Educational Studies (a non-licensure major)
The educational studies major at Saint Mary’s University provides opportunities for students to study education theory and examine the processes involved in teaching and learning. The program emphasizes the study of social and cultural factors that affect education institutions and the ways education processes are used in other settings. Students completing this major will connect education coursework to social advocacy by choosing a concentration in adult education contexts; child and family contexts; or youth development and leadership.
Many occupations in the areas of human services, psychology, sociology and theology include a need to understand education. The educational studies major prepares students to work in fields related to social and behavioral science, to pursue employment in the area of educational policy, to do graduate study in Education or a related field, and to enter the teaching profession in settings that do not require state licensure. (These include adult basic or adult ELL education, community education, environmental or outdoor education, Head Start, long-term volunteering, Montessori or Waldorf training, museum education, religious education and youth leadership.) The major is also appropriate for students whose special interest in law or business requires a deep understanding of educational issues.
Although the educational studies major does not lead to teacher licensure, it is possible to “cross over” during the undergraduate program from this major into an education major that does lead to certification. The major is also designed to support students who may be interested in pursuing a teacher licensure program at a later date. One way this can be accomplished is through an undergraduate completion program. Students following this path are encouraged to meet with School of Education advisors early in their course of study to identify which courses meet undergraduate general education requirements and also are needed for teacher licensure.
The educational studies major is a creative partnership between the departments of education, history and social science, and theology based on their shared dedication to preparing undergraduates to provide educational services in diverse and rapidly changing settings. Guided by Saint Mary’s mission, this major prepares students to make ethical decisions and to be effective advocates for those who are vulnerable in society. Each student declaring the educational studies major will have two academic advisors – one in education, and a second in history and social science.
- Adult education contexts (e.g., behavioral and mental health, recreation or program development)
- Child and family contexts (e.g., school readiness and developmental intervention programs)
- Youth development and leadership (e.g., behavioral and mental health, mentoring and recreation)