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M.A. | PhD
Learning Technologies

Prepare for research and practice related to multimedia, design, K-12 technology integration, online distance learning and learning analytics.

Conduct research and engage in LT-related practice in K-12, higher education, or business settings.

Priority deadline: December 1. Applications are only accepted for Fall admission.

Admissions decisions: January

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Innovative Coursework & Research

Coursework in LT includes hands-on learning and use of current technologies, development of technological solutions, consideration of theory and research, and conducting educational research.

The M.A. track is designed for students interested in a stronger research orientation than those who pursue the master of education degree.

M.A students often continue to a Ph.D. program, take courses in research methodology, and may engage in advanced media and software design and development or develop plans for technology integration for diverse educational settings.

Ph.D. graduates often earn academic positions in higher education or become directors and leaders of development or research within business and industry.

Note to International Students: While this program offers many online courses, international students on F-1 visas have limitations. Students with F-1 visas may take no more than the equivalent of 1 (one) completely online education class (or 3 credits per semester) and count it towards their full-time course requirement. Full-time enrollment for graduate students is 6 credits.


Bodong Chen

Assistant Professor
Bodong Chen

Design technology-enhanced environments for knowledge building | Learning analytics for online discourse | Learner analysis in open online education. Full profile

Aaron Doering

Aaron Doering

Online + mobile teaching and learning | Adventure learning | Geospatial learning | TPACK | Technology integration in K-12 settings. Full profile

Cassandra Scharber

Associate Professor
Cassandra Scharber

Literacy, power, and technology | Transformative power of technology in teaching and learning. Full profile

Daryl Boeckers

Angelica Pazurek

Online and distance learning with an emphasis on the design and facilitation of highly-engaging learning experiences, the potential of mobile technologies for transformative learning, technology integration in adult and higher education contexts. Full profile

Daryl Boeckers

Teaching Specialist
Daryl Boeckers

Second language pedagogy, technology integration, mobile learning, hybrid and online learning environments, curricular access for students with special needs. Full profile


M.A students: Select plan A or B
M.A.: Thesis
(Plan A)

  • 10 thesis credits
  • involves original research in the form of a "mini-dissertation" divided into chapters
  • is likely to require human subjects (IRB) approval
  • final copy is bound and submitted to the Graduate School
  • often pursued by students who intend to pursue a Ph.D.*

*Completing a thesis does not guarantee admission to a Ph.D program, though, if accepted, the thesis can serve as the basis of your dissertation.


34 total credits

  • CI 5331 Introduction to Learning Technologies (3 cr.)
  • CI 8133 Research Methods in Curriculum and Instruction (3 cr.)
  • Minor or related field: (6 cr.)
  • Thesis credits: CI 8777 (10 cr.)

M.A students: Select plan A or B
M.A.: Final Paper (Plan B)

  • 3 credit "Problems" course
  • results in 1 paper, 40-60 pages in length, divided into sections. Or 2 papers, each 20-30 pages
  • may or many not involve human subjects (IRB) approval
  • final copy is not submitted to the graduate school
  • often pursued by students who aren't committed to pursuing a Ph.D.*

*It is possible to complete a final paper and later pursue your Ph.D. You will apply with less research experience, but will still be considered for admission based on the strength of your application.


30 total credits

Major: (Minimum of 14 cr.) Specific courses listed below. An additional 12 semester credits satisfy the requirements for one of the certificate programs: Multimedia design and development, K-12 technology integration, or Online distance learning
CI 5331—Introduction to Learning Technologies

CI 5155—Contemporary Approaches to Instruction and Assessment or an approved course in Learning and Cognition or Adult Education

DES 8181—Research Ethics (1 cr.) or Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) part 1 & 2 workshops

A minimum of one 3-credit research course selected from list of recommended courses for C&I Plan B students.

CI 8395—Problems: Instructional Systems & Technology [3 cr. for Plan B paper(s)]

Minor or related field: (6 cr.)

Common Curriculum

The following courses are required of all PhD students (27 cr.):

  • CI 8131 – CI Core: Critical examination of curriculum in context
  • CI 8132 – CI Core: Teaching theory and research
  • CI 8133 – Research Methods in CI
  • CI 8148 – Conducting Qualitative Studies in Educational Contexts
  • OLPD 8812 – Qualitative Research in Work and Human Resource Education
  • A minimum of 9 semester additional credits in qualitative, quantitative or mixed method

You will also complete:

  • 15 credits in your track
  • 12 credits from outside your track (if pursuing a minor or supporting program)

54 course credits + 24 thesis credits = 78 total


Support is available in the form of:

  • Graduate assistantships in teaching
  • Research Assistantships
  • Fellowships. Based on a departmental nomination process. You will be notified by the Director of Graduate Studies if you are being considered for a fellowship

Benefits are pro-rated based on the appointment percentage.

Applications must be submitted by the December 1 priority deadline to be considered for funding opportunities for the following academic year.

While support is not guaranteed, we make every attempt to financially support full-time students through completion. You may also explore assistantships available outside our department on the University's employment page.

Tuition and cost information.

Credit for past work
Transfer credits

M.A. students must complete at least 60% of coursework (not including thesis credits) within our program. PhD students may transfer no more than 15 credits from an outside institution.

A maximum of 12 graduate course credits that were taken as non-degree seeking or under non-admitted status at the University of Minnesota can be applied to these graduate degree programs once admitted into the program. These credits are counted separately from the maximum 15 transfer credits from an outside institution.

If you earned a M.A. at the UMN, please contact the Graduate Studies Coordinator to discuss transfer procedures.

Thesis credits cannot be transferred.

After you are admitted, you will work with your adviser to determine which credits may transfer.

Graduate Studies Coordinator
Kristina Pearson
fax: (612) 624.8277
office: 125H Peik Hall
Office hours 8:00 - 3:30