Online K-12 Education Graduate Programs & Grad Schools

Hoping to enhance your preparation for a teaching career path? Then perhaps you’re thinking about online education graduate programs for current and prospective teachers. Teachers have an important job of nurturing and inspiring the next generation, but they also may do a lot more…like using new technology and adapting to change.[i] Pursuing online graduate courses for teachers just might be the perfect way to brush up on professional knowledge areas. Below, learn more about potential Online K-12 Education Graduate Programs, like online masters in education, certificate, or doctorate programs, that may help you pursue your goals.

What Online Graduate Programs in Education Might Suit My Career Goals?[ii]

The answer may be different for everyone! While the minimum education required for a teaching career path is typically a bachelor’s degree, some states may require teachers to pursue additional education and professional development. In some cases, it may be necessary to earn a master’s degree in order to continue your teaching career path or qualify for licensure. Check your state’s requirements to be sure.

Here are a few online education graduate programs you may encounter:

Online Education Masters Programs – Earning an online masters degree in education may be one possible path, whether you hope to meet state teaching regulations or merely wish to enhance your career and further develop your skills and knowledge. But what’s next? Well, you may need to choose between potential program types like the master of education (M.Ed.), master of arts in education, or master of science in education. Each program may have slightly different goals or focus areas, but you might study subjects like child or adolescent development, literacies, or students with special needs, while potentially pursuing preparation in academic subjects like history, English, and math. Brand new to teaching? A master of arts in teaching program may offer courses for budding teachers, such as curriculum planning or classroom management. Every program is different, so when considering a prospective online masters in education program, be sure to read the program’s learning goals and curriculum plan carefully to see if it sounds like a perfect fit for you!

Online Doctoral Programs in Education – Pursuing a doctoral degree in education, like a PhD or Ed.D., may also be a potential path worth considering. A doctorate program may be research-intensive and require the completion of an original dissertation, in addition to coursework and potential examinations. You may also be able to choose from possible professional concentrations such as educational leadership, educational technology, and others. This more intensive level of study could be great for those seeking to teach at the postsecondary level or simply deepen their knowledge of the educational field.

Online Teaching Certificate Program – Hoping to enhance a particular knowledge area, or potentially address a professional challenge? You may want to look into teaching certificate programs, or graduate diploma in education online programs. Graduate certificates are typically non-degree programs, so they aren’t the same as pursuing a master’s program. Rather, they may be a path toward potential career enhancement; for example, about 13% of middle school special education teachers earned a post-baccalaureate certificate.[iii] Potential areas of study may include instructional technology, educational policy, reading instruction, student development, and lots more. Check with your preferred school for program details and possible curricula.

Why Choose Online Education Graduate Programs?

Online learning isn’t new, but compared to traditional campus-based learning, it may seem like a radically different approach to pursuing your prospective graduate teaching degree. So, is online learning perfect for you? Here are a few potential benefits that you may find appealing.

Did you know... in 2016, elementary and secondary education were both ranked #12 for top graduate majors among online students? * Click To TweetOnline K-12 Education Graduate Programs

Potentially flexible: Hoping to pursue online graduate courses for teachers while remaining employed? Since online programs may allow students to complete coursework from anywhere with an internet connection, it may be possible to fit your educational goals into your busy schedule. In fact, in 2016, 67% of online graduate students worked full-time! *

Close the distance: If you don’t live near a college or university that offers graduate education programs for teachers, online learning may allow you to pursue your studies from afar! Thanks to online education graduate programs, you could potentially enroll in a grad school across the country without leaving home.

Stay in touch: Though you won’t necessarily meet your professors in the flesh, you may still find it easy to stay in contact with online faculty through technology tools! About 50% of online learners said they used a mobile device to communicate with professors. *

Get comfortable with technology: Online course delivery tools and multimedia teaching methods may help to bring your lessons alive…and you just might be inspired by learning innovations, like online discussion forums, that update education for the digital age! 

How Might I Choose From Potential Online Graduate Programs for Teachers?[iv]

Torn between two or more online education graduate programs? It may be tough to identify the program that seems perfect for your background and goals. Of course, coming up with some key criteria may be helpful! Here are a few:

  • Curriculum and major Does your prospective program offer the area(s) you hope to study?
  • School accreditation Is the college or university accredited by an organization that is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education?
  • Reputation – Is the prospective program respected in the education field?
  • Cost – Is the tuition within your target range?
  • Resources – Does the program seem able to offer the support and resources you need?
  • Flexibility – One potential benefit of online learning is the ability to study at the times that work best for you. Does your prospective program suit your schedule?
  • Other features – Does your program offer an alumni support network, social meetups, student-teaching opportunities, or other potential features you may be interested in?

Online K-12 Education Graduate Programs​: It’s time to start your search!

Below, you’ll find program listings for online graduate programs in education that you may want to explore. Use the left sidebar to filter by degree type, like online masters in education. And if a particular program catches your eye, simply click for more info or to contact Online K-12 Education Graduate Programs directly!

* Clinefelter, D. L. & Aslanian, C. B., (2016). Online college students 2016: Comprehensive data on demands and preferences. Louisville, KY: The Learning House, Inc.


Sources: [i] bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/high-school-teachers.htm#tab-2 | [ii] bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/high-school-teachers.htm#tab-4 | [iii] onetonline.org/link/summary/25-2053.00 | [iv] studentaid.ed.gov/sa/prepare-for-college/choosing-schools/consider

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