International Education M.Ed. - Online

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The master's degree in international education program provides students with the opportunity to study the role of education in the context of Asia, Africa, and Latin America and other developing areas. The program provides opportunities to focus on formal or non-formal education, community education, teacher education, adult literacy and learning theories, gender issues in development, social theories of education, comparative education, cultural issues in education, and education in crisis and conflict contexts. Students can also choose to focus on issues of formal education and development. Courses and co-curricular activities also bring an international dimension to education in the United States.

Our world needs educators trained in critical reflection and dedicated to improving equitable outcomes for students and their communities around the globe. Students in international education are expected to become aware of social justice issues in education and to understand participatory and popular education approaches to education. Graduates should have developed an in-depth awareness of cultural differences; the ability to apply critical theory and pedagogy in both schools and communities in domestic and/or international settings; and practical skills in training, project development, research, and evaluation.

The International Education program at the UMass Amherst College of Education has been at the forefront of cutting edge approaches to international education and development for over 50 years. This top-ranked Master of Education program, taught by world-class UMass Amherst faculty, delivers hands-on practical experience through a field-based, rigorous curriculum. Serve your local community by completing your coursework close to home.

Through the completion of 12 classes (36 credits) in a comprehensive and agile course of study, our M.Ed. students engage in experiential and academic projects to grow as scholar-practitioners engaged in socially just approaches to education and development. The built-in flexibility allows you to complete your degree in as little as 12 months, and fully online.

We seek candidates from a wide range of personal, professional, and academic backgrounds. Our students benefit from sharing their diverse perspectives and real-world knowledge. The online learning format prioritizes collaboration between students and faculty. Our program engages educators in critical inquiry and reflection to develop socially just approaches to equitable educational solutions around the world.

The flexible structure of the online M.Ed. allows you to cultivate ready-to-use skills while continuing to work and advance your professional skills.

You will:

  • Build a worldwide network through classes with peers and faculty around the world
  • Grow academically and professionally while simultaneously advancing your career and education
  • Apply your professional and academic skills to real-world examples in real-time
  • Join a powerful and well-established alumni network
  • Be taught by full-time faculty and established practitioners throughout your degree
  • Be part of a robust and engaged community of scholars around the world

Want to learn more about the program? We offer Virtual Information Sessions throughout the semester for a chance to speak with faculty, advisors, current students and/or other prospective students over Zoom. Upcoming Information Sessions are scheduled for:

  • Tuesday April 26th at 9:00 a.m. EDT
  • Wednesday May 18th at 6:00 p.m. EDT
  • Wednesday June 15th at 7:00 a.m. EDT
  • Monday July 18th at 12:00 p.m. EDT
  • Friday August 5th at 5:00 p.m. EDT

Please sign up for a Virtual Information Session here. If none of the times listed work for you, you can always sign up for an individual meeting. Please email to set up a meeting time by Zoom, phone or in-person.  FYI- Applications for the online program are currently being accepted for the Summer and Fall of 2022.

For more information, please contact Annie Stephany at

young students in Nepal in classroom

What to Expect 

You will be part of a global program of scholar-practitioners working towards living lives making a difference to the lives of some of the most vulnerable populations around the world.

You will work alongside peers, alumni, and faculty engaged in socially just education work in all corners of the globe throughout your program. You will work with a faculty advisor and a peer advisor throughout your program, and you will have opportunities to work alongside our outstanding network of alums engaged in all levels of work globally.

As a student in our program, you will nurture your skills to:

Advocate: the M.Ed. in International Education at UMass Amherst has been grounded in socially just approaches to some of the world’s most intractable education challenges for more than 50 years. Our learning community is comprised of students, faculty, and alumni from around the world. Working collaboratively, you will learn to advocate for equitable outcomes for marginalized communities.

Lead: Our students are immersed in academics grounded in practical, professional experiences. By studying and working concurrently, students grow their academic learning in research methodologies, critical social theories, and educational policy nurture and grow their abilities as scholar-practitioners in real-time. Graduates leave our program with outstanding skills in reflective practice that progresses inquiry and research empowering them to think broadly as leaders making a difference in the world.

Collaborate: The strength of our program is rooted in you, our students. As you work together with outstanding scholar-practitioners around the world, you will work together to explore, problem solve and create, enhancing skills that benefit each other and the field as a whole.

Create: By nurturing your skills through a combination of relevant coursework and practical experiences alongside scholar-practitioners around the world, you will strengthen your skills in designing, managing, and implementing innovative programs and policies that make a real difference in creating equitable educational outcomes around the globe.

How an M.Ed. in International Education can help your career

As a student in our program, you will learn how to develop the concrete analytical and practical skills alongside a deep theoretical base in international education development to stand out as a practitioner in your field. You will build the reflection and practical skills to emerge as a leader in project design, implementation, and management; in decision-making and management of both small and large teams; in policy-making and innovative program planning.

Program of Study

Masters programs of study are individually designed by the student and their advisor.  Students take two required courses, while the remaining credits are elective courses. The remaining credits are elective courses taken within the international education concentration and across the College of Education or the university, according to the interests and needs of the student. The program of study timeline is very flexible, but typically takes four semesters to complete.

