Earning a Master’s in Educational Technology Online

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September 22, 2021

Should I Pursue a Master's in Educational Technology Online?

As schools begin integrating technology into classrooms, educational technologists help select, implement, and evaluate that learning technology. Educational technologists usually work in K-12, college, or adult education environments, but some work in the corporate world to train employees in the use of business-related technology.

Many educational technologists advance to administrative roles after earning an educational technology online master's degree, but some choose to remain in the classroom. The ideal master's degree candidate has a few years of experience in the classroom or doing corporate trainings. They should enjoy exploring new technologies and excel at communicating complex ideas simply. A vivid imagination also helps, as does enough self-discipline to keep up in a fast-paced industry that is always changing.

Employment Outlook for Master's in Educational Technology Graduates

Master's in Educational Technology Salary

Educational technologists who work in postsecondary administrative positions typically earn more lucrative salaries than those employed in K-12 settings. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the mean salary for postsecondary educational administrators is $107,670 -- about three times the average American wage. Those in populous states can earn even more, and the BLS predicts 10% job growth between 2016 and 2026.

Pay by Experience Level for Instructional Technologists

Source: PayScale

Master's in Educational Technology Careers

The best educational technology online master's degrees prepare graduate students to enter diverse fields that blend software development with training and teaching. Across the board, educational technologists are creative, analytical people with an eye for detail. They love technological innovations and working with students. Most also possess strong public speaking and writing abilities. Below are a few career possibilities you can consider.

Curriculum Specialist

Annual Median Salary: $54,818

Projected Growth Rate: N/A

Curriculum specialists analyze the effectiveness of curricula in particular classes, schools, or districts. Usually holding at least a master's degree in education plus many years of teaching experience, these educators use data collection and analysis tools to measure the effectiveness of school programming. They can work at all levels of formal education, from preschool through university.

Education and Training Consultant

Annual Median Salary: $63,447

Projected Growth Rate: N/A

Education and training consultants help higher education institutions define priorities, create meaningful relationships, and construct programs that train effective employees. Consultants may also write reports and training manuals for institutions. Basic requirements include an advanced degree and teaching experience.

Instructional Coordinator

Annual Median Salary: $63,750

Projected Growth Rate: 11%

These professionals work with teachers and administrators to select, implement, and analyze school curricula, ensuring their effectiveness. Some instructional coordinators specialize in a single content area, like language arts or science, but many work in a more general capacity.

Instructional Technologist

Annual Median Salary: $55,425

Projected Growth Rate: N/A

Most instructional technologists work in K-12 schools or colleges, where they solve educational problems by identifying and implementing technology-based solutions. Instructional technologists find, evaluate, and sometimes create learning tools for use in the classroom.

Training Development Manager

Annual Median Salary: $108,250

Projected Growth Rate: 10%

Typically working in large businesses or industries, training development directors need a bachelor's or master's degree. These professionals develop, manage, and execute on-site training programs for staff at all levels. They may also help design and implement new strategies for comprehensive training and behavior change.

Sources: Bureau of Labor Statstics / PayScale

What Can I Expect From an Online Master's in Educational Technology Program?

Each college or university offering a master's in educational technology online develops its own unique curriculum based on program goals and resources. Most schools offer a mix of courses in pedagogy, technology, and research. Below, you will find a few common types of courses offered in educational technology programs.

Curriculum for an Online Master's Degree in Educational Technology

Mobile Technologies in Education

Mobile technology is a staple in nearly every modern American's life, granting access to information from any place and at any time. This course helps educators explore the risks and opportunities represented by present and future mobile technologies, including augmented reality and wearables.

Games and Simulations for Teaching and Learning

Students begin class by covering the foundations of gamification. Coursework moves on to the defining qualities and characteristics of education-focused games and simulations. In this practical course, students learn about game design and development, virtual worlds, and the connection between learning and playing games.

Designing Technology-Rich Curricula

Focused on either integrating technology into existing curricula or designing new curricula around technology, this course works best if students have a fundamental knowledge of curriculum design and development beforehand. Students will learn to incorporate technology in curricula across grade levels and institutions.

Issues and Trends in Educational Technology Research

Students in this course explore what educational technology is and how scholars collect data on it. By understanding research design paradigms, educational technologists can understand and evaluate new technology-related findings. This course focuses on contemporary challenges and ideas in educational technology research.

Media Ecologies and Open Education

How does new media shape online and real-life identities and educational environments? Using research, theory, and data, students examine the role of new media -- such as social networking and virtual worlds -- in education, and consider what social media developments might mean for teachers and students of the future.

Certifications and Licenses a Master's in Educational Technology Prepares For

Professional Organizations and Resources

After gaining an accredited educational technology online master's degree, joining a professional organization is the most effective step instructional technologists can take to advance their careers. These organizations provide access to the latest research, opportunities to publish or present new findings, courses for continuing education, and members-only job boards. Active participation in an association like the ones below helps members build reputations as thought leaders in the instructional technology field.

Methodology

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