Masters in Teaching Education Degree Programs, Online Included
Consider an online teaching program currently accepting applicants for 2023.
University of Southern California
|Master||Master of Arts in Teaching Online
Earn Your MAT Online From USC Rossier in 12 Months. No GRE scores required.
The University of Texas Permian Basin
|Master||MA in Special Education
CAEP-accredited, Complete in as little as 12 months, six start dates a year, cost-effective tuition.
University of West Florida
|Master||Online Master of Education Programs
CAEP Accredited. Programs in Elementary, Middle, and Secondary Education. Gives classroom teachers a specialized education for their student age group and career goals.
|Master||Online MS in Education
Specialized degrees in Special Education, Curriculum Instruction, Learning Design and Technology.
To be a teacher, you need to have your bachelor's degree (which you probably already have). To further your career for advancement in stature, salary, and respect, you should consider your Masters in Education. Earning a M.Ed. degree will provide you with a number of positives, but it will also help you to specialize and become an expert in the field of education you are most passionate about.
Are there online Masters in Education programs?
Simply put: Yes, there are online Teaching Education Masters programs. Online Masters in Education degrees are becoming increasingly popular, especially for current teachers or teaching assistants that want to continue working while taking an online degree. Many traditional universities with historically prominent Teaching Education programs are now bringing their Masters programs online. Keep a look out for the different types of online Masters degrees: Online MAT and Online M.Ed. are two of the most common.
With the need for more teachers across most grade levels and specialties, an initiative to increase the number of teachers, and a proposal for increased funding (source), the outlook for a teaching career is very good. Learn more about different degrees:
Masters in Education Programs
- Masters in Teaching Degrees
- Master of Education (M.Ed)
- Master of Science in Education (M.S.Ed)
- Masters in Teaching (M.I.T)
- Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T)
- Masters in Reading Education
- Masters in Secondary Education
- Masters in General Education
With a Masters degree in Education, you could potentially increase that paycheck and get paid what you deserve for molding the youth of America. Of course, salary and other benefits are often commensurate with experience and location.
Historically, teachers taught by grade level, and although that is still the case, more and more teachers that pursue their Master's degree in teaching are graduating with specialty education degrees. These provide a lot more options and help our teachers to become experts in their field. Considering the unique needs for most of the specialties (leadership, math, reading, special education, childhood education), everyone - parents, teachers, and students - can feel comfortable knowing they have experts teaching the students.
Types of Masters in Education Degrees
Becoming a teacher is one of the most rewarding careers. Nearly all teachers at least have their Masters in Education (M.Ed.) or Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.). A graduate level education degree in teaching is beneficial for many reasons. You can get more teaching knowledge and experience to better teach your audience. There are teaching methodologies and theory that you can learn with your Masters degree that you simply do not specialize in with a Bachelor's in Education degree. Thus, your students should learn more from you!
With a Masters in Teaching, you should have more career opportunities. A Masters in Education may not be required for all teaching jobs, but there are many teachers searching for some of the best jobs in the school districts or private settings - you can help yourself stand out with a Masters degree. If your Masters in Education degree is specialized in one of the over 20 different areas of teaching education, you can help yourself stand out even more.
Why Consider a Masters in Education?
If you want to reach the top levels of the field of education and maximize your earning potential, earning your Masters Degree in Education (M.Ed.) can help open doors for several career opportunities. For current teaching professionals who already have an education focused bachelor's, this is a common next step in their career path.
In-depth understanding of subject areas
Masters programs can vary in focus, giving you an in-depth understanding of a specific area of interest. For instance, Masters in Education programs can help you become a specialist in such areas as education policy, administrative management, psychological aspects, leadership, special education, technology, counseling, and many other areas.
Some programs include teacher certification as a part of their degree
Another benefit to Masters in Education programs is the inclusion of certification as you earn your degree. For instance, some programs will help you achieve certification to teach elementary, middle or secondary classes within 12 months of starting your programs. Just as programs can be designed by topical interest, you can plan your degree to focus on the various grade levels from pre-K through higher education.
The information below and throughout this website will help spell out the benefits of earning your Masters in Education and important considerations you should make when choosing the right MEd program. The best way to move forward from here is to contact schools in your area, and compare their programs with online paths that can offer credible, effective learning outcomes as well.
Common Courses for Masters in Education Programs
Your courses will likely include a mix of elective and foundation courses, as well as a capstone course that you can read about in the next section. Elective courses are going to be more focused and higher level than what you experiences at the bachelor's level. Still, these will be critical to your program, so make sure to discuss each course decision with your assigned counselor.
