Social Justice Education M.Ed.

The goal of the Social Justice Education (SJE) concentration is to prepare educational leaders who can promote social diversity and social justice in educational settings through the development of theoretical and practical knowledge, empirical research, and the use of effective social justice education practices.

Course of Study

Program of Study

Course Description Credits
  Social Justice Education Content & Theory Core Courses  
EDUC 691E* Social Justice Issues in Education 3
EDUC 624 Contemporary and Historical Constructions of Social Justice Education 3
EDUC 648 Oppression & Education 3
  Pedagogy, Curriculum Design, Facilitation, & Assessment  
EDUC 627 Curriculum Design and Facilitation in Social Justice Education 3
EDUC 609 Multicultural Group Processes: Self/Other Awareness in groups 3
EDUC 691G** Social Justice Education Teaching & Reflective Practice 3
EDUC 692B*** Small Group Leadership: Dialogue Facilitation Across Differences 3
EDUC 698S Small Group Leadership: Dialogue Facilitation Across Differences 3
  Social Justice Education Specialization (1 course required)  
EDUC 746 Social Justice Education in Youth Based Settings 3
EDUC 797K Social Justice Education with College Students 3
     
Electives 3 courses required towards specialization 9
EDUC 698S**** Summer or Fall Internship 3

*Students are expected to demonstrate competency in FOUR manifestations of social oppression. Students will complete three in the first semester and demonstrate competency in a fourth using a different course or experience.

**In this course students learn to plan and co-facilitate EDUC 392 undergraduate weekend seminars (1 credit) focusing on one manifestations of oppression (1 weekend).

***In this course students learn to plan and co-facilitate EDUC 202: Exploring Differences and Common Ground Intergroup Dialogues (4 credits), a multi-section undergraduate course that meets for 10 weeks.

**** In this 3-credit elective practicum course, students work closely with their academic advisor using the concentration internship guidelines to develop an independent practicum contract.

EDUC 691E Social Justice Issues in Education

Introductory vocabulary and definitions, descriptions of the dynamics of oppression at the individual, institutional, and cultural levels.  Focus on developing personal awareness of social group memberships in relationship to two specific forms of oppression.  Introduction to selected literature on two specific forms of oppression.

EDUC 624 Contemporary & Historical Constructions of Social Justice Education

Theoretical issues related to manifestations of oppression with focus on social constructions of race,gender and sexuality, and disability.

EDUC 648 Oppression & Education

Theory, practice, and manifestations of oppression.  Various educational methods and techniques of combating oppression.

EDUC 627 Curriculum Design & Instruction For Social Justice Education

Examines and applies theories and methods of instructional design, classroom teaching, and reflective practice in social justice education in K-16 settings.  Explores critical issues in teaching and learning about diversity and social justice issues.

EDUC 609 Multicultural Group Processes

Develops a theoretical and skill foundation for working with diverse groups in educational and work settings. Explores theories of intergroup relations, group development, and leadership that facilitate understanding of intergroup biases and conflict, multicultural dynamics in diverse groups, and conflict and cooperation in group life.

EDUC 691G Social Justice Education Teaching & Reflective Practice

The practicum is designed to provide an opportunity for participants in the Social Justice Education Reflective Practitioner Development Program to reflect on their development and increase their levels of self-awareness as Social Justice educators.

EDUC 692B Dialogue Across DIfference

This course is intentionally designed to prepare students to become active change agents as planners and facilitators of intergroup dialogues using a reflective practice training model.

EDUC 746 Social Justice Education in Youth Based Settings

This course focuses on the integration of SJE as pedagogy and SJE as content to promote youth engagement and transformative education across learning environments. Its purpose is to help students develop a combination of historical, theoretical, conceptual, scientific, and pedagogical foundation for SJE in youth-based settings such as schools and community based organizations.

EDUC 797K Social Justice Education with College Students

This course provides a conceptual, practical, and empirical foundation for SJE in college settings in four areas: advocacy and inclusion, diversity education, intergroup dialogue, and civic engagement.

Admissions

The Social Justice Education admissions committee wants to know about your interest in social justice education and to understand how your prior personal, educational, and professional experiences have prepared you for graduate work in social justice education. Please be succinct yet specific about your interest in social justice education and the ways in which SJE can support your future plans and professional goals. Your personal statement will doubly serve as a writing sample (no more than 3 pages). Master’s applicants: Be sure your application indicates your preference to focus on K-12 education/youth-based settings or higher education.

Application Timeline

Applications are due by January 2. Decisions will be made in March/April for admissions the following September. There are no mid-year admissions.

Prerequisites

Applicants are expected to show evidence of applied social justice experience, at least one semester of which is supervised. Examples might include classroom teaching, peer education programs, mediation teams, residence assistants, or community outreach programs. Applicants may also have certification in teaching, school counseling, and special education or school administration. Evidence of at least one full year's work experience in a social justice-related area beyond the bachelor's degree is strongly preferred.

Application Materials

  • Online Application
  • Personal statement describing the applicant's prior experience with social justice education, professional objectives relevant to social justice education, and a description of what they hope to achieve through completion of the master’s program
  • Official Transcripts
  • Full résumé
  • 3 letters of recommendation (at least one faculty member)

For more information, please contect Judy Pierce at judithpierce@educ.umass.edu or (413) 545-3610.