Online Master’s in Instructional Design Degree Programs: The Ultimate Guide

Tired of looking all over the internet for 100% online master’s in instructional design degree programs? How will you know that you’ve looked at all of the options?

Good news, there is one ultimate guide available to help and you’ve found it!

On this page you’ll find over 85 online master’s degrees in instructional design, online teaching, learning design, instructional technology and related fields in a free, sortable table. You will also discover 11 tips to choosing the best online master’s in instructional design degree as well as the benefits of earning a master’s degree.

Already know how to pick a degree program? Go straight to the list of degrees.

I look forward to hearing from you after the ID Hunter helps find your perfect program. Drop me a note with your success story!

Thanks for the fantastic info you compiled and summarized for others entering the field. Education is a wonderful place to be."

Kathryn Davis - ID Hunter Reader

What is a master's degree?

A master’s degree is the degree awarded by a college or university for completion of the first level of postgraduate studies. This is an advanced diploma for those already holding a bachelor’s degree and wishing to specialize, or grow, within a field of study.

However, many master’s degrees do not require any previous experience in the field. For example, you could have bachelor’s degree in business administration or psychology and easily start working on a master’s degree in instructional design.

Master’s degree studies generally take one-and-a-half to two years to complete when taking courses full-time. Part-time options are often readily available through online schools, however reduced course loads increase the amount of time it will take to complete the degree.

Most online master’s in instructional design degrees require 30 to 36 semester hours of credit.

Benefits of a master’s degree

There are many benefits to a holding a master’s degree, not the least of which is the additional opportunity for professional development. Since a master’s degree also indicates to employers a level of professional commitment, competency and specialization, it can certainly increase your chances of serious consideration for a job when added to your resume.

You may find the curriculum for a master’s degree more engaging and fulfilling than the courses you took to earn a bachelor’s degree. The courses for a master’s degree are much more focused on the subject matter, with fewer classes to simply make you “well rounded.”

The workforce has seen growth in the number of professionals holding a master’s degree, so obtaining an advanced degree can make you more competitive in the field. In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported in 2013 that a master’s degree resulted in a median salary increase of about $12,000 per year above those holding a bachelor’s. A master’s can also result in higher starting salaries and more opportunities for career advancement.

Why earn a master’s degree online?

woman typing for online masters in instructional design degree programs

It's easy to work on an instructional design degree from anywhere

The quality of online education has increased dramatically over the last 10 to 15 years and many highly reputable universities offer courses and entire degrees online. 

The stigma that used to be associated with an online degree is gone. Your diploma will not even indicate that you were an online student. Universities and employers consider on-campus and distance learning students as equals.

For working professionals, earning a degree at a brick and mortar college or university can be nearly impossible. Therefore, many are turning to online education as a solution. Online master’s programs offer students flexibility that would not otherwise be possible in terms of time, location and courses offered.

Earning a degree online makes it possible to take courses any time of the day or night. Courses can also be accessed from any location where a computer with an internet connection is available. You can earn a degree while still taking care of your work and family obligations.

Online programs are often able to offer more course options than traditional colleges and universities as well. This is especially important because many working professionals cannot afford to take time off for advanced education, and brick and mortar schools are less able to schedule courses around a working professional’s schedule.

Online education allows you to pick the right school and program to help you meet your goals. Plus, in an effort to attract students, many universities offer significant discounts (such as in-state tuition) to all of their distance learning students. This lower tuition cost could result in lower student debt which, for most students, is not a small consideration.

​The ID Hunter has assembled an extensive list of 100% online instructional design master’s degree programs that require zero campus visits. Check out the list at the end of this article for an easy way to find online only programs."

ID Hunter

Master of what? Different types of master’s degrees

Different schools offer different types of master’s degrees. The three most common options for instructional design degrees and related disciplines are:

  • Master of Arts (M.A.)
  • Master of Science (M.S.)
  • Master of Education (M.Ed.)

The difference between the three can be subtle when referring to the same field of study.

Some general courses may overlap between degrees making it confusing for students trying to choose between programs. The difference between the three is usually in the degree specific courses that are offered. These are the courses that are tailored to the degree focus.

