How to Earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Education Administration Online
Pursuing an online bachelor’s degree in education administration prepares students and professionals to work in managerial positions in educational institutions. Educational administrators can work in preschools; elementary, middle, and high schools; colleges and universities; and other organizations offering educational services. They might serve various roles in these settings, such as managing admissions or running specific academic departments.
These occupations offer stable salaries, and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects many of them to expand in the coming years. For example, the BLS projects occupations for postsecondary education administrators to grow by 7% from 2018 through 2028. An online bachelor’s in education administration prepares students to work as postsecondary education administrators and in other roles in the education administration field.
How Much Can You Make in an Education Administration Career?
Graduates with degrees in education administration qualify for a wide range of careers serving various populations. They most traditionally pursue roles in management or administrative services at educational institutions, working as principals, deans, or department administrators. Because education administration degrees blend knowledge from the business and education fields, graduates can also work in administrative positions for corporations, nonprofit organizations, or government agencies with a focus on education.
No degree guarantees a specific position or salary, but education administration degrees qualify students to take on many careers in this field.
Elementary, Middle, and High School Principals
Elementary, middle, and high school principals manage daily school operations by coordinating curricula, overseeing staff, evaluating teachers, counseling and disciplining students, and communicating with parents. They also organize school budgets and liaise with school districts to ensure their institutions meet quality standards. Principals typically need a master’s degree in education administration or leadership and several years of work experience as a teacher.
Median Annual Salary: $95,310
Job Growth (2018-2028): 4%
Postsecondary Education Administrators
Postsecondary education administrators coordinate academic programs, admissions, student services, and research at universities and colleges. The scope of work for these professionals depends on the size of their institution. Education administrators might specialize in admissions, athletics and student activities, or academic programs in a particular discipline. These roles typically require a master’s degree, though some smaller universities may accept a bachelor’s.
Median Annual Salary: $94,340
Job Growth (2018-2028): 7%
Administrative Services Managers
Administrative services managers coordinate and plan daily activities, tasks, and support services to ensure their office runs efficiently. They supervise staff, set goals and deadlines for their department, maintain and manage records, oversee mail distribution, and recommend changes to improve operations. They can work in a variety of industries, including healthcare, education services, scientific services, government, and finance and insurance.
Median Annual Salary: $96,180
Job Growth (2018-2028): 7%
Education Administrators, Preschool and Childcare Programs
Education administrators for preschool and childcare programs direct and plan academic and extracurricular activities for young children and early learners. They organize student enrollment, coordinate staff, plan activities and field trips, and interact with students’ parents. Education administrators at preschool and childcare programs typically need a bachelor’s degree in education administration or business, though some employers may require a master’s degree.
Median Annual Salary: $53,990
Job Growth (2018-2028): N/A
Management analysts advise organizations on how to improve efficiency. They gather information about particular problems, interview personnel and conduct onsite observations, analyze data, and design appropriate solutions. Most management analysts work on a contractual basis for various organizations. They typically hold at least a bachelor’s degree, though some employers prefer candidates with an MBA.
Median Annual Salary: $83,610
Job Growth (2018-2028): 14%
Salaries and job growth rates may fluctuate throughout the United States depending on local economic landscape, industry demand, and cost of living, among other factors. States with the highest concentrations of postsecondary education administrators include Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Iowa, and Mississippi. The highest-paying states for this occupation include New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, California, and New York. The list below illustrates salary and job growth data for education administration professionals in all states.
What Courses Can Be Taken for an Online Education Administration Degree?
Online education administration degree curricula prepare students for leadership and management positions in the education field. Courses focus on leadership, resource management, evaluation, education laws and regulations, and other topics relevant to the daily operations of educational organizations. See below a few examples of courses students may encounter in their education administration program. Students should research their prospective institution and program for specific course offerings and degree requirements.
RESEARCH IN EDUCATION
This course prepares students to understand and analyze research in education, including quantitative and qualitative methodologies, theory, best practices, and evaluations. Students also learn to design their own research projects in the field.
Students in this course explore state and federal laws relating to education. Students examine case studies and consider ethical and legal issues in the context of real-world problems facing schools.
HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT
This course provides an overview of the theory and practices behind the recruitment, selection, coordination, compensation, and evaluation of school personnel such as teachers, counselors, and health and food service workers.
FUNDAMENTALS OF LEADERSHIP
In this course, students receive an introduction to theories regarding organizational behavior and various leadership styles. They reflect on and discuss typical problems facing school administrators, including how to create stimulating and accepting environments for diverse learners.
CURRICULUM MANAGEMENT AND EVALUATION
This course introduces students to a variety of instructional models and strategies, including the latest research in learning theory. Students learn to develop curricula, conduct evaluations, and manage curriculum development on an institution-wide scale.
