2021 Best Online Masters in Educational & Instructional Technology

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If you’re interested in the role that technology can play in helping students, professionals, employees, and customers learn, then you might consider pursuing a masters in educational technology online.

Masters in Educational & Instructional Technology

The study of educational technology can help teachers better connect with students, help trainers more effectively communicate with trainees, and help students better engage with the learning material.

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Online master’s in educational technology programs can help you develop the skills and knowledge required to support schools and businesses in the implementation of educational technology.

Masters in Educational Technology Online Programs

Masters in Educational Technology Online Programs

Master of Educational Technology online programs are focused on demonstrating the various systems, technologies, and methods that can be used in education to enhance or complement the learning experience.

This may include creating an understanding of digital learning tools, gaming, blended learning options, video, animation, or internet learning options. The field of education technology blends knowledge of hardware, software, and educational or instructional theory.

Positions that can benefit from training in educational technology include:

  • Technology developer
  • Pedagogy specialist
  • Educational consultant
  • Training and development specialist
  • Corporate training manager
  • Principal
  • Curriculum designer
  • Instructor

With your graduate degree, you may be able to work with a variety of individuals, from school children and young adults to adult learners, teachers, and other technology professionals. You may also be qualified to take on roles in leadership and management.

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Subjects that you may have the opportunity to study as part of your masters education include:

  • Foundations of educational technology
  • Instructional design
  • Designing integrated media environments
  • Internet in K-12 instruction
  • Games and simulations for teaching
  • Distance education leadership
  • Managing education projects

In addition to completing a variety of courses, you may also be required to complete an internship or thesis project in order to graduate with your degree. Specific requirements can vary greatly depending on the specific program you choose to attend.

Educational Technology Careers & Salaries

Educational Technology Careers & Salaries

An online masters in education technology can be applicable to various roles in education, research, government institutions, or private business and nonprofit.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, an understanding of instructional design and technology is relevant to a number of roles that can offer higher than average annual earnings.

Careers Annual Median Salaries
Training and Development Managers $115,640
K-12 Principals $98,490
Postsecondary Education Administrators $97,500
Postsecondary Teachers $80,790
Instructional Coordinators, Government $76,780
Instructional Coordinators, Elementary and Secondary Schools $70,270
Instructional Coordinators, Educational Support Services $67,240
Instructional Coordinators, Colleges, Universities, and Professional Schools $62,950
High School Teachers $62,870
Training and Development Specialists $62,700

Several positions in the field of educational technology are predicted to experience growth over the next several years.  

For instance, the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts growth for postsecondary education administrators (4% job growth), principals (4%), instructional coordinators (6%), training and development managers (7%), and training and development specialists (9%).

Educational Technology Masters Curriculum & Courses

Educational Technology Masters Curriculum

In order to graduate with a degree in educational technology, you’ll complete a variety of courses in the field to develop a master’s level of expertise. Courses that you may take as part of your studies could include:

  • Research Methodology in Education: You’ll learn about the ways that educational research is performed in relation to quantitative and qualitative study methods.
  • Design of Technology-Supported Learning Environments: You’ll explore theories and methods behind the development of technology-based learning environments.
  • Foundations of Educational Technology: You’ll explore the fundamental theories, practices, and applications in the field of educational technology.
  • Applications of Learning Theories to Instruction: You’ll learn about the various theories of learning and instruction, including behaviorism and cognitivism, used within the discipline of educational technology.
  • Learning Technologies in Higher Education: This course covers the key methods of planning and managing learning technologies in higher education settings.
  • Mobile and Open Learning: You’ll explore mobile technologies and their impact on learning and education.
  • Selecting, Designing, and Applying Learning Technologies: You’ll learn methods related to the selection, design, and application of new technologies in the field of education, including tools to evaluate existing technologies.
  • Strategies for E-Learning: This course explores constructivist theories for e-learning, including the development of engaging learning environments.
  • Understanding Learning Analytics: This course covers various principles and practices in relation to data analytics and education.
  • Digital Games and Learning: You’ll learn about the role that games and digital learning have in the field of education technology and education in general.

In addition to the completion of various graduate-level courses, earning your master’s degree in educational technology may also require the completion of a thesis project or an internship. Specific requirements will vary from one school to the next.

How to Know If a Masters Degree in Educational Technology Is Right for Me

Masters Degree in Educational Technology

Deciding whether a master’s degree in educational technology program is right for you depends on your specific career goals, educational goals, and personal interests. When deciding if this path is right for you, you might also consider whether you have the following:

  • Passion for education and technology education
  • Interest in seeing the field of education progress in new and exciting ways
  • Desire to help others utilize technology in the teaching process

A big part of educational technology can be using your expertise to help teachers and trainers explore ways that various tools and programs can be used to improve their methods. If you’re currently a teacher, educational technology can also assist you in improving your own classroom practices.

