The Best Online Master's in Teaching 2020

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Online teaching master's programs give students the knowledge and skills they need to deliver online instruction in corporate and school settings.

Graduates can work as training managers, college faculty members, K-12 teachers, and district instructional technology leaders.

These professionals enjoy strong job prospects. For instance, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that training and development managers earned a median annual salary of $111,340 in 2028.

Online programs give students the flexibility to balance their studies with personal and professional responsibilities. Online learning also allows students to attend the top programs in the country without relocating.

Top 10 Online Master's in Teaching 2020

#1 University of Southern California Los Angeles, CA
#2 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Champaign, IL
#3 Michigan State University East Lansing, MI
#4 University of Missouri Columbia, MO
#5 University of Cincinnati Cincinnati, OH
#6 Texas A&M University College Station, TX
#7 Louisiana State University Baton Rouge, LA
#8 George Mason University Fairfax, VA
#9 University of Wyoming Laramie, WY
#10 Indiana University of Pennsylvania Indiana, PA

Table of Contents

This guide ranks the best online master's in online teaching programs to help students find the right programs for their needs.

Best Online Master's in Online Teaching Programs

1
University of Southern California
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4

University of Missouri 

Columbia, MO

About this school

Established in 1839 as the first public research university west of the Mississippi River, the University of Missouri is the state's largest university. Mizzou educates more than 30,000 students annually through over 125 online programs, including a master of science in learning technologies and design with a specialization in online education.

Students earning the master's in education online learn how to design, deliver, and evaluate online learning experiences. The 30-credit degree includes 17 core credits and 13 elective credits and takes about two years to complete. Learners explore topics such as digital media, game design and development, learning management systems, and online course design and instruction. Core courses include designing online learning, exploring Moodle, exploring Canvas, and instructional systems design. The program concludes with a capstone.

Applicants to Mizzou's online master's in educational technology need a bachelor's degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA in their final two years of study.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
69%
Percent Receiving Loans
44%
5

University of Cincinnati 

Cincinnati, OH

About this school

A public research university that hosts more than 45,000 students each year, the University of Cincinnati is the second-largest institution in Ohio's university system. The school maintains several campuses in Cincinnati, two regional campuses, and an online division. Students can pursue the master of education in instructional design and technology entirely online or in a blended format.

In this master's in teaching online program, students learn how to create, manage, and facilitate online learning experiences in educational and corporate settings. Learners explore online learning trends and educational technologies through practice with e-learning tools and assignments in online educational environments.

Students earning the master's in education online must complete 30 credits. Most students graduate within two years. Learners take courses such as tools for online learning creation and assessment, applications and issues in teaching with technology, and universal design for learning in online and blended contexts. The degree concludes with a capstone project.

Admission requires a bachelor's degree from an accredited school with a minimum 3.0 GPA. Graduates of unaccredited institutions or those with lower GPAs may request a waiver for admission. Prospective students can bolster their applications with a personal video.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
68%
Percent Receiving Loans
52%
6

Texas A&M University 

College Station, TX

About this school

The founding member of the Texas A&M University System, TAMU serves nearly 70,000 students through traditional, hybrid, and online programs. Graduate students can pursue a flexible, fully online master of education in educational technology.

The online master's in education teaches students how to design and develop instructional experiences for diverse audiences. Learners study topics like learning theory, instructional design, and innovative educational technology practices. Graduates can pursue careers as trainers, technology coordinators, course developers, instructional designers, and learning and performance specialists.

The 36-credit program includes six foundational credits, 15 specialized credits, and 15 elective credits. Required courses include instructional design, emerging technologies for learning, and e-learning design and development. Students can optionally pursue an internship through electives. They can also take elective courses on topics like educational video and educational game design. Students may take one graduate-level course outside the program, with advisor approval.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree and submit official transcripts. They can optionally submit a resume, professional paper, or other supplemental materials to bolster their applications. Students can begin classes during the fall, spring, or summer semesters.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
82%
Percent Receiving Loans
32%
7

Louisiana State University 

Baton Rouge, LA

About this school

Founded in 1853, Louisiana State University is the state's flagship university and serves more than 30,000 students through 14 colleges and schools. The school offers a variety of online undergraduate and graduate programs, including an online master of arts in education with a specialization in educational technology.

This 36-credit degree gives learners knowledge and skills in areas like online education, technology-enabled academic innovation, technology integration, and professional development. Graduates can find careers in K-12 schools and higher education institutions as well as business, healthcare, and government settings.

