MA in Education, Educator Effectiveness

Western's online MA in Education, Educator Effectiveness is a personalized degree program that is designed to help currently-licensed teachers meet their professional performance goals.

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How does the program work?

"What is worth noting is that the impact of this particular program of study will be measured by the teachers’ performance in the classroom, and ultimately by the growth of the students in those teachers’ classrooms. There is a powerful bridge created between the role of rigorous teacher preparation beyond initial licensure and high-quality instruction for our K-12 students."

Colleen O'Neil, Director of Educator Licensing, Colorado Dept. of Education

You will work closely with a faculty advisor to build a degree plan based on your own interests and professional growth goals, as they relate to Colorado's Teacher Quality Standards, and you will document your growth towards those goals over the course of your degree.  For example, you may wish to want to improve your students' Reading scores, implement a new learning strategy, become a leader in your school, or improve your overall teacher effectiveness rating.  

Click on the Degree plan below to see a list of courses that you will draw from.

Capstone project: A final capstone project will require a portfolio of evidence from multiple measures to establish the rate and degree of improvement in performance. The portfolio will be due and evaluated to coincide with the end of your final semester. 

File MA in Educator Effectiveness Final Capstone Professional Portfolio.docx

Do I need to travel to Gunnison?

No, your coursework will be completed entirely online.  

How long does the program take to complete?

The degree requires 30 credits of coursework and may be completed in 1 -5 years.

How much does the program cost?

The cost of the MA in Education, Educator Effectiveness is $11,950 ($385 per credit, plus a $400 comprehensive advising/exam fee). 

What sets this program apart?

Individualized: Teachers take courses that are relevant to their professional needs rather than a prescribed course list.

Designed around Colorado's Teacher Quality Standards:  Under Senate Bill 10-191, teachers are rated on Quality Standards that measure professional practice and student learning over time.   Western's Educator Effectiveness MA degree program helps teachers meet their performance goals.

Performance-based:  The impact of this program is  measured by the teachers’ performance in the classroom, and ultimately by the growth of the students in those teachers’ classrooms. 

Can I add an endorsement while I earn the MA in Education, Educator Effectiveness?

Yes, qualified teachers may add one of the following endorsements as part of the MA degree coursework:

What options are out there for financing my degree?

Candidates taking 5 or more credits may apply for federal loans and may be eligible for repayment or loan forgiveness programs:

IBR Info (Income-Based Repayment)

Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program

External Grants

Many grants and scholarships are available to educators.  By visiting one of the following links, you will be taken to a website that is not affiliated with Western.  Western is not responsible for and does not endorse, guarantee or monitor content, availability, viewpoints, products or services that are offered or expressed on other websites.

ACS-Hach Second Career Teacher Scholarship

The ACS-Hach Second Career Teacher Scholarship is awarded to professionals in the chemistry field pursuing a Masters degree in education or becoming certified as a chemistry/science teacher.

American Association of University Women (AAUW)

AAUW has a long and distinguished history of advancing educational and professional opportunities for women in the United States and around the globe. 

The American Indian Graduate Center Scholars (AIGC)

The AIGC fellowship program provides approximately $1,200,000 in fellowships to over 375 Native American and Alaska Native graduate students each year. Graduate fellowships are monetary awards made to American Indian and Alaska Native graduate or professional degree-seeking students, who meet all eligibility criteria.

Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute (CHCI)-Scholarship Awards

The mission of CHCI Scholarship Program is to provide critical financial assistance that will increase graduation rates among Latino students in post-secondary education. 

Eleanor Roosevelt Teacher Fellowship

Applicant must be a woman, elementary or secondary public school teacher, U.S. citizen, dedicated to improving educational opportunities for women of all ages, presently employed with at least three years full-time teaching experience, and planning to continue teaching for the next three years. Award supports professional development for teachers, educational opportunities for girls, and advancement of gender equity in the classroom, school, or district.

Jack Kent Cooke Foundation

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation’s scholarships are designed to encourage and support outstanding students from 7th grade through graduate school who have a breadth of interests, work hard, demonstrate a strong will to succeed, and have financial need.

La Unidad Latina Foundation, Inc.

The La Unidad Latina Foundation was established in 1999 to serve as an independent, non-profit, charitable organization dedicated to educational achievement and civic empowerment in the Latino community. 

Millennium Momentum Foundation, Inc. – Best & the Brightest Scholarship Program

In an effort to offset the financial burden associated with funding a quality college education, Millennium Momentum Foundation Inc., awards academic scholarships to aspiring undergraduate and graduate college students pursuing careers in public service related fields. 

The NEA Foundation

The NEA Foundation provides grants to support public school teachers, public education support professionals, and/or faculty and staff in public institutions of higher education for one of the following two purposes: Grants to individuals fund participation in high-quality professional development experiences, such as summer institutes or action research; or grants to groups fund collegial study, including study groups, action research, lesson study, or mentoring experiences for faculty or staff new to an assignment.

National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP)

Each year the NAACP, through generous donations, is able to provide scholarships to outstanding students.

National Association for Campus Activities (NACA)

The NACA Foundation offers numerous scholarships that are available to graduate students, undergraduate student leaders and associate members on an annual basis. 

P.E.O. International Peace Scholarship Fund

The Philanthropic Educational Organization (P.E.O.) is a philanthropic organization where women celebrate the advancement of women; educate women through scholarships, grants, awards, loans, and stewardship of Cottey College; and motivate women to achieve their highest aspirations.

Pat Tillman Foundation, Tillman Military Scholars

The Pat Tillman Foundation is a national leader in providing resources and educational scholarship support to veterans, active service-members and their spouses. 

The Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowships For New Americans

The purpose of The Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans is to provide opportunities for continuing generations of able and accomplished New Americans to achieve leadership in their chosen fields. 

Schools First Federal Credit Union, Higher Education Loan

Pursuing an advanced degree is a time-consuming and often costly challenge, but essential to your professional career advancement. To support SchoolsFirst FCU Members as they pursue degrees in master’s or doctorate programs, we’ve developed our Higher Education Loan. This loan can be used to cover tuition and other costs incurred while completing an advanced degree.


The UNCF Program Services Department manages various scholarship programs. Each program has its own eligibility criteria, open/close dates and required documentation. 

Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy 

The goal of this program is to develop and expand family literacy efforts nationwide and to support the development of literacy programs that build families of readers.

Braitmayer Foundation 

Supports organizations and programs from across the US which enhance the education of K-12 children.

Classroom Connection 

Classroom Connection is a teacher networking program that recognizes and rewards exemplary teaching in classrooms. It is sponsored by Xcel Energy Foundation and is available to teachers throughout the service territory of Xcel Energy.

Jordan Fundamentals Grants 

Grants are awarded to teachers or paraprofessionals who work with public school students in grades six through twelve who also demonstrate instructional creativity and exemplify high learning expectations for economically disadvantaged students.

National Foundation for the Improvement of Education (NFIE) 

NFIE supports a variety of programs for teachers, education support personnel, and higher education faculty and staff to improve student learning in the nation's public schools.

Verizon Foundation 

The Verizon Foundation concentrates its grant-making in several distinct priority funding areas. These include literacy, digital divide, women and economic development, people with disabilities, education/scholarships and community development.