Learn More and ApplyEducation, Culture, and Society (MEd) Online


COE 2024 - Education Culture

The Education, Culture, and Society Program is committed to inquiry that examines the relationship of schooling, education, and educational policy to social justice and cultural democracy. The program is an interdisciplinary one, designed to appeal to students seeking alternatives to more specialized or technical programs of study in education. This program is designed to attract educators, leaders, and individuals with bachelor’s degrees who have broad interests in education but who may not be professional educators. This program anticipates that students pursuing this degree will come from a variety of educational and professional backgrounds involving different forms of educational work such as media, private foundations, museums, community organizations, labor unions, higher education, K-12 schools, and others. Students are attracted to this program for personal and professional enhancement, research for private foundations, adult education and training, or to prepare for doctoral work, careers in higher education, and other related areas.

The program provides students the opportunity to study education, not only as schooling, but also more broadly as a dynamic cultural and political force that unfolds in a wide range of shifting and overlapping sites of learning. Students will consider education as a dynamic process that shapes social identities and social life as well as the learning of values and beliefs, all of which are central to how people make cognitive and emotional investments and act in the world. As such, education is a significant force in creating, maintaining, and challenging assumptions of neutrality and hierarchies of race, ethnicity, gender, class, and sexual difference. From this perspective, education is an indispensable tool for creating conditions for social justice and democratic life. In this context, students investigate the pedagogical and cultural conditions necessary for supporting the flourishing of human agency and the redefinition of human engagement in social life.

Faculty teaching in the ECS program bring expertise from a variety of disciplines and fields within educational policy studies: the sociology of education, the philosophy of education, the history of education, the psychology of education and human development, critical pedagogy, cultural studies, feminist studies, urban studies, critical race studies, research methods and more. The faculty also has a diverse range of interests in areas such as globalization, peace and human rights education, social theory and social construction of knowledge; the role of education in the production of inequalities of race, gender, class, sexuality, and language; socially situated theories of learning and teaching; and the role of education in the construction of culture and social identities.

Given the interdisciplinary approach to the study of education of this degree program, students have the opportunity with the approval of their faculty advisor to take at least 20 hours of elective courses outside of the Education, Culture, and Society Program as well as the College of Education. Choices of electives include, but are not limited to, courses in departments and programs such as Communication, Philosophy, Women’s Studies, American Studies, International Studies, Public Policy, and Sociology.

Licensure Option

Students seeking the master’s degree in Education, Culture, and Society have the option to also pursue an Illinois teaching license or endorsement. Please consult your academic advisor as an additional program application may be required.​

Critical Ethnic Studies Certificate Option

Program Requirements Quarter Hours
Degree Requirements (MA) 52
Total hours required 52
Program Requirements Quarter Hours
Degree Requirements (MED) 48
Total hours required 48

Learning Outcomes

​Students will be able to:

  • Apply theories within the humanities, social sciences, and psychological sciences within the disciplinary foundations of education to their understanding of educational phenomenon.
  • Integrate methodologies into designing and conducting research in the disciplinary foundations of education.
  • Analyze human development as a socio-cultural process that takes place over the lifespan and over historical time.
  • Communicate, verbally and in writing, their understanding of the inter-relationship between identities and social relations of race, ethnicity, class, gender, sexual orientation, etc. and use this information to examine issues of power, resistance, and social change.
  • Apply the understanding of identity and social relations to examine issues of power, resistance, and personal and institutional transformation.

College Requirements


The academic programs within the College of Education have set forth these dispositions as educational and professional expectations for all students. Students should be aware that failing to abide by DePaul University or College of Education policies including, under certain circumstances, these dispositions, could result in adverse consequences for the student, including removal from his or her program, the College of Education, or the University.

  • Is receptive to faculty feedback and acts meaningfully and professionally upon suggestions
  • Reflects on his or her own progress and identifies strengths and weaknesses, including evaluating strategies for success, finding alternatives for inappropriate strategies, and modifying future practices
  • Demonstrates a positive attitude and commitment to the profession
  • Demonstrates thoughtful, effective verbal and non-verbal communication and listening skills
  • Respects and considers cultural contexts in order to determine how to be responsive to learners and to proactively promote all students' learning
  • Is committed to collaboration with colleagues, families, and communities in order to promote all students' learning and development
  • Demonstrates professional ethical and legal behavior as defined by the respective codes of ethics and laws
  • Recognizes and fulfills professional responsibilities and habits of conduct (e.g., dress, language, preparedness, attendance, punctuality, etc.)
  • Demonstrates concern for and protection of safety and well-being of others 

Degree Conferral and Graduation

The awarding of a degree is not automatic. You must submit an application to be considered for the degree. DePaul awards and posts degrees at the end of each regular academic term (autumn, winter, spring, summer).

It is your responsibility to initiate the degree conferral application process by submitting an online application. Submitting an application means you intend to finish your degree requirements by the end of the term for which you have applied.

Graduate students must be approved for student teaching and complete student teaching, seminar, and induction courses to be cleared for the degree. Student must submit graduation application for the quarter you are completing the final course (student teaching is considered a course).

After you submit the application, you cannot register for any term after the one selected in the application.

To apply for degree conferral, log on to Campus Connection. Select FOR STUDENTS, then GRADUATION, then APPLY FOR DEGREE CONFERRAL. On screen instructions will take you through the application process.

Provided that all requirements and financial obligations are met, degrees are posted 30 days after the official end of the term. Official dates are listed on the Academic Calendar.

DePaul holds one commencement ceremony each year in June. If you intend to participate, you must first apply for degree conferral for the current academic year and then submit a cap and gown order. Honors are not announced at the ceremony for undergraduates completing their final courses in spring quarter because a final GPA is not available at the time of the ceremony.

Additional information about degree conferral and graduation can be found on the College of Education website.​

Degree Requirements

Course Requirements

Theoretical Core Courses: 20 quarter hours required, grade of C or better required

Course Title Quarter Hours

Research Inquiry Core Courses: 8 quarter hours required, grade of C or better required

Course Title Quarter Hours

Five Elective Courses with Faculty Advisor Approval: 20 quarter hours required, grade of C or better required

  • College of Education Electives (8 quarter hours)
  • Non-College of Education Electives (12 quarter hours)

Master of Arts (MA) Degree Requirement Thesis Course: 4 Quarter Hours, Grade of C or Better Required

Course Title Quarter Hours

The student prepares a thesis, which is a report of the results of an original investigation. The student must first obtain approval of the subject and general plan from their Thesis Advisor, and have a research proposal approved by his/her thesis committee. The Thesis Advisor must be an EPSR faculty member (but not necessarily the originally assigned Faculty Advisor). The College of Education Thesis Handbook outlines the policies and procedures needed to successfully satisfy the thesis requirement. The College of Education Thesis Handbook can be obtained from the College of Education website.

Course Registration

Registration for ECS master’s degree core courses is different from regular registration. The ECS students are granted access to registration for ECS core courses. If a student has special circumstances and cannot register for all cores offered in a term, this must be discussed with and approved by that student’s ECS faculty advisor prior to the start of the term. Course registration for electives is the same as for all College of Education students.