Learners take classes on topics like principles of online education, instructional design, advanced educational telecommunications and electronic learning, and design and development of multimedia instructional units.

Applicants need a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution with a minimum 3.0 GPA during their final 60 credits.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
67%
Percent Receiving Loans
36%
8

George Mason University 

Fairfax, VA

About this school

Located in a suburb of Washington, D.C., George Mason University serves more than 35,000 students each year, making it the largest university in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The institution hosts students on four campuses in Virginia, at a site in South Korea, and online. Distance learners can choose from more than 50 online programs, including a fully online master of education in curriculum and instruction with a specialization in learning technologies for blended and online learning in schools.

This degree prepares K-12 educators to design and direct online and blended learning experiences in schools. Most program participants hold a teaching certificate, but GMU does not require teaching credentials for admission. The 30-credit, online master's in education uses a cohort format, meaning students take courses with the same group of peers throughout the program.

Required courses include blended and online communication, facilitating K-12 blended and online learning, and tools for K-12 blended and online learning. The degree concludes with two six-credit project development practicums. Graduates can work as curriculum directors, instructional media directors, virtual course designers, and district technology leaders.

Applicants need professional teaching experience and an accredited bachelor's degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA during their last 60 credits.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
70%
Percent Receiving Loans
53%
9

University of Wyoming 

Laramie, WY

About this school

A public land-grant research university, the University of Wyoming began in 1886 with 42 students. Today, the school enrolls about 12,500 learners through on-campus and online programs, including a fully online master of science in learning, design, and technology.

The 33-credit, online master's in education equips learners to design, develop, implement, and evaluate educational resources in diverse learning environments. It includes courses like message design, theory of change, and communication in distance education, allowing students to explore topics like instructional design, distance education, and technology-based training history and trends.

Students culminate the degree with a capstone project that synthesizes degree knowledge and skills. Graduates can find jobs in K-12 education, corporate offices, government agencies, higher education, and design and development labs.

Applicants need a bachelor's degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA. They can optionally submit GRE scores to bolster their applications.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
57%
Percent Receiving Loans
50%
10

Indiana University of Pennsylvania 

Indiana, PA

About this school

A public research university of more than 11,000 students, Indiana University of Pennsylvania offers a variety of online programs for undergraduate and graduate students. Distance learners can pursue a fully online master of arts in instructional design and technology that administers live classes through video-conferencing technology.

Learners gain knowledge and skills in areas like digital pedagogy, instructional media design, program planning, and learning management systems. Required courses include program and project planning and evaluation, designing accessible and inclusive instruction research, and trends in instructional design and technology.

Students can choose between thesis and non-thesis tracks. Non-thesis students complete an internship and a digital portfolio in lieu of a thesis. Graduates can pursue careers in distance education, instructional design, and online learning development in business, healthcare, government, and education settings.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree and submit a resume, transcripts, and a goals statement.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
56%
Percent Receiving Loans
81%
11

University of Central Florida 

Orlando, FL

About this school

Serving nearly 70,000 students, University of Central Floridaa enrolls more on-campus learners than any other college or university in the country. UCF also serves online students through both undergraduate and graduate programs, including an online master of arts in online instructional design and technology.

Students explore the ways that people learn, strategies to improve education and training, and how to simulate learning. Courses cover instruction analysis, design, development, implementation, evaluation, and management. Graduates can pursue careers as industrial designers, senior consultants, instructional systems designers, and lead instructional designers.

The 36-credit program includes 12 core credits, nine elective credits, 12 specialization credits, and a three-credit practicum. The program offers specializations in instructional systems, educational technology, and e-learning.

Regardless of their specialization, all students take core courses on topics like instructional systems design, research in instructional technology, educational research requirements, and current trends in instructional technology.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree and submit official transcripts.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
73%
Percent Receiving Loans
34%
12

Messiah College 

Mechanicsburg, PA

About this school

A private, nondenominational Christian college, Messiah College serves more than 3,300 students each year. In addition to on-campus programs, Messiah offers a variety of online undergraduate and graduate programs, including a master of education in online instruction.

This online master's in education trains K-12 teachers to deliver and evaluate online instructional experiences. Students do not need to be teachers to participate in the program, but the curriculum is geared toward teaching professionals.

The 33-credit program includes 12 core credits and 21 online instruction credits. Courses cover topics like issues and ethics in online teaching, advanced instructional design and assessment, and online education leadership and management. Students culminate the degree with a capstone thesis or project.

