Students who are interested in pursuing a graduate degree in education may be interested in earning their degree online, which may provide greater flexibility. Below, we'll explore online graduate programs in education by discussing what kinds of courses are common parts of the curriculum, admission requirements, and what students can expect when enrolled in these programs.
Information About Online Graduate Programs in Education
At the graduate level, students who are interested in pursuing a degree in education have a number of options, with degrees available in specific types and subfields of education. More generalized online Master of Arts in Education programs also exist, though these programs typically have students select a specialization or concentration in areas like curriculum and instruction, special education, or early childhood education.
Typically comprised of between 30 and 36 credits, online graduate education programs are often designed to be completed on a part-time basis in order to accommodate the schedules of working professionals. Students are not usually required to complete a thesis as part of an online Master of Arts in Education, though they may need to submit some type of final research project in addition to standard coursework. Below are five different courses that are commonly found in these programs.
Foundation and Introduction to Curriculum
Graduate programs in education may require that students take a course that covers the topic of curriculum. In this course, students will learn about how curriculum is conceptualized, developed, and then implemented. The course may focus on providing students with a history of curriculum development in order to compare and contract modern curriculum with curriculum of the past.
Technology in Education
It is common for these programs to require that students take a course that highlights different types of instructional technologies and how teachers can use them to their full benefit while teaching. This course may cover technology trends in education, new instructional technologies, and how technology has changed the modern classroom.
Learning in the 21st Century
These programs may also require that students take a course that focuses specifically on education, learning, and the various current challenges in this field in the context of the 21st century. A course in this topic may focus heavily on ethical and legal aspects of teaching, including topics like teacher liability, federal and state law, and pertinent legislation. This course may also focus on the advantages and challenges that are associated with the educational technologic advanced that have occurred in the 21st century.
Differentiated Teaching and Diversity
In a course that covers differentiation and diversity, students will study topics like race, ethnicity, culture, and language and how different teaching methods can be used in order to help diverse student groups be successful in a classroom. In addition, students may learn about ways in which to manage and be aware of their own prejudices and stereotypes and how to discuss these issues in a classroom setting. Finally, this course may also focus on how to partner with diverse communities in order to ensure student success.
These programs also often require students to take some sort of course that focuses on how to conduct research in the field of education. This course may cover topics like theory of education research, proper evaluation of scholarly articles, currently trends and challenges in education research, and how to use research as a tool to bring about change. In addition, students will learn about tools that can be used to evaluate the effectiveness of research projects.
Online Graduate Programs in Education Admission Requirements
In order to enroll in an online graduate program in education, students will need to make sure they fulfill the program requirements and then submit an application in order to be considered for admission. In order to be considered, you will need to have already completed a bachelor's degree. While programs may not specify that you need an undergraduate degree in education, students will generally need to show that they are a licensed teacher or are eligible for licensure. Prospective students will generally need to submit an application form, official transcripts, letters of recommendation, resume, and a personal statement.
To summarize, students who are interested in a graduate degree in education can earn such a degree entirely online. These programs are typically designed for individuals who are already eligible to teach and focus on providing them with a higher level of knowledge in the field of education.