What is a STEM Education Program and Why is it Important at the Secondary Level?
Grand Canyon University's Master of Education in Secondary Education with an emphasis in STEM ITL degree program can prepare graduate students to seek licensure as a junior high or high school teacher, proficient in STEM education. STEM education is an interdisciplinary and applied approach to learning that integrates STEM-related and rigorous academic concepts with practical lessons.1
STEM education is important, as you will be taught how to help middle and high school students apply science, technology, engineering and mathematics, including problem solving and critical thinking skills — while understanding how STEM impacts our everyday lives and our nation’s competitiveness in the global economy.
- Help meet the need for STEM teachers and mentors2
- Instill an appreciation for engineering, biochemistry, computer science, robotics, cybersecurity and other STEM fields
- Guide students toward STEM related professions - Help students become tomorrow’s leaders and innovators, skilled in medicine, technology and science.
- Develop engaging lessons and projects related to science, technology, engineering and math.
- Cultivate an attitude of discovery, exploration and ingenuity
With emphases placed on technology and classroom diversity, graduate students learn to combine grades 6–12 subjects (STEM and educational psychology), including a variety of 21st century teaching methods and strategies to improve student outcomes. Master’s graduates will be taught to expose their students to STEM, prepare them for post-secondary STEM education and encourage them to explore careers by developing a strong STEM foundation, hands-on curriculum and integrated instruction.
Why Earn Your Masters in STEM Education with Licensure Online at GCU?
The digital format and courses for this institutionally accredited and Arizona State Board of Education approved program are tailored to meet the needs of the adult learner and maximize the content knowledge that the candidate already possesses. Online courses are taught by faculty who share knowledge and experience in areas of secondary education, STEM and educational psychology.
All courses are directly aligned with standards from the Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (InTASC) and the International Society of Technology Educators (ISTE). Opportunities are provided to apply concepts, theories and research throughout the program, but particularly in secondary education field experiences that guide students through 100 hours of observational and practice-based experiences.
The final semester of the master’s in teaching secondary education degree program includes a fulltime, 15-week student teaching component. These learning, development and applied teaching opportunities are emphasized through a Christian worldview regarding values and ethics. Graduates of this program may seek employment anywhere a licensure is required, including public and private schools. This program does lead to teacher certification, and therefore, requires practicum hours, state exams, student teaching and an institutional recommendation from GCU.
What is the Difference between the Initial Licensure and Non-Licensure STEM Education Programs at GCU?
Candidates who seek the non-licensure route (NITL) with this program may not need to complete the 15-week student teaching component. Therefore, this may fit the needs of those who cannot complete this requirement. In addition, the program completion will be a semester shorter, as this route has 33 total credits, as opposed to 41 credits with the licensure route. Please note that candidates who take this route cannot obtain an Institutional Recommendation (IR) from GCU, which may impact certification requirements at the state level.
What Can You Do with a Masters in Secondary Education for STEM Education?
Graduates may be prepared to pursue career opportunities teaching students in one or more STEM subject, such as mathematics or science, at the secondary level in public or private schools. Teachers may be designated according to their subject matter specialty. Potential positions include a postsecondary education teacher or secondary school teacher focusing in a STEM-related field.
1 National Science Teaching Association (n.d.) STEM Education Teaching and Learning. Retrieved on May 30, 2023.
2 U.S. Department of Education (2022, Dec. 7). U.S. Department of Education Launches New Initiative to Enhance STEM Education for All Students. Retrieved on June 20, 2023.
If seeking licensure or certification, applicants to the program are responsible for contacting their state department of education for licensure requirements and program approval. In addition, fingerprint/background clearance is required.
* Please note that this list may contain programs and courses not presently offered, as availability may vary depending on class size, enrollment and other contributing factors. If you are interested in a program or course listed herein please first contact your University Counselor for the most current information regarding availability.
* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Programs or courses subject to change.