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Best Education & Teaching Programs in Florida for 2024: Online & On-Campus

For future Florida teachers, finding the right school and program is critical to your academic and career success. Discover below how you can earn your degree or certificate through an online or campus-based program from one of 2024’s best education and teaching programs in Florida.

Author: Ellery Weil
Editor: STEPS Staff

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Teaching in Florida is unlike anywhere in the country. Where else can you enjoy a glass of fresh orange juice before class, teach by the beach or in the shadow of the Disney parks, or teach surrounded by the wildlife of the Everglades? If that sounds appealing, then you may be a future Florida teacher.

As an aspiring educator in the Sunshine State, you’ll need to choose the program that’s the best fit for you to get the bachelor’s degree you’ll need. Florida offers education degrees at colleges and universities large and small, public and private, online and on-campus. Let’s have a look at some of the best education programs in Florida.

Best Colleges to Earn a Teaching Credential in Florida: Campus-Based

For those who want a traditional, campus-based degree, here are some of the top education programs in Florida. While everyone’s definition of “best” will be different, we’ve chosen to highlight these programs in advance of our full 2024 ratings based on academic prestige, course offerings, student support and availability of resources, financial aid and funding opportunities, and more. Have a look and see if one of them might be the school for you.

University of Florida

The flagship institution of Florida’s public university system, the University of Florida offers teaching and education programs through the College of Education. Students choose among a variety of undergraduate and graduate programs, with specializations in early childhood, elementary, ESOL, special education, and more. The University of Florida also offers graduate certificates for students who want to go in-depth on a topic such as computer science education, disabilities in society, dyslexia, and teacher leadership.

As a public university, the University of Florida is partially funded by the state and offers in-state tuition for Florida residents. Even if you aren’t a Florida resident, you may still qualify for financial aid, based on either need or merit, so be sure to apply.


  • Online
  • On-Campus
  • Part-Time
  • Full-Time

Undergraduate Programs:

  • BA Education Sciences
  • BAE Early Childhood Education
  • BAE Elementary Education

Graduate Programs:

  • Master’s in Early Childhood Education
  • Master’s in Student Personnel in Higher Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Bilingual/ESOL Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Computer Science Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Counselor Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Education Administration and Policy
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Educational Technology
  • Master’s/Doctorate in English Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Mathematics Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Reading and Literacy Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Research and Evaluation Methodology
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Science Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Social Studies Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Special Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Teacher Leadership for School Improvement
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Teachers, Schools, and Society
  • Doctorate in Higher Education Administration
  • Doctorate in School Psychology

Specialization Options:

  • Bilingual/ESOL Education
  • Computer Science Education
  • Counselor Education
  • English Education
  • Early Childhood Education
  • Education Administration and Policy
  • Educational Technology
  • English
  • Higher Education Administration
  • Mathematics Education
  • Reading and Literacy Education
  • Research and Evaluation Methodology
  • School Psychology
  • Science Education
  • Social Studies Education
  • Special Education
  • Student Personnel in Higher Education
  • Teacher Leadership for School Improvement
  • Teachers, Schools, and Society

University of Miami

One of the most prestigious private research universities in Florida, the University of Miami offers a variety of education programs through its School of Education and Human Development. This academic department takes a scientific approach to education, heavily grounded in empirical research. Because of this, the school’s undergraduate and postgraduate degrees are a Bachelor of Science in Education (BSEd) or Master of Science in Education (MSEd).

As a private university, Miami’s tuition rates are higher than public schools. However, due to a generous endowment and commitment to student support, the school offers a wide range of both need- and merit-based financial aid for all students. Miami also has no fees for extracurriculars or on-campus activities, meaning that all students can participate in campus culture regardless of financial situation.


  • Online
  • On-Campus
  • Full-Time

Undergraduate Program:

  • BSEd in Elementary Education

Graduate Programs:

  • MSEd in Applied Learning Sciences
  • MSEd in Education and Social Change
  • MSEd in Special Education
  • EdD in Applied Learning Sciences
  • PhD in Teaching and Learning

Specialization Options:

  • Applied Learning Sciences
  • Education and Social Change
  • Elementary Education
  • Special Education
  • Teaching and Learning

Florida State University

Florida State University (FSU) is another major university within the public university system. Its education and teaching degrees are offered through the school’s College of Education, Health, and Human Sciences. As a large institution, FSU offers several highly specialized programs, such as the Bachelor’s and Master’s combined program in Visual Disabilities Education, as well as programs that are unrelated to education, such as sports management.

As a state school, FSU offers in-state tuition for Florida residents in addition to the overall financial aid and scholarship program. Interested students should explore the FSU College of Education, Health, and Human Sciences website to learn more about the degree program they’re interested in. Several online degrees are offered at different academic levels and specializations.


