The Best Online Master's in Education

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Educators with a master's degree work as school principals, instructional coordinators, and lead teachers.

They can also pursue opportunities as superintendents and higher education administrators. In these roles, educators take on leadership roles in schools and improve student learning outcomes.

Earning a master's degree in education increases a teacher's earning potential and offers career advancement opportunities. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, school principals earn a median salary of over $95,000 per year and college administrators make over $94,000 per year. Many practicing teachers choose an online master's in education program to continue working while earning a graduate degree.

Top Ten Online Master's in Education Programs

#1 University of Southern California Los Angeles, CA
#2 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Champaign, IL
#3 University of Pittsburgh Pittsburgh, PA
#4 Michigan State University East Lansing, MI
#5 University of Arizona Tucson, AZ
#6 Purdue University West Lafayette, IN
#7 University of Utah Salt Lake City, UT
#8 University of Missouri Columbia, MO
#9 University of Kansas Lawrence, KS
#10 University of Massachusetts - Amherst Amherst, MA

This page also covers how to choose the right master's program, career paths for graduates with a master's in education, and common salaries for educators with a master's degree.

The Best Online Master's in Education Programs

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4

Michigan State University 

East Lansing, MI

About this school

One of the largest universities in the U.S., Michigan State University is a public research institution that serves more than 50,000 students each year. Its College of Education offers several distance learning options, including a popular, online master's in education. Nearly 1,000 educators worldwide have earned this degree since its inception in 2001.

The master of arts in education offers several concentrations:

  • Special education
  • Sport coaching and leadership
  • Technology and learning
  • P-12 school and postsecondary leadership
  • Literacy education
  • Science and mathematics education

Regardless of their concentration, all students take classes on topics like classroom and behavior management in the inclusive classroom, language diversity in literacy instruction and assessment, and program planning and evaluation in postsecondary contexts.

All online master's in education students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency. Applicants must submit transcripts, a goal statement, letters of recommendation, and a resume. Applicants typically learn of their admissions status within 4-6 weeks after submitting an application.

5

University of Arizona 

Tucson, AZ

About this school

Founded in 1885, the University of Arizona is a public research institution that enrolls over 45,000 students each year. The school offers diverse online and on-campus programs, including an online master of education in teaching and teacher education. The program prepares students to work as middle and high school educators and qualifies graduates to pursue secondary teacher certification.

The 36-credit program uses a cohort model, meaning students take classes with the same group of peers throughout the program. Full-time students can graduate within one year. Learners study topics like literacy in a multicultural school, educational tests and measurements, introduction to special learning needs, and alternatives in the secondary classroom. Students must also take a content methods course in science, math, world languages, social studies, or English.

The school accepts applications until January 31 each year, with new cohorts typically beginning in May. Application requirements include an accredited four-year degree, a background in content and curriculum, a 3.0 GPA or higher, an updated resume, and an application fee.

6

Purdue University 

West Lafayette, IN

About this school

Founded in 1869, Purdue University is a public research institution that educates more than 43,000 students annually. The main campus offers online master's in education programs in applied behavior analysis, curriculum and instruction, learning design and technology, and special education.

The applied behavior analysis program requires 30 credits and covers topics like verbal behavior and social communication, behavioral consultation and systems change, and single-subject research design. The 30-credit, online MS in education in curriculum and instruction allows learners to choose from five concentrations:

  • English language learning
  • Gifted
  • Educational technology
  • Math
  • STEM

The online MS in education in learning design and technology requires 35 credits and covers topics like human performance technology, introduction to e-Learning, and learning systems design. The 31-45-credit online MS in special education allows learners to choose from six concentrations, all built around different licensure options.

Applicants must submit transcripts, letters of recommendation, and a resume. Online students gain access to a writing lab, library services, tutoring, and the Academic Success Center to support their studies.

7

University of Utah 

Salt Lake City, UT

About this school

Established in 1850 as the state's flagship institution, the University of Utah serves nearly 33,000 students through online and on-campus undergraduate and graduate programs. UOnline offers a unique, online master of arts in teaching with a concentration in fine arts that exists primarily online, though students must visit the Salt Lake City campus during two 12-day summer intensives.

