Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study (CAGS)
Fitchburg State University’s CAGS programs are designed to meet well-defined career needs of professionals who have earned an appropriate master’s degree and who wish to attain greater competency in a combination of areas of study within one of the major CAGS fields offered.
General Description of Program
Each student’s CAGS program is planned under the direction of an advisor and is built on the academic background, professional position, and career goals of the student. CAGS programs consist of an integrated core curriculum, supervised professional practice, an internship, and elective courses.
General Program of Study
Upon acceptance into the program, the student’s plan of study is developed with and approved by an advisor, who works with the student over the course of study. A minimum of 30 approved graduate credits is required to complete the CAGS with the following restrictions:
- CAGS courses may not repeat work previously accomplished by the student in other graduate degree study
- CAGS credits must be earned in graduate-level courses
- 6000-level professional development courses may not be taken or transferred in as part of the CAGS program of study
Details regarding the CAGS curricula, including information about required and elective courses, may be found in the specific CAGS program description which follows.
CAGS in Interdisciplinary Studies: Individualized Concentration
Jessica Robey, PhD
Each student’s CAGS program is planned and approved under the direction of a faculty member from both disciplines chosen by the student. Upon acceptance into the program, the student must submit an approved plan of study. The CAGS consists of an integrated core curriculum and a capstone experience. Students choose from two capstone options: thesis or research project.
The integrated core curriculum consists of:
- Two common courses, Critical Inquiry in Interdisciplinary Studies and Advanced Research Methods
- Twelve advanced graduate credits (7000-level and above) in each of two declared disciplines
- A 6 credit capstone experience. Students choose either a research project or thesis. This capstone experience allows the student to demonstrate specified competencies in the two fields studied.
The student must complete 36 semester hours, which includes 6 semester hours of required core course work, a 6 semester hour capstone and 12 semester hours in each of the two academic disciplines.
As part of the capstone experience, students collaborate with faculty members from each discipline. Students choosing the thesis option follow the Fitchburg State University Thesis Guidelines.
Potential Combined Disciplines
Applied Communication, Biology, Business Administration, Computer Science Counseling, Creative Arts, Early Childhood Education, Educational Leadership and Management, Educational Technology, Elementary Education, English Studies, History, Middle School Education, Occupational Education, Psychology, Reading Specialist, Reading Specialist/Wilson Language Reading Program courses, Science Education, Secondary Education, and Special Education.
Admissions Standards and Criteria
To apply for enrollment in the CAGS in Interdisciplinary Studies Program, a student must submit documents as outlined in the graduate admissions section as well as:
- Official transcript of a master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution
- MAT/GRE/GMAT exams are not required
- Passing scores on the Communication and Literacy portion of the Massachusetts Test for Educator Licensure (MTEL) if the student’s direction is to obtain a MA Educator License.