  • Online
  • On-Campus
  • Part-Time
  • Full-Time

Undergraduate Programs:

  • Bachelor’s in Elementary Education
  • Bachelor’s in English Education
  • Bachelor’s in Math and Science Education
  • Bachelor’s in Social Science Education
  • Bachelor’s in Special Education
  • Bachelor’s in Visual Disabilities Education

Graduate Programs:

  • Master’s in Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Master’s in Early Childhood Special Education
  • Master’s in School Counseling
  • Master’s in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages
  • Master’s in Visual Disabilities Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Educational Leadership and Administration
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Educational Policy and Evaluation
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Educational Psychology: Learning and Cognition
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Early Childhood Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Elementary Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in English Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Foreign and Second Language Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Higher Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in History and Philosophy of Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Instructional Systems and Learning Technology
  • Master’s/Doctorate in International and Multicultural Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Mathematics Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in in School Psychology
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Science Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Social Science Education
  • Master’s/Doctorate in Special Education
  • Doctorate in Reading and Language Arts

Specialization Options:

  • Autism Education
  • Educational Leadership and Administration
  • Educational Policy and Evaluation
  • Elementary Education
  • English Education
  • ESOL Education
  • Foreign Language Education
  • Higher Education
  • History and Philosophy of Education
  • International and Multicultural Education
  • Mathematics Education
  • Reading and Language Arts
  • School Counseling
  • School Psychology
  • Social Sciences Education
  • Special Education
  • Teaching and Learning
  • Visual Disabilities Education

Top Online Education & Teaching Degree Programs in Florida

Looking to earn your teaching qualifications from the comfort of home? Online and hybrid degree programs are more popular than ever — including in Florida. When pursuing an education degree online, it’s important to note that many programs require you to do some in-person work, such as student teaching at a school near you. That’s true even if the program is advertised as 100% online, which means you won’t need to go to your school’s campus. While many Florida schools offer online and hybrid education and teaching degrees, here are a few of the top online education degrees in Florida for your consideration.

University of Central Florida

The University of Central Florida (UCF) has an online learning division that ranks in the top 10 for online schools by U.S. News and World Report. Within the education programs, students learn 100% online — with no visits to the UCF campus in Orlando required. If you’re interested in pursuing an online education degree at UCF, you’ll have the choice between two specialized teaching-focused bachelor’s degrees and a wide variety of master’s programs, which include teaching and other educational subjects, such as educational leadership and instructional design and technology. UCF offers online MEd, MA, and MAT (Master of Arts in Teaching) programs.

UCF has a flat rate of tuition for all online students, regardless of residency status, although nonresident students pay a nonresident fee of several hundred dollars.

Undergraduate Programs:

  • BS in Career and Technical Education
  • BS in Exceptional Student Education-Learning and Language

Graduate Programs:

  • MA in Applied Learning and Instruction
  • MA in Career and Workforce Education
  • MA in Educational Leadership
  • MA in Instructional Design and Technology
  • MAT in Art Education
  • MAT in English Language Arts Education
  • MAT in Teacher Education/ESOL
  • MEd in Elementary Education
  • MEd in Exceptional Student Education
  • MEd in Reading Education
  • MEd in Secondary Education-English Language Arts
  • MEd in Secondary Education-Mathematics Education
  • MEd in Secondary Education-Science Education

Program Options:

  • Part-Time
  • Full-Time
  • Fully-Online

Specializations Offered:

  • Applied Learning and Instruction
  • Art Education
  • Career and Technical Education
  • Educational Leadership
  • Elementary Education
  • English and Language Arts
  • Exceptional Student Education
  • Instructional Design and Technology
  • Mathematics Education
  • Reading Education
  • Science Education
  • Teacher Education/ESOL

University of West Florida

At the University of West Florida (UWF), students have a choice among fully-online degrees in education, including bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. UWF’s education programs have a strong focus on curriculum and instructional design, including programs such as their EdD in Instructional and Performance Technology. However this online teaching degree program in Florida offers a wide range of education specializations, from community education to curriculum and instruction.

UWF is a state school, with a significantly lower rate of tuition for its online degrees for Florida residents than for those out of state. However, regardless of your residency status, all students are encouraged to apply for financial aid, with about 70% of UWF students receiving assistance.

Undergraduate Programs:

  • BA in Exceptional Student Education
  • BS in Instructional Design and Technology
  • BA in Interdisciplinary Social Sciences Community Education

Graduate Programs:

  • MA in Exceptional Student Education
  • MEd in Curriculum and Instruction Elementary Education Comprehensive
  • MEd in Curriculum and Instruction Middle Level Education Comprehensive
  • MEd in Curriculum and Instruction Secondary Education Comprehensive
  • MEd in Educational Leadership
  • MEd in Instructional Design and Performance Technology
  • MEd in Reading
  • EdD in Curriculum and Instruction
  • EdD in Instructional and Performance Technology
  • EdS in Curriculum and Instruction

Program Options:

  • Part-Time
  • Full-Time
  • Fully-Online

Specializations Offered:

  • Curriculum and Instruction
  • Educational Leadership
  • Exceptional Student Education
  • Instructional and Performance Technology
  • Instructional Design and Technology
  • Interdisciplinary Social Sciences Community Education
  • Reading

Florida International University

Florida International University (FIU) offers a smaller but highly regarded group of fully-online degrees in education. The two bachelor’s degrees in education offered through FIU Online are specialist teaching programs, while the master’s degree programs include specializations ranging from Special Education to Music Education to Educational Leadership. All FIU teaching degree programs are offered fully online for maximum flexibility and convenience.