Administered by the College of Fine Arts, the program features 30 credits, which full-time students can complete in 18 months. Learners take classes on topics like socially engaged arts making, music and dance materials and methods, and community-based arts teaching. Learners culminate the degree by designing and implementing an arts teaching project. Students need a minimum 3.0 GPA to graduate.

Applicants must have at least one of the following qualifications for admission:

  • A bachelor's degree focused on a specific art form;
  • State arts endorsement for theatre, dance, visual arts, film, or music;
  • A cognate education degree appropriate to teaching the arts; or
  • Ample arts teaching experience.

Applicants must also submit a statement of purpose, a resume, two letters of recommendation, an arts teaching portfolio, and a current background check.

8

University of Missouri 

Columbia, MO

About this school

The University of Missouri is the flagship campus in the University of Missouri System and the largest higher education institution in the state. Established in 1839 as the only college west of the Mississippi River, the school educates more than 30,000 learners annually. The College of Education offers online master's in education programs with 19 specialization options, including art education, early childhood special education/autism, gifted education, mental health practices in school, online education, and school counseling.

Most of these concentrations require 30-36 credits, although the master of education in educational, school, and counseling psychology requires 60 credits and a practicum. Students take fully online courses and study foundational topics, including developmental aspects of human learning, inquiry to learning, and diversity issues in schools.

Missouri residents and students who qualify for the Midwest Exchange enjoy a tuition discount. Approximately 75% of learners at the University of Missouri receive some type of financial aid.

9

University of Kansas 

Lawrence, KS

About this school

In addition to its central campus in Lawrence, the University of Kansas maintains several satellite campuses throughout the state as well as an online learning division. The school offers online master's in education programs with concentrations like curriculum and instruction, educational administration, secondary special education and transition, and sport management.

All of these programs require 30-36 credits that students can complete in two years. Classes are taught in eight-week blocks to accommodate working educators. Core courses include school resource management, differentiating curriculum and instruction, student engagement in school and community, and family and interpersonal collaboration in education.

Applicants need a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited school and a minimum 3.0 GPA. They must also submit letters of recommendation, a resume, and a personal statement. All online students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency.

10

University of Massachusetts - Amherst 

Amherst, MA

About this school

The flagship campus of the University of Massachusetts System, the University of Massachusetts in Amherst serves more than 30,000 learners each year. Students can pursue diverse online degrees through UMassOnline, including many online master's in education programs designed to meet the career aspirations of a diverse student body.

Master of education students can choose from 12 areas of study, including vision studies, science education, curriculum and instruction, education administration, instructional design, reading and language, and school counseling.

The vision studies programs require 37 credits and take approximately two years to complete. The rest of the programs, save for the school counseling option, mandate 30-36 credits and take approximately 18-24 months to complete. The school counseling program requires 60 credits, including internship and practicum requirements, and takes 3-4 years to complete.

Some degrees require learners to visit the Amherst campus for short-term clinical training. These requirements usually take place at the start of the summer to accommodate working educators. The programs use a cohort model, meaning students take courses with the same group of peers throughout the program.

All online students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency. Applicants must submit a statement of interest and intent, three letters of recommendation, and a resume. All candidates must also participate in a personal interview with a faculty member.

11

University of Georgia 

Athens, GA

About this school

One of the oldest public higher education institutions in the country, the University of Georgia began offering degrees in 1785. Today, the school hosts about 38,000 students through on-campus and online programs. Its College of Education offers multiple online master's in education programs.

Master of education students can choose from focus areas like educational psychology; learning, design, and technology; learning, leadership, and organizational development; middle grades education, reading education, and workforce education. Most of these programs require 33-39 credits and take 2-3 years to complete.

Regardless of their focus area, all master of education students take classes on topics like foundations of human development for education, applied educational assessments, program and curricular development, and classroom management in culturally responsive classrooms.

Admissions requirements include an accredited bachelor's degree, a cumulative GPA of 2.6 or higher, a statement of purpose and goals, and three letters of recommendation. All online students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency.

12

University of Cincinnati 

Cincinnati, OH

About this school

The University of Cincinnati is the oldest higher education institution in Cincinnati and the second largest in Ohio, serving more than 46,000 students each year. The school's online programs are designed for working professionals, offering asynchronous coursework to accommodate busy schedules.

