Earning an Online Master's Degree in Curriculum and Instruction

Earning an Online Master's Degree in Curriculum and Instruction

Everything you need to know about getting an online master's degree in curriculum and instruction.

Overview of Online Master's Degree Program in Curriculum and Instruction

Are you a teacher who is interested in strengthening your instruction skills and curriculum development? If you’re looking for this type of leadership position, consider earning an online master's degree in curriculum and instruction. This master's degree program prepares students for roles such as instructional coordinator or educational administrator.

As state and federal standards on public education increase, it is becoming more common for schools to hire a curriculum and instruction designer to meet these standards and devise a way to measure student progress. Many job opportunities are expected for this career, as this position is crucial to a school’s academic performance. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the most favorable opportunities will be for instructional coordinators that have a specialization in a specific subject in reading, math or science.

Most teachers cannot afford to take any time off of work to pursue their master's degree at a traditional bricks-and-mortar graduate school. Earning a master's degree in curriculum and instruction online is a great option for such teachers. Online graduate school provides students with the freedom to complete assignments at their own pace, allowing them to continue working and raising a family. Your online courses may include interactive features such as bulletin board discussions, live chats and video conferencing to supplement the classroom experience.

Applying to an Online Master's Degree Program in Curriculum and Instruction

All applicants to an online master's degree program in curriculum and instruction must have a bachelor's degree. It is not required to have a bachelor's degree in curriculum and instruction, however most programs require students to already have their teaching licensure before applying to the program. Some programs do exist that allow students to pursue their teaching license while simultaneously completing their master's degree program.

There are typical requirements to apply to an online master's degree program in curriculum and instruction. Along with your application, you must submit a personal statement, college transcripts and three to five letters of recommendation. Typically, programs require students to have earned at least a GPA of 3.0 during their undergraduate studies. However, some programs have higher and lower GPA requirements.

How to Choose an Online Curriculum and Instruction Master's Degree Program

You should determine if you would like to specialize in a subject or grade in your master's degree program. You may have a clear idea of the age group that you would like to work with. For example, you might want to become an early childhood instructional coordinator or curriculum and instruction consultant. If you have a specialization in mind, be sure to seek out a program that will help you attain your career goals.

Online master's degree programs are offered in many forms. The amount of classes you take online can vary by program. Some master's degree programs allow students to take 100% of their courses online, while others have residency requirements in which students must take a few courses or a few semesters on campus. Check with your prospective graduate programs to find out if there are residency requirements prior to submitting an application.

What to Expect in a Curriculum and Instruction Online Master's Degree Program

Online master's degree programs in curriculum and instruction are designed to train students in classroom assessment and management through learning the most up-to-date theories and practices in the industry. Instructional coordinators must learn to teach and evaluate instructor techniques, curriculum design, and observation and assessment of teaching methods. Specific courses that you may take during your degree program include classroom management strategies, foundations of educational leadership, classroom management strategies, history and theory of curriculum, etc.

Most programs have students complete a portfolio that will allow them to demonstrate their work to employers. You add to your portfolio throughout the course of your program, so that by the time you graduate you have a complete record of your master's degree accomplishments. Other programs have students complete a field-based research thesis, which allows students to learn in-depth knowledge on a specific aspect of curriculum and instruction. This options is particularly useful for students who plan on pursuing their PhD in curriculum and instruction.

It is common for master's degree programs in curriculum and instruction to include an internship requirement in the curriculum. This provides students with the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in their field. Observing a professional instructional coordinator or curriculum designer on-the-job will help you understand the general work flow of this career.

Top 10 Online Grad Schools for a Master's Degree in Curriculum and Instruction

  1. University of Phoenix - Online School
  2. Kaplan University, Portland
  3. DeVry University - Online School
  4. University of Arizona Global Campus
  5. American InterContinental University - Online School
  6. Saint Leo University Online
  7. Walden University - Online School
  8. University of Florida
  9. Capella University - Online School
  10. Jones International University - Online

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