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Understanding the Admissions Process: What Goes into Selecting the Right Candidates for Tulane’s Online MEd Program

September 7, 2023

Graduate school admissions is more than a numbers game. Yes, candidates for graduate programs report undergraduate GPAs and other metrics, but those hardly tell the whole story. 

To determine whether a candidate is a good fit for their program, graduate program admissions committees evaluate applicants holistically, considering not just the data but also life experiences, professional accomplishments, and personal statements. They don’t simply ask, “Which is the most accomplished applicant?” Rather, they ask, “Which applicant is most likely to succeed in our program?”

As you prepare to apply to the online Master of Education at Tulane University, you’re likely wondering how the school assesses potential students. This article reviews the process.

Who Is a Good Fit for the Tulane Online MEd Program?

The online MEd program at Tulane University seeks candidates interested in leadership roles who aspire to improve education at the class, school, district, state, private, non-profit, and national levels. According to Kelly McClure, director of preK-12 education programs and professor of practice, successful candidates are those “motivated by a sense of equity and social justice, committed to the proposition that all students can and must succeed.” In addition, the program looks for students interested in serving in their communities. Graduates typically go on to work as teacher leaders, instructional designers, corporate trainers, and educational consultants.

The MEd degree is offered through Tulane’s School of Professional Advancement (SoPA), an institution designed for young adults, working professionals, military personnel, stay-at-home parents, people with disabilities, and working professionals looking to advance their skills and knowledge. The school also serves the continuing education needs of Tulane alumni. On-campus and online offerings emphasize flexible scheduling, with rolling admissions and three annual start dates to enhance convenience.

The Type of Students Tulane Seeks to Attract With Its Tuition Discount

What sort of students does Tulane University seek for its online Master of Education program? Because schools use scholarships to attract the students they most desire, we can identify some of the types of students the MEd program hopes to enroll by looking at the scholarships it offers.

Tulane’s online Master of Education program awards an automatic 20 percent tuition discount to students who meet one of the following criteria:

  • Full-time educators and paraprofessionals.
  • Graduates of HBCUs and Minority Serving Institutions.
  • Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) members.
  • Tulane alumni.
  • Active and retired public safety personnel (firefighters, police officers, or paramedics).
  • Veterans and active-duty military personnel.
  • Employees who work for government offices in Jefferson or Orleans Parish or City.
  • Individuals over the age of 60.
  • Tulane SoPA adjunct faculty currently teaching a course at SoPA.

Note that 20 percent discounts cannot be combined with one another (i.e., you don’t receive a 60 percent discount for being a full-time educator over the age of 60 who graduated from an HBCU) but can be mixed with other scholarships. Military discounts are applied only after candidates have exhausted other education benefits.

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Admissions Requirements

In keeping with SoPA’s mission to serve a broad spectrum of lifelong learners, the online MEd program’s admissions policies embrace “applicants with unconventional backgrounds by removing barriers to entry such as GRE/GMAT, TESOL, and professional prerequisites,” according to Robin Forman, PhD, senior vice president for academic affairs and provost. The admissions committee bases its decision on the following application components.


Applicants must submit transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended. Unofficial transcripts are acceptable during the admission review phase, but final acceptance requires submission of official transcripts. SoPA typically requires a minimum undergraduate grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 but will consider candidates who don’t meet this standard if other aspects of their application demonstrate capability and potential.


Your up-to-date resume or curriculum vitae (CV) should summarize your academic and professional history, including internships and fellowships.

Written Statement

Tulane online MEd candidates must submit two written statements. The first should discuss one short-term career goal and one long-term career goal in approximately 200 words. The second should describe the greatest challenges or opportunities in your desired field of study. This essay should be approximately 500 words long and cite at least two supporting sources.

Director of PreK-12 Education Programs Kelly McClure cautions that “The biggest error we [see in our applications] is the informality of responses to the short answer section of the application. Just because it’s short doesn’t mean that it’s informal or that candidates should ignore the criteria we have outlined for appropriate responses.”

What’s Not Required

Your application to Tulane’s online Master of Education program need not include any of the following: GRE scores, TOEFL scores, or letters of recommendation. Students from all professions are encouraged to apply to this program.

Submitting the Best Possible Application

According to Kelly McClure, the most important things for Tulane online MEd applicants to remember are to:

  • Highlight individual interests and goals throughout the application.
  • Apply as early as you can (well ahead of the term deadline if possible).
  • Send along all official transcripts when it’s time to finalize your application.

Tulane seeks current and future educators passionate about improving education, enabling each student to achieve their potential, and promoting equity and social justice. The best possible application communicates those priorities clearly, enthusiastically, and earnestly.

Graduates in this program can apply their passions across a wide spectrum of education professions. Specializations and certifications in leadership, learning experience design, teaching English learners, and special education offer numerous options to develop new skills and effect change. A Tulane MEd can lead to careers as curriculum planners, instructional designers, assessment administrators, education policy professionals, school and district administrators, and equity and social justice advocates. 
You can complete the degree from the comfort of your home: this 100 percent online program requires no campus visits. Financial aid opportunities can reduce costs. Just reach out to an enrollment advisor to learn more about financing your degree, the MEd curriculum, or the admissions process.

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