Skip Navigation

Online Master's in Community-Based Education & Leadership

Learn to Grow, Learn to Lead, Learn to Serve.

Become a more effective educator and leader in your organization by earning your master's in Community-Based Education & Leadership.

Teacher instructing students
  • Program Overview

    Program Overview

    Stevenson University’s online Master of Arts in Community-Based Education & Leadership is designed to meet the growing demand for highly-qualified professionals to teach, lead, and manage in non-formal and informal education settings. Practicing professionals will gain the knowledge and skills to become effective educators and change leaders in their organizations. Upon completion of the master’s program, graduates will have the ability to meet the needs of diverse populations of learners, build transformative learning communities, and foster collaborative partnerships within the expanding non-formal educational sector.

    Due to the unique blend of coursework including understanding 21st century teaching and learning as well as organizational management and leadership, this program benefits a variety of positions, including and not limited to the following:  

    Youth Development Specialists

    Provides the knowledge and skills for professionals to be more effective youth educators while advancing their career potential. Professionals learn strategies to support the social, emotional, and cognitive development of youth and gain an understanding of the personal, family, and cultural influences that lead to positive outcomes. Courses include skill development in grant writing, managing volunteers, and fundraising in community organizations.

    Community Education Leaders

    Designed for professionals engaged in community education, such as community parks and recreation, youth and family education, library education, and state, regional or national agencies tasked with educating the public. Courses include how to effectively educate and engage communities, build innovative programming, and develop strategic plans for sustainability.  

    Athletic Coaches

    Professionals will be equipped with the knowledge and skills to make a positive impact on athletes and foster the development of valuable life skills for success. The program helps coaches develop positive communication patterns, identify the social and cultural influences on youth and young adults, as well as understand the psychology of motivating athletes. Courses also cover how to develop volunteers and lead in community organizations.

    Non-profit Leaders

    Professionals will develop skills in community engagement, advocacy, and fundraising in order to enhance their organization’s effectiveness. The program equips professionals with the knowledge and skills to grow and develop their volunteer base, conduct program development and evaluation, and use data to drive evidence-based decision making. 


    Stevenson also offers a Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Community-Based Education & Leadership for those who may not be ready to commit to master's program. LEARN ABOUT OUR CBEL Certificate

  • Courses


    The Master of Arts in Community-Based Education & Leadership program is a 36-credit hour program.

    Theory and Research Courses

    • ED 520 Cognitive, Social, and Emotional Development of Learners
    • ED 606 Socio-political and Cultural Influences on Families, Communities, and Organizations
    • ED 608 Action Research and Data Driven Decision-Making

    Community-Based Education & Leadership

    • CBEL 512 Foundations of Community-Based Education
    • CBEL 612 Program Design, Implementation, and Evaluation
    • CBEL 614 Innovative Teaching and Learning for 21st Century Skills
    • CBEL 618 Community Engagement and Leadership
    • CBEL 702 Community-Based Education & Leadership Capstone

    Community-Based Education & Leadership Electives

    Students will select four courses from at least two of the following content areas.

    Teaching and Learning Electives

    • CBEL 661 Principles and Practices of Youth Development
    • CBEL 662 Teaching & Learning for Specialized Populations
    • ED 510 Psychology & Development of Adolescents
    • ED605 STEM Curriculum Principles and Practice
    • ED620 Literacy Strategies in the STEM Content Areas
    • ED625 Advanced Literacy Strategies in the STEM Content Areas
    • ED630 Principles of Special Education
    • ED690 Issues in STEM Education

    Management/Leadership Electives

    • CBEL 670 Volunteer Development
    • CBEL 671 Advocacy & Fundraising in Community-Based Organizations
    • CBEL 672 Legal Issues and Risk Management in Community Organizations
    • BTM 644 Project Management
    • BTM 635 Innovative Leadership & Management

    Communication Courses

    • CM 600 Cultures and Communication
    • CM 605 Communication Ethics in the Public Sphere
    • CM 620 Conflict Communication and Leadership
    • CM 630 Contemporary Organizations and Communication
    • CM 635 Crisis Communication
  • Admission Requirements

    Admission Requirements

    • Completed online application. At this time, we are not accepting applications.  
    • Completion of bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution.
    • Official college transcripts from all previous academic work.
    • A cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in past academic work.
    • Two letters of recommendation.
    • Resume of professional experience.
    • Personal statement.
  • FAQ


    Who is the ideal candidate for this degree?
    The intended audience for this program includes, but is not limited to, community school educators, after-school and out-of-school-time educators, librarians, museum coordinators, environmental educators, coaches and summer camp coordinators, higher education professionals, K-12 teachers and administrators, and government agency outreach providers. 

    How are courses offered?
    Stevenson’s Master of Arts in Community-Based Education & Leadership is offered online in 8-week sessions, providing flexibility for working professionals. Course content is facilitated through engaging online instruction by seasoned professionals. Current and innovative educational technology tools build community and encourage collaboration among students and between students and professors. Practical application of theory is embedded throughout the program. 

    How soon can the program be completed and when does it begin?
    Anticipated enrollment of the first cohort of students is Fall 2017. The degree may be completed in two years if one course is taken every 8-week session. 

    What if an applicant's GPA is under 3.0?
    Consideration will be given to an applicant's professional experience along with academic record. Applicants are encouraged to address any areas of concern in the personal statement. 

    Who do I contact if I have questions?
    Please contact Amanda Millar, Enrollment Counselor, at  or call 443-334-3334.

  • Tuition


    Established in 1947, Stevenson University has a long history of providing students an affordable, private education. 

    The School of Graduate and Professional Studies has simplified the cost of your education by eliminating all fees.

    Master's Program Cost Per
    Credit Hour
    Cost Per Course
    (3-Credit Hours)
    Total Cost of Master's
    (36-Credit Hours)
    Master of Arts in Community-Based Education & Leadership $495.00 $1,485.00 $17,820.00*

    *Does not include books.


Program pending Maryland Higher Education Commission approval.

Request Info 

* = required
  • best live chat
  • 1-877-531-7118
  • Attend an Event
  • Apply


Contact Stevenson's School of Graduate of Professional Studies
Contact Us
School of Graduate & Professional Studies
Owings Mills Campus
100 Campus Circle
Email Us