A Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree is more than an academic credential; it’s a gateway to high-level professional opportunities in the growing educational sector.
With graduate-level learning in leadership, pedagogy, andragogy, diversity, equity, and inclusion, and curriculum development, those with a Master of Education degree are equipped to take on leadership roles both inside and outside the classroom.
Moreover, considering Canada’s education industry is on an upward trajectory — contributing tens of billions to the economy each year — M.Ed. graduates are positioned to benefit from the increased demand for skilled professionals in this space.
Amidst this growth, the EdTech sector stands out, with Global Data research indicating that in Canada, this market has expanded to $1.9 billion in revenues, growing at a CAGR of 13.5% from 2017 to 2022. This surge not only reflects the sector’s vitality but also signals a promising horizon for M.Ed. holders interested in working at the intersection of tech and education.
In this blog post, we’ll take a look at the many career avenues that a Master of Education degree can unlock, highlighting how this degree can function as the cornerstone of a fulfilling career in education.
Let’s get started!
Leadership in education extends well beyond managing a school or district. In addition to handling operations, these roles are about inspiring change, guiding progress, and paving the way for the future of learning. A Master of Education degree equips educators with the expert skills needed to tackle these challenges and lead with confidence and vision.
Let’s take a look at some of the key leadership roles that an M.Ed. can prepare you for:
As the primary leader of a school, a principal plays a central role in determining the tone, direction, and culture of their institution. With a Master of Education degree, a principal is equipped to take on critical administrative duties and spearhead academic initiatives.
- Responsibilities: Overseeing school operations, setting educational goals, and creating a safe and productive learning environment.
- Impact: The opportunity to shape the educational experiences of hundreds and thousands of students.
The vice principal operates as the right hand of the principal, often focusing on more specific areas such as academic curriculum or teacher evaluation. Because an M.Ed. provides the foundation for understanding the complexities of school administration and educational leadership, it’s a degree that prepares students for the challenges of a vice principal role.
- Responsibilities: Assisting with administrative duties, handling teacher evaluations and training, managing student disciplinary actions, and supporting the principal in daily school leadership.
- Impact: Directly influencing the quality of education and the effectiveness of school policies and teacher performance.
Department heads lead specific subject areas or departments within a school such as the English Department, Math Department, and Science Department. They are responsible for driving curriculum development and teacher support within these departments. With a Master of Education degree, you can apply overarching principles of pedagogy, accessibility, assessment, and reflexive practice within specialized content areas and lead your department with expertise and strategic vision.
- Responsibilities: Guiding curriculum planning, facilitating professional development, and advocating for department needs.
- Impact: Elevating the quality of teaching and learning within a specific subject area, influencing both teachers’ practices and students’ achievements.
Director of Education
A Director of Education at a school district, institute of higher education, or learning organization plays a strategic role in shaping the educational direction and policies. This position often requires an advanced degree like an M.Ed. because of the complex decision-making it requires.
- Responsibilities: Setting educational standards and goals, developing academic programs, managing budgets and resources, assessing and implementing educational policy.
- Impact: As a director, you have the potential to enact changes and improvements that can affect the entire educational system within your jurisdiction.
Program Development: Crafting the Future of Education
A M.Ed. can be particularly valuable if you’re interested in the design, implementation, and evaluation of educational curricula in K-12 or adult learning contexts.
Here are some specific roles within program development that an M.
Curriculum developers are responsible for creating, evaluating, and revising curricula to meet the educational needs of students and the instructional goals within a variety of educational contexts from K-12 to higher education and organizations. Most M.
- Responsibilities: Researching educational standards, developing learning objectives, and creating instructional materials that speak to the diversity of learners.
- Impact: Directly shaping what and how students learn, ensuring that content is both relevant and engaging.
Instructional designers work closely with subject matter experts to create educational experiences that are as effective and efficient as possible. Where curriculum designers focus on developing the actual learning content and objectives (the “what”), instructional designers focus on developing the methods and strategies for teaching content (the “how”). An M.Ed. provides exposure to foundational learning theories while providing students with skills in needs assessment and learner analysis, all of which are required knowledge for this position.
