What Can I Expect from an Online Master’s in Training And Development Program?

A master’s degree program in training and development equips graduates with leadership and communication skills necessary to work in corporate education and human resource environments. Those who specialize in this area assess a company’s goals and current performance to create training programs for employees. These programs help improve their skills and competence levels while also helping them become more effective.

Online master’s programs in training and development offer the same academic rigor and quality as an on-campus degree, but in a more convenient format. Distance learners can take classes at their own pace while balancing other personal demands, such as work and family.

When researching online master’s programs in training and development, it’s important to find the one that coincides with your personal career goals.

Concentrations Offered for an Online Master’s in Training And Development

CONCENTRATION DESCRIPTION POSSIBLE CAREERS THIS CONCENTRATION PREPARES FOR
Human Resources Learn the skills and responsibilities of an HR manager, including the planning, directing and coordinating of an organization’s administrative functions HR Manager
Research & Assessment Focus on respected research methods and methods for assessment before, during and after training programs. Training Coordinator

Curriculum for an Online Master’s in Training And Development

While specific courses vary by concentration area and your chosen online program, master’s programs in training and development all cover similar core subject areas, including human resources, research and assessment, consulting and other topics related to adult learners. Common courses include:

COURSES DESCRIPTION
Adult Learning Analyzes the psychological and sociological concepts related to adult learning. In the context of training and development, this course likely focuses on these concepts’ application to instructional development and delivery.
Ethics Learn the theories behind values-based leadership through the analysis of case studies that present genuine ethical dilemmas. A course like this also helps students develop skills in effective communication and facilitation of positive discussions among diverse groups.
Strategic Workforce Planning Often called SWP, this course teaches students how to use SWP strategies to support organizational goals through a talent management system. It typically covers SWP models, components, processes, evaluation and implementation of successful corporate training programs.
Integrating Technology An overview of the best ways to integrate technology into a training program with consideration to desired outcomes, adult learner needs and available resources.
Consultants in Development and Training Prepares students to work in training and development firms or be self-employed as freelance consultants.

How Long Does It Take to Get an Online Master’s Degree in Training And Development?

Online master’s degrees in training and development typically involve 30-36 credits of courses. The length varies by program and chosen concentration, but most students can complete these types of programs within two years. Most online master’s degree programs in training and development are completed entirely online and don’t usually involve a capstone project. A program’s structure matters as well – a cohort learning style, for instance, typically has students take one class at a time with the same small group of classmates. This is an attractive option for part-time learners.

Certifications and Licenses an Online Master’s in Training And Development Prepares For

CERTIFICATION DESCRIPTION
Society for Human Resource Management This organization provides standard and senior professional certifications for training and development specialists. These exams test candidates in 15 human resource knowledge areas and eight behavioral competencies.
Human Resource Certification Institute HRCI provides eight certificates for development and training specialists. Exams are based on geographic categories and degree levels, and candidates can pick from these based on their career goals.

Accreditation for Online Master’s in Training And Development

In general, accreditation for programs and schools ensures institutions and the programs they offer meet minimum standards of quality for academics, faculty credentials and campus resources, among others. Colleges and universities in the U.S. earn regional accreditation from one of six organizations, depending on their location. For example, a higher education institution in Texas receives its accreditation credentials from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

Online master’s programs in training and development may receive field-specific accreditation from organizations such as the Society for Human Resource Management and the Human Resource Certification Institute, both of which deliver certifications in the field based on exam results.

Employment Outlook for Master’s in Training and Development Graduates

Job Placement: Master’s v. Bachelor’s

A master’s degree in training and development opens up a wealth of job opportunities, and it’s often a minimum educational requirement for those interested in taking on corporate training roles. Entry-level positions may only require a bachelor’s, but most specialist and training roles require a master’s.

Expected Salary

As with any industry, overall pay is dependent on experience level and skills. Location, employer, sub-field, and education level are also big factors that affect salary. Below are the overall salaries for popular careers individuals choose with a training and development master’s degree.

