Written by: Les Kerr
The new Master degree in Instructional Design and Technologies offered by Nossi College of Art will allow students to broaden the scope of their employment opportunities in a variety of fields. Graduates of the degree program will be able to use their creativity and imagination to design learning techniques that incorporate the latest technologies. Those who obtain the graduate level degree will be able to design teaching and training programs for a variety of different environments.
The time is right for this degree. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that the demand for the degree will grow by 11% over the next eight years. Average pay for Instructional Coordinators and Training and Development Specialists who have earned the degree is $63,000 per year. The median annual salary for Training and Development Managers jumps to $108,250. According to Dr. Byron Edwards, Vice President for Academic Affairs, there are simply not enough people with this Master’s degree to accommodate the needs of the current job market.
“The demand is very high right now,” he said. “When I started designing the program, one of the things I had to do was to look at what the demand was and what kinds of jobs were available. I’ve been surprised at the demand.”
Dr. Regina Henry, Academic Director of Undergraduate Programs in the College of Professional Studies at Lipscomb University, agrees. She holds the degree herself and is a member of the advisory board assembled by Nossi College in the development of the new program. Dr. Henry said the degree opens doors to many professional opportunities.
“You will make yourself available for careers in the corporate world and in higher education,” Dr. Henry said.
“As an instructional designer and as a professional in the field, my phone rings often and there is a high demand for qualified talent. I can guarantee that a student that chooses to pursue this degree at Nossi College will have an opportunity [for employment] upon graduation.”
The courses in the degree program were specifically designed to improve learning.
“It’s designed so graduates will be aware of the latest in educational technology,” Dr. Edwards said.
“They will learn how to use the technology to design learning environments and to adapt to whatever audience they have. A lot of these graduates will go into corporate training programs so they need to be able to be creative and adapt what they’ve learned in this degree to the situation in which they find themselves.”
Among those this degree will suit perfectly are creatives looking for more growth potential than their current job allows and professionals who have been in the industry for a number of years but find it is still too early for retirement. For training specialists, this degree will equip them to further educate others while maintaining a better balance between work and other areas of their lives. They will have more control over their jobs and find themselves in a collaborative work environment.
The degree will also fit those who already have a degree but want to expand their horizons. It will open doors to opportunities for them to move up in their pursuit of professional creativity and broaden the potential of increased income.
Twilight creatives, those who have had successful careers, will also find a better work/life balance while passing along their knowledge and nurturing another generation. They will eliminate some of the stress in their own lives while helping others. The new degree will also allow them more opportunities to cut back their workload without retiring
Master’s Degree in Instructional Design appeals to industry
The business community is positive about Nossi College’s new Master ’s degree. Dr. Garrett Harper, Vice President of Research for the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, is also an advisory board member. Dr. Harper said he hears from representatives in a variety of industries, saying
“There are tremendous opportunities for that degree. The professional skills and the advanced training are vitally important in a market like Nashville. We have about a million [people] in the workforce in our area and a complement of highly specialized industries with highly specialized needs. This Master’s Program gives people the ability to advance their careers with technologies that are rapidly entering into the marketplace.”
Dr. Harper went on to say that the balance of technical and business skills offered by Nossi College also gives students an advantage.
“It is that focus that Nossi College brings around creativity, art, technical skills while blending sensibilities about business and the broader range of society and industry that make this new degree so practical,” Dr. Harper said.
Among the courses covered within the degree program are Teaching Techniques, Instructional Design, Instructional Technologies, Digital Learning Environments and Practicum in Instructional Design. All of them, plus other courses, lead to a well-rounded and practical skill set that will allow graduates to excel in many professional areas. Dr. Edwards said the potential for career growth because of the degree is obvious.
“Almost anyone with a bachelor’s degree can fit into this,” Dr. Edwards said. “Someone with a degree in graphic design, for example, could come in and do really well with this. It will probably alter or change the career path of someone with their bachelor’s degree.”
More information about this Master’s Program including curriculum info and teachers involved, please click here.