For instance, an M.A. in instructional design may focus on instructional design in the humanities and arts, while an M.S. may focus on technology and sciences and is often more research oriented.

An M.Ed. may further prepare an educator for work as a teacher, an instructional coach or curriculum design professional within the public or private school system. An M.Ed. is often thought of as a practitioner's degree.

While all three degrees are geared toward instructional design, each offers a different niche or specialization within the general field. The degree that is the best fit will depend on the professional goals of the student.

Later in this article you will discover that two of the three types represent the majority of instructional design master’s degrees.

Culminating experience: Where it all comes together

Just as each college or university and each degree specialization area differs, so does the culmination of each degree. Master’s studies often end with a culminating project such as a thesis, internship, capstone, final exam or practicum. A thesis, final exam or capstone will require extensive preparation, but can usually be completed while a professional continues to work.

An internship or practicum often requires field work. This can be an excellent booster for those just entering a field, but may be more difficult for those already working full-time. Depending on the time commitment, these types of culminating projects may require time off for degree completion.

Many schools offer more than one option for the culminating experience. For example, you might choose to complete a thesis or a portfolio project and an extra class.

Degree requirements will vary from college to college and culminating projects or tests are usually listed in the degree overview.

Many instructional design degrees are available

As you will see from the complete list at the end of this guide, you can choose from many online master’s in instructional design degree programs. Additionally, there are a number of related disciplines that incorporate instructional design into the curriculum.

Whatever your interest, there is an online program that will meet your needs. A few examples of the available master’s degrees include:

  • Instructional Design
  • Curriculum and Instruction
  • ​Online Teaching
  • ​Instructional Technology
  • ​Educational Technology
  • Learning Design and Technology

11 tips for choosing the best online master’s in instructional design degree

You have a lot of programs to sort through when choosing an online instructional design degree. Let’s walk through 11 factors that will help you choose the right program for your goals and lifestyle.

1. What will you be learning? The focus of the coursework is critical!

A thorough review of the courses you need to complete for your master’s in instructional design is essential to choosing the right degree program.

Many programs with the same name require very different types of classes. This difference is often a reflection of the department that runs the program (often a “College of Education”).

The department may have a focus on technology integration, so you may see a greater emphasis on technology. Similarly, a department that specializes in teaching may incorporate more online teaching coursework into the curriculum.

Many programs’ websites will summarize the focus of each course, especially the required core courses. A search through the university’s online graduate school bulletin will often provide useful information about individual courses.

Degree programs consist of several core courses and a group of electives. Depending on the flexibility of the electives, students can customize the degree to further align with their goals.

Many schools offer a bonus by allowing students to earn a graduate certificate while working towards the master’s degree. This is a great option to consider!"

ID Hunter

The certificate may not have the same title as the master’s degree, so you receive an extra resume booster without having to take any additional classes.

The giant list of instructional design master’s degrees at the end of this guide also identifies any related certificates at the same school. For more information on graduate certificates, visit the ID Hunter’s guide to online instructional design certificate programs.

Your educational and career goals will help you decide which program’s coursework is best for you. Find a curriculum that matches your interest to get the most out of your money and effort.

2. Do you have to leave home? Required campus visits

This website focuses on schools that offer 100% online master’s in instructional design degrees, so the programs listed in the table farther down the page should not require any campus visits.

However, many degree programs that advertise themselves as “online” actually require in-person visits. These are usually called “blended” or “hybrid” programs.

For these degrees, the required campus visit might simply serve as an initial orientation. An orientation visit usually only takes place one time, at the beginning of the program. It’s an opportunity to meet the professors and your classmates. Other programs may require that you visit the campus several times over the course of the degree.

Before you apply to any online graduate school, it’s important to verify whether you will ever have to go to campus.

3. Is it flexible? Program pacing and time limits

Schools vary in the way they allow students to schedule courses and proceed through the program’s curriculum.

Many universities let students start a master’s program during any term throughout the year (called “rolling” admissions). These schools usually don’t place restrictions on how fast or slow you work through the coursework. You can take a break for a semester or two and pick right up where you left off.

Other institutions are less flexible in their program pacing. Students may be required to start the program during the fall term and restrict the number of semesters that they are allowed to take a break from school.

What about cohorts?

