dcsimg
 

Master's Degrees in Instructional Design

Home > Master Degrees > Education > Master's in Instructional Design

In today's competitive job market, candidates must go the extra mile to stand out from the crowd and get an employer's attention. One way that workers can do this is to earn a master's degree, which can reap a myriad of career benefits. Not only do graduate degrees help make job candidates more marketable, they may also lead to higher pay. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, master's degree holders earn a median weekly salary of $1,341, while those with bachelor's degrees earn $1,137. That extra money can really add up over time. In addition, Americans with master's degrees have an unemployment rate that is 0.4 percent lower than their counterparts with just bachelor's degrees.

Those who are specifically interested in instructional design can capitalize on the benefits of earning a master's degree by learning the skills they need to pursue high-level jobs related to education. During these two-year degree programs, students take courses that familiarize them with the psychology of learning, best practices for designing a course curriculum, and computer-based instruction techniques. Graduates of instructional design master's degree programs might go on to work at colleges, corporations, or educational consulting firms, to name just a few career options.

Prospective instructional design students can get the training they need through an online degree program, which allows them to earn their master's in a way that fits into their busy lifestyles. Whether they're educators who want to advance in their careers, or simply want to enter the field, students in online programs get the flexibility they need to juggle their education with their other responsibilities.

Why Get a Master's Degree in Instructional Design?

Master's degree programs in instructional design have an excellent return on investment because they open up graduates to high-paying jobs that they may not have access to with just an undergraduate degree. The following are examples of some of the careers that master's degree holders can qualify for, as well as the median annual salaries these jobs offer (according to PayScale):

  • E-Learning Specialist: $54,854
  • Consultant, Learning and Development: $70,397
  • Curriculum Developer: $58,680
  • Instructional Coordinator: $62,270
  • Training and Development Specialist: $58,210

Although those with associate and bachelor's degrees can also find good jobs, their positions generally do not pay as well as those for worker's with master's degrees. The following are examples of jobs for these graduates and the median annual salaries associated with them:

  • Desktop Publisher: $39,840
  • Web Designer: $46,327

A master's degree in instructional design not only opens graduates up to increased salaries, it can also help students enter occupations that are on the rise. For example, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that between 2014 and 2024, there will be 10,500 new positions available for instructional coordinators. During that same time, the training and development field will see an increase of 18,900 jobs.

Conversely, the job outlook for desktop publishers is not as bright, with that field expected to lose 3,100 jobs from 2014 to 2024 -- which amounts to 21 percent of its workforce.

How Do You Enroll in an Online Master's Degree Program?

Students who enroll in online master's degree programs in instructional design typically go through the same admissions process as students applying to campus-based programs. Although each school handles enrollment differently, below is an example of the steps students are generally expected to take for admission:

  • Complete an application.
  • Pay the application fee.
  • Send transcripts from undergraduate program to the school. Generally, graduate schools want students who have earned at least a 2.5 GPA in their undergraduate program.
  • Submit tests scores from the GRE or GMAT.
  • Statement of purpose. This should explain to the admissions committee why prospective students want to enroll in the program and how the degree will help them with their career aspirations.
  • Resume. Programs may ask for applicants' resumes because they're looking for students who have work experience in the education field.
  • Letters of recommendation. Recommendations should usually come from undergraduate professors, however, some schools may accept them from employers.
  • Interview. Some programs expect applicants to go through an interview with a member of the instructional design department.

The cost of education is a concern for all students, no matter what kind of degree they're earning. For online students, just like those who attend brick-and-mortar schools, the price of tuition will vary depending on the program they enroll in. However, the average range for tuition is around $100 to $400 per credit hour for an online degree program.

Filling out a Request Form

If you're interested in pursuing a master's degree in instructional design, we can help you get more information. Just click the "Search Schools" button on the right to be matched with institutions that offer programs in the field.

What's the Difference Between Online and Campus-Based Degrees?

Students in traditional and online instructional design degree programs take classes in subjects such as learning theory, e-learning project management, interface design, and instructional media tools. Although the course content for online and traditional students is the same, the way classes are structured is different.

For example, traditional students are expected to attend classes on a certain day and time every week. However, many online students are not tied down to such a strict structure. If they attend schools that offer asynchronous programs, students can watch lectures when it's most convenient for them, and participate in classroom discussions online when it best fits into their schedules. In addition, some course content may be available in text or MP3 form, allowing students more choices for how they study the required material.

Synchronous programs, however, provide less flexibility. In these programs, online students must "attend" classes at the same time as on-campus students, typically with the aid of live streaming. However, the time and gas money students save by not commuting back and forth to campus still makes asynchronous programs an attractive option for many students.

Why Is Online College Good for Master's Degrees in Instructional Design?

A master's degree in instructional design can help give students the tools they need to work in adult education and training environments -- and in some cases, graduates may design courses that are taught online. By earning their graduate degree through an online program, students gain another layer of understanding that can help them in a variety of settings.

Does Location Matter for an Online Master's Degree in Instructional Design?

Location does not necessarily matter when it comes to earning an instructional design degree online. Some programs, however, do expect students to come to campus to participate in certain activities, such as lectures, tests, or group projects. If traveling to campus presents a challenge, students should inquire about any such requirements when researching schools.


