The 10 Best Online Master’s in Education Degree Programs for 2022
The state of teacher education in the United States is constantly changing. While you will find that some of the same names pop up year after year on the lists of the best teacher-training schools, you better believe those colleges have to fight to keep those positions. And there are plenty of hungry up-and-coming schools that are just as eager to find their place on those lists.
So that’s a great reason to check out the contenders this year – the ones that our editorial staff here at EducationDegree.com feel are worth a good long look for anybody trying to find the best master’s in education degree programs for the 2021-22 school year.
All of them hit all our marks for a top-notch education. None of them will blow up your bank account. And this year, in particular, you will be happy to learn that every single one of these programs is available online. In a world where COVID-19 is still ebbing and flowing, you want the flexibility to keep your education on track no matter what.
There are many types of master’s degrees for teachers. Discover which degree path works for you!
How We Picked the Best Master’s in Education Programs in The Country
Okay, full disclosure – You won’t find any high-dollar schools from the Ivy League here. Even if it could be argued that the best schools are those big-name traditional institutions in the Northeast, most people would also agree that a list of those kinds of schools simply wouldn’t be very practical for most aspiring teachers around the country.
So, what we have done here is picked out a great slate of options from among our partner schools, which all offer practical and accessible options with a high-quality education that doesn’t come with a high-cost price tag.
The BEST is always a category that is a little bit subjective in nature anyway. The very best program for you is always going to be the one that comes in at the right cost, meets your educational goals, and gives your career exactly the right jumping off point, which is something that can depend a lot on where you are currently standing. That simply means the best master’s in education program for you isn’t always going to be the same as it is for the next teacher.
But each of these schools here on this list was selected for good reasons.
The Best Master’s Programs for Teachers All Have Outstanding Faculty
When it comes to great graduate programs in education, there’s just no substitute for having great professors. You already know in your soul how much of an impact an educator has on their students. That’s why you chose to become a teacher in the first place. You have experienced first-hand the difference it makes.
These schools all have first-rate faculty who have serious academic and research chops on top of putting in years of experience in the field. Many of them have published significant papers in academic journals and presented their work at industry conferences. They have the knowledge and the skills to make sure you get the kind of training you need through an online master’s program.
The Best Education Graduate Schools Have the Best Resources for Teacher Training
Studies at the master’s level involve research, and research means having resources on tap for diving into some of the thorniest problems facing educators today.
Each of the schools on our list has a full slate of centers, libraries, partnerships, and relationships with education labs and school systems to get you access to the resources you need to develop answers to those problems. On top of having professors who have the knowledge and research experience to point you in the right direction, you’ll find campus centers that specialize in cutting edge subjects like education and media policy, school psychology, and special education subjects. And you’ll find universities with partnerships with community schools, non-profits, and even private industry that can open up venues for research and study that you won’t find just anywhere.
The Best Schools for a Master’s in Education Always Have A Wide Selection of Concentrations
A master’s in education degree should offer you the ability to drill down into a specialization that really gets your brain racing. You are going to be developing new ideas and conducting original research as part of your degree. You definitely need the kind of career motivation to make that an exciting, meaningful experience.
So we picked out schools that have a wide array of different concentrations available in their master of education programs. Of course, you will easily find the most common options like educational leadership and administration, or special education studies. But you’ll also find schools with concentrations such as Catholic Educational Leadership or Technology Integration in the Classroom. That’s niche stuff, but it may be your niche!
Some of these programs even allow you to design your own specialization, which pretty much guarantees you will be able to study what you want, at the level you need to study it.
We Aren’t the Only Ones Who Think These Are the Best Master’s in Education Programs
Of course, although we put a lot of thought and investigation into finding the best online education master’s degrees in the country, you shouldn’t just take our word for it. It’s pretty easy to get a second opinion on any of these schools since you don’t have to look far to find many of them showing up with high marks on other lists of top programs. When U.S. News & World Report says a program is being delivered by one of the top grad schools in the country, you know it’s worth a look.