How to Choose an Online Master’s in Educational Technology Program

Online Master’s in Educational Technology Program

Choosing the right online master’s in educational technology program for you may depend on a number of different factors, including:

  • Accreditation status. Regional or programmatic accreditation can verify the quality of a program’s educational material.
  • Part-time, full-time, or accelerated enrollment options. Part-time options may allow you to balance family or work responsibilities, while full-time and accelerated options may allow you to complete your degree in less time.
  • Graduation rates. Different programs have varying graduate rates, showing how many students who enroll in the program graduate.
  • Available financial aid options. Some schools provide tuition reimbursement or scholarships.
  • Curriculum. The specific courses available to you can vary between programs and schools.
  • Thesis or internship requirements. Completing thesis or internship requirements can add time to your degree, but they can also add to your depth of knowledge and experience.

Whether a specific program is right for you may depend on a number of these factors, along with your specific personal and career goals.

Admissions Requirements

Masters in Educational & Instructional Technology admissions

Admission requirements for master’s in educational technology online programs can vary from one school to the next, but some common criteria include:

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited university
  • Letter of intent
  • CV or resume
  • Letters of reference from academic or workplace colleagues
  • GRE or GMAT scores (only some schools require them)

In some cases, schools may have additional requirements, such as the submission of a written essay or interview.

Accreditation

Masters in Educational & Instructional Technology accreditation

Regional accreditation is a status that is granted to schools and programs whose educational offerings have met a predetermined set of quality standards.

Attending an accredited program can impact a number of things, including your ability to transfer credits into another program or your eligibility for PhD and doctoral programs. Accreditation can also be a precondition for financial aid.

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Whether your master’s degree in educational technology was earned from an accredited institution can also impact hiring decisions by potential employers. For more information on the accreditation status of the school you’re interested in attending, you can visit the US Department of Education’s website.  

Licensure and Certifications

teaching licensure and certifications

While teaching licensure and certification can vary from one state to the next, there are some common elements to be aware of when pursuing a career in the field of education.

There are several types of licensure and certification, including elementary and middle school certifications, secondary teaching certifications, and special education certifications.

For example, secondary teaching certifications can include math endorsement and technology endorsement. Those teaching students from grades K-12 can also voluntarily certify with the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.

If your undergraduate degree is not one that would lead to teacher certification, you may want to consider the combined masters and teaching credential programs that a growing number of universities offer.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Masters in Educational & Instructional Technology financial aid

While pursuing a master’s degree in educational technology, there may be a number of financial aid options available to you if you qualify:

  • Government aid: Financial aid in the form of grants and loans are offered to qualifying students by federal and state governments.
  • Scholarships: Scholarships can be offered by public and private organizations. In some cases, scholarships are offered to students engaged in a particular area of study.
  • Work-study programs: Work-study programs can be offered through various government institutions.
  • Employer training programs: If you’re currently employed, your employer may offer professional development funding to help you pursue additional education related to your position.

For more information on financial aid opportunities that may be available to you, you can visit the US Department of Education’s website.

What Is Educational Technology?

What Is Educational Technology

Educational technology is a field of study that focuses on understanding the different tools, systems, and technologies that can support the learning and educational process.

Educational technology looks at tools such as video, computers, the internet, and other assets that teachers and trainers can use to improve learning experiences and improve engagement with educational content.

The field of educational technology also pulls on educational theory to improve the use and efficiency of hardware and software in the learning process.

How Hard Is an M.Ed in Educational Technology?

M.Ed in Educational Technology

Whether an MEd in Educational Technology seems difficult or not can depend on your specific skills, interests, and abilities. As part of an educational technology masters program, you may be required to study course topics such as:

  • Foundations of educational technology
  • Instructional design
  • Designing integrated media environments
  • Internet in K-12 instruction
  • Games and simulations for teaching
  • Distance education leadership
  • Managing education projects

In addition to completing various courses, you may also be required to complete a thesis project in order to graduate.

What Can You Do with a Masters in Educational Technology?

Masters in Educational Technology careers

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, with a masters in educational technology, you may be qualified to take on a variety of roles in education, leadership, business, nonprofit, and research.

Professionals in this field may work as training and development managers or specialists, principals, education administrators, postsecondary teachers, and instructional coordinators.

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While it is common for educational technology graduates to look for employment in education, a number of roles may also be available in the private sector in relation to corporate training and development.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Master’s Degree in Education Technology Online?

It generally takes 1 to 2 years to earn a masters degree in educational technology online. If a program only consists of 36 credit hours with no thesis requirement, you may be able to complete your degree in 1 year if you attend on a full-time basis continuously throughout the year.