Students seeking an online master's in education can choose from six fully online focus areas:

  • Curriculum and instruction
  • Educational leadership
  • Instructional design and technology
  • Literacy and second language studies
  • Medical education for healthcare professionals
  • Special education

Several programs offer additional concentrations to help learners specialize. Most students graduate within one year of full-time study, though part-time study options also exist. Students can begin on one of three start dates per year.

Applicants need a regionally accredited bachelor's degree and a minimum 3.0 GPA. They must also submit a statement of academic and professional goals, a cover letter, a resume, three letters of recommendation, and official transcripts. Applicants with lower GPAs may need to submit GRE scores.

13

Texas A&M University 

College Station, TX

About this school

Texas A&M hosts the largest student body in the state, serving nearly 70,000 learners through online and on-campus degree programs. Its College of Education and Human Services offers many online master's in education programs. Some programs are fully online, while others are 50%-85% online.

Fully online programs include educational administration, educational technology library science, curriculum and instruction, early childhood education, reading, and counseling with a student affairs emphasis. Partially online programs are in special education and the art of teaching.

Regardless of concentration, all students take courses on classroom management for teachers, diversity and equity in education, differentiated instruction, and problems and issues in education. Most programs require 30-36 credits and take 1-2 years to complete.

Courses use an asynchronous format, giving students the flexibility to balance their studies with personal and professional obligations. Online learners have access to 24/7 technical support, and Texas residents receive a tuition discount.

14

Louisiana State University 

Baton Rouge, LA

About this school

Established in 1853, Louisiana State University is a public research institution that hosts nearly 32,000 students through campus-based and online classes. Students with classroom teaching experience can pursue an online master's degree in education with a concentration in educational leadership.

The 39-credit program takes about 15 months to complete. Learners study topics like administration of school personnel, ethics and educational leadership, understanding and applying research in education, and best practices of principal leadership. Students must also complete an internship and an independent study program.

All online students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency. Applicants need an accredited bachelor's degree and a minimum 3.0 GPA. They also need three letters of recommendation, a valid teaching certificate, current school employment, two years of teaching experience, and evidence of leadership potential.

15

George Mason University 

Fairfax, VA

About this school

One of the newer institutions in this ranking, George Mason University was established in 1957 as a public research institution. GMU hosts about 25,000 students through a variety of online and on-campus degree programs. The school's online learning division, Mason Online, offers online master's in education programs in a variety of areas, including special education, assistive technology, literacy leadership for diverse schools, and advanced studies in teaching and learning.

Some of these programs exist fully online, while others feature a hybrid format. All master's in education programs include core courses on topics like education and culture, how students learn, inquiry into practice, curriculum design, and educational change.

All online students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency. Applicants must hold an accredited bachelor's degree and submit a goal statement, official transcripts, and two letters of recommendation.

16

Indiana University - Bloomington 

Bloomington, IN

About this school

The flagship institution of the the Indiana University System and the largest school in the state, Indiana University in Bloomington hosts more than 40,000 learners annually. Considered a public ivy, IU offers rigorous degrees and competitive admissions. The school offers a variety of on-campus and online programs, and educators can choose from several online master's in education programs, including specializations like adult education, instructional systems technology, and literacy, culture, and language education.

These programs require 30-36 credits. All of the programs feature fully online formats except for the adult education program, which is 80%-99% online. All programs feature core courses on topics like legal perspectives on education, instructional issues in language education, classroom management and behavioral support, and instructional and performance technologies foundations. Online courses feature instruction by the same faculty members who teach on campus.

In-state learners receive a tuition discount. Applicants need a regionally accredited bachelor's degree and a minimum 2.7 GPA. They must also submit official transcripts, a personal statement, two letters of recommendation, and a resume. Some programs require GRE scores.

17

University of Alabama 

Tuscaloosa, AL

About this school

Established in 1820, the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa is the oldest and largest institution in the University of Alabama System, hosting about 40,000 learners each year. The school's online division, Bama By Distance, offers a variety of online master's in education programs, including specializations in educational leadership, elementary education, higher education administration, secondary education, and instructional technology.

Most of these programs are fully online, though some require students to visit the Tuscaloosa campus for short intensives. Credit requirements vary by program, but students can complete most programs in 18-24 months. All programs require students to participate in a practicum to gain experience in the field.