- Responsibilities: Following instructional design models like ADDIE,
- Impact: Enhancing the learning experience through innovative design, often for online and blended learning environments.
Curriculum specialists, also known as learning coordinators, work within schools, school districts, and Centres of Teaching and Learning in post-secondary institutions to support educators in implementing curricula effectively. They often play a supporting role to curriculum developers and instructional designers.
- Responsibilities: Implementing and supporting curriculum designed by others, providing training on new curricula, acting as a liaison between educators and curriculum developers.
- Impact: Ensuring educators have the resources and training necessary to deliver high-quality instruction.
A Master of Education degree provides a strong foundation for securing academic research roles post-graduation. Rather than working directly in teaching or curriculum development, these roles focus on advancing educational theory and practice. Because of this, they lend themselves to people who enjoy academic study and prefer to work on high-level research.
Let’s take a look at some of the most common academic research roles available to M.
Educational researchers conduct studies and investigations on various aspects of education, including learning methods, educational outcomes, and policy effectiveness. Typically, their goal is to produce new knowledge within these areas to advance education as a whole. An M.
- Responsibilities: Designing research studies, collecting and analyzing data, and publishing findings in academic journals.
- Impact: Contributing to the body of knowledge in education, which can influence teaching practices and educational policy.
Academic Advisor for Research Institutions
Academic advisors at research institutions guide and support educational research projects, often collaborating with graduate students and faculty members. In many ways, their day-to-day duties are similar to those of an educational researcher.
- Responsibilities: Advising on research design, ensuring ethical research practices, and assisting with the dissemination of research findings.
- Impact: Facilitating high-quality educational research that can lead to significant contributions to the field.
Opportunities Beyond the Classroom
For those with a Master of Education degree, the skills acquired can translate into a variety of roles that extend beyond traditional classroom teaching. Here’s a list of such opportunities:
- Education Policy Advisor: Advises on the development and implementation of education policies at local, provincial, or national levels. Utilizes research and analysis to recommend strategies that improve educational outcomes.
- E-Learning Specialist: Designs and develops online learning modules and courses for educational institutions or corporate environments. Focuses on creating engaging and effective digital education experiences.
- Educational Administrator: Manages and leads various administrative functions within educational institutions, such as staffing, budgeting, and compliance. Plays a key role in shaping the educational strategies and policies of the institution.
- Corporate Trainer: Develops and delivers training programs to employees in a corporate setting, focusing on skill development and performance improvement. Tailors instructional materials to meet the specific needs of an organization.
- Instructional Coordinator: Works with schools and educational systems to develop curriculum and teaching standards. Evaluates educational programs and teacher effectiveness, providing guidance for improvement.
What Salary Could I Earn with a Master of Education degree?
In 2020, Statistics Canada published a study comparing which masters programs were associated with the highest pay in Canada. The results showed that masters degrees categorized under “education administration and supervision” ranked in the top 10 for both men and women. In particular, the median annual earning for men with a masters degree in this category was $95,976, while for women it was $85,497.
Salaries by Role
Now, let’s look at some of the salary ranges of specific roles commonly held by M.Ed. grads in Canada. For reference, these numbers are taken from Indeed.ca.
- Principal: Average salary of $95,481
- Professor: Average salary of $95,481
- Educational Director: Average salary of $75,282
- Educational Specialist: Average salary of $72,997
- Instructional Designer: Average salary of $70,456
Elevate Your Career in Education with Yorkville’s Online M.Ed. Programs
Yorkville University offers two fully online, asynchronous M.Ed. programs, both of which can be completed in as few as two years:
Yorkville M.Ed. Highlights
- Flexible Online Format: Attain your degree with the flexibility to study around your existing commitments.
- Customizable Curriculum: Opt for a course-based or research-based pathway to suit your professional direction.
- Recognized Credentials: Gain qualifications that are respected and recognized for advanced Teacher and Principal Certification in Canada.
- Distinguished Faculty: Benefit from the expertise of seasoned educators, including Interim Dean J. Tim Goddard, M.S.M., Ph.D.
Sound interesting? Speak with one of our admissions advisors for more information.