You’ll find schools here with that stamp of approval along with those from other nationally-recognized ranking organizations.
Even more importantly, these schools have the blessing of a more important set of evaluators: their alumni! Tens of thousands of graduates have had the inside perspective on these schools and given them the thumbs-up too.
Online Options Offer Flexibility For Working Teachers Interested in the Best Master’s in Education Degrees
Of course, online has taken on a whole new kind of significance in education recently. But many of these schools were offering master’s programs through remote learning long before it became trendy. That means they have had a chance to work out the kinks and deliver a superlative online experience that doesn’t cut any corners in getting you an advanced degree.
Whether it’s driven by COVID-19 or not, you can benefit from schools with course options that offer you the ability to attend at any time, day or night, and from anywhere, whether that’s the sidelines of your kid’s soccer field or the faculty lounge at your day job. Many of these schools also have hybrid programs, allowing you to mix online and offline attendance depending on your preference for a particular class.
Other Considerations When Selecting a Master’s in Education
Even though we make our selections based on some pretty universal criteria relevant to any student looking for a good online master’s-level teacher prep program, we also appreciate that the final decision is a personal one. After doing your homework, you might still find yourself doing a little soul searching before you lay down your hard-earned dollars for your degree. Some of the questions you’ll probably ask yourself will likely include…
Is it worth it to get a master’s in education?
The salary for teachers with master’s degrees will almost always surpass those with only a bachelor’s degree. That isn’t always the case from day one if you’re starting your teaching career with a master’s. That’s because tenure is also a big consideration with teacher salaries, so a bachelor’s-prepared educator with years in the classroom would qualify to earn more than a new teacher with a master’s. You will also find that many teaching credentials require ongoing continuing education as a requirement of license renewal. Since college credits almost always count as a part of that process, getting a master’s degree is almost a foregone conclusion for most teachers who plan to make a career in the field anyway. So getting a master’s in education satisfies that requirement while increasing your expertise and bumping your salary level… a win-win-win situation.
What is the best education master’s degree?
The best education master’s degree is the one that gets you the career you want at a price you can afford! But that ideal career is different for everyone. So is the cost that you are willing to pay. That means that the best degree is subjective, but we feel that all ten of the online master’s in education degrees featured on this list are strong contenders on the basis of accessibility, affordability and quality.
Does it matter where you get your master’s in education?
We would be lying if we said that the school you choose for your master’s in education didn’t matter at all. Everyone knows that the name and reputation of the school on your diploma is going to have an impact on your career. Let’s face it, Harvard gets people’s attention on a CV.
But what matters most about where you get your master’s in education is very personal. You will find many universities that have programs that are highly respected in their area, or that offer a special concentration that puts them among the top in the field for. With these online programs, you can find an option that will meet your needs even if it’s not in your immediate area. Picking the best fit for your career goals is the most important criteria.
Which master’s degrees are most in demand?
You will find that STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math), are hot topics at almost all levels of primary and secondary education today. Getting a master’s degree in education with concentrations in any of those fields will set you up for in-demand teaching jobs, and probably better pay, than many more traditional options.
Special education is also a big deal for school districts today, and finding master’s-trained special education teachers is a priority.
