Secondary Education Online Graduate Programs

Why Consider Online Secondary Education Graduate Programs?

There are many reasons you might be reviewing online secondary education graduate programs. Perhaps you’re looking to enhance your current teaching career. Or, maybe, you’re looking to pursue a new occupation and teaching has caught your eye. Either way, there may be a perfect degree program out there that could help you achieve your top goals through continued education. In addition, earning your graduate degree in secondary education could give you the best knowledge and skills to better assist the current students in your classroom. And to think, by pursuing an online degree, you could do this from the comfort of your own home!

Pursuing an Online Secondary Education Graduate Program : The Basics

Online secondary education graduate programs may be available at the master’s, doctorate, or graduate certificate levels. While some states do not require a graduate degree to earn licensure, there are many potential advantages to pursuing them. Whether you are a hardened veteran of the classroom or fresh-faced and just beginning your teaching journey, there could be possible benefits to earning your advanced degree!

Still a non-believer? Here’s a few more facts to in favor of these degree programs:

  • New to the field? Many secondary education graduate degree programs may offer licensure programs. That way, you could have the chance to step into a classroom as soon as you graduate.
  • Some states may require teachers to earn advanced degrees after gaining licensure.[i] Check your state’s guidelines to ensure criteria are met. If you’re just entering the education field, you won’t have to worry about this criterion in the future!
  • Education admins who have earned their master’s degree may have a wage premium of $23,000 over their colleagues who earned only a bachelor’s degree [i].
  • Trying to enhance your career? Teachers who earn a graduate degree may be considered for roles such as instructional coordinators, administration leadership, or principals as these positions may require advanced degrees as a prerequisite.[iii]

Which Online Secondary Education Graduate Degree Program may be Perfect for You?

Picking a perfect program for your lifestyle and schedule may seem like an insurmountable task. Fear not! Answering a few questions could make this process a little easier. What level of graduate program are you seeking? What is your goal for completing this coursework? How long do you expect this program to take? By keeping these questions in mind as you read about the following degree programs is a good start to finding a perfect secondary education graduate degree program.

Another thing to keep in mind: some online secondary education graduate programs may require applicants to have earned their teaching license by their time of enrollment. Check with your perspective schools to ensure that admission requirements are met prior to applying.

Secondary Education Master’s Programs

Even though admission requirements may vary from school-to-school, there may be a few common guidelines when applying for a master’s degree program in secondary education. Applicants could be required to hold a 3.0 or higher undergraduate GPA in addition to supplying items such as transcripts, letters of recommendation, and professional teaching portfolios. Some schools may require more documents, while some require less – so be sure to check any supplied admissions checklist!

New to the classroom? Look for degree programs that also offer licensure tracks to ensure that you’re able to teach post-graduation.

If you’re looking for a master’s degree program, there a few options to choose from:

  • A Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) online with a concentration in Secondary Education may place its emphasis on in-classroom teaching. Students could expect to focus on core liberal arts topics such as math, language arts, and history. In addition, students may also have the chance to develop classroom management skills, curriculum implementation experience, and teaching methods for diverse student populations. With its emphasis on central secondary education concepts, this may be the perfect program for those entering the educational field.
  • The Master of Science in Secondary Education may combine general grade 5-12 teaching knowledge and teaching theories and methods. While covering expected topics such as STEM, English, and extracurriculars, students could also have the opportunity to delve into contemporary research to support their classroom.
  • The Master of Education in Secondary Education is another option for the budding educator. Like the MS and MAT options, the M.Ed degree program touches on common core liberal arts education that is likely to be encountered in the classroom. In addition, students may be involved with developing new teaching methods to increase the effectiveness of their lessons in a modern classroom.

Secondary Education Doctoral Programs

Doctoral degree programs are the highest graduate degree program attainable, and thusly might have competitive admission requirements. In addition to the same materials that master’s students may be required to provide, students may also be asked to have a GPA of 3.0 to 3.5 in addition to GRE exam scores. With that rigorous coursework also may come a lengthier completion time. When considering research and writing a dissertation, many students may be expected to complete studies over 3 to 6 years. Programs lengths vary by school.

The Doctorate of Education (EdD) in Instructional Leadership may be a common secondary education doctoral program you find in your research. This specific program may emphasize preparing educators for leadership roles within their school. Coursework typically focuses on subjects such as educational policy studies, diverse classrooms teaching methods, and research backed curriculum implementation. This program may be suited for current educators looking to strengthen their foundation of knowledge and procedures.

Secondary Education Certificate Programs

Graduate certificate programs are a quicker method to become involved in secondary education. If you’re looking to start a new career in education, this may be a great way to earn the requisite coursework to begin teaching fast. In addition, some graduate certificate programs may not require a bachelor’s degree in education in order to apply. Currently teaching? If you’re not sure about jumping into a master’s degree program, a graduate certificate program could be a good way to test out similar coursework without making the lengthy commitment. Since the course load is lighter than the master’s and doctoral programs, student may expect a certificate program to take anywhere between 1 to 2 years to complete. Program lengths vary by school.

Admission requirements may be more accessible than both the master’s and doctoral degree programs because of the smaller course load: departments may require anywhere from a 2.5 to 3.0 undergraduate GPA. Coursework may vary with the specific certificate program, but common areas of study may be:

  • Teaching theory & method
  • Core curriculum
  • Lesson planning

Students earning a graduate certificate may be required to pass required state licensure exams before or during enrollment, unless already completed during undergraduate coursework. Be sure to check with your school to make sure required criteria are met.


Students may be encouraged, but not required, to complete accredited coursework. These programs follow a standardized national education curriculum that may be easily identified by employers when pursuing a career in education.

The U. S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation recognize the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) as a professional accrediting body for teacher preparation. The NCATE accredits schools, colleges, and departments of education in U.S. colleges and universities, as well as non-university entities that prepare educators for P-12 schools[iv].

Why Choose an Online Secondary Education Degree Program?

Online secondary education graduate programs may be a great choice for those with a busier schedule – and teachers seem to have a pretty busy schedule! Courses may be accessed when it’s convenient to your lifestyle, creating a flexible program to earn your secondary education degree. In addition to making your own timetable, some other possible advantages of an online degree program could be:

  • Schools may offer access to online classrooms featuring streamed lectures or course chatrooms as a way to tap into the traditional, on-campus experience. Why go to campus when you have access to it from your computer?
  • Academic libraries and databases might be just a click away. Schools may make some of their on-campus facilities available online for students to use in their research and studies.
  • Teaching your own students? Not a problem! Once you’re done grading their papers, you could submit your own to your professor! The flexible time schedule could make it easy to balance work and academics.

Find a Perfect Online Secondary Education Graduate Program Today!

You’ve read the facts and likely have a bunch of information to help you in your search for a perfect online secondary education graduate program. And can’t wait to help you with your journey! To begin your search, click your preferred online degree program. Looking for a school in a specific location? When your classroom is in your living room, there’s a multitude of potential options! Find a perfect online secondary education graduate program today!

Sources: [i] | [ii]| [iii] | [iv]

  • Grand Canyon University

  • Notre Dame College Of Ohio

  • Liberty University Online

  • West Virginia University

  • Eastern Oregon University

  • Marygrove College

  • Bethel University

  • American Public University

  • Huntington University

  • American Military University

  • Utah State University

  • Franklin Pierce University