The Department of Education, University of Delhi, earlier known as the Central Institute of Education (CIE), was the first central institute of professional learning and research in Education established just after independence. The first Prime Minister of India, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru and his Education Minister, Maulana Abdul Kalam Azad, took considerable interest in establishing CIE in 1947 and its activities and progress in those early years. Maulana Azad visualised the function of CIE not merely to "turn out teachers who will be 'model teachers', but to evolve into "a research centre for solving new educational problems of the country". Over these past decades, CIE has attempted to work towards this vision. Moreover, at this juncture, when the nation has introduced the Right to Education Act and a National Curricular Framework for Teacher Education but is grappling with how it will prepare a vast cadre of teachers who can ensure quality with equity, CIE will need to brace itself to address this challenge.
Recognised as an Institute of Advanced Studies in Education (IASE) and having established the Maulana Azad Centre for Elementary and Social Education (MACESE), the Faculty of Education has developed several academic programmes.
The Faculty offers the following academic programmes -
- A full-time professional programme of four years, after 12 years of schooling, in elementary teacher education, leading to a Bachelor of Elementary Education (B.El.Ed.) degree. This programme is offered in eight affiliated colleges of the University of Delhi.
- A full-time professional teacher education programme for one academic year after graduate or post-graduate studies, leading to a degree in Bachelor of Education (B.Ed.). Besides CIE, this programme is offered at three affiliated colleges - Maharshi Valmiki College of Education, Lady Irwin College and Shyama Prasad Mukherjee College.
- A full-time professional teacher education programme for one academic year, leading to a Bachelor of Special Education (Visual Impairment) degree. This course is offered at Durgabai Deshmukh College.
- A full-time professional teacher education programme for one academic year, leading to a Bachelor of Special Education (Mental Retardation) degree. This course is offered at Lady Irwin College.
- A full-time advanced programme in Education for one academic year leading to a Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree.
- A part-time advanced programme in Education for two academic years, leading to a Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree. This programme is designed for in-service teachers and other educational practitioners.
- A full-time pre-doctoral research programme of eighteen months and a part-time programme of twenty-four months for working professionals in Education leading to the degree of Master of Philosophy (M.Phil.)
- A doctoral research programme leading to a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD).
- A Post-Graduate Diploma in Special Education (Multiple Disabilities: Physical and Neurological) for one academic year, with three months internship, is run by Action for Ability Development and Inclusion (AADI).