Applicants need a bachelor's-level teaching certificate and a minimum 3.0 GPA. They must also submit letters of recommendation, a resume, and a personal statement. All online students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency.

18

American University 

Washington, DC

About this school

Established in 1893, American University is a private research institution that serves more than 14,000 students through its undergraduate and graduate degrees. Its School of Education offers a fully online master of arts in teaching with concentrations in elementary education, early childhood education, secondary education, and english for speakers of other languages.

Many students already work as classroom teachers, and they can continue teaching full time while enrolled. They can also use their current jobs to meet student-teaching and practicum requirements. Classes use a synchronous format but take place during hours suited to teachers' schedules.

Applicants do not need previous experience as educators but they most hold a bachelor's degree and demonstrate an interest in pursuing a teaching license. The program has a 100% job placement rate for graduates. Applicants with a 3.0 GPA or higher can bypass the Praxis CORE application requirement. The department offers several scholarships and partnerships, including a new partnership with the Peace Corps.

19

North Carolina State University 

Raleigh, NC

About this school

Part of the North Carolina Research Triangle, North Carolina State University is a public research institution that hosts around 35,000 learners each year. Students seeking an online master's degree in education can choose from many concentrations, including adult and continuing professional education, clinical mental health counseling, community college teaching, health professions education, and learning design and technology.

Most programs use fully online formats, but a few include some on-campus requirements. All programs feature a cohort format, meaning students take courses with the same group of peers throughout the program.

Some programs, particularly those focused on developing counseling skills, require applicants to submit GRE or MAT scores. All applicants must submit three letters of recommendation and a goal statement. North Carolina residents receive a tuition discount.

20

Auburn University 

Auburn, AL

About this school

Auburn University is a public institution that serves 23,000 students each year. The school's College of Education offers a variety of online and on-campus programs to meet diverse student needs. The college's online M.Ed. programs include degrees in administration of elementary and secondary education, adult education, agriscience education, business and marketing education, and music education.

Save for its administration of elementary and secondary education program, all master of education programs at Auburn University use fully online formats. Graduation requirements for each program vary, with programs like the clinical rehabilitation counseling degree requiring more credits and a longer practicum than others.

Students can begin classes during the fall, spring, or summer. Admission requirements include GRE scores, official transcripts, a clear background check, a current resume, a statement of intent, a valid teaching certificate, and contact information for three professional references.

21

Oregon State University 

Corvallis, OR

About this school

The Beaver State's largest school, Oregon State University educates more than 31,000 learners each year. The institution's Ecampus provides a variety of online undergraduate and graduate programs, including two master's in education online programs: adult and higher education and college student services administration.

The adult and higher education program requires 45 credits and allows working professionals to graduate within two years. Learners study topics like leadership development and human relations, instructional strategies for adult learners, and adult learning and development. Students must also complete an internship. Graduates can work in workforce development, community education, and postsecondary education.

The college student services administration program comprises 54 credits and takes three years to complete while studying part time. Required classes include organization and administration of college student services, programs and functions in college student services, and research and assessment in higher education. Learners also complete an internship to gain practical experience in the field.

Applicants need a regionally accredited bachelor's degree, a minimum 3.0 GPA, and at least one year of related work experience. They must also submit three letters of recommendation and transcripts. All online students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency.

22

University of Nebraska Lincoln 

Lincoln, NE

About this school

The oldest and largest public research institution in the state, the University of Nebraska at Lincoln serves nearly 26,000 students each year through a variety of undergraduate and graduate degrees. Learners seeking an online master's degree in education can select from several focus areas, including educational administration in P-12 school leadership; special education and communication disorders with various specializations; and teaching, learning, and teacher education.

While most programs have fully online formats, the educational administration and visual impairments specializations include on-campus requirements during the summer. All programs require 36 credits and take 18-24 months to complete. Students in every program must complete an internship and choose from a final project or exam to culminate the degree.

Applicants must submit official transcripts, a resume, three letters of recommendation, and a goal statement.

23

University of Mississippi 

University, MS

About this school

Founded in 1848, the University of Mississippi is the largest university in Mississippi, hosting more than 24,000 students across 15 academic divisions. Students can choose from a variety of online programs, including an online M.Ed. in curriculum and instruction with an emphasis in elementary education. The program teaches graduates to apply research-based skills and techniques to help elementary students grow and develop.

