Master’s of Educational Technology Online
What You Should Know
Explore some of the schools offering online master’s degree programs in educational technology. Discover the different requirements and career possibilities associated with educational technology degree programs and develop questions to ask yourself and admissions officers.
On the forefront of new educational practices and theories is educational technology, an area that has expanded as use of technology has become more widespread. While technology has mostly been thought of as a tool of the entertainment and scientific industries, more and more instructors are recognizing the educational implications of using it in the classroom.
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Technology has been increasingly used in instructional settings, as professionals gain a greater understanding of how people interact online and through computer software. Where once students might have been required to complete tasks in a workbook, they might now log on to a website where their educational progress is stored and tracked.
A master’s degree in educational technology focuses on designing and evaluating technology used in schools. In an educational technology program, individuals learn about software development, e-learning, instructional design, and interactive learning, and how these skills and programs are introduced in the classroom.
To gain a complete understanding of technology as an educational tool, many individuals earn their master’s degrees in educational technology.
Earning a master’s degree at a traditional university is a time-consuming and expensive process. Often, individuals in these programs must quit their jobs, hire sitters for their children, or commute long distances to attend class. Thankfully, many universities now offer online degree programs that provide the same quality level of education while catering to their students’ busy schedules.
In an online educational technology master’s degree program, students gain the same skills and understanding of technology design as students in traditional universities, while having greater control over their courses.
Educational technology students examine how technology and instructional design principles merge in the classroom, as they learn how to implement new teaching technologies.
People today are more ingrained in technology than ever, so it makes sense to integrate this technological interest into the classroom. Courses in educational technology focus on presenting instructional material to students in an interactive way, including web-based instruction and games.
For example, with a master’s degree in educational technology, an individual might help to develop a new game or program that will help students interact with subject material in the classroom. These individuals know how to evaluate game outcomes and teach students the connection between the game and the content matter.
If the idea of integrating technology and education is appealing to you, ask yourself if now is the best time to earn a master’s degree.
Should I earn a Master’s Degree?
Educational technology is an evolving field, likely to expand as technology advances. When looking at master’s degree programs, ask yourself a few of the following questions:
- Do I enjoy working with technology?
- Do I believe technology and education are compatible?
- Am I interested in learning more about software development and technological design?
- Do I want to help implement school- or department-wide initiatives to integrate technology?
- Am I interested in assessing and evaluating effective educational technology programs?
- Do I want to advance my career?
Online master’s degree programs in educational technology give students numerous opportunities to use technology to evaluate different teaching practices. Students in these programs learn the best ways to use data-driven reports and instructional design to develop technology-based teaching techniques.
One of the biggest benefits of online degree programs is the amount of flexibility offered when taking courses and completing work. Individuals in these programs meet and speak with academic advisers who help schedule the degree program around a student’s life.
More students are needed to earn master’s degrees in this field to support the ever-increasing amount of technologies available to instructors. In an online degree program, a student will learn how to train current teachers in new instructional technologies, and ensure the best results from introducing new software in the classroom.
Those who earn master’s degrees in educational technology will see a large amount of job opportunities open after graduation. As technology continues to advance, more and more professionals will look to merging technology and education.
Educational technology is used not only online in the classroom, but in the corporate setting as well. Here are a few of the careers offered to master’s degree holders:
- Instructional Designer
- Curriculum Developer
- E-Learning Developer
- School Technology Specialist
- Instructional Technology Supervisor
- Multimedia Designer
- Corporate Trainer
- Director of Technology Training
Educational technology experts might help manage educational computer programs, or develop ways to apply educational media and technology in the classroom or office. They also research the effects of using technology in these settings, and develop reports for administrative personnel.
Individuals who hold master’s degrees in educational technology will continue to be leaders of merging cutting-edge technology with traditional educational practices. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, technology instruction jobs in America will increase nearly 23% by 2018, which is much faster than average job growth in the country.
If you’re interested in meeting this huge need for technologically-savvy instructors, contact some schools offering online master’s degrees in educational technology.