Prospective FIU Online students can calculate their likely expenses using the school’s online tuition calculator and may also apply for scholarships. Scholarships available for online students are different than those offered for students in on-campus programs.

Undergraduate Programs:

  • BS in Early Childhood Education
  • BS in Exceptional Student Education

Graduate Programs:

  • MS in Curriculum and Instruction-Curriculum Development
  • MS in Curriculum and Instruction-Elementary Education
  • MS in Educational Leadership
  • MS in Higher Education Administration
  • MS in Music Education
  • MS in Special Education

Program Options:

  • Part-Time
  • Full-Time
  • Fully-Online

Specializations Offered:

  • Curriculum and Instruction-Curriculum Development
  • Curriculum and Instruction-Elementary Education
  • Early Childhood Education
  • Educational Leadership
  • Exceptional Student Education
  • Higher Education Administration
  • Music Education
  • Special Education

Types of Education & Teaching Degrees You Can Earn in Florida

Education is a broad field with a large number of degrees you can earn in Florida, whether you’re starting at the associate degree level or ready for a doctorate. Take a look at some of the different degrees available to you and some of the top education degree programs in Florida where you can earn them.

Undergraduate Teaching/Education Degrees in Florida

Associate Degrees in Education

For those at the beginning of their education career, an associate degree can be a convenient and affordable initial qualification. While you’ll need a bachelor’s to teach K-12 students, an associate degree from a top education program in Florida may qualify you for other education roles, as well as serving as a pathway to a bachelor’s degree.

Accredited Florida Colleges with Associate Degrees in Education

Bachelor’s Degrees in Education

A bachelor’s degree in education, which typically takes four years, is a foundational postsecondary qualification for future teachers. If you complete a bachelor’s in education, whether it’s teaching and learning, special education, or another topic, you’ll have fulfilled many of the Florida educational requirements to become a certified teacher.

Accredited Florida Colleges with Bachelor’s Degrees in Education

Graduate Education Degrees in Florida

Master’s Degrees in Education (MEd)

For those who already hold an undergraduate degree — and may have already started working as educators — a master’s degree in an education-related field can be a way to take the next step in your career, become more specialized within your field, or change careers entirely. Choosing a degree from a top education program in Florida ensures your degree will give you an advantage.

Accredited Florida Colleges with Master’s Degrees in Education

Doctorate of Education (EdD) Programs

EdD degrees are professional doctorates, meaning that they’re intended to prepare education professionals for a more specialized career. These programs typically include a large research component and a thesis and are available at top online and on-campus teaching programs in Florida.

Accredited Florida Colleges with Doctorate (EdD) Programs

Education PhD Programs

While PhD programs are similar to EdD programs in many ways, there are key distinctions between these two types of education doctorates. While an EdD is meant to advance you in your career as an educator, a PhD in education, with its focus on theory, pedagogy, and academic research, is designed to prepare you for a career in academia or educational research.

Accredited Florida Colleges with Education PhD Programs

Graduate Certificates

Graduate-level certificates don’t confer a full degree. However, if you already hold degrees but want to earn a specialization within your field (for example, a licensed teacher looking to work in arts education or gifted education), these shorter options from the best on-campus and online education programs in Florida can help you gain the skills you need.

Accredited Florida Colleges with Education Graduate Certificates

Financial Aid and Scholarships for Education & Teaching Students in Florida

As you prepare to select from among the best education programs in Florida, finances are likely to come to mind. After all, “best” can mean “best for your wallet.” While higher education can be a significant financial burden, there are ways to lighten the load. In addition to filling out your FAFSA for any federal student loans or grants you may qualify for, be sure to look into scholarship and financial aid opportunities, both from your school and from private organizations. You’ll be surprised what you may qualify for — such as this scholarship for future Florida teachers!

Job Outlook and Earnings Potential for Teachers in Florida

Teachers and other education professionals are always in demand in Florida and elsewhere. Because Florida is a large state, pay for educators varies significantly depending on where you’re based. Areas with a higher cost of living, such as Miami and Naples, are more likely to have higher pay for educators than cities like Ocala and Gainesville, which have lower housing costs and other key expenses.

A piece of good news is that educator pay in Florida for secondary school teachers is among the highest in the country. Have a look at a few education professions and their average pay in Florida:

Job Growth Rate
Average Annual Openings (2022)Annual Mean Wage (2023)
High School Teacher1%1,072,300$63,470
Elementary School Teacher1%1,548,400$59,240
K-12 School Administrator1%300,400$90,390
Instructional Coordinator2%216,600$67,280
Preschool Teacher3%512,300$30,990

Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics; Projections Central

Florida Education & Teaching Professional and Student Resources