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Most schools have rolling admissions and financial help so you can start your degree in a few weeks!

Students who graduate with a master’s degree in online teaching are qualified to teach at grade schools, middle and high schools, and charter schools, as well as at the postsecondary level at universities and colleges. They can also pursue careers in the private sector as instructional coordinators, corporate trainers, and training and development specialists.

According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the median pay for high school teachers in 2021 was $61,280, while instructional coordinators made an average of $63,740. The average annual salary for postsecondary teachers was $79,640. The average cost of a master’s program in 2020-21 was $12,394 at public institutions and $26,621 at private institutions, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. Completing this degree takes between one to two years of full-time study.

How to Choose an Online Master’s in Online Teaching Program

Choose your area of study

Since a degree in online teaching qualifies graduates to teach at different levels and in both the public and private sectors, students need to know what career they’d like to pursue before choosing a program of study.

Some universities offer a master’s in online education, while others offer a master’s in education with a concentration in online education. An M.Ed program may focus on education at the primary, middle, or high school level. Additionally, many programs offer or require an internship or field experience. If there is an in-person aspect, it’s essential to ensure opportunities are available locally.

Research schools and programs

After deciding on an area of study, the next step is to research various schools and their programs. Search for programs that offer concentrations and field experiences that correspond with your career goals. This can often be done by going to each school’s website and navigating to the specific page for the program. Some schools provide detailed information, while others do not. You may need to fill out an online form or contact an admissions counselor to receive more information.

Find out as much as you can about the academic aspects of the program, but consider the following factors as well:

  • Is the school accredited? Be sure to apply only to institutions that are accredited by agencies recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. The accreditation status of a school will affect the financial aid you will be able to receive. Proper accreditation also affects what future postsecondary programs you will be eligible for as well as what job opportunities are available to you after graduation. You can also verify that individual programs are accredited by visiting the website of the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation.
  • What is the cost of the program? Along with accreditation, this is usually one of the determining factors in choosing a program. Focus on programs that fall within the amount you can spend for the degree so that you only spend time researching programs within your budget.
  • What is the learning format? Online programs can be synchronous, asynchronous, or a combination of both. Asynchronous programs give students the most control over their schedules, and if they’ll be studying evenings and weekends, this is generally the best option. On the other hand, synchronous learning provides live instruction and more interaction with fellow students and instructors, but it requires students to be online at specific times. Consider the amount of time you can put into your learning and any responsibilities you may have outside of school to help you determine which learning format makes the most sense.
  • Where is the school located? Most universities offer various services, amenities, and events that are available only on campus. These may include orientations, career fairs, meet-and-greets, student clubs and organizations, sporting events, and more. Although the actual master’s degree program is online, students may wish to participate in some of these other activities. If so, the school’s location is something to consider when choosing a program.

Prepare for tests and applications

Admissions requirements vary with each university, so check the school’s website for details. Some institutions set specific deadlines for submission of applications and related documents, while others offer rolling admissions. The program’s start date may have a bearing on this, as online programs may or may not start at the same time as on-campus classes. Also, some universities require GRE or Praxis scores for admission.

Select your program

After you’ve selected your area of study and researched various schools and programs, it’s time to narrow down your selection. Since no two programs are exactly the same, look at the pros and cons of each. Determine which features are most important to you personally. Compile a list, in order of preference, of the programs you would like to take, and then apply to them all. When you receive acceptance letters, choose the one that ranks highest on your list.

Determine how you’ll pay for your degree

Eligible students can get financial aid from the U.S. government through grants, loans, and work-study programs. To receive such assistance, students must submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

If students previously earned graduate-level credits, they may be able to transfer them to their current program, reducing the number of courses needed for the degree. Also, many universities offer financing, and students may have the option to pay for each course separately as they work their way through the program. Schools usually offer discounted tuition to past and present members of the military. Additionally, if your schedule allows, a part-time job can help pay for the degree. Contact the school’s financial aid office to help you explore all options for paying for your degree.

