School of Education and Psychology

Denise Dunzweiler, Dean; Austin Archer, Emily apple (Placement Officer), TBD (Director of the Child Development Center), Wafia Kinne (Assessment Coordinator), Neria Sebastien, Debbie Muthersbaugh, Tamara Randolph, Debbie Smart (Certification Officer), Franice Stirling (Director of Curriculum Library), Lee Stough (Director of Counseling Psychology program)

The School of Education and Psychology offers three master’s degree programs - the Master of Arts (M.A.) in Education, the Master of Education (M.Ed.), and the Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.).

The Master of Arts degree is a program which provides a significant opportunity to develop research and writing skills. This option is especially suited for those wishing to contribute to knowledge through in-depth research and/or those aspiring to a doctoral degree. The Master of Education degree is designed for ­educators whose goal is to provide leadership in teaching or administrative roles at the K-12 level. Master of Education students will be required to complete a professional project.  The Master of Arts in Teaching program is intended for practicing teachers who wish to improve or expand the area of their professional performance.


Master of Arts (M.A.) in Education and Master of Education (M.Ed.) in the following areas of specialization:

  • Curriculum and Instruction
  • Literacy Instruction
  • Educational Leadership

Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) in the following areas of specialization:

  • Curriculum and Instruction
  • Instruction with Certification(Elementary)
  • Educational Leadership
  • Instruction with Certification(Secondary)
  • Literacy Instruction

Most specialization options sufficiently meet individual needs. However, an applicant wishing to pursue a specialization in an area other than those listed above may submit an individualized program proposal to the School of Education and Psychology and to Graduate Council. The proposed program should consist of 45 credits or more, depending on the focus of study and the adviser’s recommendation. At least 24 quarter hours (20 hours in M.A. programs) must be core courses that support the area of specialization selected in consultation with the student’s graduate adviser. It is recommended that the program include no more than 3 courses below the 500 level. However, exceptions may be made for unusual program needs. Additional credits needed for completion of the degree shall be selected in harmony with the degree requirements specified in this bulletin. An individualized program must be approved by vote of the School of Education and Psychology and Graduate Council before it is implemented. Only individuals who hold current teaching certification may propose an individualized specialization M.A.T program. To avoid confusion with existing degree specialization programs, the graduate student and his or her adviser must devise a unique name for the individualized degree specialization.

Admission to Graduate Programs in Education and Psychology In addition to the general admission requirements listed earlier in this bulletin, the School of Education and Psychology requires a satisfactory GRE score on the general exam taken within the last five years for M.A. and M.Ed. programs, three professional references, and a personally prepared statement of philosophy and purpose. Applicants who already hold a graduate degree from a regionally accredited institution or those applying to the M.A.T. program are not required to take the GRE general exam. An interview with one or more School of Education and Psychology faculty members may also be required. The quality of the statement of philosophy and the three professional references are significant factors in the decision process.

Prerequisites Applicable to All Programs. In addition to general admission requirements described elsewhere in this bulletin, candidates for degrees in the School of Education and Psychology must meet all prerequisites listed under their chosen areas of specializa­tion. Deficiencies may be removed after admission to graduate study, but any credit earned thereby will not apply to minimum degree requirements. A plan for the removal of all deficiencies, including professional experience and/or certification requirements, must be approved by the School of Education and Psychology faculty. All deficiencies and program requirements must be satis­fied before the degree is granted.

Requirements. A Program of Study prepared on an official form must be approved by the dean or program director and submitted to Graduate Council at least two quarters prior to completion of the program. Official approval of this program will be acknowledged by a letter from the Dean of Graduate Studies. Forms for this purpose are available in the School of Education and Psychology office. All courses included in the degree program must be approved by an adviser assigned by the School of Education and Psychology­. Any changes in the study program must be documented on a Program Change Form and require the signatures of the adviser, program director and the Dean of Graduate Studies. Unless specifically approved by Graduate Council, courses numbered below 350 will not apply for graduate credit. For the M.A. and M.Ed. degrees a written comprehensive exam must be passed prior to defense of a thesis or project. For the M.A. and M.Ed. degrees the thesis or project proposal must be approved, and all necessary forms must be signed, at least two weeks prior to commencement.

Second Master's Degree. If degree requirements overlap with work already taken, a student seeking a second master's degree may petition Graduate Council for some reduction in the total number of required credits. A second degree must contain a minimum of 30 quarter hours, and include a thesis or professional project originated and completed within this School of Education and Psychology.

Teacher Certification. Walla Walla University is a state and denominationally approved teacher education institution; and, as such, is authorized to recommend students for initial certification in the State of Washington and in the Seventh-day Adventist Church. The School of Education and Psychology can also assist students who seek to renew their certificate or wish to apply in another state or province. Since certification requirements are subject to frequent change, students seeking to qualify for either residency or continuing/professional certification should consult with their advisors, the Certification Officer, or the Dean of the School of Education and Psychology early in their programs. Information on teacher certification requirements, including appropriate check sheets and other aids, is available from the Certification Officer.