Our Top Picks for the 10 Best Master’s in Education Programs For 2022
Master in Education Degree Programs
Programs for Postsecondary Education
- MA of Arts in Communication with an Emphasis in Education
- MA of Arts in English with an Emphasis in Education
- MA of Arts in History with an Emphasis in Education
- MA of Science in Biology with an Emphasis in Education
- MA of Science in Chemistry with an Emphasis in Education
- MA of Science in Mathematics with an Emphasis in Education
- MA of Science in Nursing with an Emphasis in Nursing Education
- MA of Science in Sociology with an Emphasis in Education
Master’s Degree Programs for Current Educators
- MA in Autism Spectrum Disorders
- MA in Curriculum and Instruction
- MA in Reading with an Emphasis in Elementary Education
- MA in Reading with an Emphasis in Secondary Education
- MA of Arts in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)
- MA of Education in Educational Administration
- MA of Education in Educational Leadership
- MA of Science in Instructional Technology
- Advanced programs that are designed for both new teacher preparation and current educators who are looking to grow in their field
- With honor, Grand Canyon University (GCU) proudly serves military service members, veterans, Department of Defense personnel and their dependents
- For more than 65 years, GCU has welcomed diverse cultures, encouraging our students to share their unique perspectives so they can evolve into global citizens
- If you have completed secondary school, or if you have attended college, university or technical school outside the U.S., you may be qualified to attend GCU as a student with foreign credentials
Grand Canyon University is a private Christian university located in Phoenix, Arizona that is dedicated to helping students change their lives for the better through education. Grand Canyon University prepares learners to become global citizens, critical thinkers, effective communicators and responsible leaders by providing an academically challenging, value-based curriculum. GCU offers a variety of modalities to help you earn your master’s degree from home or in person. Choose an online degree for convenience and flexibility, or study in a face-to-face format in our evening classes. Their hybrid learning program offers an opportunity to study in both online and evening classes. Whatever delivery method you choose, you will receive a quality education from faculty who care about your success while having the opportunity to interact with peers in a dynamic learning environment.
Online Master’s in Education (M.Ed.)
- MED in Curriculum and Instruction:
- Early Childhood Education
- Elementary Education
- Middle Grades
- General Education
- Special Education
- Math Specialist Endorsement
- Urban Education
- School Counseling
- Student Services
- Reading Specialist Endorsement
- Health and Wellness
- Foreign Language Education
- Gifted Education
- Educational Technology and Online Instruction
- MED in Higher Education:
- Educational Leadership
- Instructional Design and Technology
- Student Affairs
- MED in Administration and Supervision
- MA in Teaching English as a Second Language
- MA in Human Services:
- Military Resilience
- Health and Wellness
- Executive Leadership
- Life Coaching
- Dobson Center Marriage and Family Studies
- Dobson Center Parenting and Child/adolescent
- MAT in Special Education
- Early Childhood Education
- Elementary Education (45-hour)
- MAT in Teaching
- Secondary Education
- Special Education
- Middles Grades Education (45-hour)
- 100% online with flexible 8-week courses and no set login times
- One of the lowest rates, per credit hours, in the country for an M.Ed
- 5 years average completion time
- Liberty University has been paving the way in distance education since the mid-1980s
- Proudly offers benefits to military students
Liberty University believes in their students. They work hard to develop reasonably priced and academically rigorous programs that produce educators and school leaders who model high academic, moral, and spiritual standards. Liberty University’s master’s in education online courses are committed to providing students with both the practical and theoretical knowledge they need to become effective leaders in a Christian, public, or private school setting.
At Liberty University, students can also customize their master’s in education online by choosing a specialization, providing them a more focused training in a particular area of the education field. Liberty students have the opportunity to learn from professors who are passionate about teaching from a biblical worldview, offering encouragement and mentorship along the way.
Master of Science in Education
- MA of Arts of Teaching
- MA of Science in Education
- MA of Science in Educational Psychology
- MA of Science in Higher Education
- MA of Science in Instructional Design and Technology
- Ranked in the top 10 best public universities in the U.S. by The Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education
- National Board Certified Teachers may be eligible for transfer credits, which can save you time and money on your degree
- An innovative approach to teaching and outcome-focused curriculum that provides you the skills you need to make an immediate impact on your career and the edge to compete in this fast-changing world economy
- Personalized online education tailored to the unique needs of adults who have work or life experience beyond the classroom, enabling them to develop essential academic and professional skills with the support and flexibility they need to achieve their career goals
Purdue University Global understands that adult learners approach learning differently than traditional college-aged students. Founded in 1869 as Indiana’s land-grant institution, Purdue University system serves students through its flagship campus in West Lafayette, a network of regional campuses and technology centers across Indiana. In April 2017, Purdue reinforced its status as one of the world’s most innovative universities by announcing it would acquire Kaplan University, a longtime leader in online adult education, and create a new, public institution—Purdue Global.