At the far end of the spectrum are schools that operate in a cohort fashion. Students are grouped together in a group, called a cohort, and they are expected to proceed through the degree program as a unit. The cohort doesn’t allow as much flexibility in course scheduling. Everyone typically takes the same classes during the same terms.

Cohorts are a means of building a community within the degree program. Students will get to know one another very well during the program. If you have to drop out of school for a term or two, you will likely have to wait to rejoin the program until you can cycle into a new cohort.

A cohort program is a fantastic option if you value really connecting with your classmates and possibly building lasting friendships. If you value the flexibility to take time off or to schedule classes at your own pace, you should strongly consider non-cohort programs.

Traditional vs accelerated semesters

Most online degree programs use either a traditional semester approach, where one class lasts about four months, or an accelerated class schedule.

Under the accelerated format, each course is only about eight weeks long. However, you will still complete an entire semester’s worth of coursework in those two months. While the class may not last as long, you may find there is more to do each week.

The primary benefit of an accelerated format is that classes will typically be one after the other (not concurrent) if you take two classes per semester. You don’t have to divide your focus between two courses since they are not simultaneous. This is a great option for students who work full-time.

On the other hand, if you need to take two classes per semester under the traditional four month semester format, they will occur simultaneously. You will have to divide your efforts and focus, but both classes will move forward at a slower pace.

Keep in mind that virtually all online instructional design master’s degree programs place a time limit of around five or six years to finish your degree. That shouldn’t be a problem in most cases. If you take three courses per year, you will finish a 36 semester hour degree in about four years.

4. Master of Arts, Education or Science?

In general, the fact that you have earned a master’s degree is more important than the type of degree (M.A., M.S. or M.Ed.). However, there are a few broad guidelines to consider.

A Master of Education degree is more commonly associated with K-12 and higher education environments. This degree type may be more appreciated in a school environment and is a common precursor to a Doctor of Education (EdD) degree.

A Master of Science degree is generally considered the most appropriate preparatory degree for a PhD program.

A review of the online master’s degrees in instructional design and related programs in the ID Hunter’s comprehensive list shows which degrees are the most common (percentages are approximate).

Types of master's in instructional design degrees

Types of master's in instructional design degrees pie chart

5. Login now or later? Synchronous vs asynchronous classes

The university’s website will often describe the graduate program or coursework as synchronous or asynchronous. It’s important to understand the distinction in order to choose the best option for your situation.

Synchronous courses

Synchronous classes require you to participate at specific times and dates. You are virtually “attending” class online with all of your classmates at the same time. There may even be on-campus students physically present while you participate online.

The meeting time is often scheduled for the evening. This could be an issue depending on the time zone difference between you and the school. Classes usually only require a meeting once or twice a week.

The meetings can take several forms but typically involve a live video conference with the instructor, participating in an audio conference call (think Skype) or taking part in a live chat room.

Asynchronous courses

Asynchronous classes do not require your participation in class at a specific time. You are free to login to the class environment and complete your assignments according to your schedule.

That doesn’t mean you can turn in assignments whenever you like. Most classes (synchronous and asynchronous) have specific due dates and may be organized in week long segments with something due each week. This type of organization helps to keep you from falling behind.

Asynchronous classes may offer you the opportunity to periodically meet live with the instructor or other students on a voluntary basis. These meetings can be a question and answer session or provide additional explanation about an upcoming assignment. The meeting may be recorded and posted online for anyone who missed it live.

So which is the right choice for you?

Consider synchronous programs if you want to develop a more personal connection with your fellow students and the professor. Being “in class” and interacting with the same group of people at the same times each week may help you feel more connected to your school and studies.

On the other hand, if you value the maximum freedom possible, an asynchronous format may be the best choice. Keep in mind that some programs may offer a mix of asynchronous and synchronous courses.

Regardless of your choice, online classes offer a lot of flexibility to schedule your time around work and family.

6. How much is this going to cost? Tuition and financial aid

The dollar cost of obtaining a master’s degree can be high. Fortunately, there are many affordable options available through distance learning.

The first item to investigate is the cost per semester hour. Many programs advertise this cost on the degree program’s website. If you don’t see it there, you’ll need to look for a “tuition” or “admissions” link to try and track it down.

