Master’s Degree Program Description

The Department of Educational Psychology has a Master’s degree program in Educational Psychology: Cognition, Instruction and Learning Technology (CILT). This graduate program is structured to prepare the professional whose primary interests involve learning, teaching and research. In particular, this program serves as a stepping-stone for those who would like to continue study in a Ph.D. Program.   

The Master’s program in Cognition, Instruction and Learning Technology bridges the gaps among psychological theory, research, and educational practice. Core courses include theories of learning, cognition, quantitative and qualitative research methods, learning technology, and instructional design.

Research conducted by the CILT  program is supported by the Neag School of Education’s Collaborative Technology Center (CTC) with networked and wireless computers, digital multimedia development capabilities supporting technology for research and instructional development.

General Program Considerations

Each student upon formal admission to the Master’s program in Cognition, Instruction and Learning Technology is assigned a major advisor who will guide the student in developing the plan of study. During the second semester of the program, the student selects an advisory committee chairperson and two committee members to advise and direct the student’s course of study.

Students are evaluated with a variety of methods throughout the program. In addition to formal evaluations such as course grades, the faculty may evaluate the student’s progress through research projects. An annual faculty review of the student’s progress is conducted. In order to continue on the program, students must make satisfactory progress through the program. Finally, the Cognition, Instruction and Learning Technology Program has adopted a portfolio system to monitor each student’s academic and professional development. Please see our website for more information about our portfolio system.

Although the Cognition, Instruction and Learning Technology Master’s program is designed such that students are encouraged to be involved full-time in their graduate studies, students do work in the community. In some cases, these positions are related to the student’s graduate program and consequently may even enhance the student’s skills, professional maturity, and overall educational goals. The Department of Educational Psychology has made available a limited number of graduate assistantships and fellowships for Cognition, Instruction and Learning Technology students. However, such financial aid is typically offered to Ph.D. students.

Two different options exist for students who seek the Master’s degree. These options pertain to a thesis or non-thesis option, related to a student’s graduate plan of study. The thesis option is termed “Plan A” in the Graduate Catalogue. For Plan A, students complete a reduced plan of coursework followed by defense of a research-based thesis. “Plan B”, the non-thesis option, requires a plan of coursework followed by comprehensive examinations. (More information is available online at In general, the thesis option (termed “Plan A” in the Bulletin) is preferred, especially if the student intends to complete doctoral degree requirements.

For more information about the Master’s in Cognition, Instruction, and Learning Technology program, including program goals and admissions criteria, please see the CILT MA Booklet.

CILT Sixth-Year Gainful Employment Disclosure