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Course Delivery and Credit Options

Blended Learning

Blended Learning format courses support educators' teaching and learning while meeting the demanding schedules of today's teachers. This course format combines face-to-face class meetings with a collaborative online component, using Blackboard, in which the course instructor delivers the course content and serves as an instructional coach. Course participants engage in responsive learning connected to key concepts of the course. Following an action research model, participants determine a concept they would like to explore more fully and create a plan to implement in their classroom and/or school setting.

When registering, please note the location of the course. Learners are required to travel to the site for the face-to-face class sessions, while the online sessions are completed via Blackboard on a computer in a location convenient for you.

If you are not in a degree program at Saint Mary's University, your log in information will be shared with you via the instructor or the GPDE Program Office, shortly before the course starts.


Traditional course participants attend required class meetings, engage in learning connected to key concepts of the course, and incorporate research and practical applications to deepen their knowledge about student learning and effective teaching.


Online learning eliminates face-to-face class meetings with the convenience of collaboration among students using the Blackboard component, where the course instructor delivers the course content and serves as an instructional coach

Inquiry-Based/Independent Study

Inquiry-based courses are especially purposeful for school-based professional learning communities and/or study groups that are interested in connecting their inquiry to graduate credit. Educators who want or need to engage in action research learning benefit from theses courses as well. Interested independent study learners should register for GPDE 5100, Conducting Classroom Inquiry. GPDE 5180, Putting Implementation Plans into Practice is our inquiry course designed for learners who participate in a GPDE summer course and are interested in implementing their research-based plan in their classroom during the fall or spring semester.

Flexible Credit Option: One Credit Courses Offered, Available as Three-Credit Option

The GPDE program will be offering additional one-credit courses that are available as three-credit courses. These courses are delivered as flexible credit option courses. The three-credit option will provide learners the opportunity to more deeply investigate a variety of educational issues and trends. A number of three-credit courses currently offered through the GPDE program will be modified and delivered as one-credit courses, as well.

For example, in many of our GPDE courses, learners may elect to enroll in the course for one or three semester credits. Learners who elect the three-credit option will attend the required face to face meeting time for traditional courses for a one credit course but in addition, will focus their continued inquiry on concepts of interest or need that were part of their course curriculum, typically completed during the two week period following the face to face meeting. Learners can register for the flexible credit option in a blended learning or online course as well. There will be additional course requirements for the students electing the three-credit option. This additional work will be submitted to the instructor virtually. The guided inquiry credits will extend the learners' engagement with the main concepts from the one-credit course.

Flexible credit option courses allow learners to:

  • Explore a greater variety of current topics and trends in education

  • Enjoy increased flexibility to accommodate your schedule

  • Investigate course concepts that meet your needs

  • Embed your learning in your instructional planning

  • Receive responsive, supportive instructional coaching

  • Instructors of those same courses will serve as the instructional coach for the two additional credits.

    The additional one-credit courses will provide learners the opportunity to investigate a more expansive variety of educational issues and trends. A number of the three-credit courses currently offered through the GPDE program will be modified and delivered as one-credit courses, as well.

    One-credit courses focusing on assessment, questioning, goal setting, and non-linguistic representations are being offered this summer.

    Please view the attached document to learn more about the required assessments for the one credit course and the three credit option.

    Assessments for Flexible Credit Courses

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