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Man with master's in education degree working with a group of students.

Online Master's of the Arts in Education Degree (MAEd Program)

You’ve made the decision to teach, thereby improving our schools, communities and the lives of your students. Move your career forward while enriching your life by completing your Master of Arts (M.A.) in Education degree.

University of the Cumberland’s master’s in education online program gives licensed educators the opportunity to further develop knowledge, skills, and dispositions to enhance teaching outcomes within a previously earned certification area. For convenience, we offer the option to complete your master’s in education degree online with different concentrations that meet the requirements for a number of academic opportunities.


What is a Master's of the Arts in Education MAEd program?

While a Master's of the Arts in Education (MAEd) and Master's in Teaching (MAT) often get confused, there are a few key differences between the two degrees. A master’s in education is designed to help educators and teaching professionals take the next step on their career paths—traditionally toward a job in administration or for educator roles outside of their current area of teaching expertise. Our online master’s in education degree program offers concentrations that touch on literacy, counseling, and leadership, helping teachers qualify for specialized positions in and around the classroom.

In comparison, a master’s in teaching degree program is designed to give classroom educators the skills they need to create a better learning experience for their students. They’ll often dive deeper into their area of study or pursue coursework that helps them integrate technologies into their curriculum. 

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What are the Different Masters in Education Jobs or Careers?

Whether you’re investigating a school counseling position or want to move into school administration positions, such as principal or even superintendent, earning your master’s in education online is an excellent option to gain the skills and practical insights needed to advance your career. To help graduates pursue opportunities in their schools and districts, the MAEd degree at University of the Cumberlands offers four distinct concentrations:

  • Literacy Specialist
  • School Counseling
  • Principal
  • Teacher Leader

Depending on the concentration you choose for your online master’s in education degree program, career options can vary. For example, the School Counseling concentration can help you pursue a school counselor position, where professionals averaged a salary of $60,510 in 2021. Other concentrations can lead to administrative opportunities such as a school principal—a position whose annual salary averaged $98,420 in 2021. Or you can use the Teacher Leader concentration to branch into district-wide leadership positions, such as an instructional coordinator overseeing curriculum and teaching standards across schools. In 2021, these instructional coordinator averaged $63,740.

Other educational leadership opportunities include:

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Is it Worth it to Get a Master's of the Arts in Education Degree?

At University of the Cumberlands, we provide supportive school administration degree programs online in an environment that imparts a breadth of information; an understanding of critical concepts; and a mastery of skills through higher education designed to support a life-long pursuit of professional achievement, responsible service and leadership. This online master's in education administration program offers several study options with the convenience and flexibility of school admin courses offered online.

Earning a graduate degree is an investment in your future—for working educators, that’s doubly true for a Master of Arts in Education. While this online degree program does not lead to initial teaching licensure, it can provide additional certifications and advancement opportunities in areas impacted by a higher education in Literacy, School Counseling, School Principal or Teacher as Leader. If your career plans include the pursuit of opportunities covered in one of these areas, then, yes, this master’s degree in education is definitely “worth it.” 

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Curriculum and Degree Requirements

Literacy Specialist Concentration

The Literacy Specialist P-12 Program is a 30-hour program that provides you with content, skills and leadership in both reading and writing at all grade levels. As a candidate in this program, you’ll receive experiences in coaching teachers and leading professional learning communities in the design and development of reading and writing lesson plans, differentiated instruction and interventions. You’ll also receive a Literacy Specialist P-12 Endorsement which offers the opportunity to become not only a literacy teacher but also a resource teacher, coach, mentor or consultant in the areas of reading and writing. Courses include Reading in the Content Areas, Diagnosis of Reading Problems, Writing Instruction in the Content Areas, Literacy Leadership and Teacher Leader in the Professional Learning Community.

School Counseling Concentration

Learn to reach students on a personal level and help them through potentially stressful life events. This school counselor degree program covers a variety of subjects, including Counseling Individuals with Diverse Needs, Group Counseling in Public Schools, Counseling Aspects of Grief and Loss, Personality and Psychological Assessment, and Legal and Ethical Issues in School Counseling. If you’re looking for school counselor programs or hope to become a school guidance counselor, we can help.

Principal Concentration

The P-12 Principal concentration is a 30-hour program that covers the core concepts, skills and abilities you will need in order to be effective in educational administration. As you pursue this master’s degree in educational leadership, you’ll develop a deeper understanding of the educational system overall and what you can do as an individual to foster better outcomes for students at every level and any age. School admin courses for your education administration degree include School and Community Relations, The Principal’s Role in Curriculum Leadership, Human Resource Leadership, School Law and more. In total, the concepts and information you’ll gain through the Principal concentration for your school administration degree program will help you achieve your career goals and help students achieve superior results.

Special Education Concentration

Certification in special education will provide you with a foundation for understanding the development, characteristics, and educational services of learners with exceptionalities. As a student in this program, you will learn to teach students with learning/behavior disorders, identify typical and atypical development characteristics of young learners, design and adapt formal and informal assessment instruments, and address curriculum and planning strategies in all content areas to service learners with mild disabilities.

Teacher Leader Concentration

This teacher leader program is designed to help you master your teaching skills and continue your lifelong pursuit of professional achievement, responsible service and leadership in teaching. As a student enrolled in this concentration program, you will take courses, such as School Program Improvement, Team Leadership, Theories of Teaching and Learning, Leadership for Educational Professions, Best Practices for Coaching and Mentoring Teachers, and more. Graduate students can now earn an endorsement as a School Safety Specialist through a six-course specialty option. 

