Earning a PhD in Educational Technology Online

Become Team
Become Team
August 30, 2019

Should I Pursue a Ph.D. in Educational Technology Online?

Ideal for experienced educators, educational technology specialists, and instructional designers, earning a doctorate in educational technology online can prepare professionals for leadership positions in the field. Schools, colleges, and companies need educational technology experts. Educators constantly work to integrate the latest technology and digital media into their instruction, and an increasing number of institutions now offer courses online. Along with school settings, educational technology professionals can work in any industry that uses technology to train employees or customers.

Professionals who enjoy using technology to enhance teaching and learning should consider earning a Ph.D. in educational technology to advance their career. A doctorate in the field qualifies professionals to design and manage instructional technology systems and to oversee the work of instructional designers and programmers. Pursuing the degree online allows learners to progress through the curriculum according to their schedule and can save time and money compared to on-campus programs.

Employment Outlook for Ph.D. in Educational Technology Graduates

After earning a doctorate in educational technology online, graduates can qualify for leadership roles in the field. With the continuing growth of online learning and instructional technology, employers in nearly every industry need educational technology experts. The section below includes information about common careers for graduates, including salary expectations.

Ph.D. in Educational Technology Careers

For individuals passionate about using the latest technology to enhance teaching and learning, earning a doctorate in educational technology online can lead to a variety of leadership positions in instructional design and technology. Educational technology professionals help design educational products and services, create workplace training programs, and use technology to improve educational access and outcomes. Doctoral degree holders often pursue the positions below.

Curriculum Developer

Annual Median Salary: $64,450

Curriculum developers design or select the lessons and materials instructors use to teach a particular topic. These professionals typically specialize in a certain content area. Curriculum developers with expertise in educational technology may advise schools and teachers on ways to incorporate technology into their instruction.

E-Learning Specialist

Annual Median Salary: $56,257

These specialists need expertise in educational technology, learning theories, communications, and instructional design. These professionals develop, assess, improve, and manage online courses and workplace training programs. E-learning specialists work in a variety of settings, and those with graduate degrees often assume responsibility for large projects or multiple course offerings.

Learning Management System Administrator

Annual Median Salary: $56,665

These administrators use their understanding of online learning platforms and other forms of educational technology to manage the software systems instructors use to deliver educational content. Learning management system administrators often work for companies, schools, and universities.

User Interface Designer, Educational Apps

Annual Median Salary: $64,089

These designers apply knowledge of graphic design, human-computer interaction, and educational theory to design the user experience of educational apps. User interface designers typically work as part of a software development team, and those with a doctorate may lead teams and projects.

What Can I Expect From an Online Ph.D. in Educational Technology Program?

Online doctoral programs in educational technology require different courses, according to each school's curriculum and the student's concentration. All programs, however, prepare students for leadership positions within the educational technology field. Although course requirements vary, most educational technology programs require the courses below.

Curriculum for an Online Doctoral Degree in Educational Technology

Leadership in Educational Technology

Students gain the leadership skills necessary to implement instructional technologies in schools and organizations. Learners gain abilities related to team building, resource management, instructional needs assessment, and program evaluation. Coursework may also cover education policies related to technology, organizational change management, and current research findings.

Topics in Educational Technology

This course provides an advanced overview of current trends and hot topics in education technology research. Students explore legal and ethical issues, including diversity, equal access, and the impact of emerging technologies. Learners also identify topics for further research and exploration.

Educational Technology Systems Design

Students learn to design, implement, and assess educational technology systems that maximize student engagement and learning. Learners explore topics like setting goals, stakeholder engagement, system design models, and evaluation strategies.

Instructional Design

Educational technology doctoral candidates may take one or more courses in instructional design. These classes teach students to employ learning theories, design models, and digital media to develop online courses. Students prepare to conduct needs assessments, design learning modules to meet these needs, and evaluate the success of modules.

Research Methods

Doctoral candidates typically take several research courses in preparation for their dissertation. These courses provide an understanding of statistical research methods, experimental design, and statistical analysis.

Certifications and Licenses a Ph.D. in Educational Technology Prepares For

Professional Organizations & Resources

Professional organizations provide graduate students, job seekers, and professionals with networking opportunities, career services, and resources. Membership in a professional association offers many benefits and demonstrates commitment to the profession. These groups often advocate on behalf of members at the state and federal levels and keep members informed about policies relevant to professionals in the field. Many professional organizations offer continuing education programs and certifications that help job seekers stand out.

Become Team
Become Team
Contributing Writer

Latest Posts