online, fall)
  • LRES 591 Water Quality (3 cr, online, spring)
  • LRES 591 Yellowstone Lake Ecology (2 cr, campus, summer)


  • MB 536 Exploration of Microbiology (3 cr, online, fall)
  • MB 538 Cell and Molecular Biology (3 cr, campus, summer)
  • MB 539 Infection and Immunity (3 cr, online, summer, even yrs)
  • MB 541 Microbial Genetics (3 cr, online, summer, odd yrs)
  • MB 540 Environmental Microbiology (3 cr, online, spring 2008)
  • MB 591 Biofilms: the Diversity of Slime (3 cr, online, fall 2007)
  • MB 591 Current Topics in Microbiology (3 cr, online spring)


  • PHSX 401 Physics by Inquiry I (3 cr, campus, summer)
  • PHSX 402 Physics by Inquiry II (3 cr, campus, summer, alt even)
  • PHSX 403 Physics by Inquiry III (3 cr, campus, summer 2011, alt odd)
  • PHSX 405 Special Relativity (3 cr, online, fall)
  • PHSX 491 Conceptual Physics (3 cr, online, spring)
  • PHSX 511 Astronomy for Teachers (3 cr, online, variable fall and spring)
  • PHSX 512 General Relativity (3 cr, online, spring)
  • PHSX 513 Demystifying Quantum Mechanics (3 cr, online, fall)
  • PHSX 514 Comparative Planetology (3 cr, online, summer)
  • PHSX 582 Astrobiology for Teachers (3 cr, online, variable fall and spring)
  • PHSX 583 Invisible Universe: Search for Astronomical Origins (3 cr, online, TBA)
  • PHSX 591 Night and Day Sky for Teachers (2 cr, campus, summer)
  • PHSX 591 Particle Physics for Teachers (3 cr, online, TBA)
  • PHSX 591 Studying the Universe with Space Observations (3 cr, online, TBA)
  • PHSX 591 Teaching Electronics & Magnetism Using Research-Based Curriculum (2 cr, campus, summer, odd yrs)
  • PHSX 591 Teaching Mechanics Using Research-Based Curriculum (2 cr, campus, summer, even yrs)
  • PHSX 591 Using Robotics in Lunar Explorations (3 cr, online, spring)

See MSSE Course Catalog for more information.  

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 E. Extended University Drop/Withdraw Policy

Click here for information on drop/withdraw policies.

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 F. Summer Campus Housing Options

Dorm Housing

Dorm rooms are available for summer MSSE participants.  The dorms have a computer lab, laundry facilities and are located close to dining options. This is a good residence option for you and the best option if you are attending for three weeks or less.


Room rates start at $28/night for a single and $46/night for double occupancy. All rooms are subject to a 7% per night occupancy tax. Rooms include linens (two sheets, mattress pad, pillow case and blanket), towels and bath soap.


  • All rooms have twin beds, shared double rooms and private single rooms are available.
  • All buildings are traditional style residence halls, meaning that there is a community bathroom down the hall.
  • Buildings do NOT have air conditioning.
    • If you have room, bringing your own fan is recommended.
  • Front desks are staffed 24 hours a day.
  • Fresh bed linens (sheets, blanket, pillow), towels and soap are provided upon arrival.
  • Bathrooms are conveniently located on each floor.
  • Lounges and laundry facilities in each residence hall.
  • Laundry cards, fans, refrigerators and parking permits are available at the front desk.
    • Attendees requesting assistance or special services may contact the desk at any time.
  • Smoking is prohibited on the MSU campus.
  • Alcohol consumption is prohibited in all areas except by persons of legal age in private quarters.
  • Please review the following housing policies to ensure all of our guests have a safe and enjoyable stay.

RESERVATIONS may be completed at the MSU Conference Services Accommodations website.

In addition to the link to the housing registration, this page also contains useful information for individuals staying on campus, as well as links to area information.