Admission requires a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution, a minimum cumulative 3.0 GPA, a resume, and a copy of a valid teaching certificate for Pennsylvania teachers pursuing additional credentials. This master's in teaching online program does not lead to initial teaching certification.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
78%
Percent Receiving Loans
72%
13

University of Toledo 

Toledo, OH

About this school

A public research university, University of Toledo serves more than 23,000 students, making it the sixth-largest university in Ohio. The school offers more than 250 academic programs, including an online master of education in educational technology and performance technology.

Students earning this master of education online complete 30 credits of core and elective courses. Students work with the director of graduate studies to design a personalized study plan that can include specializations in areas like instructional technology, educational computing, and instructional design.

Regardless of specialization, all students choose one core course in each of four learning categories: psychological foundations, research foundations, social foundations, and curriculum foundations. Students culminate the degree with a three-credit seminar, project, practicum, or thesis.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution with a minimum 2.75 GPA. Applicants who do not meet this criteria may apply for provisional admission.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
47%
Percent Receiving Loans
58%
14

Slippery Rock University 

Slippery Rock, PA

About this school

A public institution of about 9,000 students, Slippery Rock University offers around 150 undergraduate and 40 graduate programs, including a fully online master of education in technology for online instruction.

The program serves educators, business managers, trainers, and other professionals who deliver online educational materials. Students gain the technical skills and knowledge they need to create robust online learning experiences.

Students can complete the 30-credit program in one year of full-time study. The curriculum includes courses such as technology-based inquiry in middle and secondary schools, emerging web technologies and learning, psychology of learning and instruction for diverse learners, and integration of web-based technologies when creating online courses. Certified teachers who complete the program can apply to receive an endorsement through the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

Before enrolling in the program, learners can pursue a certificate in educational technology from SRU, which they can then apply to this degree. Admission requires a bachelor's degree in any subject with a minimum 2.75 GPA.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
67%
Percent Receiving Loans
80%
15

Northern Arizona University 

Flagstaff, AZ

About this school

A public research University, Northern Arizona University hosts about 30,000 students on its main campus, at satellite locations, and online. The university offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate programs, including a fully online master of education in educational technology.

Students gain communication, creativity, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills. Program outcomes align with standards put forth by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, the International Society for Technology in Education, and the Interstate New Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium.

The 30-credit program includes 12 core credits, 18 elective credits, and three credits of research. Students can tailor the degree to their interests through concentrations in adult learning and training, assistive technology, and K-12 teaching. Core courses include instructional theory and strategies, technology integration, distributed learning delivery systems, and creating technology-based learning environments. To graduate, students must hold a minimum 3.0 GPA.

Applicants to NAU's educational technology program need a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution with a minimum 3.0 GPA.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
52%
Percent Receiving Loans
50%
16

Dallas Baptist University 

Dallas, TX

About this school

A Christian liberal arts university affiliated with the Baptist General Convention of Texas, Dallas Baptist University hosts students on its campus in Dallas, at satellite locations in Plano and Hurst, and online. The school offers 73 undergraduate majors, 32 master's degrees, and two doctorates. Students can complete DBU's master of arts in teaching with a distance learning specialization entirely online.

The program comprises 36 credits divided into three areas: academics, professional topics, and resources. Courses include designing and developing distance learning programs, technology tools for the online classroom, distance learning design and administration, and the school and multicultural society. One course includes a field-based service-learning component. The program does not lead to Texas teacher certification.

Applicants must hold a minimum 3.0 GPA and meet minimum MAT or GRE scores. Applicants who do not meet these qualifications may receive provisional admission.

School Type
Private Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
53%
Percent Receiving Loans
47%
17

New Mexico State University 

Las Cruces, NM

About this school

A public research university, New Mexico State University serves about 25,000 students each year. NMSU offers 96 undergraduate majors, 58 master's programs, and 28 doctoral degrees. Students can complete many of NMSU's programs online, including the master of arts in education with an education and design in learning technology specialization.

Teachers who graduate with this degree qualify for the information technology coordinator endorsement from the New Mexico Public Education Department. The fully online, 30-credit program examines topics like emerging technologies in multicultural education, online pedagogy, and curriculum development for online delivery.

