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Joint Degree with the Graduate School of Business (MA/MBA)

Program Requirements

Joint MA/MBA students spend most of their first year fulfilling the requirements of the MBA curriculum. Students may take Graduate School of Education (GSE) courses once they begin enrolling in electives, typically Spring quarter of their first year. During their second year, students have the opportunity to take a variety of courses at the GSB and the GSE.

The following section pertains to the Graduate School of Education (GSE) requirements for the MA portion of the Joint MA/MBA degree. In addition to the following guidelines, students should consult the academic requirements specified by the Graduate School of Business (GSB) for the MBA portion of the Joint MA/MBA and the Stanford Bulletin.

Students must complete at least 35 units of instruction at the Graduate School of Education (EDUC units) for the MA portion of their MA/MBA joint degree. The following constraints are placed on those 35 units:

  • All courses must be at or above the 100 level – courses numbered below 100 do not count toward the MA degree.
  • At least 18 units must be at or above the 200 level (EDUC 180 and 190 can count toward this requirement).
  • At least 27 of the 35 units must be taken for a letter grade (as opposed to Pass/Fail). 
  • A maximum of 10 cross-listed units may count toward both degrees.
  • A maximum of 4 independent study units (e.g., internship, directed reading, directed research) from the Graduate School of Education may be applied toward the MA degree.
  • A 3.0 GPA must be maintained for all courses applied to the MA degree.
  • Students may not enroll in Stanford Teacher Education Program (STEP) courses.
  • Any other course policies set forth in the MBA Student Handbook apply.

Crosslisted Courses

The two schools will offer a menu of cross-listed courses particularly suited to the program, and students can earn up to 10 of their 35 Education units from cross-listed courses. These 10 cross-listed units will count towards both degrees as long as the student enrolls in the GSB listing and in their GSB career in Axess. Students who enroll in cross-listed courses which add up to more than 10 units should indicate their plan to count up to 10 units of their cross-listed courses on their Master’s Program Proposal form.

It is imperative that students pay close attention and register for courses under the correct career. Students should register for courses counting toward the MA under the Grad career and courses counting toward the MBA under the GSB career. Students wishing to count up to 10 crosslisted units toward the MA and MBA degrees must register for them under the GSB course number in the GSB career.

2015-16 Cross-Listed Courses

Advising and Plan of Study

Beginning in their first year, students are expected to discuss a coherent program of study with David Brazer, Faculty Director, to guide their selection of GSE courses. He and Emi Kuboyama, Associate Director of Leadership Degree Programs, are always available for academic advising.

In consultation with the Faculty Director, students must complete their Preliminary Program Proposal during the Autumn quarter of their second year of study. The Proposal is to be submitted to Associate Director, Emi Kuboyama no later than Friday of the second week of Autumn quarter. Students may deviate from their Preliminary Program Proposal during the academic year, but must be careful to fulfill all requirements. The Final Program Proposal, indicating courses actually taken, is due to Caroline Stasulat, MA Programs Officer, in the Spring Quarter of the second year.

Internships and Directed Reading (4 unit maximum)

Students may take up to 4 units for internships, directed reading, or other independent study from the Graduate School of Education which may be applied towards the 35 units needed for the MA in Education. Students interested in an internship during the academic year should consult the EdCareers database for opportunities and meet with David Brazer to discuss the process for earning internship units. Students who wish to pursue internships in education over the summer can apply for funding to the Stanford Management Internship Fund at the GSB. No units of credit are offered for paid internships.

2015-16 MA/MBA Course Requirements

Students are required to complete a minimum of one course in each of the three thematic clusters:

The following are approved courses for each Thematic Cluster for this academic year. (In rare cases, students may modify cluster requirements by submitting a Program Modification Form to the Director. The rationale for modification of thematic cluster requirements must be clear and compelling. Approval is not automatic.) This list is periodically updated as course offerings change. Note: all course information is subject to change. Please consult ExploreCourses and Axess for updated course offerings and scheduling information.

To help students plan a program of study, we have labeled courses in the table with the following recommendations aligned with student interests:

  • Pre-K – 12 Leadership and Management (PK12)
  • Higher Education Leadership and Management (HE)
  • Non-Profit Educational Organizations (NP)
  • Education Policy (EP)
  • Educational Technology (ET)

Click the designation to filter courses below. Click here to clear all filters.

