Teachers looking to advance their knowledge and skills in education may achieve this by enrolling in an online Master of Education program. One huge benefit of enrolling in a program while working full time is that teachers will be able to apply their new knowledge in the classroom immediately. Their classroom is not only a place where they work but also a learning lab to grow their skills.
The typical student in this program continues to teach full time. One advantage of an online graduate program is that it affords students the flexibility to do coursework on a schedule that fits their personal and professional routine.
How Is an Online M.Ed. Program Different From an On-Campus Program?
Online M.Ed. programs feature the same content and expectations as on-campus programs. The key difference is how students receive the content. Students get their information from online resources. All they need is a device and an internet connection. This allows them to work from anywhere.
Taking classes online saves on commute time. Students will not have to drive to a campus at a scheduled time. The student can use the time saved from the commute to study at a time that fits the working student's schedule.
Online M.Ed. programs use a hybrid of methods to deliver the content:
- Message boards.
- Reading material.
- Videos of lectures.
One of the benefits of an on-campus class is learning from other students' questions and insights. Students enrolled in online programs say they get that same benefit in the online discussions. Some say online discussions are better than those in the classroom because they catch everything. They do not worry about missing something because they did not understand or hear someone.
The quality of instruction in an online M.Ed. program can be the same as its on-campus equivalent. In some schools, professors teach courses in both programs. Both programs result in an M.Ed. degree, which many schools and school districts value. Some education jobs require a Master of Education degree.
How to Find the Right Online M.Ed. Program
Here are some factors to consider to find the right online Master of Education program:
- What core courses are required?
- What specialties, if any, does the program offer?
- What electives are available?
- How long do classes run?
- How many classes can you take at a time?
- What accreditation does the school have?
- What are the cost and the financial support options?
The quality of the program depends on various factors. Prospective students can find the program that best fits their needs and requirements through research. Also, check with your school district about reimbursement. Some school districts may reimburse their teachers after completing the course or the degree.
What Are the Benefits of Earning an M.Ed. Online?
As previously mentioned, online programs save commute time. Also, on-campus classes may meet at times that are not always convenient for teachers working full time.
Although there are due-dates and other deadlines within the courses, online programs are self-paced. This allows teachers to work through the program as quickly or as slowly as they want. The time it takes to complete the degree depends on the school, degree and the number of courses the student enrolls in.
Students can complete the University of Texas at Arlington's Master of Education in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies online program in as few as 16 months. This program is for students who want to work toward becoming a campus principal or an assistant principal.
UTA also offers three M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction specialties: literacy studies, mathematics and science. Students enrolled in any of these M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction may finish the program in as few as 18 months.
Some teachers take more classes during the summer or other times when their schools are closed for vacation. This allows them to finish the program faster and enroll in a single course during the busy teaching season.
Teachers who like to travel during the summer will not miss a single thing. All they need is a tablet, laptop or other connected device and they can stay on top of their classes.
UTA's online education programs give students the opportunity to apply their knowledge on the job. UTA requires every student to have two mentors: a site supervisor and a field site supervisor. This step helps solidify the student's real-world learning.
Several trusted online resources can help you find a higher quality online graduate education program. U.S. News & World Report ranks many higher education programs. The University of Texas at Arlington is ranked No. 56 for "Best Online Graduate Education Programs." In ranking the schools, the magazine weighs student engagement, student services and technology, admissions selectivity, and other factors.
As a teacher working full time, you may find it ideal to enroll in one course to get an idea of what the workload will be like and how much of a time commitment it will require. It is also a good opportunity to see if online learning works well for you.
Learn more about the UTA online Master of Education programs.
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