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Online Master of Science in Education in Curriculum & Instruction - Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need a background in education to qualify for admission?
No. Qualified applicants have various backgrounds within curriculum development, like teachers, school social workers, and administrators. Learn more about application requirements.

Who is on the faculty?
The faculty of the MSEd in Curriculum and Instruction at Purdue all hold doctoral degrees and contribute to ongoing research in the education field.

How do online classes work? Do I have to be at my computer at a specific time?
Most of the coursework is asynchronous, meaning that there are not specific times that you need to be in the course. However, interaction with your instructor and peers is a major component of our classes. As an online student at Purdue University, you’ll log into a virtual online classroom interface that includes areas for assignments, discussion boards, e-mail, and more. Just like in a traditional classroom, you’ll complete coursework and exams and interact with your instructor and classmates, but it will all be online. You can access and work on your coursework at any time—you just need to complete your assignments according to the schedule posted by your professor.

Is financial aid available? How much is tuition?
Financial aid is available. Visit the tuition and fees page for more information.

Can the graduate entrance exam be waived?
Applicants should provide scores from a Graduate Record Exam (GRE) that are less than five years old. Purdue University’s code for the GRE application is 1631.

In some instances, the GRE may not be required under the following conditions:

  • Applicant already possesses an advanced degree from a regionally accredited college or university, and graduated with a cumulative grade point average that is a 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale.
  • Applicant’s undergraduate cumulative grade point average is a 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale.

Note: All waivers must be approved by the department and are reviewed on a case by case basis. Meeting the above conditions does not guarantee waiver approval. Please contact an admissions counselor to discuss your specific admissions requirements.

How many total credits are required?
The online MSEd in curriculum and instruction at Purdue University requires a total of 30 credit hours that include a mix of core and concentration coursework.

How much time should I plan to spend on the program each week?
The academic experience varies by student; however, we recommend that students plan to spend 15-20 hours per week for each course they take.

Is an in-person residency required?
No. Purdue University does not require an on-site residency. That means you can earn the MSEd in Curriculum and Instruction degree from anywhere in the United States or around the world without temporarily relocating to complete a residency program.

Is support available to all students?
As an online student, you will have access to a multitude of support resources when you need help or guidance, starting with new student orientation to familiarize yourself with the online learning environment. Other services include a help desk for technical issues, a student services coordinator, financial aid advisers and more.

How are the online programs different from the on-campus programs?
Purdue University’s online courses are taught by the same world-class faculty members, and are just as rigorous and challenging as their on-campus counterparts. The main difference is the online format, which allows you greater convenience as to when and where you learn.

Will my diploma look different from the on-campus programs?
No. Both on-campus and online programs earn the same diploma. Online students are also invited to participate in the graduation ceremony on campus upon program completion.

Can I visit campus?
Yes. Students are always encouraged to visit campus and experience all that Purdue has to offer. For visitor information, visit

How do I evaluate a school curriculum?
Guidelines for how to evaluate a school curriculum are outlined in the online MSEd Curriculum and Instruction program. You’ll learn how implementing the new methodologies regarding social justice issues and STEM education improve the learning potential of all students, and how to interpret evaluation and assessment data to select the best program for your students. Within the foundation of social justice issues and STEM education in curriculum, the program allows you to also choose a concentration in Gifted, Creative and Talented Studies, Mathematics Education, English Language Learning, or Education Technology to deepen your evaluation skills where they’re needed most.

How can teachers improve student academic achievement?
Improving academic achievement is a core outcome of the online MSEd in Curriculum and Instruction degree. The program focuses on how new methodologies surrounding the implementation of social justice issues and STEM education improve student learning, as well as how students might be served better with varied evaluation and assessment techniques. Teachers learn to demonstrate equality in learning in the classroom, and more sophisticated practices. They also choose a concentration in Gifted, Creative and Talented Studies, Mathematics Education, English Language Learning, or Education Technology to deepen their ability to improve academic ability for the student population they serve.

What is a curriculum specialist?
Curriculum specialists, also known as Instructional coordinators, are the professionals in education who are officially tasked with evaluating the effectiveness of curriculums and teaching techniques. They also review student test data, observe teachers in the classroom, recommend different teaching techniques, and conduct training for teachers, especially where technology is concerned. Their median pay is $62,460 and the employment growth rate for this title is 11%.

Don’t See Your Question Here?

Ask more questions about the online Master of Science in Education in Curriculum and Instruction from Purdue University: Complete the form or call us at 877-497-5851 to speak to an admissions adviser.