M.Ed. in Teacher Leadership

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M.Ed. in Teacher Leadership

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Course Offerings

One unit of credit equals four semester hours. All courses are .75 credit (three semester hours), unless otherwise noted.

Graduate-level courses can be taken for at-large graduate credit. These courses do not lead to a graduate degree, but may be electives for earning endorsements or professional development credits. At-large graduate students must be admitted through the School for Professional Studies to enroll in a graduate course in education.

Elmhurst College reserves the right to modify courses, schedules and program format without advance notice to students.

Master of Education in Teacher Leadership (back to top)

Core Teacher Leadership Courses

Most courses do not have prerequisites and may be completed in any order. The following courses are required for the M.Ed. in Teacher Leadership and the teacher leader endorsement.

MTL 521—Building Professional and Community Relationships through Collaboration
This course involves the study of the collaborative processes and skills necessary for effective interaction among educational professionals, para- professionals, parents and students. Course topics include communication processes, problem-solving strategies, establishing positive collaborative relationships, and the management and assessment of collaboration. An additional focus will be on the process and collaboration necessary for successful transitions throughout life.

MTL 528—Examining Issues and Trends in Teacher Leadership
Teachers will research, analyze, synthesize and evaluate the meaning of “teacher leadership” through investigating the current professional literature and their professional practice. The primary goal of the course is for teachers to enhance their understanding of teacher leadership, increase their leadership actions, and learn how their actions can be a form of advocacy for improving education.

MTL 536—Linking Assessment to Learning
In this course, teachers will examine the major types of assessments used for diagnosing and evaluating student learning in schools. Assessments will be designed and analyzed that effectively link learning objectives and learner outcomes with current research on differentiation. Teachers will learn how to effectively and ethically develop, implement and interpret multiple assessment tools and practices by adapting them to the contexts in which they are used.

MTL 538—Improving School Climate and Learning
Teachers will explore controversial issues and best practices influencing positive school and classroom climates. They will analyze research-based practices and strategies to evaluate the essential qualities of schools and classrooms that optimize learning and socio-emotional development for students as well as support the retention of high-quality faculty. Through application and self-evaluation of new practices for improving school and classroom climate, teachers will broaden their understanding and skills for meeting the needs of their students and set goals for moving to a higher level of professional practice.

MTL 597—Promoting Professional Development for School Improvement
In this course, teachers examine how different models of professional development impact student learning. They research and evaluate models of effective professional development in education designed to meet teaching and learning needs. Teachers learn how to observe instruction and provide coaching, mentoring and professional development to colleagues. Readings and assignments are aligned with the Professional Learning Domain of the Teacher Leader Model Standards.

Advocacy Courses

Teachers must choose at least one advocacy course to complete the M.Ed. in Teacher Leadership and the teacher leader endorsement.

MTL 532—Teaching and Learning in the Diverse Classroom
This course provides a foundation for developing instructional practices that classroom teachers may use to respond to the issues of the 21st century. Teachers will examine the learning outcomes of PK-12 students with and without special needs in inclusive classrooms and the social issues faced by teachers, counselors and administrators. Additional focus areas will include topics such as professional collaboration, differentiated instruction, strategies for modifying and adapting instruction, cooperative learning, problem- based learning, interdisciplinary instruction, and classroom applications of the theory of multiple intelligences.

MTL 544—Cross-Cultural Studies for Teaching English Language Learners
This course is designed for teachers to examine the relationship among culture, classroom practices and policy, and how this relationship influences the education of English language learners. Teachers begin by first examining their own culture and their cultural assumptions and biases and how those influence teaching and learning in the classroom. Issues of equity, access and cross-cultural understandings are examined as well. Teachers will analyze and redesign curriculum so that it is linguistically and culturally relevant. This course requires field experience hours in an ESL and/or bilingual PK-12 classroom.

MTL 567—Advocating Culturally Relevant Curriculum and Instruction
This course provides theory and practice in the analysis and integration of cultural proficiency for grades PK-12. Teachers enrolled in the course will explore the implementation of a culturally relevant curriculum in the classroom that meets the needs of culturally and ethnically diverse students.

MTL 596—Evaluating Diversity Issues in Teaching and Learning
This course provides theory and practice in the analysis of diversity issues and integration of diverse and differentiated instruction for grades PK-12. Teachers investigate classroom diversity issues that affect instruction and learning such as acculturation, disability, race, ethnicity, language and communication, as well as local, state and national policies.