Courses include foundations of learning design and technology, fostering online learning communities, social media in blended and online learning environments, and culturally responsive teaching with technology.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree and submit undergraduate transcripts and references.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
47%
Percent Receiving Loans
32%
18

Millersville University of Pennsylvania 

Millersville, PA

About this school

A member of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education, Millersville University is a public university that serves about 8,500 students each year. MU offers 55 bachelor's programs, 22 master's programs, and two doctoral programs. The school offers many of its programs online, including a fully online master of education in online teaching, which teaches students to use foundational pedagogical tools in online and hybrid environments.

The 33-credit program includes nine educational core credits, six curriculum and assessment core credits, and 12 concentration credits, giving learners the skills and knowledge they need to design and facilitate online classes. Core courses include online learning environments; responding to individual learners; legal and ethical issues in online education; and instructional and curricular design for online, blended, and customized instruction.

The program concludes with a six-credit thesis or capstone. It does not lead to initial teacher certification. Students can begin on one of eight start dates throughout the year.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
60%
Percent Receiving Loans
75%
19

University of Alaska Fairbanks 

Fairbanks, AK

About this school

The flagship institution of the University of Alaska System, University of Alaska Fairbanks serves more than 8,500 students each year. In addition to its main campus in Fairbanks, the school maintains six regional campuses and an online division. UAF offers 190 academic programs in 120 disciplines, including a fully online master of education in online innovation and design.

The 30-credit, online master's in education requires six classes in the major. Courses include multimedia tools for educators; introduction to applied social science research; current topics in educational technology: innovative instruction and leadership; and digital citizenship: internet legal issues, copyright, and fair use.

Students choose between two tracks to culminate the degree: a comprehensive exam track or a project/thesis track. The comprehensive exam track includes four additional courses plus the exam, while the project/thesis track requires an elective, a research methods course, and a culminating project.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution and submit a 4-5-page essay describing their educational philosophy and career goals. Applicants with a GPA below 3.0 must submit GRE scores.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
32%
Percent Receiving Loans
31%
20

California State University - East Bay 

Hayward, CA

About this school

Part of the 23-member California State University System, California State University - East Bay is a public institution that serves about 15,000 online and on-campus students. The school offers a fully online master of science in education with a concentration in online teaching and learning. The program features a flexible format and practical approach to learning. By taking two courses during each eight-week session, learners can graduate in one year.

The 30-credit degree includes eight required courses and two electives. Required courses include technology tools for online instruction, designing curriculum for online instruction, educational planning and development for online programs, and history and culture of online learning communities. The program concludes with a final project. Graduates can work as e-learning instructional specialists and designers.

Admission requires a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution with a minimum 3.0 GPA and some teaching, training, or personnel development experience. Applicants with a lower GPA may receive consideration if they hold a 3.0 in the last 60 credits of their undergraduate work.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
48%
Percent Receiving Loans
37%
21

Lamar University 

Beaumont, TX

About this school

A member of the Texas State University System since 1995, Lamar University serves more than 15,000 students annually. The university offers 96 undergraduate, 50 master's, and eight doctoral programs, including a fully online master of education in digital learning and leading, which prepares students to use contemporary technology to provide learner-centered educational experiences.

This 36-credit program includes 11 required courses and a three-credit synthesis/capstone. Courses include creating significant learning environments, digital learning in local and global contexts, assessing digital learning and instruction, and instructional design in online learning. Courses span five seeks, and students can graduate in 18 months. After completing the first six credits, students can earn the certified digital educator credential.

Applicants need current employment in education or training along with a bachelor's degree with a minimum 2.5 GPA.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
27%
Percent Receiving Loans
52%
22

Texas A & M University - Kingsville 

Kingsville, TX

About this school

Texas A&M University - Kingsville began as a teacher's college in 1925. Today, the school offers hundreds of undergraduate and graduate programs in diverse areas of study, including a fully online master's in instructional technology.

The 36-credit program includes 27 core credits and nine research credits. Core courses include microcomputers in the classroom, World Wide Web learning environments, leadership in instructional technology, and advanced instructional strategies and learning theories. Students in this program learn to plan, implement, advance, and evaluate instructional technology in different settings. Graduates can work as educational software consultants, district technology leaders, and educational technology instructors.

To fulfill research credits, students can complete a research paper or an instructional design project. The research paper requires a research course and a graduate research project, while the instructional design project requires a course in instructional design and an action research project. All students complete an internship to gain experience in the field.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree and submit undergraduate transcripts and GRE or MAT scores.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
37%
Percent Receiving Loans
68%
23

CSU Global 

Greenwood Village, CO

About this school

Founded in 2007, Colorado State University - Global Campus is an online public university and a member of the Colorado State University System. The school offers master's degrees in 14 academic areas, including a fully online master of science in teaching and learning with a specialization in online learning innovation and design.

