Program Description

This master’s degree with a concentration in Transformative Teaching provides experienced educators in any context with valuable professional development opportunities that help them to continually rethink the routines and assumptions that shape their work. Students reflect upon their practice, design thoughtful and constructive responses to the obstacles that inhibit teaching and student learning, and learn to become leaders in schools, professional associations, and communities around the world as civically engaged advocates for educators and students.

What it costs

The cost for this program is $687.00 per credit hour for VA state residents or $887.00 per credit hour for Non-VA residents. See the Cost tab below for a breakdown of tuition and fees. All of Mason’s tuition rates and fees can be found on our Student Accounts site.

Application Deadline

For application information and deadlines, see the Admissions site.

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Program Summary

90 Percent Online

Program: Curriculum and Instruction

Concentration: Transformative Teaching

Degree: MEd

College/School: College of Education and Human Development

Credits: 30 total

Intensive summer courses require week-long presence on Mason campus each summer. Summer coursework begins before fall enrollment date.

What is transformative teaching?

Transformative teaching is a multi-layered practice grounded in democratic leadership. It is the practice of protecting all and fostering equitable treatment, often through activism or negotiation with the school system. This form of transformative leadership relies on emotional intelligence and is cultivated through mindfulness, hope, and compassion.

We strongly encourage you to form a school-based team by beginning this program with at least one other teacher at your school.

Why choose George Mason?

  • The online format allows teachers from across the country to connect in deep collaboration while continuing to teach full-time.
  • You will work with a fixed group of students and faculty throughout the entire program in the cohort model.
  • A strong sense of community is developed during the week-long, on-campus course held each summer.
  • Families are invited to enjoy a memorable getaway in Washington, D.C. during the students’ on-campus weeks.
  • You can establish unique relationships with policymakers, advocacy groups, and media because of the program’s proximity to the nation’s capital.
  • You will develop solutions for educational equity and access as part of our social justice focus, thus becoming a transformative leader.
  • You will learn theories and pedagogy that empower you to address your students’ dynamic needs in the context of mandated curricula and assessment.
  • The program’s accomplished core faculty have extensive experience teaching in the K-12 classroom, managing Department of Education grant projects, and actively participating in professional associations. These associations include American Educational Research Association, Teaching for Change, and Center for Education Policy.

Additional Information

Program requirements are subject to change; please refer to the Mason Course Catalog for the most up-to-date requirements.

Requirements: 30 credits total

Students must attend a week-long intensive course on campus each summer. The remainder of coursework for this program is a combination of asynchronous and synchronous online offerings.

Please note that your first summer course is taken before your fall enrollment date. The cohort model provides a set sequence of integrated courses as shown below.

Required Courses (Year 1)

  • EDUC 647 Critical Reflective Practice | 1.5 credits | Summer 1 (face-to-face)
  • EDUC 649 Critical Dialogue in Education | 1.5 credits | Summer 1 and Fall 1
  • EDUC 651 Critical Theories and Pedagogies | 3 credits | Fall 1
  • EDUC 653 Technology and Learning | 3 credits | Fall 1
  • EDUC 655 Teacher Research Methods | 3 credits | Spring 1
  • EDUC 657 Teaching for Democracy and Social Justice | 3 credits | Spring 1

Required Courses (Year 2)

  • EDUC 659 Teacher Leadership | 1.5 credits | Summer 2 (face-to-face)
  • EDUC 661 Teacher Empowerment and Policy | 1.5 credits | Summer 2 and Fall 2
  • EDUC 663 Culturally Relevant Pedagogy | 3 credits | Fall 2
  • EDUC 665 Teacher Inquiry in Practice I | 3 credits | Fall 2
  • EDUC 667 Teacher Inquiry in Practice II | 3 credits | Spring 2
  • EDUC 669 Teaching and Learning in Practice | 3 credits | Spring 2

Tuition (2019-2020)

Virginia Resident$506.00
Non-Virginia Resident$706.00
Distance Learning Fee$35.00
Mandatory Student fee$146.00
Total Cost for Virginia Residents per Credit$687.00
Total Cost for Non-Virginia Residents per Credit$887.00
Graduate New Student Fee$60 (non-refundable, one-time fee)

Please Note: In addition to the tuition and fees described above, various course and lab fees may be assessed depending on the course(s) in which the student is enrolled. Please refer to the Students Accounts Office website for more information on tuition and fees.

VA state residents who are eligible can apply for the 15% PreK-12 VA Educators Discount.

Financial Aid

For information on loans and scholarships, visit the Office of Student Financial Aid. For information regarding grants, tuition waivers and other merit aid, please inquire with your graduate department. Also, many school districts offer tuition reimbursement options. Speak to your employer for more information.

Lodging and transportation expenses for the week long on-campus courses each summer are not covered by the above fees. Campus apartment style dorm facilities with kitchens and bathrooms are available for an additional rental fee.

Career Enhancement

The Transformative Teaching concentration serves as a rewarding alternative for gaining professional development credits. In the program, you will have opportunities to reflect upon your teaching practice to create empowering learning environments, gain the knowledge necessary to be an informed participant in the policy arena in issues related to teaching and learning, and be empowered to promote social justice from the classroom outward.

Further Studies

Students completing this degree are eligible to apply to the PhD program in the College of Education and Human Development.

Program ContactBetsy DeMulder
Academic Program Coordinator
Phone: (703) 993-8326
Fax: (703) 993-6137
Department ContactAna Silva
Phone: (703) 993-2794
CEHD Website
Follow CEHD on Twitter@MasonCEHD

All applicants should review the College of Education and Human Development (CEHD) Admissions page. For international applicants, see guidelines for International Graduate Requirements.


  • Hold a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university
  • Maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 3.00 in the last 60 credit hours of undergraduate study
  • Work in a school setting as a licensed teacher or in-school practitioner

Application Materials

  • Graduate application
  • Application fee
  • In-state tuition form (if applicable)
  • Two sealed official transcripts from all colleges and/or universities attended (applicants do not need to send transcripts for courses taken at George Mason University)
  • Three letters of recommendation from colleagues or principal/supervisor
  • Goals statement (750-1000 words) describing why you chose this online program, what you hope to learn in the program, and why now is an ideal time for you to enroll in the program. (Please compose and spell check your essay in a Word document first, then copy and paste it into the online application.)

If you have any questions during the application process, please contact the CEHD Admissions Office or 703-993-2010.