Research Courses

Teachers must choose at least one research course to complete the teacher leader endorsement. MTL 591 and MTL 598 are required for the M.Ed.

MTL 513—Analyzing Reading Foundations
Teachers examine the history of reading from three perspectives: (a) reading from a historical perspective, (b) understanding current reading research, and (c) the study of reading as it applies to current classroom practice. There is an emphasis on reading research. Course topics include pivotal research studies, student texts and teaching methods used at different points in time, and trends in our schools that have led to some of the changes in how we teach reading. Teachers will focus on a facet of reading research that will most directly inform their own practices and impact student outcomes.

MTL 552—Using Educational Research to Improve Practice
In this course, teachers will read, analyze and synthesize the research literature on teaching and learning to examine and transform their focus areas. Teachers will acquire skills for electronically searching, selecting and evaluating the most current research literatures. In addition, they will develop the critical thinking and problem-solving skills needed to answer professional questions using the most valid and reliable professional resources.

Required Research Courses for the M.Ed.

MTL 591—Applying Action Research in Education
A purpose of this course is to take the classroom practitioner from theory to practice. With professor supervision, teachers will learn how to use action research methods as a means of collecting data that can inform and improve practice as well as be applied in their graduate research projects. Topics will reflect current educational issues and areas of research.

MTL 598—Seminar in Leadership, Innovation and Critical Inquiry
.25 , .50 or .75 credit as needed to earn 8.50 credits
This seminar represents the culminating experience for all teachers. This seminar is completed during the final Fall or Spring term in the program in order to facilitate the completion of a final master’s project.

Elective Course Offerings

MTL 518—Promoting Social Justice through PK-12 Multicultural Literature and Media
This course provides theory and practice in the analysis and integration of multicultural literature and media for grades PK-12. Teachers enrolled in the course will explore social issues in the classroom that affect instruction such as stereotypes, cultural differences and various forms of diversity.

MTL 522—Integrating Literacy Across the Content Areas
This course is an in-depth examination of research-based literacy practices and strategies (reading and writing) across the content areas in grades PK-12. Through reflection, scholarly research and the practical application of best practices in literacy, teachers will broaden their understanding of how best to meet the need of their students to become independent readers and writers.

MTL 530—Special Topics in Instruction
A seminar designed to give graduate students in education an opportunity to study current research-based instructional models, methods and strategies. Specific topics vary each term based on the interests of students and faculty expertise. May be repeated for credit when topic changes.

MTL 534—Implementing Technology and Multimedia Tools to Enhance Learning
An advanced investigation of current and innovative ways in which technological tools and resources may be ethically and effectively utilized to facilitate teaching and learning. Teachers will become proficient in the application of methods and strategies for using educational technology in their instruction as well as in their program study and research. Faculty will also facilitate grant writing so that teachers can apply for technology-related materials and resources for their classroom or school district. This course requires additional technology needs as specified in the course syllabus.

MTL 541—Special Topics in Administration
A seminar designed to give graduate students in education an opportunity to study current administrative theory, research and practices in instructional leadership, management of public schools, and school and public policy. Specific topics vary each term based on the interests of students and faculty expertise. May be repeated for credit when topic changes.

MTL 542—Using School Law for Advocacy and Leadership
This course introduces teachers to the laws and legal implications of court decisions affecting schools and professional educators. Teachers will analyze and discuss constitutional law, case law and legal issues affecting educational policy.

MTL 580—Comparative Studies–Travel
.50 credit
This comparative studies and travel course varies with different travel destinations as they are offered. The travel destination will be reflected in the title of the course. Common summer travel destinations are Australia and South Africa. All travel courses include cross-cultural studies of education and visits to schools. May be repeated for credit when travel destination changes.

ESL/Bilingual Course Offerings: Graduate ESL/Bilingual Endorsement
The ESL/Bilingual endorsement for the state of Illinois may be earned by combining undergraduate and graduate coursework in ESL/Bilingual. The endorsement may be earned on an Illinois early childhood, elementary, secondary or special education professional teaching license, if the teacher has completed 18 semester hours of coursework, including the documentation of 100 hours of clinical experiences in ESL/Bilingual classrooms. A language proficiency exam is also required to earn the Bilingual endorsement. All courses are .75 credit (3 semester hours).

