According to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, training and development specialists are “high employment prospects for Ohio.” In Ohio, this group ranks 18th in the top 50 fastest-growing occupations; nationally, it’s ranked 13th. The Bachelor of Science in Teaching and Training Technical Professionals provides individuals working in technical and paraprofessional fields, who hold an associate degree or equivalent, the opportunity to teach and train adults for this growing job market. The program is offered fully online, and students can transfer all of their general education coursework and technical field coursework from other colleges and universities for a total of 96 hours of transfer credit. The last 32 credit hours are offered completely online through The University of Akron, College of Education.
This bachelor’s degree has existed since 1970 through the Department of Educational Foundations and Leadership within the College. Program graduates enter this growing job market without ever having to leave their current place of employment. The Department boasts a 97 percent rate of online degree completion in this program.
The second fully online degree that the University of Akron offers is the Master of Science in Teaching and Training Technical Professionals. This degree is for people with a wider range of backgrounds who are interested in working in business and industry, community agencies and higher education. According to O*Net OnLine, instructional design is one of the fastest-growing occupations in the country. In Ohio, there has been a 20 percent growth in this field. Nationally, instructional designer jobs are ranked 27th of the top 50 career opportunities; in Ohio, the field is ranked 23rd of the top 50 fastest-growing occupations.
Enrollment in this program has tripled since online courses have been offered. Most students in this program work full-time and attend classes part-time online, with most taking two courses per semester. Graduate assistantships are available for students interested in working full-time with opportunities in instructional design. The demand for graduate technicians and paraprofessionals to teach adults at the postsecondary level and conduct training in business and industry varies by technical area.
Both degree programs are anchored in a solid knowledge of adult learning theories, curriculum development, instructional techniques, learning assessment, cutting-edge educational technologies, leadership skills, and a smooth delivery of learning experiences. Degree candidates are challenged to use and learn new and emerging instructional technology for both learning and instruction. Graduates of the Teaching and Training Technical Professionals program are employed as trainers in business and industry; faculty in two-year colleges; academic advisors; supervisors who need to train others; and learning leaders in the military, government and community agencies.
University of Akron alumni speak highly of the degree program.
“The course work and instruction for this degree were extremely relevant for my work – a blending of education and business,” said Cheryl Beckwith, coordinator of workforce development and continuing education at The University of Akron, and a 2006 graduate of the Teaching and Training Technical Professionals program. “I develop corporate training programs for employees, create noncredit courses for the community and structure professional development seminars and workshops for recertification. I also interview and hire trainers. I learned how to identify needs for training; analyze gaps in the workforce; and build curriculum and instruction with competencies, core abilities, objectives, planning and assessments. I became a better teacher-leader as a result of this degree, and now provide in-service seminars for our instructors.”
Click here to view a video of Jean Andrick, an instructor at the Akron Institute, talking about the program.
For those not interested in a full degree, the university also offers a Certificate in Teaching and Training Technical Professionals. For more information about these programs, contact Kelly Chaff at firstname.lastname@example.org or 888-640-9747.