M.Ed. SEcondary Education

W.I.S.E.R. Program

West Chester University Improving STEM Education through Residency 



With funding from the National Science Foundation, NOYCE grant, West Chester University (WCU) offers the West Chester University Improving STEM Education through Residency (WISER) Program. The WISER program is a five-year innovative, apprenticeship-based program for individuals with a deep commitment to teaching mathematics or science in a high-need school district. Working from the model of medical residencies, the program provides graduate education, intensive classroom experiences with a master teacher, and four years of mentoring and professional development in the schools where they teach. Resident Fellows work with faculty in the Department of Secondary Education during their program.

The foundational coursework of the M.Ed. Program provides candidates with the core principles and values of the M.Ed. Program. Candidates will explore the history and nature of education and public schools, as well as the historical effects of socioeconomic disparity and racial/cultural bias on the development of public schools, curriculum, and student achievement. Candidates will also study and research adolescent development and the various societal issues that affect development (special education, literacy, trauma, etc.). These courses will be connected throughout the program with themes of social justice, culturally relevant pedagogy, and conversations of the social content of education and communities influence on public schools and adolescence. Content pedagogical coursework will be integrated with residency work during the school year to provide ongoing support. 

Resident Fellows who successfully complete the program earn an M.Ed. degree and teacher certification simultaneously. Graduates then make a four-year commitment to a mentoring program to support their early career trajectory and goals. 

Based on research about successful programs, the Residency Fellowship:

  • Embeds Resident Fellows from day one in high-needs schools, focusing their master’s degree coursework on classroom experiences;
  • Provides all the coursework needed for a 13-month Master of Education (M.Ed.) and state certification;
  • Matches the Resident Fellow with a school-based collaborating teacher;
  • Provides Resident Fellow Graduates intensive induction support, mentoring, and professional development through the first four years of teaching;
  • Provides additional professional development support to the master teachers and school leaders to reinforce the school’s focus on learning and continuous improvement at all levels;
  • Offers invaluable support of a cohort of individuals who are passionate about science and math education for urban and rural school districts.

Participants in this program also benefit from the following:

  •  A $15,000 scholarship during the residency year.
  •  A $5000 tuition credit.
  •  A yearly $11,000 salary supplement during the first four years of teaching.
  •  Four-year mentoring program post-graduation including in-class support, monthly mentoring experiences and yearly summer professional development opportunities.
  •  Additional funding for professional development experiences, travel, and classroom materials throughout the mentoring program. 

To receive further information about admission requirements, please fill out this form. To discuss the program in more details, please contact the Program Director:

Dr. Daniel Ilaria


Apply for this program: Graduate Admissions. Deadline to apply is March 1st for the academic year. This program starts with Summer Session courses. 

Back to top of page.