Best 50 Accredited Online Master’s in Online Teaching Programs

Best Online Master's in Online Teaching Degree Programs

Georgia Southern University

Harding University

Clemson University

Arkansas State University

Columbus State University

Biola University

Liberty University

University of North Dakota

University of the Southwest

Stephen F. Austin State University

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How We Rank Schools

For this list, we concentrated our research on master’s programs with an emphasis in online teaching. Most of these programs offer degrees in online teaching, instructional or educational technology, or curriculum design. Students can earn several different degrees in this field, including a Master of Arts (MA), Master of Science (MS), or Master of Education (M.Ed).

We only included regionally accredited institutions on our list as a confirmation that programs meet high standards of quality. Many programs also have National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) accreditation.

Another criterion was that programs be completely or primarily delivered online to ensure accessibility for the greatest number of students, regardless of location or availability.

We reviewed all of the programs on the basis of cost, reputation, outcomes, faculty, and flexibility. Then, we calculated the Intelligent Score of each program on a scale from 0 to 100. For a more extensive explanation, check out Our Ranking Methodology.

What Can You Expect from an Online Master’s in Online Teaching Program?

Online teaching and in-person teaching share many similarities, so this program covers the skills needed to become a qualified and effective educator.

It also delves into other areas, such as how to involve students and keep them engaged in an online setting, how to use technology to maximize the online experience, the theory and culture of online learning, what online learning management systems are available and how they differ from one another, how to provide individualized feedback, technical training, and other subjects relevant to online education.

Online students receive course material via an online learning platform. Popular platforms include Blackboard, Canvas, and Moodle. Alternatively, the school may have its own platform. After logging on to their personal portals, students can access the course syllabus, schedules, audio-video material, reading material, class assignments, grades, and more. They also have access to online chats and message boards, which facilitate communication with other students as well as instructors.

Potential courses you’ll take in an online master’s in online teaching degree program

  • Technology tools for online instruction. In addition to acquiring skills as an educator, online teachers must know what technology tools are available for online education and how to use them. This course covers how to utilize various software programs and applications, operating systems, mobile devices, and learning platforms for teaching in the online environment.
  • Theory and culture of online learning. Online teaching differs in many ways from in-person instruction. This course discusses these differences in depth and helps students understand teaching methods and approaches that are most effective when providing education online.
  • Field experience. Most teaching programs require students to participate in a field experience where they teach in a real-world environment. The amount of time required partially depends on the student’s prior experience and what degrees/certificates they already have.
  • Foundations of distance education. In this course, students explore the history of distance education and how it has rapidly evolved over the past few years. It covers various policies and practices and how the latest technologies have changed online learning and teaching.

What Can You Do With an Online Master’s in Online Teaching?

Career outlook

The career outlook for individuals with an online master’s in online teaching is bright, reflecting the increasing demand for skilled educators in the digital learning landscape. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment of postsecondary teachers, including online educators, is projected to grow by eight percent from 2022 to 2032, faster than the average for all occupations. The current median annual salary for postsecondary teachers is $80,840, with variations based on factors such as institution, location, and level of education.

Career paths

Individuals with a master’s degree in online teaching have a range of career options, leveraging their expertise in instructional design, technology integration, and online pedagogy. Here are some job options available for someone with a master’s degree in online teaching:

  • E-learning specialist — creates interactive and engaging online learning experiences using multimedia tools, instructional design principles, and educational technology.
  • Learning experience designer — designs learning experiences that integrate instructional design principles and technology.
  • Corporate trainer — develops and delivers online training programs for corporate employees.
  • Online tutoring coordinator — coordinates online tutoring services, ensuring effective support for students in virtual learning environments.
  • Virtual school administrator — leads and manages virtual schools or online education programs, overseeing administrative aspects, curriculum development, and teacher support.

Online Course Developer

Earning Potential: $65,000-$98,000 annually
Education Required: Master’s degree in curriculum development, online teaching, or a related field

An online course developer designs and creates engaging digital courses. They integrate instructional design principles, technology, and pedagogical strategies to enhance the online learning experience. Collaborating with subject matter experts and educators, they develop multimedia content, assessments, and interactive elements. Their role extends to ensuring alignment with learning objectives and utilizing educational technology effectively. Online course developers play a pivotal role in crafting educational experiences that are dynamic, effective, and responsive to the evolving needs of online learners.