Some factors, such as enrolling on a part-time basis or needing to complete a thesis, may extend the length of time required to earn your degree.

What’s the Difference Between a MEd vs. MA in Education?

MEd vs. MA in Education

While both an MEd and an MA in Education provide students with a masters level of expertise in the field of research, each degree is intended for students with specific career goals.

  • MA in Education: A Master of Arts in Education is geared toward students who are interested in pursuing a career in research or earning their PhD down the road.
  • MEd: A Master of Education is crafted for students who are interested in following a practical career pathway outside of research. An MEd more commonly leads to careers in education and leadership.

The program that is right for you will depend on your personal and professional goals.

What’s the Difference Between an Instructional Design vs. Instructional Technology Degree?

Instructional Design vs. Instructional Technology Degree

Instructional design and instructional technology degrees overlap in a number of areas, but they also have a few key differences.

  • Instructional design: Instructional design looks at the broad creation of materials to aid in the learning process. It pulls from instructional science and instructional technology.
  • Instructional technology: Instructional technology specifically focuses on the tools, systems, and technology used in the learning process.

In some cases, schools may offer programs that blend these two areas into a masters in instructional design and technology degree.

Is a Masters in Educational Technology Worth It?

Masters in Educational Technology jobs

Yes, a masters in educational technology is worth it for many students. Many positions in the field of education have a positive job outlook. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 5% job growth for education, training, and library occupations.

This includes positions like postsecondary education administrator (4% job growth), principal (4%), instructional coordinator (6%), and postsecondary teacher (9%). Training and development managers and specialists are also expected to experience 7% and 9% growth, respectively (Bureau of Labor Statistics).

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With your masters degree, you may find rewarding work in various fields, including education, research, nonprofit, private education, business, and consulting.

Universities Offering Online Masters in Educational and Instructional Technology Degree Programs

Methodology: The following school list is in alphabetical order. To be included, a college or university must be regionally accredited and offer degree programs online or in a hybrid format.

Arizona State University

Arizona State University campus

Arizona State University offers an online program for a Master of Education in Learning Design and Technologies.

Students must complete 10 courses and a final capstone project to graduate. Each course is 7.5 weeks long. Applicants must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher and submit 3 letters of recommendation and a personal statement when applying.

ASU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

California State University – Fullerton

California State University - Fullerton campus

California State University—Fullerton offers a Master of Science in Instructional Design and Technology. The program can be completed online.

Students in the program can take two classes per semester. Applicants must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher, though those who don’t meet this requirement may be considered based on an essay, interview, or resume.

California State University – Fullerton is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior College and University Commission.

Florida State University

Florida State University campus

Florida State University offers a Master of Science in Instructional Systems and Learning Technologies. Students must complete 36 credit hours, an internship, and a portfolio to graduate. To be eligible for the program, applicants must have an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 and must submit their GRE test scores.

Florida State University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Fort Hays State University

Fort Hays State University campus

Fort Hays State University offers a Master of Science in Instructional Technology. Classes are offered in 4, 8, and 16 week semesters.

To graduate, students must complete 36 credit hours, with the final class being a practicum. Applicants must submit official transcripts from all post-secondary schools they’ve attended, a letter of recommendation, and entrance exam scores.

FHSU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Johns Hopkins University

Johns Hopkins University campus

John Hopkins University offers a Master of Science in Education with a focus in Digital Age Learning and Educational Technology. Students must complete 36 credit hours to graduate and have the option to take two elective courses. Applicants must submit official transcripts from all post-secondary institutes they’ve attended.

Johns Hopkins University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

Liberty University

Liberty University campus

Liberty University offers a Master of Education in Educational Technology and Online Instruction. The program requires 36 credit hours to graduate and can typically be completed in 1.5 years. Classes are offered online and are 8 weeks long. Applicants must have a GPA of 2.5 or higher from an undergraduate degree program to be eligible.

Liberty University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Michigan State University

Michigan State University campus

Michigan State University offers an online Master of Arts in Educational Technology program.

The program requires students to complete 30 credit hours and can typically be completed in 1.5 years. Applicants must have an undergraduate degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0 and must submit a written academic statement, 2 letters of recommendation, and a CV or resume.

MSU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

North Carolina State University

North Carolina State University campus

North Carolina State University offers a Master of Education in Learning Design and Technology. An emphasis in Design, Digital Leadership, or Inquiry may be added to the degree.

To graduate, students must complete 30 credit hours. Applicants must submit 2 copies of their transcripts, 3 letters of recommendation, a professional statement, and an academic writing sample.