How to Choose the Best Online Education Administration Program
Several factors come into play when choosing an online education administration program, including school prestige, tuition, accreditation, degree offerings, available courses, course delivery format, and faculty members. Students should research a variety of programs and select one that aligns with their intellectual interests, scheduling needs, and professional goals. Students who want to gain hands-on experience during their degree program, for example, should research programs that embed internship components into their curricula.
What strategies should I follow in choosing my education administration courses?
Most programs publish a complete course schedule the semester before. Browse course offerings in the education department or college, looking for courses that fulfill major or general education requirements. Then tailor your coursework based on your professional interests. For instance, if want to work in early childhood education administration, consider looking for courses in early childhood development. Check in with an academic advisor to make sure you stay on track to complete your degree.
What should I pay attention to when researching faculty?
Faculty members boast expertise in particular professional areas. In your research, investigate whether your prospective professors specialize in your areas of professional interest. These professors can provide personalized advice and might provide mentorship for your career endeavors. If you aim to work as an education administrator in disability services, research programs with faculty who specialize in working with neurodiverse learners.
Should I look for a curriculum focus?
Yes, seek a curriculum that aligns with your professional goals. Many education administration programs offer various concentration options, so focus on programs offering concentrations in your area of interest. Pay attention to curricula emphases, as well. For instance, prospective students interested in education administration research may want to matriculate into a program that requires a bachelor’s thesis.
Are there any difficulties to obtaining an education administration degree online?
Online students in education administration degree programs generally enjoy the same access to courses and faculty as their on-campus counterparts. Distance learners may encounter a slightly smaller selection of courses than traditional in-residence students in the department, but they can still fulfill their degree requirements online. Online programs with internship components typically place students in appropriate internships in their local communities.
How can looking into different education administration degree programs at the same institution be helpful?
Some institutions only offer bachelor’s degrees in education administration, while other schools may offer bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. Considering the availability of these degrees at an institution of interest may prove useful when considering your next steps beyond graduation, since students planning to pursue advanced degrees may want to stay at the same school.
What types of delivery formats should I be looking for in an online degree?
Online courses follow either asynchronous or synchronous formats. Asynchronous courses provide students with more flexibility for completing assignments and watching lectures, as long as they meet the required deadlines. Synchronous formats, on the other hand, require students to log in at set times and participate in live virtual classroom sessions. Students should choose the best format for their scheduling needs.
What are typical degree requirements for an online bachelor’s in education administration?
Online bachelor’s degrees in education administration typically require 120 credit hours of coursework and take four years to complete. Required coursework usually includes major-related courses, general education credits, and elective credits. Some programs require a practicum or internship experience, a capstone project, or a bachelor’s thesis.
Scholarships and Financial Aid for Education Administration Programs
Bachelor’s degrees in education administration often prove costly, but students can consider several payment options. Local, state, and federal institutions offer financial aid, as do private companies. Financial aid can come in the form of loans, work study programs, grants, and scholarships. Grants and scholarships are particularly beneficial because students do not need to pay them back. The table below features a few scholarships available to students majoring in education administration.
Gates Millennium Scholars
The Gates Millennium Scholars Program serves low-income minority students interested in education-related fields, among other disciplines. This need- and merit-based scholarship awards learners with full tuition. Applicants must be high school seniors with a minimum 3.3 GPA. To apply, candidates write a series of essays, submit two recommendation letters, and demonstrate financial need. Applications are due in January.
Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program
Sponsored by the American Association for the Advancement of the Sciences, this scholarship supports students majoring in any field of education. Selected scholars receive full tuition and a stipend in exchange for a commitment to teach for a number of years after they graduate. Deadlines and award amounts vary by state and university.
The Agnes Jones Jackson Scholarship
The Agnes Jones Jackson Scholarship awards $2,000 to students under the age of 25 who aim to pursue an undergraduate or graduate degree and who demonstrate financial need. Eligible applicants must hold membership with the NAACP and U.S. citizenship. They must also enroll in a degree program and hold a minimum 2.5 GPA. Students of color pursuing careers in education or related disciplines are encouraged to apply. The annual deadline is in May.
Barbara Lotze Scholarship
The American Association of Physics Teachers offers the Barbara Lotz scholarship for future high school physics teachers. Undergraduates currently enrolled in an education program with a physics curriculum and high school seniors matriculating into such programs qualify to apply. Awardees receive $2,000 and an annual AAPT student membership. Recipients may renew the scholarship for up to four years. Applications are due in December, and learners can submit the application online.
NEA Jack Kinnaman Scholarship
The National Education Association provides the Jack Kinnaman Scholarship for students pursuing careers in teaching who demonstrate financial need. Eligible applicants must work with NEA’s student programs, demonstrate a minimum 2.5 GPA, enroll in a teacher education degree, provide proof of financial need, and submit two letters of recommendation. Selected awardees receive $2,500. Applications must be postmarked by the deadline in April.