How can you ensure effective quality of education in the 21st century classroom? Should the Internet and technological devices be pigeon holed as distractions and eliminated from the instructional environment? The obvious answer is “no” but understanding how these tools are assets and not inhibitors is not so obvious. Faster than you can say “change” learners are changing- spending more hours in front of a screen than those who are old enough to even pursue a master’s degree can even remember. These new minds are still learning, but learning differently. The job as an educator in the 21st century is to understand this, welcome this new age of thinkers and reinforce the positive aspects technology brings to augment the learning process. “No more pencils no more books” may one day be a reality- while school is still in session! The cutting-edge educator will understand this and be the change that they see in their classrooms. The following are our top 10 picks for best master’s degrees in educational technology. We selected these courses for their quality academic programming, affordable tuition rates, and flexible online delivery formatting.
- Academic Prestige (1/3): Each institution’s rank according to national data.
- Flexibility (1/3): The range of flexible options in the program, including the ability to accelerate degree completion, work part-time, choose different concentrations, get credit for prior experience, and other unique degree options.
- Affordability (1/3):Tuition per credit hour.
Pepperdine University is a private research university located in Malibu, California. There are 7,632 students enrolled who benefit from small classroom sizes and a student-to-faculty ratio of just 13:1. The Western Association of Schools and Colleges accredits Pepperdine to award bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. U.S. News ranks Pepperdine as the 50th best school in the nation, and 29th best college for veterans. When it comes to academic programming Pepperdine offers a vast range of interesting topics in the liberal arts as well as the arts and sciences. Students may select to study unique programs like European studies, creative writing, dispute resolution, kinesiology and philosophy. Online programming focuses on the fields of business and education.
Pepperdine University offers a M.A. in Learning Technologies. This program is accelerated and may be completed in one year. We selected this course for its quality academic programming and affordable tuition rate. As a top 50 school, you are receiving a high-value rate of return- a prestigious master’s degree that will increase you salary all in just one year. This program covers conceptual tools in cognition and learning, learning designs, collaborative action research, learning technology, how to analyze problems and tools, formulate a theory of action, teaching and learning relationships with technology, how to apply technology for change, and much more. The cost of this program is $499 per credit hour and requires 30 credit hours for completion.
- Average Tuition Per Credit Hour: $499
- Flexibility-Enhancing Features: Accelerated
2.)University of Missouri
The University of Missouri (Mizzou) is a public land-grant research university located in Columbia, Missouri. There are 33,239 students enrolled and the student to faculty ratio is 19:1. The student body represents all 50 states and over 150 countries worldwide. The Higher Learning Commission accredits Mizzou to award bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees as well as professional certifications. Mizzou has over 300 degree offerings from 18 colleges and schools. It is one of the few universities in the U.S. with a law school, medical school, and veterinary medicine school. U.S. News ranks Mizzou as the 111th best school in the nation, 51st top public school and 73rd best college for veterans. When it comes to online rankings Mizzou ranks as the 61st best school for online graduate education programming.
The University of Missouri offers a completely online Master’s of Education (M.Ed.) in Information Science and Learning Technologies. We selected this program for its convenient accelerated format, affordable online tuition, and high quality of academic programming. This 30 credit hour degree may be completed in just one year. The courses include electronic portfolio development, technology action research, technology to enhance learning, instructional systems design and 18 credit hours of electives. This program culminates with a web-based portfolio that you will use to show you mastery of the subject material. The cost of this degree is $416 per credit hour.
- Average Tuition Per Credit Hour: $416
- Flexibility-Enhancing Features: Accelerated
3.)University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is a public university founded in 1876. It is locate in Champaign, Illinois. Champaign has a twin city- Urbana. Hence the name of the region “Urbana-Champaign.” There are 45,842 students enrolled at UIUC and the student-to-faculty ratio is 18:1. This flagship university is also a land, sea, and space granting institution. The Higher Learning Commission accredits UIUC to offer bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees as well as professional graduate certifications. The Carnegie Foundation ranks UIUC as the a doctoral university with the highest research activity. In fact, UIUC is one of the top 25 American Research Universities as measured by The Center for Measuring University Performance , and is a leader particularly regarding computer based education and hosted the PLATO project. In 1971 UIUC was the first institution to license the use of the UNIX operating system. According to U.S. News UIUC is the 44th best college in the nation, the 27th best college for veterans, and has the 10th best online graduate education program and 9th best for online engineering.
The University of Illinois offers a Master’s of Education (EdM)in Education Policy Organization & Leadership with a concentration in Learning Design and Leadership for a Technology Specialist. This program requires 32 credit hours for completion. We selected this program for the high quality academic content as well as the affordable tuition rate. Students admitted to this course may look forward to content regarding technology and educational reform, new learning, learning and human development with new technologies, analysis of advanced instructional technologies, and learning with mobile technologies. Additionally, there are a vast array of electives from which to pick including: bilingual ESL methods and materials, computer-assisted instruction, innovation in eLearning, New Media & Learner Differences and more. The cost of this 32 credit hour program is $459 per credit hour.