Purdue Global is dedicated to adult students who need flexibility to fit learning into their busy lives, making it possible to achieve a degree from a school within the respected Purdue University system—from anywhere in the world. Their innovative approach to teaching and outcome-focused curriculum gives you the skills you need to make an immediate impact on your career and the edge to compete in this fast-changing world economy.
School of Education
- MA in Curriculum Instruction and Assessment
- MA in Educational Leadership Administration
- MA in Educational Leadership Administration (International Non-Licensure)
- MA in Elementary Reading and Literacy
- MA in Elementary Reading and Mathematics
- MA in Integrating Technology in the Classroom
- MA in Mathematics (5-8)
- MA in Mathematics and Science (K-8)
- MA in Mathematics (K-6)
- MA in Science (K-8)
- MA in STEM Education (K-8)
- MA in Teacher Leadership (K-12)
- Walden offers a variety of learning tracks, ranging from traditional options with a predictable course load and a fixed schedule to accelerated options that allow you to earn your degree in just 12 months
- Offers a one-credit learning track, an intensive learning experience that offers a set semester-based tuition schedule
- More than 300 Walden faculty have been recognized for excellence in teaching and mentorship
- Over 51% of Walden students are minorities with over 158,000 graduates coming from 165 countries
- Walden’s faculty includes esteemed scholars, respected leaders, and passionate change agents who are making the world a better place
The University of Walden was founded in 1970 by two educators who were inspired to create opportunities for working professionals where there previously were none. They are now led by scholars, practitioners, and education innovators with a collective commitment to providing quality, student-centered degree programs. While their leaders come from diverse backgrounds, their goal is the same: providing the education today’s teachers need through an engaging learning experience designed to fit the schedules of busy grad students. Walden University is committed to producing graduates ready to join a diverse community of working professionals. Their students and graduates are actively working to make a positive difference in the world, in many ways. Walden’s learning model encourages a deeper level of student discussion and immersive conversations that engage everyone. By collaborating with professionals from different fields and cultural experiences, you’ll gain a broad range of perspectives and best practices you can apply to drive change in your own organization and community.
School of Education
- MA of Education
- MA of Public Administration
- MA of Science in Counseling and Human Services
- MA of Science in Higher Education Leadership
- Offers hybrid on-campus/online courses
- Ranked among the best Online Education Programs by U.S. News & World Report
- Post University has earned the 2021 Top Workplaces USA award, issued by Energage, a leading workplace culture research organization that develops solutions to build and brand America’s top workplaces
- Has been selected by Victory Mediafor the Military Friendly® School Award for the 7th consecutive year
Post University’s online master’s in education degree programs help prepare you to learn, educate, and lead in your field. The coursework at Post University will help you build the critical thinking, analytic and forecasting skills you need to be successful in a variety of educational settings, from K-12 through higher ed, to corporate training, military training, post-secondary education, and other online learning environments. This MA program is grounded in the identification, evaluation, and application of research-based education practices. In your core classes, you will develop a vision for the future of education through an analysis of the issues and changes in both education and technology; apply principles of cognitive science; use metrics to measure student, programmatic and institutional achievement; and identify and use relevant technology in the service of better learning.
Throughout your time at Post, you will be guided by a faculty of industry experts, professionals who have years of experience and expertise in the field. They will share their valuable insights and advice to help better prepare you to move ahead in your career. Additionally, a personal academic advisor will assist you with any questions and challenges, and help you choose a concentration that best aligns with your goals.