Autumn Quarter

EDUC 220D History of School Reform:Origins, Policies, Outcomes, and Explanations (D. Labaree) (3-5) (PK12, NP, EP, ET)
POLS students interested in Pre-K – 12 are commonly focused on making change or addressing a problem in education. This course explains the context of past and present efforts to improve the quality of education and provides students an opportunity to test their own reform thinking against past experience.
EDUC 232 Culture, Learning, and Poverty (L. Chen) (2-3) (PK12)
For students interested in learning about the actual process of policy making, this course offers a behind-the-scenes look at the political process of public policy making at the Federal level. Students will learn about the theory and literature behind policy formulation and will engage in debates over past and current efforts at policy reform.
EDUC 306A Economics of Education in the Global Economy (M. Carnoy) (5) (PK12, EP)
In today’s educational policy environment, a working knowledge of the economics of education is fundamental for anyone involved in educational policy and educational practice. Education 306A is a survey course, covering issues from the relation of schooling, to economic outcomes, to the analysis of how schooling and students’ family backgrounds influence student performance in schools, to analyses of teacher labor markets (including issues such as teacher incentive pay). The course also covers education “markets” and discusses educational finance at the K-12 and university levels.

Winter Quarter

EDUC 265 History of Higher Education in the U.S. (D. Labaree) (3-5) (HE, EP) 
This course emphasizes an understanding of contemporary configurations of higher education through studying its antecedents. EDUC 355 Higher Education & Society, and this course are strong complements for one another.
GSBGEN 348/EDUC 347 The Economics of Higher Education (E. Bettinger) (4) (HE, EP)
For students interested in higher education, this course examines theoretical frameworks, policy matters, and the concept of higher education as a public good. Students will consider stratification by gender, race, and social class, as well as the worth of college and graduate degrees, access to higher education, productivity, etc.

Spring Quarter

EDUC 212 Urban Education (A. Ball) (3-4) (PK12, NP, EP, ET)
For students who are interested in teaching or leading in urban school settings, this course takes social science and historical perspectives to look at the major developments, contexts, tensions, challenges, and policy issues of urban education.
EDUC 271 Education Policy in the U.S. (T. Dee) (5) (PK12)
The course will provide students from different disciplines with an understanding of the broad educational policy context. The course will cover topics including a) school finance systems; b) an overview of policies defining and shaping the sectors and institutional forms of schooling, c) an overview of school governance, d) educational human-resource policy, e) school accountability policies at the federal and state levels; and f) school assignment policies and law, including intra- and inter-district choice policies, desegregation law and policy. Many policy discussions will focus on the quality of the quantitative evidence and the underlying applied microeconomic theory. This course is intended for PhD students only. Other students may contact the instructor for permission to enroll. Knowledge of intermediate microeconomics and econometrics would both helpful.
EDUC 348 Policy and Practice in Science Education (3-4) (PK12, EP)
Values and beliefs that dominate contemporary thinking about the role and practice of science education, what the distinctive features of science are, and the arguments for its value as part of compulsory education. Research on the conceptual and affective outcomes of formal science education, how the changing nature of contemporary society challenges current practice, and the rationale for an alternative pedagogy, curriculum and assessment.
EDUC 355 Higher Education and Society (M. Stevens) (3) (HE, EP)
For undergraduate and graduate students interested in what colleges and universities do, and what society expects from them. The relationship between higher education and society in the U.S. from a sociological perspective. The nature of reform and conflict in colleges and universities, and tensions in the design of higher education systems and organizations.
EDUC 371 Social Psychology and Social Change (S. Brady, G. Cohen) (2-3) (PK12, HE)
This course focuses on the major ideas, theories, and findings of social psychology and how they relate to education. Students will look at historical issues, classic experiments, and seminal theories.

Autumn Quarter

EDUC 275 Leading U.S. Schools (3-4) (PK12)
The landscape of schooling in the U.S. is dynamic and replete with ideologies, myths, and beliefs. Organizational theory, leadership theory, and empirical research are lenses through which students will develop a deeper and broader understanding of the similarities and differences among private schools, parochial schools, traditional K ¿ 12 schools, charter schools, and alternative schools. Students will connect theory and research to practice by visiting and learning about two or more schools of their choosing.
EDUC 288 Organizational Analysis (W. Powell) (4-5) (PK12, HE, NP, EP)
Pre-K – 12, higher education, and non-profit focused students should take this survey of major theoretical traditions to understand rational and non-rational behaviors of organizations. This knowledge can be applied to schools, districts, CMOs, colleges, universities, and non-profits as formal organizations.
STRAMGT 368/EDUC 377B Strategic Management of Nonprofits (B. Meehan) (4) (K12, HE, NP)
Strategic, governance, and management issues facing nonprofit organizations and their leaders in the era of venture philanthropy and social entrepreneurship. Development and fundraising, investment management, performance management, and nonprofit finance. Case studies include smaller, social entrepreneurial and larger, more traditional organizations, including education, social service, environment, health care, religion, NGOs, and performing arts.