- Average Tuition Per Credit Hour: $459
- Flexibility-Enhancing Features: N/A
4.)Kent State University
Kent State University is a public university located in East Liverpool, Ohio. There are 29,762 students enrolled, and the student-to-faculty ratio is 21:1. Regardless of enrollement, as Kent University is an 8-campus university system, the atmosphere remains similar to a small liberal arts college. According to U.S. News Kent State ranks as the 110th top public school in the nation with the 18th best School of Library and Information Science. The Higher Learning Commission accredits Kent State University to award associate, and bachelor’s degrees. The online campus extends programming to offer a number of master’s degrees. There are over 280 academic programs offered that range from accounting to zoology. According to G.I Jobs Kent State is recognized as a Military Friendly School for its department of Veteran services making it easier for veterans and active military access their G.I. Bill benefits.
Kent State University offers a Master’s Degree in Instructional Technology. We selected this program for its affordable tuition rates and extremely flexible options. The course is broken down into two- three component parts depending on the learner’s preferred method of completion. All students will engage in 19 credit hours of core requirements that include learning theories, instructional design, designing visuals for instruction, computer applications in education, researching current issues in instructional technology, and instructional applications of the Internet. There are nearly 20 elective courses from which to pick and all students may choose to engage in independent research or a thesis. The cost of this 34 credit hour program is $382 per credit hour.
- Average Tuition Per Credit Hour: $382
- Flexibility-Enhancing Features: Several specializations
5.)Appalachian State University
Appalachian State University (App State) is a public university located in Boone, North Carolina. There are 18,295 students enrolled and the student-to-faculty ratio is 16:1. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools accredits App State to award bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees as well as postbaccalaureate certificates and post-master’s certifications. According to U.S. News App State is the 9th best school in the region, 7th best college for veterans, 3rd best public school, and has the 66th best online graduate education program. There are 8 colleges and schools awarding degrees in a vast range of fields like accounting, women’s studies, human development, sacred music, military science and more. When it comes to online education, App State offers 11 online degrees and certifications in fields like business administration, educational technology, child development and nursing. Their online programs are accessible and a great option for non-traditional learners.
Appalachian State University offers a M.A. in Educational Media. We selected this program for the number of flexible online options, and flexible format as well as the affordable tuition rate, and high quality of academic programming. Students may elect to study one of the three online tracks including: Instructional Technology Specialist/K-12, Online Learning an Professional Development, and New Media Literacies and Global Perspectives. The instructional technology specialist track helps to prepare you for a leadership role in technology in K-12 education including public schools, public libraries and other settings. The online learning and professional development concentration enables the learner to design and develop online learning pedagogies. New media literacies and global perspectives is a deep analysis of new media and the Internet and its emerging role in education today’s learners. The cost of this 36 credit hour program is $266 for North Carolina residents.
- Average Tuition Per Credit Hour: $266
- Flexibility-Enhancing Features: Number of tracks
6.)University of Arkansas
The University of Arkansas (U of A) is a public flagship university with a land and space grant.U of A and is located in Fayetteville, Arkansas. The Higher Learning Commission accredits U of A to award bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees as well as postbaccalaureate certificates, and post-master’s certificates. This university enrolls over 27,000 students representing 50 states and over 120 countries. According to U.S. News The University of Arkansas is ranked 135th in National Universities and is considered to be one of the “Best Colleges for Veterans.” In terms of research, the University of Arkansas is in the top 2% of colleges nationwide according to The Carnegie Foundation . Some colleges of note are the Fay Jones School of Architecture, the Sam M. Walton College of Business and the J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences.
The University of Arkansas offers a Master of Education (M.Ed) in Educational Technology. We selected this program for its high quality academic prestige, affordable tuition rate, and flexible time frame. Students may take as little as 1.5 year to complete this program or as many as 6 years- catering to every type of professional schedule. This program is a great match for individuals who wish to focus on instructional design, distance education and more. Students will be able to embed technology in their instruction, teach confidently with the latest technologies, coordinate distance learning, train and develop individuals in the use of technology in corporate, government, and health care settings. The cost of this 34 credit hour program is $400 per credit hour.
- Average Tuition Per Credit Hour: $400
- Flexibility-Enhancing Features: N/A
7.)Iowa State University
Iowa State University is a public flagship university with a land and space grant located in Ames. The Higher Learning Commission accredits Iowa State University which offers 108 bachelor’s, 112 master’s degrees, and 81 Ph.D. programs including a veterinary medicine professional degree. There are over 36,660 student enrolled with a student-to-faculty ratio of 19:1. Ames is located about 30 miles outside of the state’s capitol and is known for it innovative bio-economic systems, parks, bike trails, cultural centers, and festivals. Iowa State University was among the first universities to receive a land-grant that aims do the following: open higher education to all, teach practical classes, and share knowledge beyond the campus borders. U.S. News ranks ISU highly for undergraduate engineering programming and number 1 in the nation for its biological/ agricultural engineering programs. There are a total of 23 degree program offered online.