School of Education
Los Angeles, California
- MAT of Arts in Teaching
- MAT of Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)
- MAT of Education in Learning Design and Technology
- MAT of Education in Enrollment Management Policy
- MAT of Education in School Counseling
- EdD in Educational Leadership
- EdD in Organizational Change and Leadership
USC Rossier programs are delivered through a state-of-the-art learning platform that allows you to attend classes and complete coursework from wherever you are in the world. As a student earning a degree online, you will:
- Benefit from academically rigorous curricula designed by USC faculty
- Attend live, face-to-face classes in a dynamic virtual classroom
- Collaborate with educators around the world who have also met USC’s exacting admissions criteria
- Apply what you learn in the program to field-based teaching experiences — either in a classroom or within your organization
- Experience the USC Rossier Commitment, which offers you support, feedback and professional development resources throughout your career
- Enjoy membership to the USC Trojan Family Network and participate in USC’s on-campus commencement
The USC Rossier School of Education is top-ranked among graduate schools of education by U.S. News & World Report, offering programs for teachers and educators who want to develop or improve their skills in order to promote positive change in today’s classrooms and organizations. Whether you are starting out in the field or an experienced teacher or an organizational leader looking to drive systemic change, USC Rossier’s programs can prepare you to create positive learning outcomes.
As one of the world’s premier centers for graduate study in education, for more than 100 years, USC Rossier has been preparing educational leaders to be change agents, providing them with the skills, knowledge and determination to create environments in which all students can learn.
The USC Rossier School of Education strives to prepare educators who achieve positive learning outcomes across a range of settings by offering a number of graduate programs in an online format. These innovative programs are designed and taught by the same renowned USC faculty members who teach on-campus. As a USC Rossier student, you’ll take advantage of a state-of-the-art online learning platform to blend live, face-to-face online classes, dynamic self-paced coursework and field-based experiences.
School of Education
Manchester, New Hampshire
- Med in Curriculum and Instruction
- Dyslexia Studies & Language-Based Learning Disabilities
- Educational Leadership
- Online Teaching
- Special Education
- Technology Integration
- MA in Higher Education Administration
- Named 2020’s Most Innovative University in the North and one of the nation’s “Best Regional Universities” by U.S. News & World Report
- Awarded the 21st Century Distance Learning Award for Excellence in Online Technology by The United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA)
- Recipient of a $1 million grant from Google to explore soft skills assessments for high-need youth
- Recognized as a Digital Learning Innovator by the Online Learning Consortium
- Recipient of the “First in the World” grant from the U.S. Department of Education
Southern New Hampshire University is a private, nonprofit institution with more than 3,000 on-campus students and over 135,000 online students, making it one of the fastest growing universities in the nation. Since its founding in 1932, the University has transformed from a school of accounting and secretarial science into an institution offering over 200 programs, from certificates to doctoral level degrees including business, education, liberal arts, social sciences and STEM. By reinventing higher education to fit the needs of today’s students and workforce, SNHU ensures that students are keeping pace with new technologies and professional requirements.
SNHU provides unparalleled support and service to help students achieve their dreams and transform their lives and the lives of those around them. SNHU is proud to offer an exceptional student experience with nationally recognized academic programs. As a university built for people, not for profit, SNHU invests in their learners and their communities, visiting soccer fields, military bases and underserved neighborhoods in New Hampshire and across the globe. They believe in using the power of education as a force for social good.