This 30-credit, online master's in education includes 45 hours of field-based clinical work and a culminating capstone project. Most students graduate from the program within five semesters -- less than two years. Learners can also pursue education master's degrees at Ole Miss in early childhood education, educational leadership, higher education, or teaching.

All online programs use a mostly asynchronous format, giving students the flexibility to balance their studies with professional and personal obligations. Enrollees can start in the fall, spring, or summer. Applicants need a bachelor's degree in education or a related field with a minimum 3.0 GPA in their final 60 undergraduate credits. They must also submit GRE scores.

24

University of South Carolina - Columbia 

Columbia, SC

About this school

The state's flagship university, the University of South Carolina, offers over 1,000 online courses and more than 25 online master's degrees. During the school's online M.Ed. in teaching, students learn how to develop programs for pre-K-12 classrooms.

The 30-credit, online master's in education includes 15 credits of core courses and 15 credits of specialization courses. All learners take core courses on topics like multiculturalism and educational leadership. They also complete an action research project that involves designing a curriculum that caters to their specializations. Students can choose from specializations in literacy and reading, project-based learning, or multicultural contexts in education.

In addition to this teaching degree, students can pursue fully online master's degrees in educational administration or educational technology, both of which comprise 36 credits.

Learners can begin on one of five start dates per year. Classes primarily run asynchronously, though some courses may feature synchronous sessions. Applicants need a bachelor's degree. They also need to score in the top 50th percentile on the GRE, hold a minimum 3.0 GPA, or have three years of education experience. All online students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency.

25

Washington State University 

Pullman, WA

About this school

Founded in 1890, Washington State University has offered online programs since 1992. Today, the school offers more than 40 online programs, including 12 online master's degrees. The online Ed.M. in special education provides graduates with the required state endorsement for special education licensure. Learners study evidence-based teaching strategies that address topics like social skills, behavior management, and academic improvement.

The 37-credit online master's in education includes courses like the education of exceptional children, methods in intensive educational support, and prevention and remediation for reading problems. Students culminate the degree with a directed study or comprehensive examination. Courses feature a mostly asynchronous format, giving students the flexibility to balance their studies with personal and professional obligations.

Students typically graduate within two years of full-time study. Applicants need a bachelor's degree and a minimum 3.0 GPA. Students can transfer up to half of the degree's required credits, provided they hold a minimum 3.0 GPA.

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End of list, bravo!

Ranking Methodology

Online Master's in Education Programs Ranking Guidelines

Best Online Programs - Master's in Education

We selected the following programs based on academic quality, course offerings, faculty, rankings, awards, and reputation. We also considered the overall quality of the school's online programs.

What Is a Master's Degree in Education?

A master's degree in education prepares graduate students for leadership roles in the classroom and in educational settings. Master's programs for teachers emphasize classroom management techniques, educational research, and educational technology. Master's programs for administrators train future principals and school administrators in the management and leadership skills required for their roles.

Prospective master's students can choose to earn an MA in education or an M.Ed. While both degrees prepare students for advanced roles in education, an MA track typically emphasizes research, while M.Ed. pathways focus more on practice. It generally takes full-time students two years to earn a master's in education.

Online Master's in Education Programs

An online master's in education program may appeal to working educators seeking career advancement. The flexible, accessible learning environment means teachers can attend a top program without quitting their job or relocating.

By choosing to earn an online master's degree in education, teachers can advance their careers while working full time.

In an online program, graduate students complete coursework requirements at their convenience. Some online programs offer courses with an asynchronous format, meaning there are no set course times. Other programs use a synchronous format, where students meet for class at scheduled times. Many synchronous programs set meeting times in the evenings or weekends to fit a teacher's schedule.

By choosing to earn an online master's degree in education, teachers can advance their careers while working full time. Nevertheless, an online learning environment requires a self-motivated approach. Many programs offer online advising and career support to help online learners.

What Can You Do With a Master's in Education?

Earning a master's degree in education helps teachers advance their careers and increase their earning potential. Many roles in education require a master's degree, including administrative positions like school principal and higher education administrator. Teachers with a master's degree often earn higher salaries and take on leadership roles in their schools.

