Today’s evolving world calls for learning engineers who can help schools, nonprofits, companies, and governments design engaging, accessible learning experiences that draw on the most current learning technologies and pedagogies. The M.A. in Learning Engineering is designed to equip you with the hands-on design experience, interdisciplinary knowledge, and technical savvy you’ll need to respond to that call.
As a student here, you will be designing from the moment you step on campus. Under the guidance of faculty who are at the forefront of the field, you will develop a toolkit for creating learning experiences that incorporate cutting-edge technologies.
Through collaborations and internships with our partner organizations, you’ll build a design portfolio that will prepare you to pursue a career as a learning engineer, learning experience designer, instructional designer, curriculum developer, or educational technology consultant.
Learning engineering is the systematic application of principles and methods from the learning sciences to support and improve our understanding of learners and learning processes. The discipline leverages human-centered design principles to iteratively develop and improve products and services that empower learners—often using technology.
Learning engineers design learning experiences and environments informed by the learning sciences. They combine knowledge, tools, and techniques from a variety of technical, pedagogical, empirical, and design-based disciplines while collaborating with subject-matter experts, software engineers, and others.
The program is built around the experiential, hands-on core of BC’s Design Studio. Throughout your year at Boston College, you’ll work to find innovative solutions to a series of increasingly complex real-world learning design challenges, building your professional portfolio as you go. You will gain key knowledge and technical skills to develop your design and leadership capabilities and improve your understanding of learning.
You will be an active member of a knowledge-building community with faculty, mentors, and peers. Rather than a traditional, top-down learning environment, our program is designed as a kind of cognitive apprenticeship, with the following components:
Hands-on learning: You will hone your practical design skills in the Design Studio, shadow professionals who are engaged in designing for learners, and have an opportunity to intern with a partner organization.
Classes and modules: In the classroom, you’ll gain a background in the learning sciences and a set of technical skills that will inform the decisions you make in the Design Studio. The combination of foundational three-credit courses and skill-specific one-credit modules is designed to provide you with the grounding you’ll need to thrive as a learning engineer.
Reflection: As you gain understanding and skills and face design challenges in the Design Studio and in your internship, you’ll use the Reflective Seminar to develop new insights. This seminar, taken every semester, is designed to help you track your thinking, record and justify your decisions, identify what you’ve learned, and synthesize across your experiences.
Throughout the program, you’ll develop the expertise and imagination you’ll need to design learning experiences that dynamically engage learners’ interests, passions, and prior knowledge. You will also acquire interpersonal and leadership skills that will prepare you to thrive as a leader and collaborator in a wide range of professional environments. You’ll learn:
How people learn and what influences their engagement: You’ll be introduced to the theoretical foundations of learning, pedagogies and practices for fostering learning, and the latest thinking on how to design and use technology to engage learners.
Learner-centered design: You’ll master design thinking, decision-making practices, and the art of using what you’ve learned about learning to create engaging and effective designs that address learners in all of their complexity.
How to design for social justice, diversity, and equity: At Boston College and the Lynch School, you will join a university community founded around the pillar of social justice. Through coursework, Design Studio experiences, and the Reflective Seminar, you will consider how social, cultural, emotional, and cognitive differences influence access and learning, and discover how to design experiences that work for all learners.
Throughout the year, you’ll engage in activities that will help you imagine your career as a learning engineer. You’ll identify the kinds of learning experiences you enjoy designing and take concrete steps to achieve your personal and professional goals.
We welcome students from all educational backgrounds who are passionate about designing educational opportunities in formal or informal settings. There’s no need for you to have expertise in education, design, engineering, computer science, or any other particular discipline or major.
At the Lynch School of Education and Human Development, you will join a tight-knit community that prizes collaboration and social justice. You will live in Boston, an international hub for learning, science, and technology.
Schools, districts, colleges, and universities
Museums, zoos, aquariums, and national parks
Businesses ranging from startups to large corporations
Nonprofits and foundations
Social service and community agencies
Designing the next generation of educational technology
Developing online, hybrid, makerspace, and active-learning environments
Constructing technology-enhanced curriculum, pedagogy, and assessment
Creating employee training and consumer education programs
Learning Experience (LX) and User Experience (UX) Designers
Instructional Designers and Evaluators
Educational Technology Consultants
Education should level the playing field. We feel the same way about financial aid.
The Lynch School of Education and Human Development provides more than $8.4 million in financial aid to students each year. As a result, the quality of BC’s instruction, the benefit of our alumni network, and the impact a BC degree will have on your employment options is both affordable and invaluable.
To be uploaded to your online Application Form.
In addition to your academic history and relevant work experience, please include any licenses currently held, any social justice-related experience, any language skills other than English, and any research experience or publications.
To be uploaded to your online Application Form.
In 1,000-1,500 words, describe your academic and professional goals, any experience relevant to this program, and your future plans, expectations, and aspirations.
Identification of recommenders/instructions to recommenders are outlined in the online Application Form.
Two letters of recommendation are required with at least one required from an academic source. Applicants may submit one additional recommendation of their choice.
Unofficial transcripts will be accepted in lieu of official transcripts for the application review process. In the event that one is admitted into a program and enrolls, our office will need official transcripts prior to course registration. To expedite application processing times, our office encourages you to send unofficial transcripts electronically to our email address at GSOE@BC.EDU. Please note that unofficial transcripts must include all of the following items:
If you are able to secure official transcripts, please note the following:
Official electronic transcripts are accepted when sent directly to email@example.com from the institution. When requesting electronic transcripts, you must manually type in firstname.lastname@example.org to ensure it is received by our office.
Mailed transcript(s) should be sent to the following address:
Lynch Office of Graduate Admissions, Boston College
Campion Hall 135
140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
Submitting GRE test scores is optional and not required for 2021 entry term(s). If you wish to send GRE scores, the Lynch School GRE code is 3218.