ncu-spring-2018-cover-new-degree-programs

NCU Offers New Degree Programs
to Keep Pace with Industry Demands

Written by Judy Tierney


New! NCU Leads the Way with Doctoral Degrees in Data Sciences and Instructional Design

In yet another exciting addition to the University’s leading-edge technology programs, NCU now offers a full Doctor of Philosophy in Data Science degree in its School of Technology and a Doctor of Philosophy and a Doctor of Education in Instructional Design degree in its School of Education.

According to LinkedIn, data science is among the fastest-growing career fields in the country and instructional design is one of the fastest growing in education. Offering degrees in these two disciplines continues to show that NCU has its finger on the pulse of the latest industry trends and is taking scholarship to the next level.

Unicorns and the Demand for Data
A recent report from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and the Business-Higher Education Forum reveals that 69 percent of employers will prefer job candidates with data science and analytics skills by 2021. And with a median base salary of $110,000 and a 4.8 out of 5 overall job score, data scientist was just ranked first on Glassdoor’s annual list of the 50 Best Jobs in America for 2018.

NCU intends to help fill this hiring gap by graduating its own “unicorns” with the expertise they need to help employers use data to make better, fully informed decisions and drive growth.

That’s probably why the Harvard Business Review calls data science “the sexiest job of the 21st century” and Wired suggests data science is a more lucrative career track than medicine.

Yet because people with data science expertise are few and far between, highly paid positions are going unfilled. In fact, employers are even referring to them as “unicorns.”

NCU intends to help fill this hiring gap by graduating its own unicorns with the expertise they need to help employers use data to make better, fully informed decisions and drive growth.

Broad Application for Instructional Design
The demand for instructional design experts is also on the rise. New instructional design professors—all of whom are experienced technology professionals—have joined NCU, creating holistic, hands-on curriculum. A key differentiator: Where other instructional design programs tend to focus on a particular industry, NCU’s program is equally applicable to all industries. Additionally, the University’s program curricula are aligned with the competencies and standards of three different professional organizations: the Association for Talent Development (ATD), the Association for Educational Communication & Technology (AECT) and the International Board of Standards for Training, Performance and Instruction (IBSTPI).

The data science and instructional design programs further position NCU as the educational leader in technology. It’s an exciting time to be in this field and to know that the University has had a direct hand in preparing the most innovative technologists of the future.


NCU Offers Master of Arts in Teaching Degree to TeacherReady® Educators

Great news for teachers! NCU is pleased to offer its Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) degree to all TeacherReady®-certified educators, providing a convenient gateway to a master’s degree and enhanced professional expertise.

TeacherReady is an online teacher certification program for college graduates who want to work in the education sector, but who don’t have an education degree. NCU’s MAT program offers these educators a continuing education option—one that will likely make them even more desirable job candidates.

“As the demand for teachers continues to increase, and turnover among educators continues to be a challenge, innovative programs like this offer the professional development, support and flexibility that the field requires,” says NCU School of Education Dean Andy Riggle, PhD.

NCU’s MAT is aligned with the standards of the Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium, and consists of five core courses and three specialization courses. Specializations include athletic coaching, curriculum and teaching, early childhood education, e-learning, English language learning, reading education, special education, and sport and athletic management.

“For alumni who have earned their TeacherReady certification, this is an opportunity to continue growing and advancing in their chosen field,” says Dr. Sarah Miller, director of student services for TeacherReady. “Providing access to this important profession is core to our mission, and we’re excited by the increased opportunities for our graduates that this partnership provides.”

The MAT program is 100 percent online. There’s no entrance exam, and weekly course starts mean educators can begin the program at their convenience. Upon admission, NCU will award TeacherReady graduates nine transfer credits, which, when combined with 24 credit hours of NCU coursework, allow the student to meet the required 33 total credits to be awarded the MAT.