Or contact Conference Services by phone or fax, and mention that you are part of the MSSE Program.  Be sure to indicate the exact dates you plan to be in residence.  No deposit is required to make a reservation, but full payment is expected at Check-In.  Cancellations made less than one week prior to the arrival date will result in a charge of the first night's stay.  Charges will be assessed for all reservation dates for any rooms not released by 5 pm on the day of check-in. Children under six will be half price. All reservations, changes, and cancellations must be received in writing.  Participants can register through the web, email, fax, or mail.  No reservations or changes will be accepted by phone.  Payment may be made prior to arrival or at the time of check-in. Please make reservations early.

Parking hang-tags are required Monday-Friday for summer housing guests.  Tags can be purchased at the residence hall front desk.

Please make reservations EARLY!  Register On-line at:
MSU Conference Services Accommodations

or contact Conference Services by phone (406-994-6583) or email (sara.jay@montana.edu).

Food Service


The summer campus cafeteria (Miller Dining Hall) is located across campus. Meal charges and hours are:

Meal Charges Hours



7-8:00 am



12-1:00 pm



5-6:00 pm

Union Market in Strand Union Building

Meal prices vary. 

Students utilizing the Miller Dining Hall or the Union Market food services can have prearranged billing or use the "One Card" credit system. We suggest you wait until you arrive on campus to explore these options.

Family & Graduate Housing

The Family and Graduate Housing Office provides information and a housing application at the time of graduate admissions. Plus, housing information can be found at the campus web site. If you prefer an apartment and/or plan to have a family with you on campus this summer you must complete an application to Family and Graduate Housing with a $100 deposit. Housing assignments are made by order of application date, so apply early to increase the chance of getting the unit of your choice! Be sure to indicate the exact dates you plan to be in residence. Please note that rent will be pro-rated for your 6-week stay (i.e. you are not required to rent an apartment for 2 months in order to stay for 6 weeks). Family and Graduate Housing will provide a two-week rental, but at a minimum "one-month" rental fee. They require a 30-day notice to terminate their month to month contract.

All other housing options require a minimum rental charge of 1 month. One-month rent (including utilities) ranges from about $317 per roommate in a 2-bedroom apartment to as much as $750 for a 3-bedroom apartment with amenities. Rates vary depending on location and size of the unit. There are 300 furnished units, but that does not include linen, shower curtain, waste-basket, and cooking/eating utensils. See the Family and Graduate Housing Office web site for more details, including rent and location, for the various types of housing.

A parking pass is included with the rental charge for Family and Graduate Housing units.

Day Care is available for children 2 1/2 years through Kindergarten; several day care homes are situated through out Family and Graduate Housing for younger children.

Pets are not allowed in any campus housing.

For more information about Family and Graduate Housing, contact:

Family and Graduate Housing
1502 West Garfield
Bozeman MT 59714
Phone: (406) 994-3730
E-mail: fgho@montana.edu

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 G. Guide for Program of Study Preparation

The 30 credit MSSE degree program requires the following:

  1. Fourteen (14) credits of core education classes (listed below);
  2. Minimum twelve (12) credits of science courses from two or more content areas; and
  3. Four (4) credits of elective courses which may be any combination of education, mathematics and/or science credits accepted by the graduate committee as appropriate.


  • EDCI 501 Inquiry through Science & Engineering Practices (2 credits)**
  • EDCI 504 Assessment and Evaluation (3 credits), enroll fall or spring
  • EDCI 505 Foundations in Action Research (3 credits), enroll spring only
  • EDCI 509 Implementing Action Research (3 credits), enroll fall only


  • EDCI 575 Capstone Project/Symposium in Science Education (3 credits), enroll summer only

**The MSSE Steering Committee approved MSSE 501 as one of the required education core courses. This requirement will be initiated with graduate students admitted for Fall 2013.