Most graduate school classes are three semester hours long. So you you will need to multiply the semester hour price by three to determine the approximate cost of one class.You will also need to be on the lookout for hidden fees. Some schools add on “technology”, “student service” or even “activity” fees. These costs can be based on the number of credit hours you are taking in a semester or just a flat fee.

Some schools have no hidden fees whatsoever. You simply pay the per credit hour cost.

One of the benefits of online degree programs is the possibility of a tuition discount. In order to attract students, many universities offer in-state tuition to all online students, regardless of residency. You can find some great deals online, often better than what you could get in your home state.

Graduate school courses often cost as little as $400 to well over $1,000 per semester credit hour. Because classes are usually three semester credit hours, a single course will typically cost between $1,000 and $5,000. Some states offer ultra low in-state tuition rates that are significantly lower than $400, but you have to live in that state to qualify.

​In addition to the price per class, you should also consider the total cost of the degree program, and this is directly linked to the number of required credit hours. Most online master’s in instructional design degrees require between 30 and 36 semester hours.

As you can see from the examples below, the cost per credit hour and the number of credits you need to graduate make a substantial difference in the total cost of the degree.

Cost of an online instructional design master's degree

Cost of an online instructional design master's degree bar chart

​Note that graduate school courses are often a little more expensive than the undergraduate courses, so make sure you look at the correct rate for your program.

Student Aid

Traditional financing is usually available to students enrolled in an online master’s degree program. You may be eligible for federal financial aid and private student loans.

However, if you haven’t been formally accepted into the graduate program (such as students only pursuing a graduate certificate), you probably will not be eligible for federal financial aid.

Your status as a full or part-time student can also impact your financing choices. Definitely check with the school about possible financial aid, assistantships and scholarship opportunities.

7. How long will this take? Program length

Virtually of the master’s degree programs highlighted at the ID Hunter require between 30 and 36 semester hours. This equates to about 10 to 12 individual courses.

There are no programs that require fewer than 30 semester hours.

Many universities boast that a student can complete a master’s degree within one to two years. That is definitely possible as a full-time student, especially if you take two classes per semester during the fall, winter and summer terms.

A part-time student may decide to take an additional one to three years to complete the degree. Remember that most programs place a time limit of around five or six years to wrap up your coursework.

8. You graduated from where? Institution and accreditation

You should consider the reputation and name recognition value of the university you are considering. Some people place a high value on going to a nationally recognized school. On the other hand, a regional or for-profit university may work best for you.

What do you believe potential future employers will think of your degree and school? There are a number of websites that actually rank universities. You may gain some insight into the reputation of a school by checking these lists (the most well known is by U.S. News and World Report).

University accreditation is your way of confirming a school is legitimate and not just a diploma mill. In the United States, “regional” accreditation is the best and most common form of recognition. Examples of regional accreditation authorities are “The Higher Learning Commission” and the “Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges”.

“National” is the second most widely seen form of accreditation. This is not as prestigious as regional accreditation and could be cause for concern and further research. An example of a national authority is the “Distance Education Accrediting Commission”.

It may be difficult to transfer any credits earned at a non-regionally accredited school (such as a nationally accredited university) to a regionally accredited one. It is probably not a good idea to enroll in a school without regional or national accreditation.

Most institutions make their accreditation status easy to find on their website. It’s often located in the “About Us” link. You can also check a school’s current accreditation status on the U.S. Department of Education’s website.

9. Do you have to write a thesis? Different culminating experiences

All online master’s programs conclude with some form of culminating experience. A thesis, (an in-depth and original scholarly work) is what many people associate with a master’s degree and it causes a good bit of apprehension.

If the idea of writing a thesis is a deal breaker for you, then here is some good news. There are many master’s programs that do not require a thesis!"

ID Hunter

Instead of a thesis or a final comprehensive exam, many programs now focus the culminating project on real world experience. For example, it could be an internship or a capstone project that requires you to use instructional design to solve a problem for a company, non-profit, school, etc.

A real world project even provides experience that you can put on your resume. If you are a full or part-time employee in addition to being a student, be sure to check with the school to see if a culminating experience project will conflict with your work obligations. For example, an internship could require approximately 120 hours of work during the semester.

