What are the anticipated positions and careers for Educational Technologists?

Educational Technologists have the unique advantage, especially if they come from a teaching background, of being able to deliver instruction in a way that the learner can handle.

Some positions currently being offered to people in Educational Technology include:

  • technical trainer
  • instructional designer
  • web content specialist
  • curriculum developer
  • multimedia developer
  • educational media designer
  • training and development manager
  • e-learning systems manager
  • technology integration specialist

These careers are not only in education settings such as schools, but also in industries that recognize the need to keep their employees trained and up-to-date.

Teachers are sought-after as workers for several reasons.

Good teachers . . .

  • know how to figure out what needs to be done
  • can do any task well for a short period of time, even if it’s not what they were trained for
  • can find a way to relate to just about anyone on any level
  • are adept at learning their content and imparting it in the most effective way to suit their audiences
  • always have a variety of hidden "extra" skills that come from years of having to "just do it themselves" when resources were lacking

The field of Educational Technology relies on these skills. Teachers often leave the traditional classroom for more lucrative positions, and they are generally well-accepted in all fields because of the traits described above.

However, people who leave other fields to enter teaching do not always find the same success. Teachers just seem to have a knack for being able to identify trouble spots.

You might hear a teacher say:

"People will hit a wall here; it's not obvious what they're supposed to do next."

"These directions don't clearly state the steps for accomplishing the task."

"Why are people being asked to do this? If I wonder, you can bet THEY will."

Teachers can see from the perspective of the user, student, trainee, employee, or customer. Any career that requires analysis of a situation and coming up with a solution to the problem at hand would be a good fit for an experienced teacher graduating from an Educational Technology program.

A final thought:
Energy consumption and its effect on the environment are huge issues in our world today. Educational Technologists may find themselves hired to solve problems involving alternative energy, commute congestion, pollution, conservation of resources, and so forth.

© 2008 San Diego State University, Jodi Kohler, Deborah Lawson, Diane Main, and Kimberly McCain-Correll