Elective courses may cover such areas as current trends in technology, reading assessment, discipline strategies, and communication tools. You can expect to take about 15 hours of electives in most programs, which can sometimes be completed in as little as 12 months time. When comparing programs, you will want to consider how many classes you will have time to take. Every student has their own unique circumstances. Some programs are more flexible for students who have families and full-time work schedules.
Foundation Core Courses
Many M.ED. programs are designed for particular certificates that include foundation courses before the final capstone or equivalent type of experience. The foundation courses will be very specific to your certification and help you become more proficient in your chosen area. These can enhance understanding of curriculum design, diversity in the classroom, administrative effectiveness and other specific tracks.
The Capstone Course for your Degree
Your capstone experience is the last step in earning your Masters in education. This will prove your skills by applying what you learned in your program. Think of this as your dissertation for your degree. Schools have their own models for capstone's but you can expect to choose a topic that aligns with your desired career outcome and degree focus. This can be in-depth research about theories in all sorts of areas, including behavior, types of teaching techniques, administrative topics- virtually any area of education can be explored.
Not only will your analytical, writing and research skills be evaluated, you will most likely work with a professional mentor to help guide your successful completion of the project. Capstone projects can take 1-2 semesters for completion. When you compare programs be sure to inquire about this part of your program.
Consider an online teaching program currently accepting applicants for 2023.
University of West Florida
|Master||Master of Education in Curriculum & Instruction
CAEP Accredited, 3 specializations.
University of Dayton
|Master||Master of Science in Education in Educational Leadership
Top-ranked online education program. Degree can be completed in as few as two years (additional time if pursuing the principal licensure track). No GRE required to apply.
Fairleigh Dickinson University
|Master||Master of Administrative Science
CAEP Accredited. 100% online graduate program.
Arizona State University
|Master|| Online Master of Arts in Education
100% online, 9 focus areas of teaching education available. No GRE scores required for application.
Online Masters in Education vs. On-Campus
Almost every school nowadays offers online programs for current professionals and busy students. In the past, online programs were looked at with skepticism until accredited universities jumped on board with credible programs that produced results.
Deciding whether to enroll in an Online Masters in Education vs. an on-campus brick and mortar program should really depend on your schedule, budget, and desired degree. If you are self-motivated, you can succeed in online learning. But some students prefer the real life classroom experience to remain motivated and inspired.
Top Types of Masters in Education Degrees
There are quite a few specialties of the Masters in Education degree, starting with a Master of Arts in Teaching vs. a Master of Science in Education. Below you can view summaries of some of the top Masters degrees in Teaching Education, and a link to more information about that specific degree for some specific programs.
Alternative Certification Masters Degree
The alternative teacher certification program is a Master’s level degree option for those that have a Bachelor’s degree that is NOT in teaching. It is the ideal degree for people looking to make a career change to get into teaching.
It is also one of the most common Master’s degrees in teaching, again mostly due to the number of non-teachers that have decided they want to become a teacher.
Masters in Early Childhood Education Degree
Teachers seeking a specialty to work with preschool and kindergarten kids (or younger, even) should look into getting their Master’s degree in Early Childhood Education. Working with younger kids takes a lot of patience, but it is very rewarding as they learn and act on what you are teaching them almost immediately. As an early childhood education teacher, you also might help them learn how to be potty-trained, learn to read, learn to tie their shoes, and more. Some teachers find this to be extremely rewarding because advancements happen so quickly with the young kids.
Masters in Educational Leadership Degree
Every institution, no matter what level, needs a strong leader to lead the organization, and schools at every level are no different. Whether it is elementary school, high school, or a combination, the leadership is extremely important to shaping the kids futures and to recruiting and keeping the best teachers in your school.
Masters in School Counseling Degree
School counselors are a must at every level – especially elementary school, middle school, and high school. Counselors are there for the kids should they need someone to talk to, or if they need help. Counselors also tend to help prepare students for their future, particularly high school counselors that help with the decision post-graduation for what students want to do. They help them select colleges, and help figure out which program of study interests them most and which area they would be most successful in.
Masters in General Education Degree
This is by far the most common Master’s degree in teaching education. A Master’s in Education is the fundamental M.Ed. degree that hundreds of universities across the United States offer. Many of these programs are found online, which is an excellent choice for current teachers.
Masters in Secondary Education Degree
Earning a Master’s in Secondary Education (or High School Education) will allow you to become a high school teacher, more than likely of a single subject. Most of these degrees also have a specialty or concentration that is tied in. There are also a few options such as the University of Phoenix, that allows entry from those with a non-teaching Bachelor’s degree, similar to the Alternative Certification Master’s degree.
