Although an online bachelor’s degree in education and a teacher certification are sufficient to teach in most states, many experienced educators are pursuing online master’s degrees in education. Accredited online master in education programs are designed to enhance educational skills and knowledge and prepare experienced educators for leadership positions such as principal and instructional coordinator. However, educators interested in teaching at colleges and universities typically pursue a traditional or online PhD in education, rather than a masters degree. Many online masters degree education programs require only a thesis for experienced educators, but schools often require students without prior teaching experience to complete a student teaching internship as well to gain classroom experience.
How long does it take to earn an education master’s degree online?
The best online masters degree programs in education typically take 2 years to complete. This equals about 33 quarter-credit hours of coursework.
What are the admission requirements for an online master’s in education?
A number of the top online master degree programs in education require students to submit the following:
- Application form
- Undergraduate transcripts
- Revised Graduate Records Exam scores (Revised GRE)
- Personal statement or Essay
- Letters of recommendation
Candidates for online masters education programs should normally have either a bachelor’s degree in education or in a related field, including the following fields:
- Educational Psychology
- Early Childhood Development
- Elementary Education
- Curriculum and Instruction
What types of online master’s degrees in education can students pursue?
Accredited online masters in educations schools offer a broad range of online masters degrees in education, including:
- Integrating Technology in the Classroom: Online education masters degree students will gain a foundation in the use of technology to support student learning. They will learn to evaluate and incorporate computer-assisted instruction methods using projectors, online materials and other resources like Smart Boards.
- Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment: Students will learn techniques and methods for designing standards-based courses, teaching methods and testing procedures to improve student learning. They will explore topics such as motivation, instructional strategy and student assessment.
- Special Education:Online master’s degree education student will focus on current research in neuroscience, assessment and intervention. Students will learn how to use assistive technology to promote higher levels of student engagement and learning among those with learning disabilities and special needs.
- Educational Leadership: Students will gain a fundamental understanding of leadership responsibilities in planning and developing educational programs and services. They will also examine processes and issues related to change management, which is the process of gradually restructuring business practices in order to achieve lasting change within an organization.
- Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM): Online master degree in education students will become familiar with analysis, problem solving and critical thinking. They will learn how to integrate science, technology, engineering and mathematics into all subject areas to improve the quality of K-12 education for their students.
What can students expect to learn in an online education master’s degree program?
The best online master’s degree programs in education are designed to provide experienced teachers with skills in teaching reading comprehension, social perceptiveness and decision- making. They will also gain knowledge of curriculum design, assessment techniques and classroom management.
Some classes taken by many students enrolled in top online master programs in education include:
- Teacher as Professional- This education masters degree online course explores what it means to be a professional in today’s diverse and changing educational landscape. Students learn to understand ethical issues that relate to education and how to apply their training to dilemmas faced by educators.
- Curriculum and Instruction: Theories and Trends- This class focuses on how curriculum is impacted by social, political and legislative forces. Students will investigate how curriculum is shaped and how curriculum implementation and models of instruction affect student learning.
- Theory and Practice in Classroom Management- This course helps teachers create safe, supportive and respectful instructional environments in order to optimize learning for all students. Participants learn how to develop positive relationships with and between students as well as how to foster a sense of community in the classroom.
What careers can students pursue after graduating from education masters programs online?
Education master’s programs online graduates may choose from a variety of career options, of which popular choices include:
- School Principal- Elementary, middle and high school principals are responsible for overseeing school operations and managing teachers and other school staff members. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of school principals is expected to increase by 10% between 2010 and 2020. The median average annual wage for principals is $86,970.
- Instructional Coordinator- Instructional coordinators oversee teaching standards and school district curricula, working closely with teachers and school administrators to improve the quality of education. The annual salary for an instructional coordinator is $58,830. This occupation is expected to grow by 20% as school districts further emphasize teacher effectiveness.
- Postsecondary Education Administrators- Postsecondary education administrators manage student services and admissions departments at colleges and universities. The average salary for postsecondary education administrators is $83,710. The field is expected to grow by 19% by 2020.
The route many K-12 teachers take to the classroom is attending undergraduate school and graduating with a BA with an education emphasis. This emphasis typical requires additional credits of study.
However, many education professionals choose to pursue a Master of Education in order to widen the scope of their job opportunities, to get into administration, or simply for the additional education. With a total of 6.2 million teachers in America, education is a big field that is essential to the long-term success of the entire country. Here are the key things to consider when choosing a Master of Education (MED) program.
A Master of education opens up many career options. Jobs options include (but are not limited to): producing curriculum for a public or private entity, administration, teaching, and much more. Choosing a specialization before entering a Master of Education program will help perspective students choose the right program for them. The top ranking MED programs offer study in child studies (psychology based), community development and action, education policy, elementary education (typically includes a licensure course for a direct class to classroom program), higher education administration, learning and instruction, urban studies, reading education, special education, and more. Perspective students should ensure the universities they apply to offer the specialization they are interested in.
Many professionals who are already working in the classroom choose to return to graduate school for their MED while continuing at their full-time job. Part-time and online degrees options are widely available from universities with Master of Education programs. While flexibility is important, quality of education is paramount. Fortunately, many of the top programs recognize the demand for flexible education and offer night and part-time programs with the same high quality professors and curriculum.
The best MED programs recruit the top thinkers in education. These are teachers with decades of experience, psychologists, and researchers. Research is a key part of improving education and most
masters programs teach education on both the micro and macro level. By choosing a program with faculty that has considerable field experience as well as publications on their research, graduates will feel confident in their skill when they receive their diploma.
Professionals don’t get into the field of education for the money (salaries range from $30,000- $140,000), but a Master of Education is a great way to combine career passion with a high quality career and a salary to match. Below is a list of top MED programs. These rankings were determined by experience and resume of faculty, graduate satisfaction and job placement, and expert assessment. The opinion of previous graduates and students were determined with satisfaction surveys.