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College of Education and Human Development - George Mason University

OES Contract Course Information for Agencies

A contract course evolves from a documented agreement between the University and a public school division or other agency. Unlike conventional courses for which tuition payments are made by individuals, contract courses are paid for on a group basis, usually by the agency whose employees are course participants.

Typically, a contract course is conducted at a site designated by the contracting agency while a conventional course is usually conducted on campus. A contract course represents the University's effort to meet the specifically identified needs of a particular client group in a teaching-learning format consistent with the University's guidelines for graduate credit. Often such needs result in courses designed collaboratively by Mason faculty and agency personnel.

Scheduling Contract Courses

Contract courses also offer more flexible scheduling and, in some cases, more innovative formats than traditional catalog courses. Contract courses may meet on evenings, weekdays, weekends, combinations of weekdays and weekends; may begin or end in any month of the year; may span two or more semesters; and may involve innovative teaching delivery systems and learning experiences.

They have featured such proven practices of instructional design as peer observations, behind-the-glass techniques, reflective practitioner dialogue journals, action research, as well as aspects of the latest technology. Credit courses may also be designed to coincide with particular client activities and agendas or to take advantage of special learning resources (i.e. conferences, staff planning, etc.).


Submit the following documents as one complete packet no later than 4 weeks prior to the 1st class meeting by emailing to A late fee of up to $50.00 may be incurred if the request is received beyond this point in time or an incomplete packet is submitted.

  1. Cover letter on agency letterhead (docx)
  2. Contract Course Request Form (pdf)
  3. Proposal syllabus (using syllabus template) (.docx)
  4. Resume (for new instructors)
  5. Faculty Qualifications (doc) (pdf)