Interdisciplinary and experiential, this one-year, full-time program prepares you to design engaging and effective learning experiences that are informed by the learning sciences and incorporate cutting-edge technologies.
Throughout the on-campus program, you’ll complete design challenges, shadow working professionals, explore technology incubators and collaboratories, and intern with local organizations. You’ll graduate with a dynamic portfolio that showcases the depth and breadth of your design work and demonstrates your capabilities in learner-centered design, leadership, and forward-thinking imagination.
Learning engineering is the systematic application of principles and methods from the learning sciences to support and better understand learners and learning. The discipline leverages human-centered design approaches to iteratively develop and improve design solutions that address specific learning needs and opportunities—often using technology.
Learning engineers design innovative learning experiences and environments informed by the learning sciences. They deftly 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 a well-facilitated and increasingly challenging experiential core. Three-credit courses and one-credit modules emphasize the knowledge and skills needed to develop design and leadership capabilities and improve understanding of learning.
Our program is designed as a cognitive apprenticeship in which you participate as an active member of a knowledge-building community with teachers, mentors, and peers.
Hands-on learning through a design studio every semester, opportunities to shadow groups engaged in designing for learners, and internships with local organizations.
Classes and modules designed specifically to support you as you learn what you need to thrive as a learning engineer. You’ll use what you learn in classes to guide the decisions you make while completing studio projects.
Reflection. You will continuously reflect on your experiences and the design challenges you face, using those reflections to develop new insights. You’ll track your thinking, record and justify your decisions, continually identify what you learn, and synthesize across your experiences in the Reflective Seminar.
Throughout the program, you’ll develop the expertise and imagination 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 leaders and collaborators.
How people learn and what influences their engagement. You will be introduced to the theoretical foundations of how people learn, pedagogies and practices for fostering learning, and how to design and use technology to engage learners.
Learner-centered design and designing for diversity. You’ll master design thinking, design decision-making practices, and how to use what you learn about learning to create engaging and effective designs that address learners in all of their complexity.
Design for social justice and equity. Across classes, design studio experiences, and reflective activities, you will account for the full range of social, cultural, affective, and cognitive influences on access and learning. Promoting social justice is a pillar of both Boston College’s mission and the mission of the Lynch School of Education and Human Development.
Vocational discernment and career readiness. You will have opportunities to identify what you enjoy doing as a designer of learning experiences, your personal values and aspirations, what your strengths are, and concrete steps to achieve your goals. You’ll work with and be mentored by practicing learning engineers.
Leadership skills. Whether you are a team member or a team leader in your first position, you’ll learn valuable skills and knowledge you can use to influence your team, organization, or clients.
All majors or backgrounds may apply. A background in engineering or computer science is not required.
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
Learning Engineering student, Lauren Totino, designed an "immersive orientation" experience to prepare university students for a semester abroad. The design project leveraged Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) technology to support students in learning important cultural and logistical information about the host city they plan to study abroad in (Cairo, Egypt).
Student Anne Riitho designed a simulated campus experience intended to empower Venezuelan refugees and migrants to engage in Colombian higher education. Through the use of the simulation, the model of the campus, and the introduction to campus processes, the project makes the inaccessible accessible to migrants. Learners will begin to see themselves (belonging) on campus as well as develop mental models of the necessary steps to join the campus.
Designed by Juliet Norvig, this project teaches elementary school learners about computational thinking skills such as problem decomposition, pattern recognition, abstraction, and algorithms. Students create their own cute, brightly-colored monster using codes for various monster parts. Ideally, the fun of builidng a monster in this activity will serve as a "spark" to help learners who do not typically identify with computer science become interested in the field. Part of the activity is "unplugged" and part of the activity is completed using a block-based coding platform to teach a variety of skills.
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 $7.5 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. Here’s why:
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.