Graduate School of Education
New York, New York
- PhD in Counseling Psychology
- PhD in Contemporary Learning and Interdisciplinary Research
- PhD in Administration and Supervision
- PhD in School Psychology
- EdD in Educational Leadership, Administration, and Policy
- MSed in Mental Health Counseling
- MSed in School Counseling
- MSE in School Building Leader
- MSE in Church and Non-public Educational Leadership
- ADV CER in Bilingual School Psychology
- ADV CER in School Psychology
- Ranks Among the Nation’s Best Graduate Schools in 2021 according to U.S. News & World Report
- Reflects the Jesuit tradition of academic excellence in a setting where values are a priority
- Faculty and student relationships are mutually supportive and reflect the belief that education is paramount in shaping the kind of society we desire by making the world a better place for all people
- Provides a dynamic balance between theory and practice, and among research, teaching, and community service endeavors
Located in the heart of the New York City, Fordham University has forged strong partnerships with public and private schools, other colleges and universities, business and government groups, and human service organizations. In keeping with the University’s Jesuit tradition of rigorous academic endeavor, service to complex urban and metropolitan communities, and dedication to the intellectual, moral, and socioemotional development of the individual, Fordham University strives to create and nurture an inclusive, dynamic, intellectual, and reflective community that generates knowledge and promotes inquiry and excellence, regardless of race, cultural background, religion and ethnicity. Faculty and student relationships are mutually supportive and reflect the belief that education is paramount in shaping the kind of society we desire by making the world a better place for all people.
School of Health Studies and Education
- MS in Art Education PK-12
- MS in Early Childhood/Elementary PK-4
- MS in Elementary/Middle School 4-8
- MS in Foreign Language Education PK-12
- MS in Professional Education
- MS in Reading Specialist PK-12
- MS in Secondary Education 7-12
- MS in Special Education
- MS in Special Education – Deaf and Hard of Hearing
- MS in Applied Behavior Analysis
- MS in Educational Leadership and Administration
- Interdisciplinary Doctor of Education Program for Educational Leaders
- Saint Joseph’s graduates rank in the top 3% nationally for median 10-year earnings according to a 2019 Georgetown University study
- Ranked #8 in Best regional University in the North (2022), according to U.S. News and World Report
- Top 10% of Best Online Graduate Business Programs (excluding MBA) (U.S. News & World Report)
- Ranked the 3rd Best College for Veterans North (2021), according to U.S. News and World Report
Saint Joseph’s University prepares educators to create positive change in their communities. Their curriculum embraces social justice and immerses students in the community, inspiring them to serve and uplift individuals and families. Saint Joseph believes that education and health are at the heart of individual and community advancement. Careers in these sectors are more than jobs, they are driven by passion and purpose. Saint Joseph’s programs, therefore, challenge students to embrace the Jesuit concept of cura personalis — care for the whole person.
The School of Health Studies and Education offers traditional and adult learners an opportunity to pursue undergraduate degree programs, graduate programs, and certificate programs. Students are encouraged to understand themselves as reflective practitioners in the context of a global community and to develop collaborative skills through inter-professional experiences. Using the resources available within Saint Joseph University’s unique urban and suburban environment, students engage in real world experiences through service learning, internships, and clinical practice.
- MA in Educational Leadership
- A flexible online program for adults working as teachers as well as those in policy, nonprofit organizations, independent or experimental schools, student services, or who seek to advance the field of education at large
- Strong emphasis on social justice and promoting change and equality in the public sector
- Faculty and cohort members who seek to confront tough issues by engaging in conversations and questioning assumptions
- A rigorous, innovative curriculum that will prepare students to become leaders in teaching, administration, policy, and their communities
Located in Oakland, California, in the heart of the San Francisco Bay Area, Mills College is a liberal arts college for women and gender non-binary students, with graduate programs for all genders. Mills has been ranked #1 for Best Value School by U.S. News & World Report and counted among the best four-year higher education institutions according to the Princeton Review for its outstanding academics. The Princeton Review also highlighted the College for its notable LGBTQ+-friendly campus culture and diverse student body. The Fiske Guide to Colleges noted a progressive campus culture in its profile of Mills, and further touted the College as a “magnet for students passionate about social justice.”
The Mills experience is distinguished by small, interactive classes, one-on-one attention from exceptional faculty, a culture of creative experimentation, and cutting-edge interdisciplinary learning opportunities which empower students to make a statement in their careers and communities. As one of the most diverse liberal arts colleges in the country, we have a strong record of academic success with first-generation students, students of color, Latinx students, LGBTQ students, and other underrepresented students.