M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction: Common Core State Standards Instructional Leader


The M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction: Common Core State Standards Instructional Leader program is designed to prepare K-12 educators as leaders in the understanding and implementation of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS).

The Next Cohort Start Date is April 5th

M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction: Common Core State Standards Instructional Leader Program Goals

In addition to meeting the objectives for all Concordia Portland’s M.Ed. programs, successful candidates in the M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction: Common Core State Standards Instructional Leader concentration will demonstrate:

  • Expertise in the utilization of new methods of authentic assessment and strategies as tools to evaluate student learning progress.
  • The ability to modify instructional plans and promote alternative goals and strategies when necessary, particularly in relation to assessment results.
  • Effective instructional skills in planning, implementing, and assessing instruction in settings that include diverse cultural populations and special needs students.

Course Descriptions

Students enrolled in the Common Core State Standards Instructional Leader program must complete:

  • Four core courses required for the Curriculum & Instruction degree
  • Foundation courses for the specific concentration

M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction - Common Core State Standards Instructional Leader
15 credits
EDCI 554 (3)
The CCSS: Real-World Standards
This course is an in-depth study of the evolution and design of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). An understanding is developed of the knowledge and skills needed for America's children to be successful in college and careers and to compete in a global economy that are addressed in the CCSS. An emphasis is placed on the need for high levels of rigor along with high levels of student engagement in teaching and learning, supported by the CCSS.
EDCI 555 (3)
What's Common about the Common Core State Standards?
The focus of this course is the CCSS Initiative and its establishment of a single set of K-12 educational standards, based on the existing foundation of standards states have already built. How the standards have been developed and the education infrastructure needed to continue the development, implementation and sustainment of the CCSS initiative is assessed. The significance of the goal of the CCSS - setting clear, concise standards and expectations that all U.S. education stakeholders can understand: students, parents, teachers, policy makers - is thoroughly examined. The intended impact on the post high school preparation of America's students entering college and/or the workforce is also considered.
EDCI 576 (3)
Common Core State Standards (CCSS): Transformative Teaching and Learning
This course begins with an examination of the substantial body of research collected on the significant effect the classroom teacher has on student achievement. Following this analysis is a comprehensive study of the Common Core strands and organizing elements that are the basis of the adopted CCSS. Learning the basics - such as how to read the standards (e.g., Reading: Strand, Organizing Element, Grade Level Column, Standard), shifts in content and coherence across grade levels - is a critical component of this class. A focus on developing curricula, lessons and units and aligned assessments is included. In addition, the process of evaluating the alignment of instructional resources to the CCSS will be studied.
EDCI 578 (3)
Leading the Implementation of the Common Core State Standards
Leadership in operationalizing the established standards in the learner's workplace - and those standards adopted in the future - is the focus of this course. An ever-growing expanse of resources that is available to CCSS Instructional Leaders is accessed and reviewed. The primary outcome of this course is a detailed plan each individual designs relative to implementing the CCSS in the individual's school, school district or workplace that addresses the following elements essential to high quality CCSS implementation (CCSSO, 2012):
- System alignment and systems change
- Educator Supports
- Student Supports
- Communication and Engagement
EDGR 601 (3)
Educational Research
This course provides students with the basic competencies necessary to understand and evaluate the research of others, and to plan and conduct their own research with a minimum of assistance. This course includes the basics of both qualitative and quantitative research.

The Master of Education culminates with one of two courses
3 credits
EDGR 698 (3)
Action Research (CAPSTONE)
Action research is one of the capstone projects for the Master of Education program. During this five-week course, candidates will learn more about the action research methodology, complete final edits of the Literature Review, and design a complete Action Research proposal including data collection methods and analysis approaches. The proposal will not be implemented with students/participants during the course.
Prerequisite: Successful completion of EDGR 601 Educational Research.
EDGR 699 (3)
The Thesis offers the graduate student the opportunity to investigate, in depth, a topic in the field of education. The student, working with his or her educational research instructor, will explore relevant literature and present a Thesis following the procedure established by the College of Education.
Prerequisite: Successful completion of EDGR 601 Educational Research.

Either option provides candidates with an understanding of the role of research in the field of education as a tool to solve problems and as a way to improve student learning.

Earning Your Curriculum & Instruction: Common Core State Standards Instructional Leader Master's Degree Online

Using cutting-edge curriculum and easy-to-use online learning tools, Concordia University - Portland’s experienced faculty will provide you with the best in theory and practice to prepare you as an instructional leader. Concordia Portland’s five-week classes can be accessed via the Internet at the times and locations most convenient for you. Assignment submission is convenient, submission deadlines are achievable, and all requirements for a course fall within the dates stipulated for the courses.


Career Opportunities

  • Common Core State Standards (CCSS) Leadership Role in the School, District or Community
  • Higher Education Instructor in CCSS
  • CCSS Education Consultant (Public or Private)
  • Division or Department Chair (K-12)
  • Department Chair – Community College (various divisions)
  • CCSS Education Advisor (K-12)
  • CCSS Advisor, District Superintendent's Cabinet (K-12)
  • Director, Curriculum & Instruction
  • Director, Professional Development
  • Coach, CCSS Implementation Teacher Support & Development

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