Masters in Special Education Degree
It takes a special kind of person to teach special education for all ages, but the special education field is extremely rewarding. Whether it is helping students with learning disabilities or special needs, special education teachers show their passion in their daily work. You can review more detail about the special education degree at the Master’s (and other) levels here.
Masters in Math Education Degree
Math teachers are in high demand, and as part of the effort of the Presidential Administration of the United States to increase STEM positions (which includes teachers), many math teaching jobs should be available as a result of impending federal government subsidies. This degree is for those looking to teach mathematics at a secondary school as a specialist, or at a community college. Many go on to get their Ph.D so they can become a professor of mathematics at a college or university.
Masters in Reading Education Degree
It is extremely important that kids are learning to read properly, especially with the advancements in technology that seem to provoke even more shorthand correspondence. Teachers that educate in reading help students learn how to read and speak properly.
Masters in School Psychology Degree
School psychologists plan an important role in an educational institution. They must achieve balance between helping students learn, and allowing teachers to teach. They use many of the psychology fundamentals, such as mental, learning, behavior and emotional health, to help foster children to succeed academically and prepare them for life. Likewise, they assist families and faculty to create a supportive and positive learning environment, and help all to work in unison.
Masters in Science Education Degree
As a part of the initiative to increase STEM workers, science teachers should have many opportunities in the future, especially those that have a M.Ed. in Science Education. Science teachers educate mostly middle and high school students on the fundamentals of science, including biology, anatomy, and physics. They will set the stage for science, technology, engineering, and math students later on.
Teaching Education Specialties
There are many specialties that are even more specialized than the most popular concentrations for education. Below is a comprehensive list of other specialties. We have plans to write more detailed summaries on each in the future, so check back soon:
FAQ’s on M.Ed & MAT Degrees On Campus and Online
Pursuing a master’s degree in education is an excellent step for any teacher. While a bachelor’s degree establishes a baseline of knowledge, experience and approaches to the art of teaching, a master’s degree will help you hone your skills, improve your techniques and expand your knowledge. Attaining a master’s degree in education will further your career and help you mold young minds for years to come.
Master of Science in Education
There are two main categories of master’s degrees in education: Master of Education degrees and master’s degrees in teaching. A Master of Education, or MEd, is a popular degree both for teachers who want to expand their experience and education in the world of teaching and those who see themselves taking further strides in their careers one day.
A Master of Education will provide a more in-depth exploration into fields like psychology, instruction and teaching technique but will also cover fields like counseling and administration. Many experienced individuals who see teaching a starting point to a career in education administration find a Master of Education to be a worthwhile pursuit.
Master of Arts in Teaching
A Master of Arts in Teaching, or MAT, on the other hand, focuses exclusively on advancing your career as an educator. This degree will explore strategies, approaches and theories related to teaching, human behavior and learning. Many individuals who have an undergraduate degree in a field other than education find an MAT or MST to be a great way to develop teaching skills while applying their specialized knowledge sets. While current teachers can and do pursue master’s degrees in teaching, this degree is also very valuable for individuals wishing to break into teaching for the first time.
Career Options for Graduates of a M.A.T. or M.Ed.
Of course the career opportunities in the field of education are expansive for those who earn their Masters in Education. Not only can you prepare to teach at all levels, and become an expert in particular areas, you can work outside of the classroom, if you want to branch out. Many school districts need outside consultants to come in and improve inefficiencies and effectiveness in many areas, including budgets, policy, classroom curriculum design, media and technology, and more.
Many M.Ed. degree holders move into such roles as principal, school administration, and roles that impact curriculum, extracurricular program design, special education instruction to students who face particular health and wellness challenges.
Organizations that focus outside the area of education sometimes require educators to help with training and leading seminars that lead to better employee outcomes. This can be especially true for those who focus on psychology and counseling related areas. Companies across the US spend millions every year trying to increase employee relations, satisfaction and learn ways to inspire their workers. Professionals with counseling backgrounds can be great resources for companies wanting to improve.
What Will I Learn While Earning a Masters of Education?
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), education is a growing field that will continue to grow well into the future. Teachers who earn this degree can expect to advance in their careers and increase their salaries.
Earning your masters of education degree will give you the skills you need for leadership in the educational setting. You will learn how to implement the strategies that you have acquired in every classroom you teach and benefit your students with your highly specialized knowledge of the best educational practices.
While you are earning your degree you will learn about developing and evaluating curriculum, administration and leadership, conducting needs assessments, teaching methods, technology, learning and development, school psychology, literacy, how to design educational programs, higher education principles, and several other highly specialized subjects.