Source: PayScale.com

The type of industry that training and development specialists work in also makes a difference when it comes to salary. Below is a table of top-paying industries for training and development specialists.

Annual Mean Wages of Training and Development Specialist in Various Industries

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Career Opportunities

Online master’s degree programs in training and development prepare students to become organizational leaders and educators. They help enhance the performance of individual employees by providing corporate training programs and counseling that adhere to specific goals of their corporate clients.

JOB TITLE JOB DESCRIPTION MEDIAN SALARY PROJECTED GROWTH RATE
Compensation, Benefits and Job Analysis Specialists Compensation specialists typically work in a company’s human resources department and oversee employee compensation and related benefits, including salary schedules and retirement plans. They also may assess company’s benefits policies to ensure they meet federal, state and local regulations. $62,680 per year 9%
Human Resources Managers HR managers direct, plan and coordinate administrative functions in an organization. They often oversee recruiting, interviewing and hiring of new staff members, work with executives on strategic planning and provide a link between management and employees. $110,120 per year 9%
Training and Development Managers The responsibilities of a training and development manager include to manage staff, assess job performance and create training programs that help enhance employee effectiveness. They typically design each component of a training program, including instructional materials and learner participation strategies. Sometimes they may oversee a group of training and development specialists, who may help administer the trainings. $108,250 per year 10%
Instructional Coordinators Instructional coordinators usually work in educational settings, and help principals and teachers develop curricula and maintain teaching standards according to state and local government regulations. Part of their job is also usually assessing student test data to assess school performance and recommend changes as necessary. $63,750 per year 11%
Training and Development Specialists Typically working under training and development managers, these specialists help coordinate and administer programs that train employees to help improve their skills and knowledge in certain areas. They work in nearly every industry, and spend a lot of their time working with people, leading training activities and giving presentations. $60,360 per year 11%

Professional Organizations

Professional organizations provide those with a master’s in training and development with a host of resources and career support. Many professional organizations have a yearly membership fee that provides individuals with access to exclusive materials, invitations to conferences, job boards and other professional development opportunities. Below are some professional organizations present in the corporate training and development space.

American Management Association: First founded in 1913, the American Management Association (AMA) is one of the most popular and recognized training organizations in the world. They provide memberships for both professionals and students and offer specific resources and training programs.

Association for Talent Development: ATD provides members with access to training programs and classes, including self-paced courses and online classes. They also provide discounts to conferences and an active job board.

National Career Development Association: The NCDA is a professional organization specifically for career counselers, and they advocate for industry rights through advenues such as policy initiatives and educational programming. They also offer a host of professional development opportunities, including webinars, in-person sessions and a multitude of certifications.

Society for Human Resource Management: The SHRM is one of the largest organizations specifically for HR professionals. They help certify schools and individuals through their accreditation program. SHRM members receive benefits such as access to eLearning and training opportunities, career guides and job placement assistance.

Financing Your Online Master’s in Training And Development

Although online classes are generally less expensive than courses taken in-person on a campus, many students still need some financial assistance to help them pay for their education. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form is a good place to start – filling it out and submitting it provides you with information about grants, scholarships, loans and other forms of financial aid available to you through the U.S. government. Nonprofit organizations, companies and even individual schools also may have their own scholarships that you can apply for. Be sure to investigate the specific program you’re interested in to find out if they offer any financial aid. You can also consult the resources listed below to help you.

Resources

Scholarships

Scholarships

Details

Susan R. Meisinger Fellowship for Graduate Study in HR

Award: Up to $10,000

Deadline: August 15

Eligibility: Fill out the online application, submit reference letters, acceptance letter to master’s degree program, and a copy of your current resume.

GetEducated.com Distance Learning Scholarship

Award: $1,000

Deadline: October and March

Eligibility: U.S. citizens enrolled in an accredited online degree program and have a GPA of 3.0.