MTL 544—Cross-Cultural Studies in Teaching English Language Learners
This course is designed for teachers to examine the relationship among culture, classroom practices and policy, and how this relationship influences the education of English language learners. Teachers begin by first examining their own culture and their cultural assumptions and biases and how those influence teaching and learning in the classroom. Issues of equity, access and cross-cultural understandings are examined as well. Teachers will analyze and redesign curriculum so that it is linguistically and culturally relevant. This course requires field experience hours in an ESL and/or bilingual PK-12 classroom.

MTL 558—Theoretical Foundations of Teaching English Language Learners
Formerly MTL 512—Theoretical Foundations of ESL/Bilingual Education
This course is an introduction to and immersion into the theoretical frameworks of English as a Second Language (ESL) and Bilingual education and the research, movements and policies that inform them. A variety of ESL/Bilingual models and programs that exist in PK-12 schools and classrooms will be identified, analyzed and evaluated through multiple assignments and media. Students will demonstrate an understanding of the relationship between theory and practice and will define their roles as teachers of, and advocates for, English learners. This course requires field experience hours in an ESL and/or bilingual PK-12 classroom.

MTL 569—Linguistics for Second Language Learning
Formerly MTL 519 Linguistics in Second Language Acquisition
The purpose of this course is to introduce linguistic concepts as they apply to teaching in a variety of contexts, including, but not limited to, monolingual and bilingual classrooms. In addition, this course is designed to provide teachers with a meta-linguistic awareness in order to facilitate learning and instruction. This course will help us understand, think and talk about the complexities of language, learning and human development. The fields of linguistics, applied linguistics and linguistic anthropology are dedicated to questions about the nature, function and purposes of language, and we will use readings anchored in these disciplines to navigate our journey. This course requires field experience hours in an ESL and/or bilingual PK-12 classroom.

MTL 579—Methods and Materials for Teaching English Language Learners
Formerly MTL 517 English as a Second Language Teaching Methodology
This is an advanced course in the teaching of bilingual and sheltered English instruction to English language learners (ELLs). Students will learn different approaches and methodologies used to support the development of listening, speaking, reading and writing in social and academic contexts. The course provides opportunities for students to develop curriculum for ELLs in bilingual and ESL classrooms, and examine instructional delivery through videotaping and analyzing practice. This course requires field experience hours in an ESL and/or bilingual PK-12 classroom. Prerequisite: MTL 558.

MTL 587—Assessment of English Language Learners Formerly: MTL 539 Assessment of Students with Limited English Proficiencies This course will focus on the discussion of basic principles and current approaches to assessment of language learning students in ESL and bilingual PK-12 educational settings, including the policies, procedures and issues that inform the assessment of ELLs. Students will learn about the different purposes of process and product assessment tools, authentic and curriculum-based forms of assessment, issues in the assessment of English Language Learners (ELLs), and assessment of academic content knowledge. Students will have opportunities to examine critically and practice administering assessment tools used in current educational contexts. Students will learn to identify language needs and how to differentiate them from developmental needs. This course requires field experience hours in an ESL and/or bilingual PK-12 classroom. Prerequisite: MTL 569.

MTL 592—Action Research and Application of Bilingual Methods .75 credit This is an advanced course in the inquiry and application of bilingual and ESL methods. Students will study their own teaching of bilingual and ESL methodologies designed to support the development of listening, speaking, reading and writing in social and academic contexts. Through the implementation of an action research model of teacher inquiry, teachers will examine critically their bilingual and ESL instructional practices and develop a situated and transformative action plan for future teaching that is anchored in sociocultural views of learning. Teachers will learn how to use action research methods to collect data on teaching practices and for graduate research projects. This course requires field experience hours in an ESL and/or bilingual PK-12 classroom. Prerequisites: MTL 544, MTL 558, MTL 569 and MTL 579.

Special Education Course Offerings

Elective coursework for the State of Illinois LBS1 endorsement, which may be added to the professional license after successful completion of the Learning Behavior Specialist 1 (LBS1, #155) exam, are listed in the section for the M.S.Ed. in Special Education.

  • MTL 514—Characteristics of Learners with Disabilities
  • MTL 524—The Educational Assessment Process and Learners with Disabilities
  • MTL 532—Teaching and Learning in the Diverse Classroom (may be waived for teachers who completed an introduction to special education as part of their initial licensure)
  • MTL 535—Curriculum and Instruction for Learners with High Incidence Disabilities
  • MTL 537—Curriculum and Instruction for Learners with Low Incidence Disabilities

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Master of Science in Special Education (back to top)

Core Special Education Courses

Most courses do not have prerequisites and may be completed in any order. The following six courses are required for the M.S.Ed. in Special Education.