You will also have the opportunity to apply the skills that you have learned in a classroom setting. Most universities will also require you to write a thesis, which will require you to conduct interviews and research.
What Types of Careers Will a Masters of Education Prepare Me For?
Earning your masters degree in education will give you an opportunity to maximize your career potential. For teachers, there is often not much room for advancement besides teaching. However, this degree shows that you are highly knowledgeable in the art of teaching and opens up many doors for you both in terms of job opportunities and your salary expectations (BLS).
The types of careers that you may be able to enter after earning your degree include, but are not limited to, high school teacher, corporate trainer, principal or vice principal, school administrator, research and development, adult instructor, school counselor, and various other leadership positions. Remember to check with your state to find out what their specific licensure requirements are for different positions. Depending on the requirements, you could even find yourself in a position with the Board of Education in your jurisdiction. If you’re looking for a leadership role in education, a masters degree will certainly help you get where you want to go.
For those who love teaching and wish to make themselves a valuable asset to schools, a master’s degree in education can make a huge difference. By seeking a further degree, you can expand your knowledge, hone your skills, and help yourself become the best teacher possible. If you know that teaching is your calling, a postgraduate degree could be your answer to career success.
If you intend to go into teaching, you might want to consider getting your graduate in teaching. There are a variety of benefits to choosing this specialty, including a higher pay rate and more teaching opportunities available to you (US Bureau of Labor Statistics – Education), as well as more job security. Here are some things to know about graduate teacher training.
Why Should You Consider a Graduate Degree in Teaching?
First off, it helps to know exactly why you might want to consider this type of degree. Consider for a moment that you have a bachelor’s degree and go on to be a teacher. You can definitely get a job with this degree and your teaching credentials, but you might be limited. It can also take a little longer finding a job, as other job candidates applying for the same job with graduate degrees are likely to be chosen over you.
The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) is a leading accreditation board for educational programs in teaching and education. Its goal is to provide excellence in the preparation of educators across the country, and uses accreditation that is reliable through evidence-based studies to provide quality programs. If you are considering a teaching degree program in the future, you should acclimate yourself to the standards and requirements of this organization, so that you know what to look for in a degree program. Organizations such as this one provide high standards for universities to match in order to continue having CAEP accreditation. The standards for accreditation are constantly updated and renewed in order to stay up to date with societal changes and innovations in technology. The values of this agency include the importance of an effective K-12 education, since it caters to the advancement of society in the years to come. Click for a review of the best online CAEP accredited teaching education programs.
Universities that are accredited by the CAEP have proven that their educational programs meet the standards of high quality educational programs throughout the United States. Most universities, especially online, should display accreditation on their website for you to review. While some universities provide this information clearly and upfront, others may require that you do some research throughout the website to ensure proper accreditation. In terms of licensure, individual states may not accept degree programs that are not completed from an accredited university, so it is vital that this seal of approval is on a university before you choose it. Read more below about regional accreditation, and how it should not be confused with program accreditation. If you desire a career in the field of education, keep in mind the accreditation requirement for each university you review.
Career Information for Masters Degree Holders
A bachelor’s degree is considered undergraduate work and completed in an average of four years, while a master’s degree is upper graduate work and done in another 1-2 years. It requires additional classes and special training to become this level of a teacher. When you enter a master’s degree course for your graduate teacher training diploma, you need to submit a research paper called a thesis. This is what you spend the majority of your education on, aside from additional classes during grad school. It should be analysis or an experiment, though for teaching, it is likely an important area of analysis.
After completing graduate teacher training and receiving your master’s degree in education, you can not only be a professor, but a principal or school administrator, testing director, curriculum director, and content area specialist (US Bureau of Labor Statistics – Education).
Teaching Associations & Organizations
Aside from speaking with schools directly, you should make note of the various organizations and associations that help Masters students navigate their career paths. Start with the Department of Education (source), which has a resource page for students earning their masters.
The American Federation of Teachers (site) is also a resource that can get you informed as you learn, no matter how far you are along in your education. Also, most states have their own teachers associations you can join.
The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, or CAEP, is the major program accreditation board for the top Masters in Education programs online and on campus. CAEP ensures high standards for teacher education programs, that rely on evidence-based measures of performance and continuous improvement for the universities with M.Ed. or other teaching programs that are CAEP accredited. NCATE and TEAC legacy standards are no longer used for accreditation, as CAEP has taken the place of both NCATE and TEAC.
If you are serious about becoming successful in the field of teaching, it only makes sense to look at Masters in Education programs and compare their benefits, costs, and effect on your career outcome.