A masters in distance education and e-learning or online learning provides advanced skills for working in adult education, higher education, and instructional design positions. With the Internet dominating every sphere of life, people who have a masters in distance education and eLearning have abundant career opportunities. Online and Distance learning (ODL) has revolutionized the world of education. Behind the scenes of this medium of learning, are qualified experts who design and develop online study courses.
E-Learning, Online and Distance Education Training
The flexibility and convenience of self-directed, self-paced learning is massively popular among working adults and those with family obligations. With online technology and multimedia expanding at such a rapid rate, this method of instruction is attracting new learners every day.
To keep pace with these fast developments, distance educator have to keep abreast of current instructional procedures. A Masters degree is usually the minimum prerequisite for this profession. Students take courses in corporate training, the application of learning technology, and teaching methodologies.
There are numerous accredited schools, universities, and colleges that offer tailored study programs in masters in distance education and e-learning. The coursework provides students with advanced theoretical and research knowledge on the fundamentals of learning. For full-time students, the course can be completed in 2 years. Before gaining admission to a masters program, students must be in possession of a Bachelors degree relating to distance education and e-learning. Courses may include:
- Technology in Distance Education and E-learning
- Teaching with Multimedia
- Learner Support in Distance Education
- Economics of Distance Education and E-learning
After graduation with a masters in distance education and e-learning, it is necessary to apply for a state license and take the applicable examination. With a Masters degree, graduates have the ability to develop visions and missions to implement online learning programs for organizations and institutions. They are able to function as effective leaders and develop strategic business plans and goals for organizations in areas like organizational development and distance education management.
Careers in Distance Education and E-Learning
Their work also involves recommending DE technology plans and overseeing the implementation and delivery of them. Additionally, they devise, implement, and supervise support services for members of the public who sign up for online learning programs. Masters graduates will be fully conversant with all areas in this educational field. These include management and organizational processes, business development, information technology, problem-solving, social responsibility, strategic planning, and ethics.
Let’s take a brief look at the job description of a DE coordinator. His or her primary function is to develop, design, and distribute resources for internet access. Some of these are webcasting, networking, and conducting online courses through video conference facilities. All such elements must be easily accessible to learners. The coordinator has to ensure that logistical and technical support is available for learners.
This should include online examinations, web-based classrooms, and online chat forums. DE coordinators communicate with students and the faculty regarding any updates or changes to materials or learning courses. They maintain online databases and websites that students use while learning. Furthermore, they communicate with students via email about period exams, online class schedules, course objectives, and syllabus descriptions.
Estimated Income and Projected Job Outlook
Apart from having a Masters in Distance Education and eLearning, those who work in this profession should have a genuine desire to assist online students. Patience and the ability to impart knowledge in simple terms are essential. In the US, salaries in this line of work depend on the complexity of the courses offered, as well as the type of organization and the state from where the program is being deployed. However, the average hourly rate is $45.35. Salaried coordinators are earning an average of $73,910 a year.
Programs in Distance Learning
- Education programs include BA in Education Studies, BA in Child Development, and MA in Education.
- Students can specialize in areas such as Education and Public Policy, Instructional Design, and Early Childhood Education.
- Courses cover concepts such as phonics, curriculum development, instruction for English language learners, and more.
- Flexible, online courses allow students to pursue a degree on their own schedule.
- MA/Education - Exceptional Systems for Revolutionizing Education
- Ranked among the top 20 Regional Universities in the West in 2015 by U.S. News & World Report.
- Listed as one of America’s Best Colleges by Forbes Magazine in 2014.
- More than 97% of tenure-track faculty holds a terminal degree in their field.
- Student to faculty ratio of 15:1, and 47.5% of classes have fewer than 20 students.
- Accredited by The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).
- Doctor of Education in Organizational Leadership - Digital Learning Track
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