If you are considering one day earning a doctorate degree, a thesis will probably be a good option for you. Otherwise, working on a project may prove to be the best option to enhance your job hunting qualifications.

10. How hard is it to get started? Application process and qualifications

Instructional design master’s degrees do not require any specific undergraduate major and they typically encourage applications from students with all types of educational backgrounds. However, you should pay attention to any mandatory prerequisite classes. It is pretty uncommon, but a few programs may require one or two extra classes if you are new to the field.

In many respects, the application process will be similar for most of the degree programs. In addition to a bachelor’s degree, you will likely need to provide:

  • Transcripts
  • Resume
  • ​References (academic and/or professional)
  • ​A one to two-page essay
  • Application fee

A few programs require an interview (sometimes just with an admissions counselor) and there are a couple of schools that require professional experience. These are the exceptions though.

Do you have to take the GRE?

The main difference in the application process between schools is whether you will have to submit a score on an admissions test, usually the GRE or MAT. If you already took one of these tests, scores are valid for five years unless a particular graduate school has a stricter timeframe.

The list of degrees on the ID Hunter will identify if a test is required. About 25% of the programs require an admissions test. However, there are exceptions in several programs:

Some schools that expect the GRE or MAT will waive the requirement if your undergraduate GPA is above a minimum level (approximately 2.75 to 3.25). Otherwise, you have to take a test. These schools are listed in the table as not requiring an admissions test.

On the other hand, some schools that require the GRE or MAT may waive the test based on your professional experience.

You should not rule out a master’s program simply because you have to take the GRE. There are many study guides available and your score will only be part of the admissions decision.

11. What are students saying? Check online reviews

Just like you read reviews of products before you buy them, a little internet research may help you find some useful information about instructional design master’s degrees.

Blogs and forums may have discussions about the program that interests you. For example, students interested in instructional design, online teaching, and e-learning degrees can check out the Articulate forum. A search for the school you are interested in could provide some revealing information.

Another idea is to search the internet for former students who list their degree on an online resume. Many former students would be happy to discuss their opinion about the master’s degree program if you reach out to them.

Search Degrees - Are you ready to find a 100% online master’s in instructional design degree program?

You can browse the extensive table below to look at a variety of online master’s programs. In addition to instructional design degrees, you will find a variety of related fields that include instructional design in the coursework.

Each column can be sorted and filtered. Are you specifically looking for an instructional design degree? The “Degree Title” column is already sorted alphabetically, but you can click any column header to rearrange the list.

Warning! Not all instructional design master’s degrees begin with the words “instructional design” so the filter method is very useful. For example, you may miss a degree called “Online Teaching and Instructional Design” if you just arrange the list alphabetically. Type “instructional design” or another term in the field at the top of the title column to show any degree with that word or phrase in the title.

See the important notes after the table!

Find a broken link or want to provide a program update? Do you know of another online master’s in instructional design degree program that should be added to the table? Contact me."

