Students enrolled in the Masters
of Education in Secondary Education have the options to write a thesis, design
a project, or take a comprehensive exam towards the end of their academic work
to fulfill the requirements for a Masters Degree at UAF.
The final comprehensive
examination constitutes a synthesis and application of knowledge, skills, and
dispositions acquired during the course of study leading to the Master’s degree
in Education Secondary Education. The exam will cover topics from the area
of certification. The exam will require the candidate to analyze, evaluate, and
apply principles, theories, and understandings about teaching and learning.
In order to take the comprehensive
examination, the Graduate Department at School of Education at UAF establishes
the following minimum requirements:
- A candidate must be enrolled in the term in
which a comprehensive examination is taken.
- A candidate must have accumulated at least 27
credit hours (including current semester’s enrollment) in the master’s program,
and have an approved plan of study on-file with the graduate School.
- A candidate must be in good academic standing,
and must have graduate department of the UAF-SOE and committee approval to take
the comprehensive examination.
Candidates should complete the UAF-SOE
Masters of Education Secondary Education Registration Form and submit it to the adviser of the Graduate School at UAF-SOE by the time-line established for the
semester in which the exam will be taken. The comprehensive exam is a take-home exam and offered in
Fall and Spring semesters. The Registration Form and schedule for deadlines and
actual exam dates can be obtained from the website or the adviser of the
graduate department at UAF–SOE.
Duration and Schedule
The candidate has 7 calendar
days (1 week) to complete the exam. The comprehensive exam will be available for pick up
at the UAF-SOE or electronically over e-mail at 10 a.m. AST on a Thursday in March
(Spring Semester) or October/November (Fall Semester). The completed examinations must
be returned or submitted via e-mail the following Thursday at 10 a.m. AST. Exams turned in beyond the established
date are considered void.
Spring 2014 Examination Dates: Students may choose from one of the following weeks (Thursday - Thursday)
March 6, 2014 - March 13, 2014
March 13, 2014 - March 20, 2014
March 20, 2014 - March 27, 2014
March 27, 2014 - April 3, 2014
Permitted Materials and Academic Integrity
Students are permitted to use any
resources in responding to the comprehensive exam prompts. However, exam responses should not include
work previously submitted for academic credit, and must adhere to the highest
professional, personal and intellectual standards of academic integrity (UAF
student code of conduct). During the exam period, all work must be done
individually. Students will be required to sign a statement certifying that
they had no assistance (content or editing) during the exam period.
Accommodations will be made for
students with verified disabilities. Students with disabilities who require
accommodations for taking the comprehensive exam must contact the Office for
Student Disability Services at UAF.
Preparation for the Examination
Candidates should contact their
committee for assistance in preparing for the comprehensive examination.
Assistance provided by the program faculty may include distributing sample
questions, offering study tips, scheduling study sessions, and so forth.
The comprehensive exam has two
In part one, candidates will choose and respond to two comprehensive exam prompts from a list of three prompts. The prompts will require the
candidate to analyze, evaluate, and apply research based principles and
understandings about teaching and learning. The candidate should demonstrate
the ability to interpret theory and practice as reflective practitioner. The
prompts will focus on the area(s) of certification, educational technology, and
researched based effective practices in education for all learners.
In part two, candidates will select four short response prompts from a list of six. These prompts will focus broadly on the course
content of the program. By responding to the prompts the candidate will
- Broad knowledge of school curriculum,
- In depth understanding of current issues in
Knowledge of principles of teaching and learning
related to classroom practices, procedures, and assessment,
- Knowledge and skills in classroom management and
supervision, inclusive of special learners,
- Knowledge of multicultural, global, and
community aspects of education, including place-based and culturally responsive
education in Alaska,
Knowledge of research and research methodology in
- Technology knowledge and skills related to
curriculum and teaching,
- Knowledge and skills related to school community
relations, and parents.
Format and Length
Each of the two responses should be typed, 8 to 10 pages long (not including the bibliography page), double spaced, with 1
inch margins, and using a traditional 12 point font. The formatting adheres to
APA (6th edition) guidelines. Candidates should begin their responses by identifying the specific
prompt they answer. Each responses should be based on research with current citations (5 citations minimum per response). Each response includes a personal, reflective statement. The two long responses should be written in third person but first person may be used for reflective statements. The APA
style bibliography should reflect only citations used in the responses.
The short response pompts from
part two will be limited to 500 minimum to 600 maximum words each. Content may reflect your engagement, experiences, thoughts about best practices, ideas and/or believes as education practitioner or future educator embedded in educational research. Citations may strengthen your argument (they are not counted in the word count).
Exams will be graded by the candidate’s committee or program faculty,
and evaluated based on the following criteria:
- Discussed the question/statement with sufficient depth and as
- Answered the questions with an understanding of the breadth of
theories, concepts, and philosophies of education,
- Demonstrated knowledge of particular aspects of literature in
education and applications in the content area,
- Provided appropriate and sufficient citations and references,
- Used appropriate examples and thoughtful personal statements to
explain the narrative,
- Organized a logical presentation,
- Used appropriate APA Style.
be notified of the results of their exam in writing about 2 weeks after the
exam is submitted. The ratings are pass or fail. The committee chair will contact students who do not pass the Comprehensive Exam to determine reexamination options.