What You Should Know About This Degree
A master’s in adult education is a versatile degree that can help you enter or advance in a variety of industries. However, since there is no singular career path for this degree, students who are interested in an adult education master’s program should carefully consider their career goals, and if this is the most appropriate degree.
For example, students who want to work in higher education administration can also consider a master’s in higher education, or a master’s in education administration. Likewise, those who are interested in pursuing training and leadership roles within the workplace may want to explore a master’s in human resources or a master’s in organizational leadership. Whatever degree you choose, now is the time to investigate all of your options.
While the job outlook for most adult education-related occupations is good, the specific job of adult literacy and high school equivalency diploma teacher is expected to experience an employment decline in the next few years. As high school graduation rates have increased, fewer individuals are seeking equivalency diplomas, cutting down on the need for educators who specifically teach adult learners.
When considering return on investment, students should also be aware that the pay difference between a bachelor’s-level adult educator and a master’s-level adult educator is negligible, although exact salaries do vary based on position and industry.
Here are some questions to ask when researching Master’s in Adult Education/Learning programs:
- Does this program have the specialization I want? Because adult education is such a diverse field, there are many opportunities for specialization in areas including literacy, ESL, curriculum design, and instructional technology. If there is a particular topic you want to focus on, seek out programs that will give you the opportunity to do so.
- Are there any in-person requirements? Even if programs are advertised as online, there may be in-person components for experiential learning such as internships. Students may also be required to visit campus for seminars or residencies. Before committing to a program, be sure you’re aware of any in-person requirements, so you can accommodate them in your budget and schedule.
Take note of schools’ application deadlines, and the materials you will have to submit during the admissions process. Staying organized and submitting application materials well ahead of deadlines will help your admissions process go as smoothly as possible.
Now is also the time to start thinking about how you will fund your graduate degree. Research financial aid options including loans, scholarships, assistantships, and tuition benefits from your employer, if you are currently employed.