Search Google Appliance


Postsecondary Adult and Continuing Education (PACE) Specialization

A specialty for those interested in the facilitation of adult learning in college and workplace settings. 



PACE mission statement

To develop adult educators who are able to anticipate and respond to the changing developmental issues of diverse adult learners, organizations, and communities.

PACE guiding principles

The PACE specialty is guided by a specific set of principles and values that is incorporated into course content and interactions:

  • A commitment to social justice and equity
  • The empowerment of change agents and agency
  • The integration of theory, research, assessment, and practice
  • The promotion of sound educational, social, economic, cultural, and environmental leadership and decision-making
  • The development of reflective practitioners
  • The fostering of life-long learning within inclusive, interdependent communities
  • The utilization of appropriate and contemporary resources and technology
  • Leveraging of multiple paradigms and perspectives to inform decision-making for the collective good

Program description

The PACE master’s program is designed to be responsive to the needs of working adults by offering convenient late afternoon, evening, hybrid, and online classes.

The PACE program serves those who wish to teach, develop programs, or manage programs for adult learners in college or non-college settings, or those who already work in this field but want to improve their practice and advance. We offer themes of study in:

In addition, PACE offers the following graduate certificates:

Please refer to our Program of Study for more information. 

PACE learning outcomes

As a result of successfully completing the program, all graduates are expected to demonstrate their learning in the following core areas:

  • Understand foundational concepts regarding individual learners across intellectual, emotional, and cultural dimensions. 
  • Apply the research and theoretical concepts of epistemology, pedagogy, and performance to individual educational practice. 
  • Understand foundational concepts (historical and current) of the organizational policies and procedures, alternate learning formats, and external forces that influence learning environments. 
  • Apply the research and theoretical concepts of learning environments to individual practice through the creation of equitable policies and programs, individual and group professional development, and sustainable organizational practices. 
  • Effectively use oral communication, written communication, research/assessment techniques, and technology appropriate to educational practice. 

The Educational Leadership and Policy Department (ELP) offers a Master of Science or Master of Arts* in Education with a specialization in Postsecondary, Adult & Continuing Education (PACE). Please send initial inquiries about the PACE program to elpadmit@pdx.edu

Click here for information on available scholarships, financial aid, and estimated program costs.

Subscribe to the PACE listserv.

*Master of Arts degree requires proficiency in a foreign language. The Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures (503-725-3522) administers the language examination taken any time prior to one's final term.