Classes listed above are required education classes for the MSSE degree. You must complete EDCI 504 and EDCI 505 BEFORE you are eligible to enroll into EDCI 509.


Select science courses from at least two (or more) science content areas, such as Biology, Chemistry, Biochemistry, Earth Science, Geology, Land Resources and Environmental Science, Microbiology, Nutrition, Physics, and Plant Science, or other appropriate content area.  The MSSE Graduate Program must include a minimum of 12 credits of science content classes from two or more science content areas.  You must do a minimum of one Montana-based lab or field course (2 credits) (e.g., you may not do all of your science classes as online coursework).  Any 400 or 500 level Extended University online class for middle or secondary teachers is appropriate for the MSSE degree program with committee approval.
Note 1:  “EDCI” and "MSSE" classes are education classes, even when the area is “science education”.  The credits may not be used for science content credit for the MSSE degree, but may be used as elective credits.
Note 2:  MSU classes with the number “588” (workshops or professional development) may not be used for a graduate degree program of study.

Four credits of electives are selected from any combination of education, science, or mathematics classes.  Additional classes will become available as course development is completed and approved.

The graduate program of study listing a minimum of 30 credits of course work must submitted to the Graduate School. The MSSE advisors will contact you after your completion of your first semsester to begin drafting your Program of Study. Upon completion of the graduate plan, the MSSE advisors will file your Program of Study with the Graduate School. At a later date, if you decide to enroll in a science or education elective course not included on your Program of Study, this will handled by submitting a Program of Study Change form the semester before you graduate.

It is never too early to draft a program.  If you wish to transfer credits into the program, you should file your program in your first semester. Contact the MSSE office to begin your program of study draft.

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 H. Program of Study

Three samples of different Programs of Study are included below. Sample 1 illustrates completion of the MSSE degree in 2 1/2 years. No transfer or non-degree credits are included. Sample 2 provides an example of transfer credits from another institution and illustrates the opportunity to take EDCI 504 and EDCI 505 during the same semester in preparation for enrolling in EDCI 509 for the fall semester. Sample 3 includes transfer credits from MSU taken prior to admissions to the MSSE degree program and illustrates a program that is completed over four years.

Note: In each sample, the bolded black lettering indicates the required core education courses; the highlighted blue lettering indicates science and/or education elective courses taken at MSU; and the highlighted red lettering indicates transfer credits taken at another institution or MSU.

To download a Program of Study Excel Spreadsheet, go to Program of Study form

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 I. Faculty Graduate Committee

You must have a 3-member faculty graduate committee before your final program year to advise your Capstone Project.  Graduate committee members are typically selected because they have the unique attributes to advise your project.  Students often select faculty they know from completed coursework.

The first committee member is the MSSE Director who serves as your academic advisor and is designated the Committee Chairperson.  You select the other two (2) committee members.

The second committee member is the Project Advisor.  You want a faculty member interested in your topic area and therefore is usually your EDCI 505 and/or EDCI 509 instructor. 

The third committee member is the Project Reader.  The Reader takes a less active role in project advising, but is asked to approve the project proposal, done in consultation with the major advisor.  Both project advisors must approve the project proposal and the final project professional paper.  The MSSE Director, listed as chairperson, does NOT generally advise the capstone project.   Your oral exam is conducted by the Capstone Project Advisor and Project Reader.

One advisor must be from a science content department and the other advisor must be from science education.  The Project Advisor is usually from science education, but may be from science or science education, this is your choice.  Pick your Project Advisor with care, as you work closely with him/her on the capstone project.  Often the Project Reader plays a minor advising role.  This may vary somewhat between advisors, but the norm on campus is for the Project Advisor to take primary responsibility.

Select your Project Advisor and Project Reader before your final academic year.  If you do not select two advisors by mid-September, faculty advisors will be assigned to your graduate committee.

Work closely with your Project Advisor to develop initial project ideas, focus the study, and craft the focus question for your research.  Frequently students start with too broad a scope.  Your Project Advisor ensures your study is reasonable for a 3-credit Capstone Project.

