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Information on Master’s Degree Programs in Online Teaching and Learning

Majors Overview August 10, 2015

This article talks about master’s degree programs in online teaching and learning and their education requirements, coursework, career choices, and licensing and continuing education choices.

Information on Online Teaching and Learning Programs

Master’s degree programs are available through many schools in online formats covering courses applicable to corporate or school learning situations. Online courses allow students to access coursework at their convenience, within defined deadlines. The online format allows interaction with instructors and classmates through online message boards, email, and chat functions.

Program coursework is devised to teach students to develop new courses as well as to adapt existing lessons for online study. They learn about new technology and ways of building an online learning community. Students can complete most programs within 18-24 months.

Those who aspire to become teachers in online classes for a public school system must adhere to the licensing norms of the respective state, including passage of a certification exam and graduation from a teacher education program. The subject and grade level determine the licensure type required, and students should find out the exact requirements for their state licensing board school district. Licensure is not compulsory for online teachers who do not teach in a public school.

Master’s Programs in Online Teaching and Learning

Students enrolled in master’s degree programs in online teaching and learning gain expertise in delivering curricula specifically adapted or designed for use with online technology. The program develops the skills they would need for teaching previously developed courses online, integrating the newest technologies, designing new curricula and delivering programs through the use of online resources. Students also learn concepts related to the social and ethical issues involved in distance learning; they work with the facilitation of online communities and a diverse team of learners. Schools commonly offer these programs in online-only formats.

Education Requirements

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a baccalaureate degree. In some online programs, applicants are also required to have completed undergraduate coursework that is closely related to education.


Coursework is devised to instruct students on the dynamics of online delivery systems. They learn various concepts including the assessment of student progress, instructional design for online learning, and technological tools available. Core coursework may cover topic areas such as:

•Digital video instruction
•Teaching models for online learning
•Building collaborative environments
•Online environment interactivity
•Online learning content development
•History of online learning communities
•Simulations and Gaming for the Classroom

Career Choices

Program graduates can seek jobs in private or public educational institutions, government agencies, private industry, or nonprofit organizations. They can choose from possible job options such as:

•Continuing education facilitator
•K-12 teacher
•Curriculum Consultant

Licensing and Continuing Education Choices

Program graduates who seek continuing education can enroll in a Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) program with a focus on technology. The focus teaches them how to improve learning environments, implement technical learning strategies or further develop their skills in technology integration in learning environments.

Program graduates who seek to become teachers must obtain teacher certification. Licensure is compulsory in every state for teachers in public school systems. Online teachers are allowed to work without any formal licensure.

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