Winter Quarter

EDUC 354 School-Based Decision Making (G. Hoagland) (3-4) (PK12, NP)
Designed with aspiring school leaders in mind, this course combines case studies, site visits, and guest speakers to take students inside school leaders’ critical decision making processes. Students who wish to work at the district and school levels may be interested in this course to learn the challenges, opportunities, and contemporary practices of school-site leadership.

Spring Quarter

EDUC 290 Instructional Leadership: Building Capacity for Excellent Teaching (D. Brazer) (3-4) (PK12)
Designed with aspiring school leaders in mind, this course helps students understand how teacher learning and organizational learning are generated to improve educational quality at the school and district level. Students who wish to work at the district level may be interested in this course to learn a perspective on addressing school improvement.
EDUC 386 Leadership and Administration in Higher Education (3-4) (HE)
This course uses case studies and practicing leaders from a range of higher education types to give higher education-focused students a perspective on the dilemmas, problems, and actions H.E. leaders address. The professor has extensive experience in H.E. leadership.
STRAMGT 535/EDUC 445 Entrepreneurial Approaches to Education Reform   (G. Lee) (3) (PK12, NP)
This course is intended for students interested in how entrepreneurs can and have changed K-12 public schooling, and for those who aspire to be leaders in entrepreneurial and educational organizations. The course explores human capital solutions, new schools, and technology products that are designed to improve student learning and solve pain points. The course will feature for-profit, not-for-profit, and double-bottom-line organizations.

Autumn Quarter

EDUC 213 Introduction to Teaching (H. Borko, E. Szu) (3-4) (PK12, NP, EP)
This introductory course is critically important to those aspiring to work in any pre-K – 12 related setting who has never actually taught. Practical problems of teaching and learning are emphasized.
EDUC 249 Theory & Issues in the Study of Billingualism (G. Valdes) (3-5) (PK12)
For those interested in working with bilingual students and their families and/or carrying out research in bilingual settings, this course emphasizes the typologies of bilingualism, the acquisition of bilingual ability, and the nature of societal bilingualism.
EDUC 281 Technology for Learners (K. Forssell) (3) (ET)
For those interested in the use of technology in education and how it may be used to improve learning. This course explores how technology may help make learning easier, faster, or accessible to more learners and considers a variety of different approaches to designing tools for learning, the theories behind them, and the research that tests their effectiveness. Topics include feedback, visualization, games, multimedia, tangible-digital interfaces, simulations, and more. Students will work on teams to identify a need, create a prototype, and design tests to understand its impact. Space is limited.
EDUC 368 Cognitive Development in Childhood and Adolescence (P. Klebahn, K. Segovia, R. Sutton, et al.) (3-4) (PK12)
Students interested in the design thinking process should take this course to learn about the coaching and leadership skills needed to drive good design process in groups. Students will work on real projects within organizations.