North Carolina State University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Northern Arizona University

Northern Arizona University campus

Northern Arizona University offers a Master of Education in Educational Technology program with emphases in Adult Learning and Training, Assistive Technology, and K-12 Teacher.

Students must finish 30 units with a GPA of 3.0 or higher to graduate. Applicants must have an undergraduate degree with a GPA of 3.0 or higher to be eligible for the program.

NAU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Ottawa University

Ottawa University campus

Ottawa University offers a Master of Arts in Education with an emphasis in Learning Technologies. The online degree program requires students to complete 36 credit hours, including a research project, to graduate. Applicants must have an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher and submit an admissions essay and 3 letters of recommendation to be eligible for the program.

Ottawa University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission.

Pennsylvania State University

Pennsylvania State University campus

Pennsylvania State University offers a Master of Education in Learning, Design, and Technology. To graduate, students must complete 30 credits and a non-credited capstone portfolio. Applicants must submit official transcripts, with GPA, from any post-secondary institutions attended, GRE or MAT test scores, and 3 references.

The Pennsylvania State University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

Texas A and M University

Texas A & M University - Commerce campus

Texas A&M University offers an online Master of Education in Learning Design and Technology. Students must complete 36 credit hours to graduate. Those interested in the program may apply online with official transcripts from any post-secondary institutions they’ve attended and a small processing fee.

Texas A&M University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

University of Arkansas

University of Arkansas campus

The University of Arkansas offers an online Master of Education in Educational Technology program.

To graduate, students must complete 31 credit hours. Though the program can potentially be completed in 1.5 years, students are allowed up to 6 years to complete it. Applicants must have an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher and must submit GRE scores to be eligible.

The University of Arkansas is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

University of Central Florida

University of Central Florida campus

The University of Central Florida offers an online program for a Master of Arts in Instructional Design and Technology. To graduate, students must complete 36 credit hours. Applicants must submit their GRE or GMAT scores and official undergraduate transcripts.

The University of Central Florida is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

University of Central Missouri

University of Central Missouri campus

The University of Central Missouri offers a Master of Science in Educational Technology. The online program includes an internship and allows students to complete an online portfolio. To be eligible for the program, applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.75 or a GPA of 3.0 in their last 60 credit hours.

The University of Central Missouri is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

University of Florida

University of Florida campus

The University of Florida offers an online Master of Education in Educational Technology program. Students must complete 36 credit hours within 2 years to graduate. Those interested in the program must apply online with a statement of purpose, 3 letters of recommendation, official transcripts, and a resume.

The University of Florida is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

University of Georgia

University of Georgia campus

The University of Georgia offers a Master of Education in Learning, Design, and Technology with an emphasis in Instructional Design and Development.

To graducate, students must complete 36 credit hours while maintaining a GPA of 3.0 or higher in the program. Applicants must apply online with their entrance exam scores, official transcripts, a personal statement, and 3 letters of recommendation.

The University of Georgia is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

University of Maine

University of Maine campus

The University of Maine offers a Master of Education in Instructional Technology. The program is offered completely online and requires 33 credit hours to graduate.

Those interested in the program may apply online at any time. To be eligible, applicants must submit an essay and their transcripts and have an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher.

University of Maine is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.

University of Maryland Global Campus

University of Maryland Global campus

The University of Maryland Global Campus offers a Master of Education in Instructional Technology. Students must complete all required courses and a capstone project while maintaining a GPA of 3.0 or higher to graduate. Those interested in the program must submit official transcripts when applying.

University of Maryland Global Campus is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

University of Michigan – Dearborn

University of Michigan Dearborn campus

The University of Michigan—Dearborn offers a Master of Arts in Educational Technology. The online program requires students to complete 30 credit hours to graduate.

Those interested in the program must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher from an undergraduate program and must submit 3 professional letters of recommendation, official transcripts, and a personal statement.

The University of Michigan – Dearborn is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Getting Your Masters Degree in Educational Technology Online

Masters Degree in Educational Technology Online

If you’re interested in using technology to improve how learning material is taught to students of all ages, then you may want to earn your masters in educational technology.

With advanced training in educational technology, you may be in a position to help teachers, trainers, and businesses use technology more effectively and efficiently. You may help improve the learning process for students, employees, customers, and clients.

Credible online education degree programs from accredited universities often allow you to earn your degree according to your own schedule. After earning your masters, it may be worth looking into the PhD in instructional technology online programs that a growing number of universities offer.

If you’re ready to advance your expertise in the growing field of educational technology, you may want to explore the many program options available to you.

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Brenda Pyzik
WRITTEN BY
Brenda Pyzik
Brenda has a bachelor’s in sociology from the University of Waterloo, with a minor in legal studies. She obtained a graduate certificate in human resource management from Georgian College. Brenda focuses on employment, business, and training and development.