ID Hunter

Last Updated April 2019

Degree Title School Sem. Hours Adm. Test Related Certificate
Degree Title School Sem. Hours Adm. Test Related Certificate
Instructional Design and Technology (M.Ed) American College of Education 31 None None
Instructional Design and Technology (M.Ed.) American InterContinental University 32 None None
Instructional Design and Learning Analytics (M.S.) American University 36 None None
Educational Media - Instructional Technology (M.A.) Appalachian State University 36 GRE or MAT Online Learning and Professional Development
Educational Technology (M.Ed.) Arizona State University 30 None None
Teaching and Learning with Technology (M.A.) Ashford University 30 None None
Instructional Design and Technology (M.S.) Ashford University 36 None None
Instructional Technology (M.Ed.) Auburn University - Montgomery 33 GRE or MAT None
Instructional Technology (M.S.) Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania 33 None eLearning Developers
Organizational Performance and Workplace Learning (M.S.) Boise State University 36 None Workplace Instructional Design or Workplace E-Learning and Performance Support
Educational Technology (M.S.) Boise State University 33 GRE Online Teaching
Master of Educational Technology Boise State University 33 None Online Teaching
Instructional Design and Technology (M.S.) Brandeis University 30 None None
Online Teaching and Learning (M.S.) California State University - East Bay 30 None Online Teaching and Learning
Instructional Design and Technology (M.S.) California State University - Fullerton 30 None None
Instructional Design for Online Learning (M.S.) Capella University 32 None None
Learning Technologies (M.S.) Drexel University 30 None Instructional Design
Instructional Technology (M.S.) East Carolina University 36 GRE or MAT Computer-Based Instruction or Distance Learning and Administration
Learning Technology and Design (M.A.) Eastern Michigan University 30 None Learning Technology and Design or Online Teaching
Instructional Design and Technology (M.S.) Emporia State University 36 None eLearning and Online Teaching
Instructional Systems and Learning Technologies (M.S.) Florida State University 36 GRE Online Instructional Development
Instructional Technology (M.S.) Fort Hays State University 36 None None
Instructional Design & Learning Technology (M.S.) Franklin University 32 None Instructional Design
Instructional Design and Technology (M.S.) Full Sail University 36 None Instructional Design and Technology
Education and Human Development - Educational Technology Leadership (M.A.) George Washington University 36 None Instructional Design, E-Learning, +2 more
Instructional Design and Technology (M.S.) Georgia State University 36 None Instructional Design and Technology
Learning Technologies and Media Systems (M.S.) Harrisburg University of Science and Technology 36 None Instructional Design
Instructional Systems Technology (M.S.Ed.) Indiana University 36 GRE Instructional Systems Technology
Educational Technology (M.Ed.) James Madison University 30 None eLearning or Educational Technology
Curriculum and Instruction (M.S.) Kansas State University 31 None Online Course Design
Instructional Design and Technology (M.S.) Kaplan University 33 None None
Educational Technology Kent State University 30 None Online and Blended Learning and Teaching
Instructional Technology Management (M.S.) La Salle University 36 None Instructional Technology Management
Online Teaching and Instructional Design (M.S.) Lenoir-Rhyne University 33 GRE or MAT Online Teaching and Instructional Design
Instructional Design and Technology (M.A.) Miami University 30 None None
Educational Technology (M.S.) Minnesota State University - Mankato 34 None Instructional Design and Technology
Instructional Technology (M.S.) North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University 33 GRE None
Digital Learning and Teaching (M.Ed. or M.S.) North Carolina State University 30 None Teaching, Training, and Educational Technology
Technology Education (M.Ed.) North Carolina State University 30 None Teaching, Training, and Educational Technology
Training and Development (M.Ed.) North Carolina State University 36 None Teaching, Training, and Educational Technology
eLearning and Instructional Design (M.Ed.) Northeastern University 30 None eLearning and Instructional Design
Educational Technology - Adult Learning and Training (M.Ed.) Northern Arizona University 30 None Educational Technology
Lifelong Learning and Adult Education (M.Ed.) Penn State World Campus 30 GRE or MAT Distance Education
Online Instructional Design (M.Ed.) Plymouth State University 33 None Online Instructional Design
Education in Learning Design and Technology (M.S.) Purdue University 33 None None
Education - Instructional Design and Technology (M.S.) Saint Joseph’s University 36 None Instructional Technology Specialist
Instructional Design (M.S.) Saint Leo University 36 None Instructional Design
Learning Design and Technology (M.Ed.) Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota 30 None None
Learning Design and Technology (M.A.) San Diego State University 30 GRE Instructional Technology or Instructional Design
Information Media Program - Instructional Design and Training (M.S.) St. Cloud State University 39 None Design for E-Learning or Instructional Technology
Instructional Design and Educational Technology (M.S.) Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi 36 None None
