Masters in Elementary Education

While undergraduate programs in education might arm you with the basic skills to teach elementary-aged students, more advanced preparation is needed to become a truly effective teacher. Children in first through sixth grade build many of the skills that they’ll need in middle and secondary school, meaning you’re on the front line of ensuring their future success.

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Master’s programs in elementary education allow teachers to dive deeper into the conceptual topics that drive the assessment and implementation of successful teaching practices. With an enhanced ability to recognize and meet the needs of diverse learners in the elementary classroom, master’s-level teachers are better prepared to tackle any learning challenge.

What will a graduate degree in elementary education do for me as a teacher?

Graduate-level elementary education programs provide teachers with a closer look at the theories and developmental concepts that inform their curriculum and teaching practices. As such, most programs focus on a mixture of content knowledge and pedagogy.

Teachers broaden their understanding of theory through research coursework, allowing them to explore the foundations of education in greater depth than in undergraduate programs. These courses are typically coupled with action research projects, where teachers conduct original research in their classrooms to discover more effective teaching methods. Action research help teachers track and monitor their teaching practices using assessment tools – tools that will help them implement and assess future changes.

In a master’s program for elementary education, teachers greatly add to their understanding of subject matter, including coursework in language arts, science, mathematics, the arts, and physical education. When students need further explanation on a topic or subject, your advanced background in these areas ensure you’ll be able to clearly present the facts on a subject.

Of course, simply having a clearer understanding of subject matter isn’t enough to be a high-quality teacher. Master’s programs also give teachers better tools for teaching that subject matter.

Elementary-aged students are known for their rambunctiousness and curiosity, meaning much of an instructor’s time spent teaching might be interrupted by distractions in the learning environment. Master’s degree programs in elementary education give special consideration to classroom management to help teachers gain better control over their classrooms.

Classroom management coursework doesn’t only cover discipline and “tough love.” Successful classroom management includes methods for creating nurturing learning environments and inclusive settings for diverse learners. Teachers become better organized and gain an understanding of how to collect behavioral data to implement class-wide teaching strategies that support students at all learning levels.

Subjects Taught: Master’s in Elementary Education
  • Child and Adolescent Development

    Gain a deeper picture on the cognitive and emotional changes children experience in elementary school. Learn how to guide these changes, leading to successful development.
  • Inclusion of Students with Mild/Moderate Disabilities

    Learn how to successfully integrate children with disabilities in the general classroom, providing differentiated instruction to those in need. Identify children with learning disabilities, and gain an understanding of how to react as a teacher.
  • Methods of Teaching in Elementary School

    Coursework differs depending on the subject focus, but provides all teachers with more tools to teach particular elementary school topics. Specializations include science, math, language arts, social studies, and art.
  • Management Practices for Elementary Classroom Teachers

    Explore ways to create a nurturing and effective classroom environment, minimizing distractions and interruptions while teaching. Research how establishing rules and incentives help students earn higher grades.
  • Cultural Issues in Education

    Look at how to responsibly address cultural concerns in the classroom, ensuring your teaching practices meet the needs of every student regardless of background.

Teachers who earn master’s degrees in elementary education are also better prepared to take on leadership roles at their schools. Special coursework in teacher leadership and organizational management allow teachers to help implement curriculum changes and better teaching practices school-wide.

Teachers more prepared to meet the needs of their students encourage student success in elementary school. Read on to discover how a master’s degree in elementary education might improve learning outcomes for your students.

How will a graduate degree in elementary education help my students?

Students thrive on a structured environment where they can explore concepts safely and efficiently. Master’s programs in elementary education give you a greater understanding of assessment tools to help create these environments, increasing the chances of your students’ successes.

Advanced coursework in cognitive and emotional development gives teachers tools to recognize these challenges, and individually address a student’s particular needs. With an enhanced understanding of how to meet the needs of all students in a classroom, graduate-level teachers are able to tackle multiple challenges that aren’t addressed in undergraduate programs.

Want to know more?

If you’re interested in learning more about how a graduate degree in elementary education can help your career grow and your students prosper, research what different programs can offer you. Pick your state from this map representing Master’s in Education programs offered across the country.

Schools Offering Accredited Education Programs

Concordia University - Portland offers several fully online 14-month Master of Education (M.Ed.) programs and a fully online Doctorate of Education (Ed.D.) program. You'll learn new strategies and techniques for your classroom while expanding your knowledge and skills as an educator.


  • M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction: Curriculum & Instruction: Early Childhood Education
  • M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction: Social Studies
  • M.Ed. in Career and Technical Education
  • And more...

Colorado State University-Global Campus

Colorado State University-Global Campus (CSU-Global) offers career relevant bachelor’s and master’s degree programs for working adults and nontraditional learners.

  • The first and only 100% online, fully accredited public university in the United States
  • No set class times or locations
  • Affordable tuition, guaranteed not to increase as long as you are enrolled
  • Accelerated eight-week terms
  • Classes start every month


  • MS - Teaching and Learning

At Kaplan University, we offer over 180 degree and certificate programs. With three different ways to learn, you can choose the format that works best for you:

  • Study wherever you have an Internet connection, because almost all of our courses are 100% online, or
  • Take campus-based classes(with day and evening options available), or
  • Combine campus learning with online classes (blended).


  • Master of Arts: Teaching
  • Master of Science in Higher Education - College Teaching
  • Master of Science: Education
  • And more...
Locations: Hagerstown
Learning at Full Sail University has always centered around interaction and the exchange of ideas. Our online curriculum fully embraces this philosophy. We have developed our own online learning environment with the aim of being the most people-focused education experience on the web.


  • Instructional Design & Technology

You’re serious about success. With your busy schedule and the desire to move your career forward, you can earn an accredited associate, bachelors or master’s degree at a pace that works for you anywhere, anytime, 24/7.

At AIU, the Serious U, you can get started to get ahead.


  • Master's (M.Ed.) - Curriculum and Instruction for Educators
  • Master's (M.Ed.) - Instructional Design and Technology

Earn your graduate degree online with Northcentral University.  We offer online programs focused on doctoral and master’s degrees in the schools of business and technology management, education, psychology and marriage and family sciences.

Earn your graduate degree online with Northcentral University.  We offer online programs focused on doctoral and master’s degrees in the schools of business and technology management, education, psychology and marriage and family sciences.

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