K12 Computer Science Education

The Graduate Certificate in K12 Computer Science Education prepares K12 teachers to teach computational thinking and computer science ideas at the elementary and secondary level. Domains include computational thinking, algorithmic thinking, abstraction, programming tools, and creative thinking. Teachers learn to teach these concepts and skills through culturally relevant pedagogy, attending to how culture and context impact student learning.

The Graduate Certificate includes 3 courses (9 credits):

CEP 814: Computational Thinking for K12 Educators

This course focuses on applying computational thinking (CT)  to domain-based contexts, with an emphasis on how to make CT transparent to K12 students. In this course, students will discuss CT with practitioners and will work to understand the wider impacts of computing. The course learning objectives are as following:

  • Understand the main concepts/skills involved in CT
  • Applying CT to disciplinary / domain-based contexts in K-12 classrooms
  • Understanding impacts of computing
  • Making CT “transparent” to K12 students

CEP 824: Programming Concepts for K12 Educators.

This course will use a wide array of digital programming tools to introduce the fundamental concepts of a programming, the basics of computing and computing systems, and connecting each of these ideas to instructional approaches for K-12 settings and subject areas. The course learning objectives are as following:

  • Utilize digital programming tools (Scratch, Pencil Code, Python)
  • Demonstrate understanding of core concepts shared between programming tools
  • Understand pedagogy of CS – misconceptions, scaffolding, basic programming concepts, inclusive computing culture, bridging visual programming tools to text-based programming languages, assessment
  • Apply programming tools to solve problems in K-12 subject areas.

CEP 833: Creativity in K12 Computing Education

This course focuses on the intersections between creativity and computing in cross-disciplinary K12 contexts and subject areas. The course learning objectives are as following:

  • Understand how creative artifacts can be used in K12 CT/CS contexts
  • Understand ways to construct learning environments that support creativity (pedagogy)
  • Understand ways to assess student performance in relation to creativity.

Why should I do it?

Today’s students need to move beyond being simply consumers of technology to become creators of technological artifacts that can be used to solve problems. The Graduate Certificate in K12 Computer Science Education will give you the foundation to teach computer science at the elementary and secondary level.  

Teachers who are interested in increasing their knowledge of computer science and how CS ideas can be taught at the elementary and secondary level should enroll in this graduate certificate. Students in this certificate program will go beyond just “coding” and explore how computer science impacts our world and how CS ideas can be integrated to solve problems in other disciplines.

How much is it?

Depending on the application path you choose and where you live, tuition rates differ. Please visit our Tuition page for a listing of all current tuition rates.

How long will it take me?

Each online course lasts sixteen weeks. You can enroll in one course at a time, ideally starting in the Fall. Typically, students take CEP 814 (Fall), CEP 824 (Spring), and 833 (Summer) back-to-back.

When can I start?

Graduate Certificate in K12 Computer Science Education courses begin every Fall, Spring, or Summer.

How do I apply?

To apply to the Graduate Certificate in K12 Computer Science Education, visit the Certificate Apply page. The Graduate Certificate in K12 Computer Science Education program code is 6787.

Applications must be received by July 15th for Fall start, December 1st for Spring start, and April 15th for Summer start.

Please note that you will need to have your undergraduate transcripts sent to us for review.

Also note: Michigan State University is obligated to comply with state authorization laws regarding distance education. Because of these laws, residents of some US states are not eligible to apply to online programs at MSU. For a full review of state-by-state authorization laws, please review this summary document before you apply to an online program at MSU. At present, MSU is not authorized to offer online programs/distance education to any residents of Arkansas or Maryland. Some restrictions apply to residents of other states as well.

For more information contact:

Dr. Aman Yadav
Director, Masters of Arts in Educational Technology
Associate Professor, Educational Psychology and Educational Technology
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI 48824
ph: 517-884-2094
twitter: @yadavaman