You will learn about types of data, data collection and data analysis in core classes (EDCI 504 & EDCI 505) and conduct an action research project for EDCI 509.  These education classes prepare you for developing and researching your Capstone Project.

Once you and your Project Advisor agree to the focus question and methods, you must enlist the support of your Project Reader.  Advisors approve projects that are well planned and executed.  Getting prior approval from project advisors is critical to project success.

To view a sample of a completed Committee form, go to

Program of Study Committee form

Communication with the Project Advisor and Reader is critical to capstone project success.  You are expected to initiate that communication.  Depending on your project and Project Advisor’s style, plan an appropriate schedule to regularly meet via e-mail or phone.

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 J. Faculty and Staff Directory

Go to Faculty/Staff Directory for list of Advisors.

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K. Institutional Review Board

Click here for MSU IRB information

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 L. Capstone Project


Each Master of Science in Science Education (MSSE) student, with the cooperation of her or his graduate committee, identifies and completes a science education capstone project. Each project is designed to provide experience and information that aids our understanding of science teaching-learning or science curriculum.  The capstone project topic is identified during the first year of the student's graduate program and relates to science education in the MSSE student's educational setting; it links multiple courses in the student's program of study in both the core and science content areas.  A student begins the capstone in the fall of the final year by submitting a brief proposal to his/her advisor.

During the spring semester, students participate in the Capstone Forum. The Capstone Forum is an online forum in D2L that requires student participation during the spring before the capstone presentation. It is where the student will continue communication with their advisor regarding the capstone project/paper and will receive important information on the requirements and deadlines from the MSSE office regarding capstone week and graduation. Your participation is mandatory and part of the EDCI 575 capstone course that students will register for during the summer. No formal registration by the student for the Capstone Forum is required as the student will be automatically entered.

Students earn a total of three credits for the capstone project, EDCI 575 Capstone Project, in the final summer of degree completion.  The results of each student’s capstone project are summarized in a written, professional paper completed the final summer.  In addition, each student presents their capstone project to their committee, their classmates, and other interested people as part of the " Symposium in Science Education."


Focus Question: Each capstone project has a focus question that addresses a current topic in science education.  The question must be researchable and relevant to science education.

Conceptual Framework: The framework of concepts, principles and theories underlying and informing the project is a synthesis of science and education topics.  It is based on modern and innovative approaches and ideas documented in the existing literature.

Methods: Appropriate methods for answering the focus question are selected and used to generate data.

Data and Analysis:Data is expected to stand tests of validity and reliability.  Analysis is appropriate to the question and setting of the study.

Interpretation and Conclusion: Student interpretations of results should lead to clarification or resolution of the focus question.  The project's claims are expected to meet criteria for validity.

Value:  The project is part of the student's professional development.  The results are expected to generate new questions.  The project is expected to have implications for teaching-learning beyond the individual MSSE student's classroom.

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 M. Plagiarism Statement

Paraphrasing or quoting another’s work without citing the source is a form of academic misconduct. Even inadvertent or unintentional misuse or appropriation of another's work (such as relying heavily on source material that is not expressly acknowledged) is considered plagiarism. All sources of information that are not your original thoughts need to be cited.  This includes, but is not limited to, journal articles, textbooks and online resources. Adapted from MSU Syllabus language page.

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  N. MSU Campus Map

Go to MSU Map

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  O. AlcoholEdu for College, Haven, and Transit

MSU- AlcoholEDU/Haven/Transit: As of October 15th, 2014 the Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education has mandated all new, incoming students to Montana State University (regardless of age) are required to complete an authorized program in alcohol education, sexual assault awareness and prevention, and financial literacy. Please see this link for information on how you complete this module, dates and deadlines. Participation in this program is not an elective; if the modules are not completed in the time allotted, a hold will be placed on your ability to register for the following term.

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