Educational Technology Degree Programs

An educational technology degree qualifies graduates for jobs in K-12 public schools, private schools, and other areas of the private and public sector. On this page you will find information on educational technology degree levels, what to expect in a degree program, and top-ranked programs.

Table of Contents

Educational Technology Overview

Educational technology, also known as instructional technology, ed tech, EdTech, or edutech, significantly influences learning nationwide. It encompasses online learning (e-learning) and mobile learning, multimedia, computer-based training (CBT), and learning management systems (LMS). Those pursuing a career as an educational technology specialist need strong organizational, communication, and technical skills.

Ed tech graduates can secure roles in K-12 schools, higher education, government, corporations, and nonprofits. Educational technology specialists do more than just work with computers and technology-based teaching tools. Their jobs involve leveraging technology to improve teaching effectiveness and enhance learning experiences. The demand for qualified educational technology specialists will continue to grow with technological advances impacting all facets of life.

Quick Facts

  • There are 340 not-for-profit colleges and universities with educational technology programs.1
  • 34 schools offer a certificate in educational technology.1
  • 4 schools offer an associate’s degree in educational technology.1
  • 13 schools offer a bachelor’s degree in educational technology.1
  • 312 schools offer a master’s or advanced degree in educational technology.1

Educational Technology Degrees and Requirements

Educational technology degree programs teach students how to utilize technology–hardware and software–to facilitate effective learning. Due to the specialized nature of this degree and the fact that most jobs in educational/instructional technology require a master’s degree or above, the majority of programs are found at the graduate level, though a handful of undergraduate programs are available. Obtaining a master’s degree or certificate in instructional technology enables professionals to advance to higher career levels and can improve earning potential.

Many who pursue a degree or certificate in ed tech are already licensed as educators and are seeking to shift into educational technology. Since these programs are highly specialized, educational technology degrees do not tend to have further areas of specialization (also known as concentrations, specialties, and emphases). Many online degree programs in educational technology are available in addition to traditional on-campus programs.

Top-Ranked Educational Technology Degree Programs

US News & World Report’s Best Online Master’s in Instructional Media Programs

  • Arizona State University (#1)
  • Indiana University-Bloomington (#2)
  • University of Georgia (#3)
  • Pennsylvania State University-World Campus (#4 tie)
  • University of Florida (#4 tie)
  • Michigan State University (#6)
  • Florida State University (#7)
  • Purdue University-West Lafayette (#8 tie)
  • University of Virginia (#8 tie)
  • Ohio State University (#10 tie)
  • Texas A&M University-College Station (#10 tie)
  • Utah State University (#10 tie)2

Best Value Schools with On-Campus Educational Technology Programs

The table below includes the not-for-profit teaching colleges and universities that offer programs in educational or instructional technology at the graduate level with the best value. We researched all schools and chose the ones with a combination of a high graduation rate (80% or above at the undergraduate level) and a low net price (less than $20,000 per year for undergraduate students), as these factors considered together suggest that a school provides a good overall value. We have also included information about the degrees offered, the percentage of faculty with tenure, and US News & World Report rankings.

SchoolGrad Degree(s)US News Undergrad Teaching Rank3US News National Rank4Grad Rate1% Tenured Faculty5Net Price1
Brigham Young University-ProvoMS Instructional Psychology & Technology (IP&T);
PhD Instructional Psychology and Technology (IP&T)
NR#77 tie86%45%$13,120
Florida State UniversityGrad Certificate Human Performance Technology (HPT);
Grad Certificate Online Instructional Development (OID);
MS Instructional Systems and Learning Technologies;
PhD Instructional Systems and Learning Technologies;
EdD Learning Design & Performance Technology
NR#57 tie83%44%$13,318
North Carolina State University at RaleighMS Learning Design and Technology (online);
M.Ed. Learning Design and Technology (online)
#61 tie#84 tie81%52%$14,771
University of GeorgiaCertificate eLearning Design;
Certificate Instructional Technology for Teaching;
M.Ed. Learning, Design, and Technology (Instructional Technology) (online);
EdS Learning, Design, and Technology;
PhD Learning, Design, and Technology
#40 tie#50 tie86%53%$15,539
University of DelawareM.Ed. Educational Technology (EDTC) (online)NR#91 tie81%56%$15,883
Michigan State UniversityGrad Certificate Educational Technology;
Grad Certificate Online Teaching and Learning;
Grad Certificate K-12 Computer Science Education;
MA Educational Technology (MAET) (online);
PhD Educational Psychology and Educational Technology
#61 tie#84 tie80%46%$16,227
University of Minnesota-Twin CitiesCertificate Online Learning (online);
Certificate K-12 Technology Integration (online);
Certificate Multimedia Design and Development (online);
M.Ed. Professional Studies Learning Technologies (online);
MA Learning Technologies;
PhD Learning Technologies
NR#70 tie80%43%$16,691
Harvard UniversityCertificate Design and Technology;
EdM Technology, Innovation, and Education
#34 tie#298%45%$17,590
James Madison UniversityCertificate Educational Technology (online);
M.Ed. Educational Technology (online)
#4 tieNR84%41%$17,753
Texas A & M University-College StationM.Ed. Educational Technology (online);
PhD Technology and Teacher Education
#76 tie#70 tie82%48%$19,118
University of ConnecticutMA/Sixth Year Certificate Educational Technology (online)NR#64 tie85%37%$19,650

Best Value Schools with Online Educational Technology Programs

The table below displays the best value not-for-profit colleges and universities offering an online program in educational or instructional technology at the graduate level. The same criteria were used as in the above table, and you can compare the schools below by programs offered, US News rankings, undergraduate graduation rate, percentage of tenured faculty, and undergraduate net price.

SchoolGrad Degree(s)US News Undergrad Teaching Rank3US News National Rank4Grad Rate1% Tenured Faculty5Net Price1
Indiana University-BloomingtonMSEd Instructional Systems TechnologyNR#79 tie78%42%$11,931
Iowa State UniversityM.Ed. Educational TechnologyNR#121 tie75%49%$14,643
North Carolina State University at RaleighMS Learning Design and Technology;
M.Ed. Learning Design and Technology
#61 tie#84 tie81%52%$14,771
University of GeorgiaM.Ed. Learning, Design, and Technology (Instructional Technology)#40 tie#50 tie86%53%$15,539
University of DelawareM.Ed. Educational Technology (EDTC)NR#91 tie81%56%$15,883
University at BuffaloEd.M. Education and Technology;
Adv. Certificate Educational Technology and New Literacies
NR#79 tie76%36%$15,895
Michigan State UniversityMA Educational Technology (MAET)#61 tie#84 tie80%46%$16,227
University of Minnesota-Twin CitiesCertificate Online Learning;
Certificate K-12 Technology Integration;
Certificate Multimedia Design and Development;
M.Ed. Professional Studies Learning Technologies
NR#70 tie80%43%$16,691
James Madison UniversityCertificate Educational Technology (online);
M.Ed. Educational Technology (online)
#4 tieNR84%41%$17,753
West Chester University of PennsylvaniaGrad Certificate Educational Technology;
Grad Certificate Universal Design for Learning and Assistive Technology
Texas A & M University-College StationM.Ed. Educational Technology#76 tie#70 tie82%48%$19,118
University of ConnecticutMA/Sixth Year Degree Educational TechnologyNR#64 tie85%37%$19,650

Educational Technology Degree Requirements and Coursework

Requirements for entry into an educational technology degree program commonly include letters of recommendation, a personal essay, and a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or above. Some examples of common courses in the curriculum of an educational technology degree program include:

  • Applying Theories of Learning to Technology
  • Differentiated Instruction with Technology
  • Interactive & Emerging Technologies
  • Leading Technology Change in Schools
  • Managing Educational Technology Resources
  • Research in Instructional Technology
  • Student Practicum
  • Teaching Information in the Digital World
  • Technology and Inquiry-Based Learning
  • Technology Curriculum and Planning
  • Technology, Schooling, and Society

Select Educational Technology Degree Programs

Traditional Programs

Boise State University

The Educational Technology Department at Boise State University offers multiple graduate degrees and certificates for those who wish to specialize in educational technology, including a Master of Science in Educational Technology (MSET), a Master of Educational Technology (MET), an Educational Specialist (EdS) degree in Educational Technology, and a Doctor of Education (EdD) in Educational Technology. The MET gives students the skills they need to improve performance at all levels of education and is preparation for enrolling in the EdD program. Coursework focuses on theoretical foundations, hands-on skills in technology, and integration strategies to use in today’s learning environments. All MET students will complete a portfolio as their culminating activity. The MSET program focuses more heavily on research and theory with an in-depth thesis as the major research project. Both the EdS and EdD programs can be completed entirely online. Related graduate certificates offered at Boise State include Technology Integration, Online Teaching, School Technology Coordination, and a K-12 Online Teaching Endorsement. US News and the National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) have ranked Boise State University’s education programs among the best in the US.

Ohio State University

The Ohio State University’s Department of Educational Studies features a 30-credit hour graduate program leading to a Master of Arts (MA) in Learning Technologies as well as a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Educational Studies, Learning Technologies and a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Education, Child, and Youth Studies (Technology and Youth). The Master of Learning Technologies is offered fully online and prepares graduates to work in K-12 traditional and online schools, institutes of higher education, nonprofit and private organizations, or the military. The master’s program starts in the fall, and applications are due in March. No thesis is required, but all students complete an electronic portfolio documenting their practicum experience. The PhD prepares graduates to be university professors, directors of and leaders in technology, and researchers. The non-licensure BS degree prepares graduates to work in a variety of educational settings as educational specialists, youth workers, and educational liaisons.

University of Florida

The University of Florida’s Education Technology program allows students to earn a traditional Master of Arts in Education (MAE) or Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis in Educational Technology. Graduate students in both degree programs must complete core courses in curriculum and instruction and educational technology, including Instructional Design, Foundations of Educational Technology, and Emerging Learning Technologies. Students in the MAE program must complete 36 credits to fulfill graduation requirements, including a six-credit thesis or project. The PhD program culminates in a dissertation and is aimed at students who wish to become researchers and university faculty. Applicants to either program must submit GRE scores and letters of recommendation in addition to an official application and application fee. Students seeking more flexibility may want to consider one of the university’s online programs: Master of Education (M.Ed.), Educational Specialist (EdS), and Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) degrees are offered in Curriculum and Instruction with a concentration in Educational Technology, as well as online certificate programs in K-12 Teaching with Technology, Instructional Design, Managing Distance Education Environments, and Online Teaching and Learning.

Online and Hybrid Programs

University of Maryland Global Campus

The University of Maryland Global Campus (formerly the University of Maryland University College or UMUC) awards the Master of Education (M.Ed.) in Instructional Technology to students who complete its 33-credit hour academic program. While all courses in this program are offered online, each course has at least one on-site field component. Students are not required to be currently certified teachers, but the program is designed for those who are currently teaching or working in preK-12 settings and does not lead to initial licensure. By taking two courses per semester, students can complete the program in two years. The curriculum includes such courses as Teaching Information and Media Literacies in the Digital World; Using Technology for Instructional Improvement: Research, Data, and Best Practices; and Leading Technology Change in Schools. An integrative capstone course is also included that consists of a self-directed project designing innovations for a given curriculum. The University of Maryland Global Campus also offers an online Master of Science (MS) in Learning Design and Technology, as well as Graduate Certificates in Instructional Technology Integration and Learning Design and Technology.

University of Missouri

The University of Missouri offers several 100% online programs in learning technology, including a Master of Science (MS) and an Educational Specialist (EdSp) degree in Learning Technologies and Design with two emphases, as well as a Graduate Certificate in Online Educator. The MS and EdSp degrees in Learning Technologies and Design are designed to prepare teachers to plan and implement technologies in classrooms and similar learning environments and can be taken without an emphasis or with an optional emphasis in Online Education or Technology in Schools. All three options require 30 credit hours of study, and coursework is divided into core courses, design courses, and development courses. Admission is competitive and requires that students possess relevant experience and have a GPA of at least 3.0 across the last 60 credit hours of undergraduate coursework. Core graduate courses for this master’s in educational technology program include Introduction to Research in ISLT; Instructional Systems Design; and Front End Analysis of Systems. Students are also evaluated on a professional portfolio that exhibits the student’s mastery of competencies based on the LT program goals with supporting work examples. The University of Missouri’s Graduate Certificate with an Online Educator emphasis is 12 credit hours and is also offered 100% online. The University of Missouri is frequently recognized for being home to some of the best educational technology degree programs in the US.

Western Governors University

Western Governors University allows graduate students and licensed teachers to earn a Master of Education (M.Ed.) in Learning and Technology. The online master’s in educational technology program generally takes 18 months to complete. Semesters run for six consecutive months, with graduate students completing all course requirements online. Unlike most universities, students pay a flat fee per six-month term rather than a per-credit fee. Students should be prepared to commit at least 20 hours a week to their studies. A teaching license is not needed for enrollment, but current educators are encouraged to apply. A regionally-accredited bachelor’s degree is required to apply, as well as access to a “community of learners” (a group of at least 15 people of any age) who will be the focus of projects throughout the program.

Additional Resources

Frequently Asked Questions

Question: Do you need a master’s degree in educational technology to work in this career?

Answer: Requirements for an instructional technology specialist vary depending on the business or school district but a master’s degree is often the minimum requirement for an ed tech career. Those who are already certified or licensed teachers may be able to earn an ed tech endorsement by completing a graduate certificate and passing the appropriate content exam(s). Other common degree types in educational technology include Educational Specialist, Doctor of Education, and PhD degrees.

Question: Can you earn a master’s in educational technology online?

Answer: Many schools offer a fully-online format for their educational technology programs, though some programs may require in-person work for practica or thesis work that requires student contact hours.

Question: Do I need teacher certification to start an educational technology degree program?

Answer: Not necessarily. Many programs in educational technology prefer applicants to be certified to teach, but other programs are open to non-teachers. Check with the programs of your choice for more information. If you plan on working in public K-12 schools, be sure to check with the school and your state’s board of education for certification information.

Student Reviews

Note: Student Reviews are based on the experiences of a few individuals and it is unlikely that you will have similar results. Please review the “Data, Student Reviews and Other Information” section in our Terms of Use and Disclaimers.

Nazareth College
4245 East Ave
Rochester, NY 14618
(585) 389-2525

Student Review: “I have nearly completed my master’s degree program in educational technology at Nazareth College. On the whole, the program is very strong and provides a broad exposure to the various technologies available to deliver content across any subject area, along with a generally sound educational philosophical foundation, to include solid research skills. The courses include content creation instruction with software tools that emphasize graphics, collaboration, multimedia, web design and custom assessment tools. Students are exposed to commercial and open source tools and communities available through online resources. The program offers the traditional classroom degree program as well as a hybrid program combining online instruction with limited in class interaction. The faculty is informed, informal and engaging, and includes full-time and adjunct instructors. On a personal note, I found myself at odds with one of the college’s policies on work deadlines that seemed to favor compliance over educational objectives. More generally, some of the instructional design favors students who are currently employed as teachers with ready access to students to conduct active research projects. Overall, I would recommend the program to current and prospective teachers.” -Eric S., student at Nazareth College

1. National Center for Education Statistics College Navigator: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. US News & World Report Best Online Master’s in Instructional Media Programs: https://www.usnews.com/education/online-education/education/online-instructional-media-design-rankings
3. US News & World Report Best Undergraduate Teaching National University Rankings: https://www.usnews.com/best-colleges/rankings/national-universities/undergraduate-teaching
4. US News & World Report National University Rankings: https://www.usnews.com/best-colleges/rankings/national-universities
5. College Factual: https://www.collegefactual.com/