Learning Management System (LMS) Administrator

Earning Potential: $51,815-$65,102 annually
Education Required: Master’s degree in educational administration, online teaching, or a related field

A learning management system (LMS) administrator oversees the technical and functional aspects of online learning platforms. They manage user access, ensure system functionality, and optimize the user experience. Collaborating with educators, they customize the LMS to enhance instructional delivery, troubleshoot technical issues, and provide training to users. LMS administrators play a crucial role in maintaining data integrity, implementing updates, and integrating new technologies. Their responsibilities extend to fostering a seamless and efficient online learning environment, contributing to the success of digital education initiatives within educational institutions or organizations.

Online Curriculum Coordinator

Earning Potential: $44,986-$57,373 annually
Education Required: Master’s degree in online teaching or a related field

An online curriculum coordinator focuses on the development, implementation, and evaluation of digital educational programs. Collaborating with educators, they ensure alignment with learning objectives, standards, and pedagogical best practices. Online curriculum coordinators are crucial in selecting and integrating appropriate digital resources and instructional strategies. They facilitate training for online instructors, assess the effectiveness of online curricula, and continuously seek enhancements. Their responsibilities span quality assurance, instructional design, and fostering a cohesive online learning experience, contributing to the overall success and innovation of digital education initiatives.

Online Master’s Degree in Online Teaching Frequently Asked Questions

How do I apply to an online master’s in online teaching degree program?

Applicants can generally submit their applications online or through the mail. A bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution is required but doesn’t necessarily have to be in a related field. Some programs require applicants to have a teacher’s license or prior teaching experience. Transcripts should be submitted on time, and there is usually a 2.5-3.0 minimum GPA requirement. Applicants should be prepared to submit their resumes, personal statements or essays about teaching interests or previous teaching experience, and letters of recommendation.

Many universities require proof of U.S. citizenship or residency, and if English is not the applicant’s first language, test scores proving English proficiency are required. Applicants should always contact an admissions counselor to confirm all admissions requirements and submission deadlines before applying.

How much does an online master’s in online teaching degree cost?

An online master’s in online teaching costs between $11,000 to $35,000. Fees involving technology and software, books, and additional university services are not usually included in tuition. At public universities, in-state residents often pay lower tuition than out-of-state students, although for online programs, students may be charged the same tuition regardless of where they live.

How long does it take to earn a master’s degree in online teaching online?

Depending on the institution, this program requires 30-36 credits and can be completed in one or two years of full-time study. Part-time options are available at some schools — this would take longer to complete. Even so, students are usually required to complete the degree in five years or less.

Is an online Master’s in Negotiation and Conflict Management worth it?

Earning a Master’s in Negotiation and Conflict Management is an excellent investment for your career.

Without a master’s degree, you’ll be completely shut out of some job opportunities. For example, 25% of labor relations specialists report that this level of education is required for their work. Also, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that workers with a master’s degree tend to make more money and face less unemployment than those who only have a bachelor’s.

Once you’ve decided to pursue a master’s, the next question is whether you will earn your degree online or on campus. You should strongly consider the online option, as the lack of commute will allow you to save a lot of time and money — some online programs can even be completed at your own pace, which makes it even easier to find time for your studies.

Is an online master's in online teaching worth it?

Earning an online master’s in online teaching offers numerous advantages in the evolving landscape of digital education. According to the Online Learning Consortium, the demand for online educators is rising, making this degree valuable for individuals seeking to enhance their teaching skills in virtual environments.

The earning potential for individuals with an online master’s in online teaching is competitive. Salaries can range from $60,000 to $100,000 annually, depending on factors such as experience, specialization, and the educational institution. The skills acquired during the program, including instructional design and online pedagogy, position graduates for success in various academic roles.

An online master’s in online teaching provides educators with the skills to navigate virtual classrooms effectively and opens doors to diverse career opportunities. The flexibility of online programs allows educators to continue teaching while advancing their knowledge, making it a valuable investment in both professional development and career advancement.

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