Community-engaged education bridges the divide between academia (PK–16) and activism by exploring how schools and communities can partner with one another for mutual benefit. The Master of Arts program in Community-Engaged Education & Social Change trains educators who understand the critical intersections across learning, teaching, and local community.

Designed for students interested in nonprofit, educational, and public-service careers, this experiential degree program allows you to participate in community-campus partnerships to exercise alternative and critical pedagogies. The program’s unique curriculum offers opportunities for important self-reflection and newfound awareness of local knowledge, assets, and alternative education projects. The program also examines current scholarship on the process of community-building and social change through texts, guest speakers, and community internships.

Program Highlights
  • One of the only Education master’s programs in Southern California that addresses civic engagement, social change, and activism.
  • You will work with the director of the program to tailor your program emphasis around your unique interests and goals. Students have used the program to focus on various interests, including women’s health, LGBTQ+ rights, youth mentorship, refugee resettlement, and undocumented students.
  • At the end of the program, you will engage in a hands-on practicum experience.
  • Graduates of the program will be prepared to work in a variety of nonprofit and educational organizations that promote and support relationships between the community and formal/non-formal educational entities.
  • Available to undergraduate students at the Claremont Colleges, the program’s Accelerated Degree option saves students time and money by letting undergraduates take courses applicable to both the bachelor’s and master’s degree.

Program At a Glance

32 units or
Accelerated Program: 12 units (Claremont Colleges) and 20 units (CGU)

Full-time: 11 months
Part-time: Varies by number of units taken per term

*Actual completion times will vary and may be higher, depending on full- or part-time course registration, units transferred, and time to complete other degree requirements.

Fall | Spring | Summer

MA in Community-Engaged Education & Social Change

Featured Courses

EDUC 425
Race & Racism in Education

Broadens student understanding of the foundations of racial inequities in education and how racism has shaped students’ educational experiences and outcomes.

EDUC 573 
Prison Education: Community-Based Education & Social Change

Provides students with an opportunity to create and facilitate curriculum based on their own critical pedagogies within the educational setting of a local men’s prison.

EDUC 426
Critical & Asset-based Theoretical Frameworks

Focuses on asset-based frameworks to examine the experiences of underrepresented and marginalized communities in K-12 and Higher Education.

EDUC 451
Current & Critical Issues in Schools and Communities: A Capstone Course

Studies the sociological, historical, political, legal, and philosophical bases of American education, philanthropy, and movement building, and examines the principles, problems, and practices influencing schools, communities, and public services.

EDUC 572
Community Partnerships & Relationships for Social Change

Examines how the larger social structures that schools are embedded in and how these structures impact students and families whose children attend these schools.

EDUC 574
Community-based Participatory Research: Focus on Transformative Movement Organizing

Provides an introduction to community-based participatory research methods (CBPR), such as participatory observation, archival research, interviews, focus groups, and the means by which students can engage in research design, data collection, and analysis in collaboration with community partners.

Student Spotlight


Alumni Spotlight


Accelerated Degree Option

Undergraduate students from the Claremont Colleges can petition to transfer in up to 12 units of “community-engaged themed” coursework from the Claremont Colleges. Credits are applied to the CEESC’s “Programmatic Choices” (and thus are not used in lieu of CEESC required courses). Students must have earned a B or better in the class for it to be transferable. Petitions related to transferable courses are reviewed by the dean of the School of Educational Studies and/or the coordinator of the CEESC program.

Faculty & Research

  • Torie Weiston-Serdan profile image

    Torie Weiston-Serdan

    Clinical Assistant Professor
    Director, MA in Community Engaged Education & Social Change

    Research Interests

    Critical mentoring; critical youth work; non-profits and social enterprises; diversity and equity; non-profits and philanthropy; youth-serving non-profits; culturally sustaining pedagogy; abolitionist teaching; Black Feminism in education; learning and teaching

  • DeLacy Ganley profile image

    DeLacy Ganley

    Dean, School of Educational Studies
    Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    Culturally relevant education; resiliency and achievement of marginalized populations; intersection of families, community, and school; language acquisition; social capital theory; systems theory

  • Eligio Martinez profile image

    Eligio Martinez

    Senior Research Fellow

    Research Interests

    P-20 education pipeline; college access and retention; community colleges; boys and men of color; middle school education; Chicana/o and Latina/o Students

  • Tom Luschei profile image

    Tom Luschei

    Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    International and Comparative Education; Economics of Education; Teacher Quality, Teacher Policy, and Teacher Distribution; Education Policy across the Americas; Bilingual Education Policy and Practice

  • Deborah Faye Carter profile image

    Deborah Faye Carter

    Associate Professor of Higher Education

    Research Interests

    Higher education; transition to college; college student outcomes; access to college; race in education; mentoring, equity, and diverse learning environments in STEM

  • Mary Simpson Poplin profile image

    Mary Simpson Poplin

    Senior Research Fellow
    Professor Emerita

    Research Interests

    Highly effective teachers in Los Angeles area; effective teaching methods; students, schools and poverty; differences between Judeo Christian and secular thought; Mother Teresa (worked with her in 1996)

  • Linda Perkins profile image

    Linda Perkins

    University Professor
    Director, Applied Gender Studies

    Research Interests

    Women and African-American higher education, history and contemporary issues on women in higher education, especially Black women, global gender issues.

  • Dina C. Maramba profile image

    Dina C. Maramba

    Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    Equity and diversity issues in higher education; theory and practice in student affairs; college student development; access and retention; first-generation college students; Asian American and Pacific Islander populations; minority serving institutions

  • Guan K. Saw profile image

    Guan K. Saw

    Associate Professor of Education

    Research Interests

    Educational inequality; diversity and inclusion; STEM education and workforce; college access and success; sociology of education; educational psychology; educational evaluation and policy analysis; quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods; health disparities

  • María de Lourdes Argüelles profile image

    María de Lourdes Argüelles

    Professor Emerita, Education and Cultural Studies

    Research Interests

    Contemplative studies; alternative ways of living, learning, and dying; immigrant and refugee studies

Request information about the Community-Engaged Education & Social Change program

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Gabriela Krupa

Associate Director of Admissions
T: 909-607-9101