Click here for MAEd Course Details | Click here for the MAEd Course Resources

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Admission Requirements

Click here to view the admissions requirements for the different M.Ed. concentrations.

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Certification and Reciprocity 

Certification is the process in which a candidate is recommended for licensure and/or rank change. Upon completion of a degree, certification, or rank change program, it is the responsibility of the candidate to submit the appropriate certification paperwork to the Certification Office. University of the Cumberlands can only submit a recommendation for certification and/or rank change completed through this institution.

Applications for teacher certification/rank change should be turned in to the appropriate certification specialist no earlier than three weeks prior to program completion. Applications for certification/rank change are processed upon verification of successful completion of required assessments and receipt of the candidate’s official transcript verifying completion of the program.

Undergraduate and MAT programs
Ms. Lisa Jones

Advanced Programs
Ms. Kim White

Certification Office
7792 College Station Drive
Williamsburg KY 40769
Fax: (606) 539-4014

Check Status of CA1
Once an application is processed by the UC Certification Office, candidates may check the status of their CA1 application by logging on to the EPSB website at and accessing "View my Application History".

Certification is provided for the state of Kentucky through the Education Professional Standards Board (EPSB), however, certification can transfer to all states through reciprocity. The map below displays the states that have an Interstate Reciprocity Agreement in place with Kentucky; some, not necessarily all certifications will be accepted. 

The interstate agreement, arranged by NASDTEC, is a collection of over 50 individual agreements by states and Canadian provinces. Each individual "agreement" is a statement by that state or jurisdiction outlining which other states' educator certificates will be accepted by that state.

Such an "acceptance" agreement means that the "receiving" state will issue some form of authorization allowing the inbound certificate holder to legally teach or provide service in the receiving state, provided the license issued by the "sending" state is acceptable under the agreement. This authorization may be limited in time by the receiving state, and the receiving state may impose additional requirements which need to be accomplished before the educator can teach or practice after the end of the time limit.

The Interstate Agreement is not a collection of 2-way agreements of reciprocal acceptance. For example, although Georgia affirms with its agreement that it will accept certificates from Connecticut, this acceptance in no way implies that Connecticut will accept Georgia certificates. Also the agreement does not necessarily indicate "full" reciprocity. The educator may have to complete additional requirements, such as coursework, assessments, or classroom experience, before receiving a full professional certificate in the new state. Candidates working out-of-state should contact their state’s certification office for reciprocity eligibility and details.

Teachers certifications from Kentucky are accepted in all states except Alaska, Iowa, Minnesota, and Mississippi

Click here for links to State Boards.

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Certification Submission

Click here to view certification submission details for the state of Kentucky. 

Out of State
It is the responsibility of the candidate to check with their home state regarding certification requirements. If a state licensure application requires verification of degree/certification completion, the application/verification form may be sent directly to the Certification Office. Please be certain to provide your full name, UC student ID number, phone number, and email address in the event that additional information is needed.

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Costs for programs of study at University of the Cumberlands are competitive and affordable. Click here to view tuition rates and fees.

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Graduate Student Success

The purpose of Graduate Student Success (GSS) is to assist students with class registration and program management. Click here to navigate the GSS webpage to better understand what to expect throughout the M.Ed. program.

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Mid-Point Assessment

You will be working with the Graduate Advising Center (GAC) to make sure you are on track. UC offers a variety of programs in education so certain requirements do not apply to everyone. It is important to review your specific Plan Program/Curriculum Contract to know what is required of you.

GAC has provided a list of items you are required to have turned in by the time you complete your program. The list can be seen on your MyUC account located under the “Student Tab”. The list appears in red and will show the item(s) that are past due. Please do not be alarmed when you see this, it is a computer glitch and you need not worry. We are simply letting you know what is still needed from you at this point, as well as, what will be required of you to complete the program. It is our hope that you will have a smooth transition when you exit your program.

Click here to view the mid-point assessment documents. 

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Click here to view University of the Cumberlands' accreditation information. 

In addition to the overall institutional accreditation statement above, the specialized accrediting bodies related to this degree are listed below. 

KDE/EPSB – State Accreditation

University of the Cumberlands' School of Education is further accredited through Kentucky's Educational Professional Standards Board (EPSB), 100 Airport Road, 3rd Floor, Frankfort, KY 40601. (502) 564-4606. Fax: (502) 564-7080.

CAEP – National Accreditation

The School of Education at University of the Cumberlands (UC) is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) at the initial-licensure level and advanced-level.  CAEP promotes excellence in educator preparation through quality assurance and continuous improvement.  UC’s School of Education has earned national accreditation by demonstrating excellence in the areas of content and pedagogy, clinical experiences, selectivity, program impact, and capacity for continuous improvement.
CAEP Address: 1140 19th St NW #400, Washington, DC 20036
CAEP Phone Number: (202) 223-0077

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Click here to view a list of the education faculty. 

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Admissions Office

Contact Us

Phone: 606.539.4390
Tollfree: 855.791.7199

Visit Us In Person

649 S. 10th Street Suite C
Williamsburg, KY 40769

CAEP Accreditation


 The School of Education at University of the Cumberlands complies with all CAEP standards across programs at the initial and advanced levels.