While a bachelor's degree meets the requirements for a teaching license, roles like instructional coordinator, lead teacher, principal, and superintendent often require a master's degree.

While a bachelor's degree meets the requirements for a teaching license, roles like instructional coordinator, lead teacher, principal, and superintendent often require a master's degree. Teachers can also strengthen their classroom skills by pursuing a master's degree.

An accredited online master's degree in education meets the requirements for a school administrator license in every state. Prospective master's students can explore different career paths with an education degree for more information on the roles that require a master's degree in education. After completing a master's in education, some individuals choose to further advance their careers by earning an online doctorate in education.

Choosing an Online Education Graduate Program

Prospective education graduate students should consider several factors when choosing an online program. In addition to weighing the total cost of a master's in education, students should also consider the program's curriculum, the length of the degree plan, and any on-campus requirements.

By researching the following factors, educators can find the best online master's degree in education for their career goals and needs.

Program Cost

The associated with earning a master's in education varies. In general, public, in-state schools charge the lowest tuition rates, but some programs offer a flat rate for all online learners, regardless of residency.

Transfer Policies

Educators with prior graduate-level credits should review a program's transfer policies to see if they can lower the cost of their degree and shorten the length of time required to complete the program by transferring in credit.

School Size and Type

In addition to considering the benefits of public versus private schools, some students prefer a program that offers smaller class sizes, while others prefer a larger cohort of education graduate students.

Program Length

The length of a master's in education degree track can vary depending on the total credits required, internship requirements, and the program's enrollment options.

On-campus Requirements

Online master's in education programs may incorporate on-campus requirements, while others offer a fully online curriculum where students meet field experience requirements locally.

Thesis, Fellowship, and Work Requirements

Programs with a stronger research focus may incorporate a thesis requirement, while master's programs for teachers may require a certain amount of teaching experience for admission.

Accreditation for Online Education Degrees

Educators considering a master's degree should always choose an accredited school. Colleges and universities that hold regional accreditation meet the highest standards for educating students. Accrediting agencies review schools to determine whether they meet accreditation standards. The Council for Higher Education Accreditation reviews accrediting agencies and maintains a database of accredited schools.

Colleges and universities that hold regional accreditation meet the highest standards for educating students.

In addition to regional accreditation, programs can hold specialized, programmatic accreditation. The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) accredits master's programs. CAEP evaluates education programs in terms of student learning outcomes, faculty qualifications, and graduation requirements. Programs must regularly undergo review to maintain their CAEP accreditation.

The best online education master's programs hold CAEP accreditation. Programmatic accreditation benefits students in several ways. In many states, only accredited education degrees meet the requirements for an educator license. Employers may also prefer to hire educators with an accredited degree.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Master's Degree in Education?

Earning a master's degree in education generally takes two years, although some programs offer an accelerated, one-year master's degree. Several factors can influence the length of a master's in education degree track, including a student's enrollment status and graduation requirements. For example, many programs incorporate field experiences, but the length of an internship can vary depending on the program.

Master's programs for teachers generally require a more extensive practicum, while programs with a school administration or higher education focus often require less field experience. Many master's in education online programs design the degree plan for working educators, prioritizing flexibility around a teacher's schedule.

Courses in an Online Master's in Education Program

While earning an online master's degree in education, graduate students take courses designed to strengthen their teaching and/or administrative abilities, depending on the program.

Classroom Management

Classroom management courses explore best practices in classroom and behavior management. Participants learn strategies for managing student behaviors, organizing classroom space, and time management. Graduate students also examine regulations and laws governing teachers in the classroom.

Technology in Education

This course explores the relationship between pedagogy and technology, methods to promote information literacy, and theoretical frameworks for understanding how students learn with computer-based technology.

Issues in Education

Many programs include a course on current trends and issues in the field, including the role of technology in education, data-driven decision-making, school inclusiveness, and demographic shifts that impact education.

Educational Research

In this course, students explore methods and procedures for conducting research in education, including how to evaluate research reports. With a focus on qualitative and quantitative research, the course prepares graduates to apply current research in education.

Teaching Math in Elementary School

Graduate students in this course learn research-based strategies for K-5 mathematics instruction, including best practices in assessment and learning. The course introduces several different content standards, and students may complete field experiences to enhance their training.

