Online Master’s in Science Education Programs 2021

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Science education trains skilled teachers who understand the best methods for instructing science and encouraging students’ curiosity about the world. Focusing on educational theory, teaching strategies, and science content areas, this degree primarily prepares graduates to teach science in K-12 schools.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that high school science teachers earn an annual median salary of $61,660, with careers projected to grow 4% from 2019-2029. Science education graduates can also pursue other science-related careers such as environmental scientist and specialist, earning an annual median salary of $71,360.

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This guide offers an overview of master’s in science education programs, including typical courses, career prospects, licensure requirements, and scholarships.

Top 10 Online Master’s In Science Education Programs

FAQ


  • What can I do with a science education degree?

    A master’s in science education prepares candidates to teach science at the K-12 level. Graduates may also pursue careers such as instructional coordinator or environmental scientist.


  • Can you be a teacher with a science degree?

    Science education master’s degrees commonly lead to state teacher certification, enabling graduates to teach at K-12 schools. However, students should check with individual programs to determine if they meet local certification standards.


  • What is the purpose of science education?

    Science education draws on the latest educational theories and research. Teachers help shape students’ understanding of science and encourage intellectual curiosity.


  • Can you get an MA without a BA?

    All MA programs require applicants to hold a BA. However, some colleges offer combination BA/MA programs that enable students to earn both degrees with fewer total credits.


Why Get a Degree in Science Education?

A science education master’s degree builds advanced knowledge and skills in pedagogy and science content instruction. Many programs also prepare candidates to obtain teaching certification in their state. Master’s degree-holders typically find employment more easily and may command higher starting salaries in the education field.

Many schools host science education programs online, allowing candidates to earn a degree while maintaining a full-time job. Online programs frequently offer tuition rates lower than their on-campus counterparts. Some public schools offer discounted in-state tuition to online students regardless of their state residency. These programs occur primarily online, though students perform in-person teaching activities locally.

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How Much Does a Science Education Degree Cost?



Tuition rates for master’s in science education programs vary widely among schools. Factors including delivery format (online, campus, or hybrid), school type (public or private), and enrollment format (part time, full time, or accelerated) can all affect overall tuition expenses. In general, online programs cost less than on-campus programs. Students can expect to pay $30,000-$40,000 on average for a master’s degree.

Online students may receive tuition discounts, and some public schools offer in-state tuition rates to out-of-state online learners.

Online learning also reduces or eliminates many secondary expenses associated with college. Students rarely relocate for online programs, eliminating moving expenses and a potential increase in living costs. Fewer campus visits also reduce travel and commuting expenses. Online programs help grant students the flexibility to work full time while in school, making it easier to budget for college expenses.

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How Much Do Science Education Majors Make?

A science education master’s degree most commonly prepares graduates for careers teaching science in K-12 schools. Teaching careers offer generally competitive salary levels, and master’s degree-holders typically command higher salaries than bachelor’s degree-holders. Teachers who earn their master’s in science education can often enter the field with a higher starting salary compared to teachers with just a bachelor’s degree.

Teacher salary levels vary slightly by grade level. Kindergarten and elementary school teachers earn an annual median salary of $59,420, while middle school teachers earn a slightly higher annual median salary of $59,660. High school teachers receive the highest annual median salary of $61,660.

Master’s in science education graduates may also enter specialized administrative roles, overseeing science teaching standards and curricula for schools and school districts. These roles typically require a master’s degree at minimum and offer higher salary levels. For example, instructional coordinators earn an annual median salary of $66,290.

Courses in Science Education



A master’s in science education program typically includes two major curriculum components: education courses and content courses. Education courses focus on pedagogical strategies for science education, giving teachers the tools to design curriculum, facilitate student inquiry, and assess learning outcomes. Content courses focus on major scientific fields and concepts, such as physics, chemistry, and biology.

Master’s candidates often demonstrate their learning through a culminating project such as a capstone, thesis, or action research project. These projects typically encompass significant research into an issue in contemporary science education.

This list highlights three common courses in science education programs. Course selections may vary among programs, but this list offers a representative sample of most curriculum models.

The course emphasizes curriculum design theories and methods for science education. Teachers gain the tools to shape student inquiry and education experiences, stressing engagement and active learning. The class also highlights frameworks for establishing explicit learning goals and best practices for assessing learning outcomes.

Assessment forms a major component of contemporary education practice, and this course focuses on assessment strategies for science classrooms. Teachers explore the common purposes of learning assessment, including summative and formative approaches. The course also highlights various student assessment dimensions, including conceptual understanding, inquiry skills, and peer assessment.

Classroom teachers and other education professionals use research to inform teaching strategies and develop education models. Most programs include at least one introductory course on education research that highlights research techniques, evaluation methods, and research data utilization. Teachers explore both qualitative and quantitative analysis and develop their own education research projects.

Science Education Licensure


While a master’s in science education helps graduates acquire the necessary skills to teach in K-12 schools, states also require public school teachers to obtain certification before they begin teaching. Many science education programs lead to initial teaching certification, while others serve current teachers who already possess certification.

Licensing and certification requirements vary nationwide, but many states offer subject area certifications for science teachers. Teachers seeking certification should consult their local state department of education to determine exact certification requirements.

Scholarship for Science Education



For most students, a master’s in science education serves as a professional investment, offering a reasonable guarantee of increased earnings after graduation. Regardless, aspiring teachers can take advantage of additional higher education funding beyond student loans, including scholarships. This list highlights three scholarships for master’s in science education students.

  • American Chemical Society Hach Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Scholarship

    Who Can Apply: The ACS offers this scholarship to chemistry majors enrolled in a master’s in education program with a focus on chemistry or science education.

    Amount: $3,000-$6,000

    Explore Here

  • AFCEA STEM Teacher Graduate Scholarships

    Who Can Apply: The AFCEA Educational Foundation offers this scholarship to graduate students pursuing STEM-related education programs (including science education programs). Applicants must plan to teach science in a K-12 school.

    Amount: $2,500

    Explore Here

  • Hubertus W.V. Willems Scholarship for Male Students

    Who Can Apply: The Poise Foundation offers this scholarship to male students pursuing science-related programs. Graduate applicants should hold a minimum 3.0 GPA. The scholarship committee gives preference to NAACP members.

    Amount: $3,000

    Explore Here

Online Master’s In Science Education Programs 2021



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