As More Training and Education Moves Online, MS-LDT Grooms Grads for Success as Instructional Designers
SAN DIEGO, Calif. — Talk about the timely launch of a new online master’s degree program! The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated an ongoing trend toward organizations of all types and sizes pivoting to online learning and training. Today, countless corporations, educational institutions, government agencies, nonprofits and others are investing in expanding their online/remote education and training capabilities. These and other factors have fueled a fast-growing demand for skilled learning designers, learning experience designers and instructional designers.
Enter the University of San Diego. Officials at USD always keep their eye on the educational horizon when it comes to creating high-quality online master’s degree programs that meet the needs of working professionals, as well as employers (think: Data Science, Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity, Health Informatics).
The need for a master’s program aimed at helping current and aspiring instructional designers build a successful career in this fascinating and vitally important field was clear, and the university is now accepting applicants for its new Master of Science in Learning Design and Technology (LDT) degree program.
“The pandemic has dramatically expanded learning design and the use of technology to create highly effective education and training offerings that can be accessed remotely,” said Academic Director Lisa Evans. “Fortunately, we began planning our LDT degree program before the crisis hit, so we had a head start. With or without the pandemic, we had already identified this as a crucial area of need.”
“We are very excited to unveil this extraordinary new degree program,” said Chell Roberts, dean of USD’s Shiley-Marcos School of Engineering and Associate Provost for the University of San Diego. “The LDT program connects to the university’s mission of providing online graduate degree programs that are distinguished by academic excellence and responsive to the needs of lifelong learners and working professionals.”
The university anticipates that LDT degree candidates will come from a variety of professional backgrounds, including:
- Working instructional designers seeking to expand their skillset
- K-12 educators looking to move beyond the classroom
- Postsecondary educators and designers
- Business professionals or admins involved in training/onboarding
- Learning and development (L&D) and library science professionals
- Human resources professionals
- Corporate eLearning professionals
- Freelance learning design consultants
- Career changers
The program engages students in developing a comprehensive understanding of the science of how people learn, as well as proficiency in the leading technology tools currently used in instructional/learning design. For example, graphic design software and rapid eLearning software such as Articulate 360 (including Storyline 360).
In the program’s Capstone project, students assimilate their learning into a peer-evaluated portfolio that showcases their technology and design skills and can be shared with prospective employers.
The deeply experienced faculty is another of the program’s calling cards, leveraging the strength of the university’s in-house Learning Design Center with crossover among several key faculty members. The instructors bring to the program an impressive combination of academic and real-world industry experience, including expertise in learner experience design, educational technology, curriculum design, digital media and graphics design, corporate training and leadership in a variety of educational settings.
The degree is designed to be completed in 20 months. Upon graduation, students will be well-prepared for positions that involve creating educational programs, online courses and training materials for educational institutions, organizations and corporations.
All in all, USD’s new LDT master’s degree is a one-of-kind professional growth experience built to groom its graduates for career opportunities that require deep understanding of both learning science and today’s dynamic learning technologies.
About University of San Diego Online Graduate Degrees
The University of San Diego’s online graduate degree programs for working professionals adhere to the same high level of academic excellence, educational rigor, content delivery and learning outcomes as its on-campus programs.
Each degree program has been thoughtfully created in collaboration with key stakeholders and industry experts to offer innovative curriculum aligned with the immediate needs of career-focused students and potential employers. Each student is supported by a talented and passionate team of educators, advisors and staff members that is invested in their success.