Master's in Education Jobs

Earning an online master's in education prepares graduates for a variety of roles in education. Teachers with a master's degree move into leadership roles and often earn higher salaries. A master's in education also leads to opportunities as an instructional coordinator, a school principal, or a school administrator.

Instructional Coordinator

Instructional coordinators -- also known as curriculum specialists -- oversee the curriculum and teaching standards for schools or districts. They create educational material designed to meet curriculum standards, work with teachers and principals to implement the curriculum, and analyze data on its effectiveness. Instructional coordinators train teachers about new content and technologies and recommend different teaching techniques.

Some instructional coordinators specialize in certain grade levels or subjects, including special education or English as a second language. Instructional coordinators working in public schools may need a license.

Median Annual Salary

$64,450

Projected Growth Rate

6%

School Principal

School principals oversee daily operations and long-term planning for their school. They manage teachers and staff, coordinate the school's curriculum, and promote a productive learning environment. K-12 principals work with instructional coordinators and teachers to develop and implement curriculum standards. They observe teachers to evaluate performance. Principals also manage the school's budget, analyze data on student achievement, and set academic goals for the school.

In most states, principals at public schools must hold a license, which generally requires a master's degree in education. Additionally, principals often need prior experience as a teacher before advancing to the administrative level.

Median Annual Salary

$95,310

Projected Growth Rate

4%

School Administrator

School administrators oversee student services at K-12 schools and at colleges and universities. They may manage the admission process by determining how many students to admit and recruiting prospective students. School administrators also work in student affairs, where they manage a school's advising services and promote student activities. At the college level, school administrators oversee residential life, manage athletic programs, and lead multicultural centers.

Most school administrators hold a master's degree, such as a master's in education. Some employers prefer candidates with prior experience in education or administration -- particularly for managerial positions.

Median Annual Salary

$94,340

Projected Growth Rate

7%

College Professor

College professors teach undergraduate and graduate classes in their subject area, including in education. They create a syllabus to organize the course, design lectures and assignments, and assess student learning through papers and exams. In many institutions, college professors also conduct research in their specialty and publish their results in academic journals. They often sit on academic committees and advise students.

While professors do not need a teaching license, many tenure-track positions require a doctorate. However, a master's in education may meet the requirements for positions at some community colleges.

Median Annual Salary

$78,470

Projected Growth Rate

11%

High School Teachers

High school teachers educate students in a variety of disciplines, including language arts, social studies, mathematics, and the sciences. They design and adapt lesson plans to meet student needs and assess student abilities through assignments and exams. High school teachers draw on classroom management and leadership techniques to oversee their classes and act as a leader within their school.

In public schools, high school teachers must hold a teaching license or certificate for their grade level. A master's degree in education meets the qualifications for a teaching license. In many districts, educators with a master's degree earn a higher salary.

Median Annual Salary

$60,320

Projected Growth Rate

4%

Education Membership Associations

Professional organizations help graduate students and educators build their professional skills and advance their careers. The following organizations connect educators with professional development resources, research opportunities, and networking activities.

National Education Association

Founded in 1857, NEA represents about three million members, including preschool teachers, postsecondary education administrators, principals, and K-12 teachers. The largest professional employee organization in the U.S., NEA advocates for public education and for educators. NEA offers lesson plans, classroom management tools, and teaching strategies to support educators.

National Association for the Education of Young Children

NAEYC connects educators and administrators with research, support, and professional development tools. NAEYC offers in-person and online training, hosts the Professional Learning Institute, and runs an annual conference to keep educators current in the field. The association also publishes a peer-reviewed journal.

American Council on Education

ACE represents over 1,700 colleges and universities. The council promotes effective public policy and innovative practice in higher education by offering professional learning resources, a fellowship program, and regional summits. ACE also provides student support resources, including mental health support and information for post-traditional learners.

National Council of Teachers of Mathematics

NCTM dates back to 1920. Today, it is the world's largest mathematics education organization. The council offers classroom resources for math teachers at all levels. NCTM also publishes research, offers professional development resources, and hosts an annual conference with networking opportunities.

Education Commission of the States

ECS provides research and resources on education policy issues, from early learning to postsecondary levels. The commission tracks state education policies and publishes research on funding, affordability, and workforce development in education. ECS resources can help education students and professionals make informed decisions about their profession.

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