US News Ranks NC State College of Education’s Online Master’s Programs Among Best in Nation

Wolf statue and the Park Alumni Center.

RALEIGH, N.C. — The NC State College of Education was the only college of education in North Carolina ranked among the Top 15 in the nation across multiple categories in the U.S. News & World Report’s 2020 Best Online Master’s Education Programs released Jan. 14. Specifically, for its online master’s programs, the NC State College of Education

  • ranked No. 8 in the nation for veterans;
  • ranked No. 1 in North Carolina for veterans;
  • earned two Top 15 rankings in the nation in education speciality categories (Curriculum and Instruction and Educational/Instructional Media Design); and
  • earned two No. 1 rankings in North Carolina in education specialty categories (Curriculum and Instruction and Educational/Instructional Media Design).

“Our inclusion in multiple categories in these rankings of online master’s programs reflects the hard work of our faculty to provide greater access to high quality education to teachers and veterans across North Carolina,” said NC State College of Education Dean Mary Ann Danowitz. “This priority area is consistent with our land-grant mission to meet people where they are to improve the educational outcomes of all North Carolinians. I am especially proud of our being able to serve veterans and active military personnel because of the large number located and stationed in North Carolina and their critical service to our nation.”

In its 2020 edition of Best Online Master’s Education Programs, U.S. News also ranked the NC State College of Education No. 31 overall out of 298 colleges in that nation that offer master’s degrees in education through distance education courses that incorporate internet-based learning technologies. The rankings are based on five general categories: engagement, services and technologies, expert option, faculty credentials and training, and student excellence.

U.S. News also introduced this year four new rankings of education specialities offered online at the master’s level that are based solely on peer assessments. The NC State College of Education was ranked in both of the education speciality categories for which it offers distance education degrees:

  • Ranked No. 10 in the U.S. and No. 1 in North Carolina in the Educational/Instructional Media Design education specialty category
  • Ranked No. 15 in the U.S. and No. 1 in North Carolina in the Curriculum and Instruction education specialty category

Through the Department of Teacher Education and Learning Sciences, the college offers a 100% online master’s in learning design and technology and a master’s in curriculum and instruction in several concentration areas via its New Literacies and Global Learning distance education program: K-12 Reading, Middle Grades English Language Arts, Middle Grades Social Studies, Secondary English Language Arts and Secondary Social Studies. At least half of the courses in the New Literacies and Global Learning program are offered online or off-campus.

Both of the master’s in learning design and technology and in curriculum and instruction are designed for in-service teachers.

“Students in these programs are largely professional educators committed to their own lifelong learning to enhance their impact on K-12 students,” Danowitz said. “Through our online master’s programs, they are deepening their content knowledge, improving their instructional practices and applying evidence-based practices to improve outcomes in their classrooms. Understanding how important master’s degrees are to teachers’ professional development, which impacts student achievement, we continue to seek ways to better deliver our high quality programs to educators across all of North Carolina.”

Recently, the college has expanded its online master’s offerings for teachers by transitioning its master’s in STEM education and master’s in elementary education to 100% online.

The online master’s in STEM education, housed in the Department of STEM Education, is designed for in-service educators who want to build their capacity to lead and enhance their impact in one of three concentration areas: Engineering and Technology Education, Mathematics Education and Science Education.

The online master’s in elementary education, housed in the Department of Teacher Education and Learning Sciences, offers specialty programs in mathematics and science for elementary teachers. The science speciality cohort program is the only one of its kind in North Carolina that leads to an “add-on” designation on teaching licenses as a science specialist.