A graduate certificate in educational technology, or instructional technology, is an academic certificate that prepares the holder to engage in several areas related to learning at every level--from children taking online courses to training departments in large corporations. Educational technology is not just about the tools used for learning, it includes analyzing, developing and designing materials and resources, to help individuals learn, be it in a college classroom or in an online course.
What Courses Are Required in a Graduate Certificate in Educational Technology Program?
When you study for a graduate certificate in educational technology, you can expect to take courses that prepare you to assess learner needs, analyze issues to be addressed in the instructional process, design instruction and determine when you need to revamp instructional strategies to meet diverse learning needs. You will study learning theories and how to apply those theories to your work in educational technology. The following are examples of courses you can expect to take.
This course covers the needs of diverse learners. Individual learning styles and teaching strategies are addressed. Utilizing learning theories in designing instruction for diverse learners is also a topic in this course.
In this course, students are introduced to various tools for online instruction. Strategies for managing an online classroom and dealing with issues that arise during online teaching will also be covered in this course.
Instructional design provides theoretical foundations and practical experience in designing technology-based learning. The course covers various models for instructional design. Students implement what they learn by designing materials and learning modules.
The digital media course provides opportunities for students to design instruction using digital and multimedia resources. Students learn to select tools for distance learning and blended learning. Collaborative learning tools are also explored.
Some programs include a research project as the final or capstone course. For this project, a student might choose to do research and write an in-depth paper on an aspect of educational technology. Students may have the option to participate in an internship to gain experience in a specific area of educational technology.
What Are the Admission Requirements?
You need at least an undergraduate degree to be admitted to educational technology graduate certificate programs. Some programs require a GPA in the 2.5-3.0 range, transcripts, a statement of purpose and your admission fee. If the school you choose has a Master of Education in Educational Technology, you may be able to use all or part of your graduate certificate hours toward your masters, but you will need to apply for admission to the graduate program.
Skills learned in an educational technology graduate certificate program can enhance online and classroom teaching and learning. Educators new to online teaching will find that earning the certificate can help them become very comfortable in the virtual classroom setting.