Online Doctorate Degree in Educational Technology: Program Summary

Find out about online educational technology courses and in which doctoral degree programs they're most commonly offered. Get course descriptions, program info and online requirements to make an informed decision.

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Essential Information

A few schools offer online doctorate programs in educational technology, learning technologies or in curriculum and instruction with a concentration in educational technology. Most programs are offered in a hybrid format with in-person seminars, dissertation requirements or educational travel. However, some schools do offer fully online Doctor of Education in Educational Technology and Doctor of Education in Instructional Technology programs.

Online doctorate degree programs in educational technology are broadly concerned with the challenge of incorporating information technology into the educational curriculum. Programs are designed for education professionals and are structured to develop a mix of competencies in organizational management, technology and pedagogy.

Applicants need to have earned a master's degree in educational technology and maintained a 3.0 grade point average in their undergraduate and graduate work. Some programs may also require five years of work experience or more in an education-technology-related occupation.

Learning Environment

Courses in an online doctorate program in educational technology are offered as a blend of online and traditional instruction, with a majority of the latter. Online classes are held in virtual classrooms. Student-to-student and student-instruction interactions are held in chat sessions and via message boards. Some seminars may be scheduled on campus during the summer months, and some programs include educational travel.

Students are required to have a laptop or some type of relatively current personal computer with Internet access to participate in an online program. A doctoral degree of this type may be completed in 3-4 years.

Common Courses

Students complete core courses in various types of technology and learn how technology can be integrated into education. There are courses in computer-human interaction, education policy development and organizational change. Students hone their research skills and learn more about analyzing data and statistics.

Doctoral programs are generally organized into core courses, seminars and a dissertation. Where possible, core courses in an education technology program will be oriented toward technology and the technological environment.

Education Theory

This course engages in a deeper examination of current theories of social learning and cognition. Special projects explore ways of incorporating theory into the design of learning environments.

Organizational Change

Students in this course survey world-wide trends in education and applications of technology to education. Coursework aims to relate educational trends to change theory and change management in educational organizations.

Computer - Human Interaction

Social forces that shape the use of computers and digital technology are the focus of this course. Students survey the history and the development of interactive systems.

Technology Management

Students in this course examine case studies of the management practices that have been applied to technology-intensive environments. Class exercises may include forming a virtual corporation.


Career Information

Graduates of an online doctorate program in education technology are prepared for a broad range of administrative and teaching positions in K-12 schools, consulting firms, virtual schools, community colleges and 4-year colleges.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, over the years 2014-2024 employment of postsecondary education administrators will increase 9%, and employment of instructional coordinators will increase 7% (www.bls.gov). As of May 2015, instructional coordinators earned a median annual salary of $62,270 and postsecondary education administrators earned a median annual salary of $88,580.

Hybrid doctorate programs in educational technology train aspiring education administrators or instructional coordinators in technology management, educational theory and computer-human interaction. Students may be required to participate in educational travel, seminars and other in-person requirements.

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