Not everyone with a master’s degree in education chooses to teach. There is a range of career options in which the course work acquired in a master’s degree program in education can be applied. These programs, which cover areas such as curriculum development, instructional design, language and literacy, child and adolescent development, and student assessment and evaluation, can be applied to careers in management, instructional design, public policy and more.
A principal leads teachers and other members of a school’s staff. Their background in education helps them understand the teaching and learning process, evaluate the performance of their teachers, improve teachers' instructional skills and oversee the development of curriculum. Principals also discipline students, partner with parents to address behavioral or learning difficulties, review and analyze test scores, manage a school’s budget and ensure schools are safe for students and staff.
Education management is the business side of education. Its purpose is to improve the efficiency and delivery of education to students through effective business practices. It ensures that students are receiving the best education from the best teachers in a cost-effective way. Educational managers, who need a solid understanding of the educational system, instructional delivery and school administration, provide guidance and consultation in a range of topics that include curriculum development, finance and accounting, admissions, student financial aid, human resources, general management and information systems.
Instructional coordinators oversee the development of a school’s curriculum and teaching standards. They evaluate the effectiveness of existing curricula by analyzing student test scores, and use that data to suggest ways to improve teaching techniques and instructional strategies. They also assist teachers in using technology in the classroom, coach instructors on implementing curriculum changes, and oversee the selection of educational materials such as textbooks and computer programs. Instructional coordinators have a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction.
Those that shape the principles and rules that govern the operation of educational systems and their instruction are educational policy analysts. These educational professionals are responsible for developing plans that support education research, evaluation and statistics. They analyze data from school districts and make recommendations on how policy changes can positively impact a state or nation’s educational system. They present their findings, publish their research and attend conferences.
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