In this master's in teaching online program, students explore emerging practices in research, instruction, and program development in K-12 and nontraditional educational settings. The 36-credit program includes 24 core credits and 12 specialization credits.

Core courses include theory and practice in backward design; cultural responsiveness in the differentiated classroom; and social, ethical, and legal issues in 21st-century learning. Specialization classes cover topics like models of instructional delivery and assessment and evaluation in learning and performance. Students also take an action research course and complete a research-based professional project as a capstone.

Applicants need a bachelor's degree. The school prefers applicants to hold a minimum 3.0 undergraduate GPA. The program offers monthly start dates.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
54%
Percent Receiving Loans
59%
24

Sul Ross State University 

Alpine, TX

About this school

A public university, Sul Ross State University is part of the Texas State University System. The school enrolls about 2,000 students through diverse undergraduate and graduate programs. Sul Ross students can choose from several fully online programs, including a master of education in educational instructional technology.

Students earning the master of education online must complete 30 credits. Courses include integration of technology into the curriculum, implementation of ed tech programs in the educational setting, and critical issues in ed tech. Ultimately, students in this program learn how to design, develop, implement, and evaluate learning materials and instructional environments to improve learning experiences.

Students conclude the degree with a capstone portfolio. Each course spans eight weeks, and students can take 2-3 courses at once. Graduates can work as K-12 technology coordinators, instructional designers, and corporate trainers.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree and submit undergraduate transcripts. Some applicants may need to submit standardized test scores.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
25%
Percent Receiving Loans
66%
25

University of South Florida - Sarasota-Manatee 

Sarasota, FL

About this school

Part of the University of South Florida System, University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee hosts more than 4,500 students each year. USFSM offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate programs through four colleges, including a fully online master of arts in education with a concentration in online teaching and learning.

The 34-credit program includes 17 core credits and 17 concentration credits. Core courses include foundations of educational research, socio-economic foundations of American education, and intro to comparative and international education. As part of their concentrations, students complete a four-credit field experience and a seminar in curriculum research.

The program's interdisciplinary curriculum serves students from a variety of fields, including education, business, and nonprofit management. However, the degree does not lead to Florida teaching certification.

Applicants need a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution with a minimum 3.0 GPA. Applicants with a lower GPA may receive admission with a minimum score of 300 on the GRE.

School Type
Public Nonprofit
Graduation Rate
54%
Percent Receiving Loans
15%
👏

End of list, bravo!

Ranking Methodology
Best Online Programs

Online Master's in Online Teaching Programs Ranking Guidelines

We selected the following degree programs based on the quality of program and range of courses provided, as well as school awards, rankings, and reputation.

Choosing a Program

Many of the classes in an online master’s in teaching program resemble those you may have taken during your undergraduate program. However, at the master’s level, classes go more in-depth and cover specific topics, such as using online learning platforms. You may also be required to conduct research.

When researching online master’s in teaching programs, pay close attention to the specializations offered at each university. If, for instance, you aspire to work as a principal, you may want to choose a program with a concentration in educational leadership. Other specializations include special education and curriculum development.

Online Master’s in Teaching Online Careers

Online master’s in teaching programs open many unique career paths. Master’s degree holders are leaders in the field of education, whether they work in the classroom or the district office. The careers below are only a few of the possible jobs for which you may qualify, depending on your specialization.

Special Education Teacher

Special education teachers work to ensure that students with disabilities receive a quality education. They keep track of their students' Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) and work with other teachers so that students receive accommodations in general education settings. Special education teachers also hold conferences with parents, students, and teachers throughout the year to review their students' IEP progress.

Median Annual Salary

$59,780

Projected Growth Rate

3%

Instructional Coordinator

Instructional coordinators develop curriculums and instructional material. A district may employ several coordinators, one for each subject area. Instructional coordinators work one-on-one with teachers, as well as leading professional development seminars. In addition to a master's degree, most instructional coordinators have many years of teaching experience.

Median Annual Salary

$64,450

Projected Growth Rate

6%

Speech-Language Pathologist

Speech-language pathologists help students overcome speech disorders such as Tourette Syndrome and lisping. Speech-language pathologists will often travel between schools in their district to work with students one-on-one or in small groups. Speech-language pathologists will also coordinate with teachers and parents on student therapy and treatment strategies.

Median Annual Salary

$77,510

Projected Growth Rate

27%

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

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