Iowa State University offers a Master’s of Education (M.Ed.) with a specialization in curriculum and instructional technology. We selected this program for its high quality academic offerings as well as for its affordable tuition rate. This 32 credit hour program is broken into two component parts: core classes and one elective. All students will engage with foundations of digital learning, designing effective learning environments, using technology in learning and teaching, multicultural foundations of school and society, priciples and practices of flexible distance learning, and more. All students get to engage with a creative component and will build an instructional technology portfolio. The cost of this program is $452 per credit hour.
- Average Tuition Per Credit Hour: $452
- Flexibility-Enhancing Features: N/A
8.)Boise State University
Boise State University (Boise State) is a public university located in Boise, Idaho. There are 23,854 students enrolled and the student-to-faculty ratio is 17:1. The Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities accredits BSU to award associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees as well as postbaccalaureate certifications, and post-master’s certificates. There are 6 colleges and schools offering a vast range of degrees in fields like engineering, business, arts and sciences and education. Additionally, Boise State has a division of extended studies including after work, evening and weekend courses as well as professional development, the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, Military Programs, and their eCampus. We really like the thorough ways Boise State addresses the needs of non-traditional learners. When it comes to online courses, Boise State offers 9 degrees and professional certifications. U.S. News ranks Boise State’s online graduate education programs as the 101st best in the nation.
Boise State University offers a Master’s of Educational Technology (M.E.T.). We selected this program for is high quality education, affordable tuition rate and flexible format. Students may elect the M.S. in educational technology and build upon that with increased course load and specialization. The course we will discuss is the 30 credit hour M.E.T. The curriculum includes a core component as well as 15 elective courses from a variety of concentrations- another aspect of this program we like, its flexibility. Students complete a portfolio as their culminating activity. All students will engage with the core curriculum which includes an introduction to educational technology, the Internet for educators, instructional design for educators, theoretical foundations of educational technology, and an evaluation for educational technologists. The cost of this program is $379 per credit hour.
- Average Tuition Per Credit Hour: $379
- Flexibility-Enhancing Features: 3 specializations
9.)Bowling Green State University
Bowling Green State University is a public research university located in Bowling Green, Ohio. There are 16,908 enrolled, and the student-to-faculty ratio is 19:1. The student body is diverse representing all 50 states and 70 nations where 20% of the entering Freshmen are ethnic and racial minorities. The Higher Learning Commission accredits Bowling Green State to award bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees as well as postbaccalaureate certificates and post-master’s certifications. The U.S. News & World Report ranks Bowling green as one of the top 200 schools in the nation and 103rd for public schools. The Carnegie Foundation classifies Bowling Green State University as having “high research activity” Bowling Green lists diversity and safety as some of its core values where the emphasis is on respect, collaboration, intellectual and personal growth, creativity and innovation, and the pursuit of excellence.
Bowling Green State University offers a M.Ed in Classroom Technology. We selected this program for its affordable online tuition, accelerated format, and high quality academic offerings. There are 6 start dates and classes are just 8-weeks in length. Students finish this rigorous program in just 18 months. The program is broken down into two component parts: computer endorsement for 16 credit hours and the master’s work for 18 additional credit hours. Students who are admitted to this program engage in course material like technology in the 21st century classroom, internet in the educational community, dynamic media, research in education, technology and tools for E-Learning and much more. The cost for this 34 credit hour program is $444 per credit hour.
- Average Tuition Per Credit Hour: $444
- Flexibility-Enhancing Features: 8 week courses
10.)University of North Dakota
The University of North Dakota (UND) is a flagship sea-grant university located in Grand Forks, North Dakota. There are 14,648 students enrolled, and the student-to-faculty ratio is 21:1. The Higher Learning Commission accredits UND to award bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees programs as well as postbaccalaurete certificates and post-master’s certificates. According to U.S. News UND ranks as the 202nd best school in the nation, 173rd top school for their high school counselor programs, and is the 110th top public school. There are 6 academic colleges and three professional schools including the John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences, College of Education and Human Development, and more. Degree offerings are vast and include unique programs like American Indian/Native American Studies, molecular biology, wildlife biology, classical languages and more. When it comes to online courses, UND offers over 20 degree and certification programs in a variety of fields. The most popular are in health, engineering, and education.
The University of North Dakota offers Master’s of Education in Instructional Design and Technology. This program is offered 100% online in a synchronous format via live web classes held in the evenings. We selected this program for the high quality of education as well as the affordable tuition rate. Students of this program will study the latest technology and how they apply to the learning environment, develop effective instruction using the creative mind and the science of the technology itself. Students will also analyze, design, and develop technology-based instruction. The cost of this 36 credit hour program is $400 per credit hour.
- Average Tuition Per Credit Hour: $400
- Flexibility-Enhancing Features: N/A