Instructional Technology (M.Ed.) Texas Tech University 39 None None
Curriculum Development & Instructional Technology (M.S.) University at Albany, State University of New York 30 None Online Learning and Teaching
Educational Foundations and Leadership - Instructional Technology (M.A.) University of Akron 30 None e-Learning
Instructional Design and Development (M.S.) University of Alabama - Birmingham 30 None None
Educational Technology (M.S.) University of Arizona South 36 None Instructional Design and Technology
Educational Technology (M.Ed.) University of Arkansas 34 None None
Instructional Design and Technology (M.A.) University of Central Florida 39 None E-Learning, Instructional Design for Simulations or e-Learning Professional Development
Educational Technology (M.S.) University of Central Missouri 30 None Online Teaching and Learning
Instructional Design and Technology (M.Ed.) University of Cincinnati 30 None Blended and Online Learning and Teaching
Instruction and Curriculum (M.Ed.) University of Florida 36 GRE Instructional Design or Online Teaching and Learning
Learning, Design, and Technology, Instructional Design and Development (M.Ed.) University of Georgia 36 GRE or MAT e-Learning Design
Curriculum and Instruction - Learning, Design, & Technology (M.Ed.) University of Houston 30 GRE Online Teaching and Learning or Designing and Developing Educational Multimedia
Instructional Systems Design (M.S.) University of Kentucky 30 None Distance Education
Educational Technology Leadership (M.Ed.) University of Louisiana - Monroe 36 GRE None
Instructional Technology (M.Ed) University of Maine 33 None Instructional Design
Instructional Systems Development (M.A.) University of Maryland - Baltimore County 36 None Instructional Systems Development, Instructional Technology or Distance Education
Instructional Design (M.Ed.) University of Massachusetts - Boston 36 MAT Instructional Technology Design
Educational Technology (M.A.) University of Michigan - Dearborn 30 None Online Teaching
Information Science and Learning Technologies (M.Ed.) University of Missouri 30 None Online Educator
Instructional Systems Technology (M.Ed.) University of North Carolina - Charlotte 36 GRE or MAT Instructional Systems Technology - Training and Development or Online Learning and Teaching
Instructional Technology (M.S.) University of North Carolina - Wilmington 36 GRE or MAT Instructional Technology or Online Teaching and Learning
Instructional Design & Technology (M.Ed. or M.S.) University of North Dakota 34 None Instructional Design and Technology
Learning Technologies (M.S.) University of North Texas 36 None None
Education - Adult Education and Training (M.A.) University of Phoenix 34 None None
Curriculum and Instruction - Instructional Technology (M.Ed.) University of South Florida 33 None Distance Education
Instructional Technology (M.S.) University of Southern Mississippi 30 GRE None
Instructional Technology (M.S.) University of Tennessee 33 None Online Teaching and Learning
Educational Technology (M.Ed.) University of Texas – Rio Grande Valley 36 None E-Learning
Instructional Design and Technology (M.Ed.) University of West Florida 36 GRE, MAT, or GMAT None
Education (M.S.) University of Wisconsin – Stout 30 None Instructional Design or E-learning and Online Teaching
Instructional Technology (M.A.) Virginia Tech 30 None None
Instructional Design and Technology (M.S.) Walden University 30 None Instructional Design and Technology
Design and Performance Systems (M.Ed.) Wayne State University 31 None Online Teaching
Instructional Design and Technology (M.Ed.) West Texas A&M University 36 None None
Instructional Design (M.Ed) Western Governors University 30 None None
Instructional Design and Technology (M.S.) Western Illinois University 32 None Instructional Design and Technology
Instructional Design (M.S.) Western Kentucky University 30 None Instructional Design
Instructional Design for Digital Learning (M.Ed.) Wright State University 30 GRE or MAT Instructional Design for Digital Learning


  • All of the master’s programs listed above should be 100% online.
  • Schools in some states are not allowed to offer online courses to residents of certain other states. Check with the admissions office to see if your residency will affect your admissibility.
  • Some schools may require the GRE or MAT only if your undergraduate GPA is beneath a certain level. These schools are listed in the table as not requiring an admissions test. Some schools that require the GRE or MAT may waive the test based on professional experience.
  • Many schools offer in-state tuition for students taking online classes. Tuition rates change regularly so be sure you have the most recent information.
  • Several degree programs use quarter hours and these have been converted to semester hours.
  • The program list does not include degrees specifically intended for K-12 teacher licensing. It does include degrees that are not called “Instructional Design” as long as they have an instructional design component.
  • All master’s degree programs require a four-year bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution for admission.

All of the information above is subject to change. You must confirm all details with the school to ensure you have the most recent information.

Check back periodically to see if there are any new online master’s in instructional design degree programs available!