Career and Technical Education, Master of Education

Department of Educational Specialties

College of Education

This flexible Master's degree offers you an opportunity to design a customized program of study, in consultation with an advisor, to meet your individual educational needs. This degree program is designed to prepare you for a career in career and technical education. Our graduates are CTE administrators, educators, and training and development personnel in secondary, post-secondary, and business and industry settings. The diverse course options can be chosen to meet the future goals of many diverse students. Your advisor can assist you putting together (and approving) a customized program of study that will prepare you for your growth in your current career or to meet your future goals.

Please note that this is not a secondary education certification program. If you are interested in secondary education certification in CTE, please explore the Masters in Secondary Education, Certification Emphasis programs.

This degree is approved by the Western Regional Graduate Program.

  • To receive a master’s degree at Northern Arizona University, you must complete a planned group of courses from one or more subject areas, consisting of at least 30 units of graduate-level courses. Many master’s degree programs require more than 30 units.

    You must additionally complete:

    • All requirements for your specific academic plan(s). This may include a thesis.
    • All graduate work with a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0.
    • All work toward the master's degree must be completed within six consecutive years. The six years begins with the semester and year of admission to the program.

    Read the full policy here.

In addition to University Requirements:

  • Complete individual plan requirements.

Minimum Units for Completion 30
Additional Admission Requirements

Individual program admission requirements over and above admission to NAU are required.

Thesis Thesis may be required by chosen emphasis or offered as an option.
Comprehensive Exam Comprehensive Exam may be required by chosen emphasis or offered as an option.
Oral Defense Oral Defense may be required by chosen emphasis or offered as an option.
Research Individualized research may be required by chosen emphasis or offered as an option.
Some online/blended coursework Required
Progression Plan Link View Program of Study
Student Learning Outcomes

Career and Technical Education M.Ed.
CTE graduates will have the knowledge and ability to (a) be advocates for the important role career and technical education has in society, (b) identify and creatively solve critical issues in the field, and (c) be catalysts for evolutionary growth.

  • Student will be able to provide legal definition for Career and Technical Education and other key terms in current federal legislation.
  • Student will be able to articulate a clear personal philosophy of Career and Technical Education and to describe the changes/growth in their philosophy while in the program.
  • Student will be able to cite a historical timeline of major legislative acts affecting VTE/CTE including the name, year, financial support, and major provisions/societal implications of each. 
  • Student will be able to articulate current critical issues within the field.
  • Student will be able to articulate purpose and importance of strong school and community relations including formal and informal methods of core communication skills and involvement of various stakeholder groups.
  • Student will identify and describe different communication tools used between the school and community and convey their application and benefits to both program promotion and advocacy.
  • Student will define/explain terms common to the field of research/experimentation and design, various research methodologies, and various data collection techniques.
  • Student will become a skilled research consumer as demonstrated by reading and critiquing professional education research reports and a skilled researcher as demonstrated by preparing a four-chapter research prospectus.
  • Student will identify and describe topics relevant to instructional management; drawing conclusions and making inferences to their relevant applications for delivery and instruction in CTE.
  • Student clearly articulates a professional development plan for staying current in CTE beyond the program and identifies relevant professional organizations and journals that would be appropriate for staying current in CTE.
  • Student will gain competence in the use a wide variety of multimedia technology tools.

Additional Admission Requirements
  • Individual program admission requirements over and above admission to NAU are required.

  • The NAU graduate online application is required for all programs. Admission to many graduate programs is on a competitive basis, and programs may have higher standards than those established by the Graduate College.

    Admission requirements include the following:

    • Transcripts.
    • Undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited institution with a 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale ("A" = 4.0), or the equivalent.

    Visit the NAU Graduate Admissions website for additional information about graduate school application deadlines, eligibility for study, and admissions policies.

    Ready to apply? Begin your application now.

    International applicants have additional admission requirements. Please see the International Graduate Admissions Policy.

    • Responses to specific essay questions
Master's Requirements
  • Take the following 30 units:

    • CTE 591, CTE 691, CTE 692, CTE 696 (12 units)
    • Select one course from: EDF 670, EDF 671, EDF 672, EDF 677 (3 units)
    • A concentration, from either CTE courses or advisor approved interdisciplinary courses that comprise a coherent area of study which may include 3 units of EPS courses and up to 6 units of CTE 699, for the research, writing, and oral defense of an approved thesis (15 units)
    Areas from which you may select a concentration include but aren't restricted to curriculum and instruction, higher education, educational technology, human resource development, and CTE Administration. Note that a concentration in CTE Administration does not lead to any type of administration certification. Consult with your plan advisor for the courses suggested in these areas of concentration.

  • If you choose the thesis plan, you can only count 6 units of thesis credit toward your degree. However, you may end up taking more units because you must enroll for CTE 699 each term while you are working on your thesis.

    If you choose the extended coursework plan rather than the thesis plan, you must pass a final oral exam administered by the faculty, in addition to the coursework listed here. The exit oral exam covers content in the four core CTE classes (CTE 591, CTE 691, CTE 692, and CTE 696).

    We offer courses for this plan via web-based delivery only. There are no other delivery methods for this program.

  • Accelerated Bachelor's to Master's Program 

    This program is available as an Accelerated Undergraduate/Graduate Plan. Accelerated Programs provide the opportunity for outstanding undergraduates working on their bachelor’s degree to simultaneously begin work on a master’s degree, which may allow them to complete both degrees in an accelerated manner by applying 6 units toward both degrees. Students must apply to the accelerated program and the master’s program by the application deadline, and meet all requirements as listed on the Accelerated Bachelor's to Master's Programs to be considered for admission. Admission to programs is competitive and qualified applicants may be denied because of limits on the number of students admitted each year. Be sure to speak with your advisor regarding your interest in Accelerated Programs.

  • Be aware that some courses may have prerequisites that you must also successfully complete. For prerequisite information, click on the course or see your advisor.