MTL 514—Characteristics of Learners with Disabilities
This course is designed for teachers to examine the development and the diverse educational, physical, motor, communication, social-emotional and cognitive needs of students with disabilities. Research on and implications for appropriate diagnosis, service delivery, and instructional methodology are examined. Summer Term.

MTL 524—The Educational Assessment Process and Learners with Disabilities
An advanced study of the educational assessment processes and strategies with a review of legal provisions, regulations and guidelines. Focus areas include the uses and limitations of formal and informal assessments, the administration and interpretation of information obtained from both formal and informal measures, strategies for modifying and adapting formal measures (local, state, and national), and the Illinois Alternative Assessment Process. Summer Term.

MTL 532—Teaching and Learning in the Diverse Classroom
This course provides a foundation for developing instructional practices that classroom teachers may use to respond to the issues of the 21st century. Teachers will examine the learning outcomes of P-12 students with and without special needs in inclusive classrooms and the social issues faced by teachers, counselors, and administrators. Additional focus areas will include topics such as professional collaboration, differentiated instruction, strategies for modifying and adapting instruction, cooperative learning, problem-based learning, interdisciplinary instruction, and classroom applications of the theory of multiple intelligences.

MTL 535—Curriculum and Instruction for Learners with High Incidence Disabilities
This course offers an investigation of the special methodology, materials and approaches for teaching students with mild to moderate disabilities in the academic curriculum (K-12). Educational assessment strategies, components in individualized education programs, and the design of such programs are also studied. Fall Term.

MTL 537—Curriculum and Instruction for Learners with Low Incidence Disabilities
An advanced study of the assessment, curriculum development and instruction in meaningful curriculum design including functional academics; critical life skills; and communication, social and mobility areas. Authentic assessment strategies, components in individualized education programs, and the implementation of functional curricula across settings are studied. Spring Term.

MTL 542—Using School Law for Advocacy and Leadership
In this course, teachers will be introduced to the laws and legal implications of court decisions affecting schools and professional educators. Teachers will analyze and discuss constitutional law, case law and legal issues affecting educational policy and practice.

Advocacy and Leadership Courses

Teachers choose two advocacy and leadership courses to complete the M.S.Ed. in Special Education from the following choices. For course descriptions, see the M.Ed. in Teacher Leadership pages in this catalog.

  • MTL 521—Building Professional and Community Relationships through Collaboration
  • MTL 528—xamining Issues and Trends in Teacher Leadership MTL 536 Linking Assessment to Learning
  • MTL 538—Improving School Climate and Learning
  • MTL 544—Cross-Cultural Studies in Teaching English Language Learners (Summer Term; this course is part of the ESL/Bilingual endorsement)
  • MTL 567—Advocating for Culturally Relevant Curriculum and Instruction MTL 596 Evaluating Diversity Issues in Teaching and Learning
  • MTL 597—Promoting Professional Development for School Improvement

Required Researches for M.S.Ed.

Teachers must complete the following research courses as part of degree requirements. All research projects are focused on special education.

MTL 513—Analyzing Reading Foundations
Teachers examine the history of reading from three perspectives: (a) reading from a historical perspective, (b) understanding current reading research, and (c) the study of reading as it applies to current classroom practice. There is an emphasis on reading research. Course topics include pivotal research studies, student texts and teaching methods used at different points in time, and trends in our schools that have led to some of the changes in how we teach reading. Teachers will focus on a facet of reading research that will most directly inform their own practices and impact student outcomes. Alternating Summer Term.

MTL 552—Using Research to Improve Practice
In this course, teachers will read, analyze and synthesize the research literature on teaching and learning to examine and transform their focus areas. Teachers will acquire skills for electronically searching, selecting and evaluating the most current research literatures. In addition, they will develop the critical thinking and problem-solving skills needed to answer professional questions using the most valid and reliable professional resources.

MTL 591—Action Research
A purpose of this course is to take the classroom practitioner from theory to practice. With professor supervision, teachers will learn how to use action research methods as a means of collecting data that can inform and improve practice as well as be applied in their graduate research projects. Topics will reflect current educational issues and areas of research.

MTL 598—Seminar in Leadership, Innovation and Critical Inquiry
.25, .50 or .75 credit as needed to earn 8.50 credits
This seminar represents the culminating experience for all teachers. This seminar is completed during the final Fall or Spring term in the program to facilitate the completion of a final master’s project in special education.

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