Online Master's Programs in Developmental Studies

A master's degree in developmental studies can train you to work with students or conduct research in the areas of literacy education and instructional design. Most of these programs are offered on-campus, although a few online programs are available. Keep reading to see about program options, typical classes and career prospects.

Can I Earn a Master's Degree in Developmental Studies?

You will find a handful of schools that offer master's degree programs in education with an emphasis on developmental studies and literacy. In these programs you can learn how to educate adults, children and adolescents in the areas of reading and writing. You can also learn how to develop coursework, manage learning centers and train other teachers. Some programs allow you to focus on research topics like developmental risk factors and educational social policy. Most master's degree programs will take you 12-18 months to complete.

Program LengthTwelve to eighteen months
Degree FormatHybrid of on-campus and online
Common CoursesProgram planning, second language acquisition, childhood literacy, adult learning theory
Career OptionsResearch, literacy specialist, teacher
Job Outlook 7% increase from 2014-2024 (for all adult literacy and high school equivalency diploma teachers)

Can I Find Any of These Programs Online?

Some schools do offer hybrid versions of their master's degree programs, but these are rare. Students in these programs must attend monthly meetings on campus and complete online course sessions in the interim. An internship is also required.

What Is the Curriculum Like?

A master's degree program in developmental studies will include courses in program planning and analysis, research methodology and assessment measures. You may also take courses on childhood literacy, postsecondary instructional strategies and second language acquisition. Courses in adult education cultural contexts and adult learning theories may be included. Some programs require you to complete an internship, where you help an experienced literacy educator work with adult students and children.

What Can I Do With This Degree?

If you have a bachelor's degree and a teaching license, a master's degree in developmental studies can prepare you to become an adult literacy and high school equivalency teacher, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Professional opportunities for these teachers were projected to grow by 7% between 2014 and 2024, due to employers seeking a more educated work force (

You may also become a teacher or literacy specialist for grades K-12, according to some programs. Graduates also perform research for public and private organizations who help change or establish educational policies. Other graduates continue their academic careers by enrolling in Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) or Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) programs. Emphases in adult education or educational psychology are available.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

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