The minimum degree requirements are 36 course credits including the two required courses, the Foundations in International Education course (EDUC 733) and a master's project (EDUC 630). The project serves as a capstone experience for the student’s academic study. The project does not need to be a formal thesis paper. It can be a written paper of substantial length (40-50+ pages) or a practical product such as a training guidebook, an action research project, or another project/product which links the student’s program of study with past, present, or future professional work. As the culmination of the program of study, the capstone project provides an opportunity for the student to conduct an in-depth study or activity on a topic of professional interest. Please see some sample master’s capstone projects for reference.

Elective courses are taken within the international education concentration and across the College of Education or the university, according to the interests and goals of the student.

  Required Courses  
EDUC 733 Foundations in International Education (offered each Fall and other semesters as needed) 3
EDUC 630 Master's Seminar in International Education (offered each Spring) 3
  International Education Elective Courses   
EDUC 626 Social Theories of Education 3
EDUC 635 Issues in Literacy Program Development 3
EDUC 678 Cultural Studies and International Development 3
EDUC 719 Theory and Practice in Non Formal Education 3
EDUC 720 Development Theories and International Education 3
EDUC 721 Research Methods in International Education 3
EDUC 752 Gender Issues and International Education 3
EDUC 768 Adult Learning Theory and Practice 3
EDUC 793D Globalization, Neoliberalism and Education Policy 3
EDUC 794J Education in Emergency Contexts 3
EDUC 819 Alternative Research Methods 3
EDUC 787 Im/migration, Development, and Education 3
EDUC 881 Comparative Education 3

Students are also able to take courses in research methods (qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods), teacher preparation and curriculum studies, higher education, and in early grade reading, to name a few online programs.  

For further information and course projections, please email

Projected Graduate Level Courses in International Education Summer 2022-Spring 2023 *Subject to change

  Planned Summer 2022 Courses  
EDUC 626 LGBTQI & International Education 3
EDUC 680 (EGR) How Children in Developing Countries Learn to Read* (EGR Course) 3
  Planned Fall 2022 Courses  
EDUC 733 Seminar/ Foundations of International Education 3
EDUC 768 Adult Learning Theory and Practice  (tentative) 3
EDUC 678 Cultural Studies  
EDUC 674A International Higher Education Policy (fall or spring)  
EDUC 687T (EGR*) Materials and Technology in Early Grade Reading* (EGR Course) 3
  Planned Spring 2023 Courses  
EDUC 630 Master's Seminar 3
EDUC 674A International Higher Education Policy 3
EDUC 794J Education in Emergency Contexts (tentative) 3
EDUC 787 Im/migration, Development, and Education  3
EDUC 687R (EGR*) Role of Community and Family in Early Grade Reading* (EGR Course) 3
  *Courses for the EGR Certificate, but open to all  

Instructions for Enrolling in Classes

Current Students: If you have been accepted into the online M.Ed. program, you are considered a current student. You will automatically be given a UWW enrollment appointment for the fall and spring semesters. Please note special Summer Session Instructions: All students must request a non-degree UWW enrollment appointment for the summer semester.

New Students/ Non-degree: Students who have applied for admission to a program but wish to take classes for academic credit before their official admit term, or non-degree students who wish to take a class or two for academic credit before applying are welcome to do so and considered new students.

UWW Enrollment Appointments

  • Log into SPIRE and navigate to Enrollment > Summer/Wtr/Non-deg Enroll Appt
  • Review all information and then press Request UWW Enrollment Appointment *It can take 3-6 days to process a new enrollment

Self-Enrolling in Classes

Once you are able to enroll, you can register for classes by logging in to SPIRE and navigate to Main Menu > Enrollment > Add Classes

Tutorial for Self-Enrolling

To enroll in an independent study, talk to your advisor.

Please visit the University Without Walls website for more information on enrolling in courses, enrollment exceptions, and late add.


Review the Enrollment FAQs or contact the UWW Registrar's Office at or call 413-545-3653 or 800-922-8211

teacher in Nepal drawing on board in class

How much does the degree cost?

  • Tuition is currently at $569/ credit.
  • Tuition for each 3-credit course is $1707 plus applicable fees.
  • Total tuition for the 36-credit program is $20,484 (Figures applicable as of January 2022).
  • One-time, non-refundable $507 matriculation fee for graduate degree students 
  • There is also a $50/semester registration fee.    

Contact the Bursar's Office at or call 413-545-0337 for questions about tuition, fees, payments, and discounts.

How to apply

Admitted students can begin the program in the Fall, Spring, or Summer terms. We use rolling admissions, so applications are accepted until full. If room, the last dates of consideration for each semester are:

  • Fall semester: July 15
  • Spring semester: December 1
  • Summer semester: April 1


  • Generally we require a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 and a TOEFL score of 80
  • Experience working in the field of international education or a related field is strongly preferred. 

Required Materials

  • Graduate Online Admissions Application  
  • Two letters of recommendation, with at least one from someone who can speak about your academic background.
  • Official transcript(s) – An official transcript from all colleges/universities attended, undergraduate and graduate, where 6 or more credits were taken.
  • Personal statement – Tell us why you are interested in pursuing a program in International Education, and why this is the right program for you.
  • Résumé/CV
  • Application fee *The application fee is $85 (current as of December 2021)
  • The GRE is not required

For more information, contact Annie Stephany at