Winter Quarter

EDUC 208B Curriculum Construction (D. Pope) (3-4) (PK12)
Practical aspects of curriculum design are emphasized by students working on projects for actual education clients. May be adapted to issues in higher education.
EDUC 218 Topics in Cognition and Learning: Executive Function (3) (PK12)
Executive function is a construct that is rapidly taking on an increasingly central role in bringing together current research in cognitive development, learning, education, and neuroscience. In this seminar we will examine the potential cross-fertilization of these fields of inquiry primarily by reviewing research on learning and individual differences in cognitive neuroscience that may hold relevance to education, as well as reviewing educational research that may hold implications for developmental cognitive neuroscience. This seminar course is designed to engage students in recent advances in this rapidly growing research area via discussions of both historical and late-breaking findings in the literature. By drawing on a breadth of studies ranging from cognitive development, cognitive neuroscience, and educational/training studies, students will gain an appreciation for specific ways interdisciplinary approaches can add value to specific programs of research.
EDUC 239 Educating Young STEM Thinkers (M. Carroll, S. Goldman, B. Roth, et al.) (3-5) (PK12, ET)
For students interested in both the design thinking process and STEM-based learning, this course will provide opportunities to work with middle school students and K-12 teachers in STEM-based afterschool activities and camps. Students will be mentors for children in learning about STEM careers.
EDUC 245 Understanding Racial and Ethnic Identity Development (T. LaFromboise) (3-5) (PK12)
This course considers racial and ethnic identity development, which may be extrapolated to the experiences of students of color; it explores how social, political, and psychological forces can shape the experiences of people of color in the U.S. Students interested in how race is related to social identity variables including gender, class, generational differences, and regional identifications, and bi- and multi-racial status are likely to be interested in this course.
EDUC 280 Learning & Teaching of Science (T. LaFromboise) (3) (HE)
This course will provide students with a basic knowledge of the relevant research in cognitive psychology and science education and the ability to apply that knowledge to enhance their ability to learn and teach science, particularly at the undergraduate level. Course will involve readings, discussion, and application of the ideas through creation of learning activities. It is suitable for advanced undergraduates and graduate students with some science background. Terms: Spr | Units: 3 | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit
EDUC 297 Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (T. Ehrlich) (3-4) (HE)
In the context of a doctoral course that teaches students how to construct and implement courses in higher education, students learn the pedagogical needs and challenges of higher education classrooms and how they are supported by the university.
EDUC 342 Child Development & New Technologies (B. Barron, K. Forssell) (3) (PK12)
This course is for students interested in the experiences of children with computing technologies and how these might influence development. The course uses sociocultural theories of development to understand how children use technology to meet their own goals, with an emphasis on the influence of interactive technology on cognitive, identity, and social development.
EDUC 357 Science and Environmental Education in Informal Contexts (B. Barron, K. Forssell) (3-4) (PK12, NP)
This course explores the opportunities to learn science in contexts outside the formal classroom (e.g. in zoos, museums, and science centers). Students will examine how issues around science and the environment are presented in contexts, how people behave and learn in these contexts, and what they take away. Case studies of nearby science centers will add an experiential dimension to the course.
EDUC 405 Teaching in the Humanities (3) (PK12, HE)
This course, designed for graduate students in the humanities and education, explores approaches to teaching the humanities at both the secondary and collegiate levels, with a focus on the teaching of text, and how the humanities can help students develop the ability to read and think critically. The course explores purposes and pedagogical approaches for teaching humanities through a variety of texts and perspectives. The course is designed as an opportunity for doctoral students in the Humanities both to enrich their own teaching, and to broaden their understanding of professional teaching opportunities, including community college and secondary school teaching.

Spring Quarter

EDUC 239 Educating Young STEM Thinkers (M. Carroll, S. Goldman, B. Roth, et al.) (3-5) (PK12, ET)
For students interested in both the design thinking process and STEM-based learning, this course will provide opportunities to work with middle school students and K-12 teachers in STEM-based afterschool activities and camps. Students will be mentors for children in learning about STEM careers.
EDUC 256 Psychological and Educational Resilience Among Children and Youth (R. Lizcano, A. Padilla) (4) (PK12, EP)
This course is aimed at students interested in individual, family, school, and community risk and protective factors that influence children’s development and adaptation. Adaptive systems that enable some children to achieve successful resilience despite high levels of adversity exposure are emphasized. Theoretical, methodological, and empirical issues are examined, including current terminology and conceptual and measurement issues.
EDUC 290 Instructional Leadership: Building Capacity for Excellent Teaching (D. Brazer) (3-4) (PK12)
Designed with aspiring school leaders in mind, this course helps students understand how teacher learning and organizational learning are generated to improve educational quality at the school and district level. Students who wish to work at the district level may be interested in this course to learn a perspective on addressing school improvement.
EDUC 332 Theory and Practice of Environmental Education (3) (HE)
Foundational understanding of the history, theoretical underpinnings, and practice of environmental education as a tool for addressing today's pressing environmental issues. The purpose, design, and implementation of environmental education in formal and nonformal settings with youth and adult audiences. Field trip and community-based project offer opportunities for experiencing and engaging with environmental education initiatives.
EDUC 337 Race, Ethnicity, and Linguistic Diversity in Classrooms: Sociocultural Theory and Practices (3-5) (PK12)
Focus is on classrooms with students from diverse racial, ethnic and linguistic backgrounds. Studies, writing, and media representation of urban and diverse school settings; implications for transforming teaching and learning. Issues related to developing teachers with attitudes, dispositions, and skills necessary to teach diverse students.