Sources:

  1. "Consider This Before You Pay for an Online Degree," U.S. News & World Report, http://www.usnews.com/education/online-education/articles/2012/01/10/consider-this-before-you-pay-for-an-online-degree
  2. "Earnings and unemployment rates by educational attainment, 2015," U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, http://www.bls.gov/emp/ep_chart_001.htm
  3. Occupational Employment Statistics, 2015, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, http://www.bls.gov/oes/
  4. Occupational Outlook Handbook 2016-17 Edition, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/
  5. Salary Data & Career Research Center (United States), PayScale, http://www.payscale.com/research/US/Country=United_States/Salary

Master's Degrees in Instructional Design

Refine School Matches
Hide filters
  • SUBJECT Clear All

    See More

  • DEGREE

    See More

  • PROGRAM TYPE

  • START TIME

    LOCATION
    Please enter valid US or Canada Zip.
            Results open in new window

            Searching Searching ...

            Prefer exploring options talking to our staff?
            Call toll free now: 1.855.330.6938
            Matching School Ads
            5 Program(s) Found
            • Get your master’s degree in just 14 months!
            • Earn your Ed.D. fully online in less than four years
            • Achieve an advanced degree on your schedule, from the comfort of your home
            • Use research-based best practices to have a more powerful impact on education
            • Further your education through affordable financial aid and competitive tuition
            • Scholarships, grants and other forms of financial aid may also be available to help students with their tuition.
            Show more [+]
            Good for Working Adults
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            1 Program(s) Found
            • Push Your Creativity To The Next Level.
            • Full Sail’s curriculum combines elements of creativity, art, business and life skills, technical prowess, and academic achievement.
            • Full Sail offers accelerated programs, so a degree that would normally take four years takes 24 months on average.
            • Students work with industry-standard tools and technologies, allowing them to gain practical knowledge and real-world experience.
            • Join us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram to interact with our community, read about grad success, and see campus images.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            3 Program(s) Found

            • Students may choose from a wide variety of programs, including business, health sciences, nursing, liberal arts, science & engineering, and more.
            • Small class sizes and an average student-to-faculty ratio of 22:1 allows students to get more personalized attention.
            • Ranked among the top High School Counselor Rankings in 2017 by U.S. News & World Report.
            • Designated as a 2017 Military Friendly® Schools: Gold award recipient by Victory Media.

            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            1 Program(s) Found
            • Each year since 2004, The Princeton Review has included California University in its Best in the Northeast listing, recognizing Cal U as one of the best regional universities in the northeastern United States.
            • Ranked #35 in Best Online Graduate Education Programs by U.S. News and World Report in 2015.
            • Offers private school amenities at a public school cost.
            • Grants students in its Global Online program the same diploma as graduates from Cal U’s traditional degree programs.
            • Has an student-to-teacher ratio of 20:1.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            2 Program(s) Found
            • Ranked among the Best Online Bachelor's Programs in 2014 by U.S. News & World Report.
            • Implements a one-to-one teaching model, partnering one student with one faculty member in each course.
            • 100% of faculty members hold doctoral degrees.
            • No physical residency requirements, allowing students to pursue their degree online.
            • Committed to innovation, diversity, excellence, and accountability since its founding in 1996.
            • Offers several programs in business, education, psychology, and more.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            1 Program(s) Found

            With an enrollment approaching 33,500, UT Arlington is the second largest institution in the UT System and the sixth largest in Texas. Through research, teaching and community service, UT Arlington rigorously pursues solutions to today’s most complex problems.


            Students benefit from more than 180 bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees within ten colleges and schools. Leaders in distance education, UT Arlington faculty members have received national recognition for the development of best practices in online education.*

            • Online Courses
            1 Program(s) Found
            • Ranked 21st among the Best Education Schools in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
            • Established in 1918 with the mission, “to improve learning in urban education locally, nationally, and globally.”
            • The first major research university to offer an online M.A.  in teaching program.
            • Offers certificate through doctoral programs in teaching, counseling, and more.
            • All programs taught with the guiding principles of leadership, learning, accountability, and diversity.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            4 Program(s) Found
            • Founded over 60 years ago on the principles of inclusion and social justice.
            • Offers credit for previous life and work experience.
            • Equipped with over 17,000 titles in their library.
            • Has 3 semesters and 6 start dates a year.
            • Located in Pasadena, CA, with instructional sites in Sacramento, Salinas, Santa Cruz, and Visalia as well as online options.
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).
            Show more [+]
            Good for Working Adults
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            1 Program(s) Found

            Saint Mary's University of Minnesota's Online Master's Programs

            At Saint Mary's, we take pride in offering online graduate degrees designed to complement the schedules of working adults like you. Get an affordable, convenient education from a top-ranked university that's grounded in real-world applications.

            Saint Mary's University's long history of innovation in education continues with the launch of our new iPad® application, allowing for learning on the go. Our commitment to our Lasallian Catholic tradition of continuous learning, ethics and advancing the common good also endures.

            • Online Courses
            2 Program(s) Found
            • Students can explore different subject areas and pursue their degree in science & mathematics, business, education, health services, social sciences, and more.
            • 99% of full-time, tenured-track faculty members have a terminal degree in their field.
            • Ranked #88 among the 2017 Best Regional Universities in the West by U.S. News & World Report.
            • Designated as a 2017 Miltary Friendly® Schools: Gold award recipient in by Victory Media.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses