As technology continues to grow in its power and ubiquity, it has become more integral as part of our lives than ever before. Not only has it improved the quality of our lives, but it has also transformed the way we learn. Therefore, it is all the more significant to integrate innovative and effective technologies into the field of education. If you’re a professional or even a beginner looking to earn a PhD in Educational Technology, then read on.
Educational technology examines the relationship between the design of technology, digital media, and learning. A PhD program in educational technology will train students to explore innovative technological solutions to learning challenges. As the highest level of all degree programs, an educational technology doctorate can provide several benefits.
In this article, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about a PhD in Educational Technology. Whether you’re curious about the best online courses or the best academic programs, CareerKarma has got you covered.
Why Should I Earn a PhD in Educational Technology?
Advances in educational technology have helped the US education system become more effective and conducive for online learning methods. A more flexible and personalized approach to learning is extremely important for academic success. Today, being well-versed in instructional design and technology has become more marketable than ever before.
With a educational technology doctorate, you can work in a variety of fulfilling administrative roles. You’ll be at the forefront of designing curriculums and learning technologies that will prepare students for excellence. A bachelor’s or master’s degree in the subject will teach you the fundamentals. However, the right PhD program will take your career to the next level.
From higher salaries to more rewarding career paths, a PhD will bolster your resume and enhance your career prospects. Here are some career paths (and their respective salaries) you can pursue with a PhD in Educational Technology:
- Chief Learning Officer – $199,100
- Provost – $149,526
- Director of Education Technology – $119,778
- Training and Development Manager – $116,388
- Higher Education Administrator – $95,410
As you can see, an educational technology doctorate will enable you to pursue rewarding careers in managerial or executive roles. Now, let’s discuss how you should choose the best PhD program.
Choosing the Right PhD in Educational Technology Program
Today, over six million Americans are pursuing an education online and it isn’t hard to see why. An online PhD is often more convenient and less expensive than a regular one. Moreover, the quality of learning is even higher in some online programs due to the variety of resources available.
Before enrolling in an online degree program, there are several factors you should consider. Firstly, you should try to pursue an affordable PhD program that doesn’t require arbitrary fees, such as graduation or assessment fees. You should also make sure that you are well-equipped with the resources you’ll need to earn your project management degree.
Furthermore, you should research whether your graduate program is asynchronous (self-paced) or not. A self-paced course is preferred by some because you do not have to worry about deadlines or missing early morning classes. Whether you’re working full-time or taking care of your loved ones, the flexibility of distance learning will surely make your life easier.
It is also important to make sure your program is accredited by a legitimate association such as the SACSCOC. This will ensure that you don’t face issues down the road when it comes to transferring credits or seeking employment.
Furthermore, you should make sure your program is reputable and highly-rated among its alumni. You can do so by visiting school websites, checking program reviews, or by contacting schools directly for further information.
PhD in Educational Technology Coursework
Educational technology, sometimes called instructional technology, primarily interacts with two other majors: curriculum and instruction, and educational leadership.
The curricula in PhD programs typically consist of a broad and challenging range of topics. The blend of applied and social sciences that characterizes educational technology appeals to a unique skill set. For this reason, competent specialists in educational technology tend to stand out.
Furthermore, students will encounter a wide range of cognitive, social, and design theories. Students are encouraged to consider the ethical implications of context and culture in their application across learning spaces and environments. By partaking in innovative experiments and research designs, you will enhance several marketable skills that are essential for this growing field.
Here are some courses you can expect to take during an online PhD in Educational Technology program:
- Advanced Educational Psychology
- Learning Theories and Instructional Strategies
- Foundations of Learning Design and Technologies
- Research Technology in Educational Environment
- Courseware Design for Computer-Based Instruction
Aside from foundational courses, students will get to choose from several electives and research courses that align with their career goals. By completing a series of support courses, capstone projects and writing assessments, graduates will be well-versed in educational technology.
This combination of practical and theoretical learning will give you keen insight into the workings of innovative instructional systems. You will emerge from the program prepared to handle senior-level occupations with refined skills in leadership, analysis, and problem-solving. Now, let’s discuss the best online PhD in Educational Technology programs below.
Best Online PhD in Educational Technology Programs
Based on factors such as cost, convenience, and reputation, we found these to be the best online PhD programs in educational technology:
University of North Texas (Denton, TX)
Convenient, adaptable, and widely respected, UNT’s online PhD is available for both residential and online study. This doctoral program in learning technologies focuses on defining, understanding, and expanding the synergy of technology and instructional systems theory.
The core of the PhD program is the application of technologies within the learning process. At the end of the program, graduates should be able to effectively create and spread knowledge while actively engaging in a rewarding profession of their choice.
Prerequisites: Eligible candidates can apply through the Apply Texas website here. Applicants must submit all transcripts and GRE scores to the UNT Toulouse Graduate School. Supplemental materials can be submitted to the Dept. of Learning Technologies.
Regent University (Virginia Beach, VA)
Ranked among the top national universities by US News & World Report for two consecutive years, Regent University features a plethora of online programs. For example, this excellent program in educational technology (regionally accredited by the SACSCOC) enables students to pursue a hands-on experience online.
Learners use personalized research and analytical methods to address problems, and also seek publication in journals. This online program features courses on advanced leadership practice, research design and analysis, and several other engaging ones.
Prerequisites: Applicants must have both a bachelor’s and master’s degree earned from a regionally-accredited institution. They must also provide GRE scores, a current resume, and a peer-reviewed scholarly paper along with the completion of an admissions questionnaire.
Michigan State University (East Lansing, MI)
This nationally ranked educational PhD program produces scholars and leaders in the study of diverse technologies supporting learning and teaching. It emphasizes rigorous scholarship and diverse analytical perspectives on learning, development and technology embedded in culture and society.
The program prepares graduates to pursue careers in university research and teaching, research on and development of educational technologies and leadership roles in school systems and the private sector.
Prerequisites: Applicants must have at least a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution and significant academic and professional accomplishments to be considered. They must also submit several strong recommendations and GRE scores.
Northcentral University (San Diego, CA)
Featuring regionally accredited online programs of unparalleled flexibility, Northcentral University offers a student-tailored approach to its doctoral programs. Students can pursue a PhD in education and choose a variety of different specializations, the most relevant of which is perhaps curriculum and teaching.
Without worrying about deadlines, you will be able to study one-on-one with some of the most experienced faculty members across the nation. At the end of the program, you’ll possess deep knowledge and be able to contribute meaningfully to the field of educational technology.
Prerequisites: Admission to the Doctor of Philosophy in Education requires a conferred post-baccalaureate master’s degree and/or doctoral degree from a regionally or nationally accredited academic institution. The University requires all applicants to submit an online application by completing the application form here. It is highly recommended that applicants review the minimum technology requirements outlined here.
Old Dominion University (Norfolk, VA)
A rigorous program that is both flexible and affordable, ODU’s excellent PhD in education program is regionally accredited by the SACSCOC. In a 60-credit curriculum, learners will take core classes in IDT research, choose courses in an area of focus, and complete a dissertation. Featuring in-depth courses regarding instructional design and technology, graduates will have a firm understanding of cognitive theory, research, and practical application.
Prerequisites: Applicants must have a master’s degree from an accredited institution. They must also submit a writing sample, a personal essay, three letters of recommendation, and GRE scores. Depending on the number of students admitted to the program, the minimum acceptable scores on the GRE may vary.
With a PhD in Educational Technology, there’s no limit to what you can accomplish. The best time to start is now. We here at CareerKarma hope you found this guide helpful, and wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors.