“If you are considering studying education online, the best piece of advice I can offer is to make sure that you are prepared to work independently.”Read the Full Interview
I’m interested in studying teaching. What can you tell me?Teaching is a field for people who want to influence their communities in positive ways. Teachers are responsible for educating students aged 5 to 18 in a range of academic and social skills so that they are prepared to be productive adults by the time they finish high school. People are often drawn to teaching because they enjoy interacting with children and teens. But teachers also must be confident leaders who can maintain control of their classrooms. In addition, they must be able to follow the curriculum standards set by their state. So if you want to teach, you should prepare yourself to spend many hours each week planning lessons and assessing your students’ work. If you decide to pursue a teaching degree, you must meet several requirements. You must earn at least a bachelors degree in order to teach kindergarten through twelfth grade. In addition, you must complete a teaching program that is approved by your state in order to earn a teaching license. Finally, you must specialize in the particular subject area, or endorsement, that you want to teach.
Let's hear some other perspectives
“If you are interested in studying English education, I highly recommend that you visit the campuses of prospective schools and speak with the advisors there. A conversation with an advisor will help you to gauge the quality of the school’s English department and determine whether or not a bachelors degree in education is something you really want to pursue.”Read the Full Interview
“Students who are interested in theater must be able to approach the field with a certain level of flexibility and adaptability, especially since you will work as part of a team when you become a professional.”Read the Full Interview
What exactly is a teacher?Teachers are professional educators who help students aged 5 to 18 to grow in knowledge and social skills. They design class curriculums by creating structured lesson plans that teach specific academic skills. They also assess their students’ progress by grading assignments and exams. In addition to these responsibilities, teachers often coach sports or sponsor student clubs. Although the distinction between different levels of education is not always clear, teachers are generally classified according to the age of the students that they teach:
Elementary School TeachersElementary school teachers instruct students from kindergarten through fifth grade, or aged 5 to 11, by introducing basic academic subjects. They usually teach several subjects in a single classroom. Therefore, elementary school teachers often earn their teaching credentials through bachelors degree programs in elementary education instead of concentrating in a particular subject, like history, mathematics or biology.
Secondary School TeachersSecondary school teachers work at the middle school and high school levels to teach students in the sixth through twelfth grades. Middle school teachers, who are sometimes referred to as junior high teachers, build on the skills that their students learned in elementary school and prepare them for high school. Their students are typically 12 to about 14 years of age. At the next level of education, high school teachers instruct 15- to 18-year-old students in a variety of subjects. Secondary school teachers usually earn a bachelors degree in the subject that they want to teach and earn teaching credentials through a state-approved teacher training program.
Let's hear some other perspectives
“I would tell a student interested in becoming a kindergarten teacher that the job requires a lot of work, but the kids make it worth the effort. Children have to absorb a lot of new concepts, and they struggle with some of them. But when you are able to witness the light that goes on in their heads when they get it, it is very rewarding.”Read the Full Interview
How do I know if teaching would be a good fit for me?
Here is a quick quiz to help you decide if you have the personality it takes to succeed as a teacher. Rate, on a scale from 1 to 5, how well each of the following statements describes you.
I like to work with young people.
Teachers spend most of their time working with children. If you do not enjoy interacting with young people, you will not make a good teacher.
I communicate using clear and concrete ideas.
Teachers introduce new concepts to students. You will need to use simple terms and clear examples so that young students can understand you.
I model positive social interaction.
Students often view their teachers as role models. If you want to be a teacher, you should be prepared to be an example of appropriate behavior inside and outside of the classroom.
I am a leader who is comfortable being in charge.
Teachers are authority figures. You must be confident in your words and actions in order to receive respect from your students.
I can think in unconventional ways.
It takes creativity to write a curriculum that interests students. If you are enthusiastic about new ideas, you may enjoy designing lesson plans and projects.
I can keep track of many things at the same time.
Time management is essential to good teaching. You will need to carefully budget your time in order to manage many children, tasks and classes simultaneously.
I am patient and willing to wait for results.
Students usually do not fully comprehend complex topics the first time that they are introduced. If you want to be a teacher, you will need to patiently repeat the same idea many times until students understand.
I stay calm when I am challenged or confronted.
Students sometimes act out in class for attention. You will need to stay composed and collected when you discipline students.
I enjoy interacting with people from different backgrounds.
Classrooms contain students with diverse cultural, religious and economic backgrounds. As a teacher, you will need to be comfortable working with students whose way of life is different than yours.
I like to learn about new ideas and theories.
Teachers are required to take continuing education credits in order to keep their teaching licenses valid. If you cannot commit to lifelong learning, teaching is not the best career for you.
*Note that this is not a scientific quiz. The result is simply my rough estimate of how well I believe your personality matches that of a successful teacher.
By my assessment, a career in teaching is probably not a good fit for your personality. Please go to the Admissions Advisor homepage for a listing of other careers you may want to consider.
By my assessment, although a career in teaching may not be an ideal fit for your personality, if you are willing to adapt in a few areas, you can still find success in the field. Please see the list to the right for information on the areas that you may need to work on.
By my assessment, your personality is a good fit for a career in teaching. Scroll through our site to gain valuable insight into what it will take you to earn the necessary credentials.
Is there anything else I should consider in deciding if teaching is the right choice for me?
Before you devote yourself to teaching, you should consider the licensing regulations of your state.
Teaching License and Endorsements
If you plan to teach in a public school, you will need to earn a teaching license and at least 1 teaching endorsement. The exact requirements for a teaching license vary by state, so you should research your state’s licensing procedures carefully. However, every state will require you to earn a bachelors degree and to complete a teaching program that includes a supervised student teaching practicum. You will also need to earn continuing education credits throughout your career to keep your teaching license valid.
In addition to your license, you must earn an endorsement, which specifies the subject that you are qualified to teach. If you want to teach elementary school, you need to earn a general elementary education endorsement. But if you want to teach secondary school, you need to earn a specialist endorsement, which means that you must choose a subject area to specialize in like mathematics, language arts or biology. Then you will have to pass at least 1 state exam that verifies your knowledge of your endorsement area.
Public Schools vs. Private Schools
Teachers mainly work in either public schools or private schools. The major teaching responsibilities are the same in either environment, but there are a few differences between the 2 workplaces that you should consider when you are deciding where to apply for a teaching job. For example, private schools charge tuition, so classes tend to be smaller than those in public schools. In addition, admission to private schools is selective, so students may be more motivated. However, many private schools are associated with certain religious values, so their administrators usually hire teachers who exhibit the same values. Finally, public school teachers tend to earn more money than private school teachers. And while public school teachers need to be licensed by the state, private school teachers do not.
What teaching professions can I choose from?
If you decide to pursue a career in education, you can teach at the elementary, middle and high school levels. Some of the teaching professions that you can choose from include:
Varies by state from high school diploma to associates (2 years)
$22,200 (Lowest 10% earned less than $15,300; highest 10% earned more than $34,000)
Childcare centers, elementary schools
Teacher assistants help preschool teachers and kindergarten teachers to instruct the class. They usually attend to non-academic duties like supervising free time and preparing and serving snacks. They also help manage students and escort them to classes that do not take place in the main classroom, like physical education and the library.
Bachelors (4 years); public schools require a teaching license
$48,800 (Lowest 10% earned less than $31,700; highest 10% earned more than $76,500)
Kindergarten teachers use games and activities to introduce basic academic concepts like numbers, phonics and simple science to 5- to 6-year-old children. The curriculum that they teach helps students transition from preschool activities to more formal education. Kindergarten teachers may work part time or full time. They often receive help managing the classroom from an assistant teacher.
Bachelors (4 years); public schools require a teaching license
$51,700 (Lowest 10% earned less than $34,400; highest 10% earned more than $80,100
Elementary school teachers are responsible for teaching many different subjects to first through fifth grade students. They plan and teach a curriculum that helps students to develop skills in literacy, arithmetic, science, social studies and computers. They also assess students’ work, lead parent conferences and perform additional school duties as needed, like supervising recess and lunchtime.
Bachelors (4 years); public schools require a teaching license
$52,000 (Lowest 10% earned less than $35,000; highest 10% earned more than $81,000)
Middle school teachers plan and teach lessons to sixth, seventh and eighth graders. Most middle school teachers specialize in teaching 1 or 2 subjects, including mathematics, history, language arts or elective classes like music and physical education. They grade students’ work, communicate with their parents and fulfill other school needs like overseeing the playground and cafeteria.
Bachelors (4 years); public schools require a teaching license
$53,200 (Lowest 10% earned less than $35,000; highest 10% earned more than $83,200)
High school teachers usually teach 1 or 2 specific subjects like geometry or literature to students in ninth through twelfth grade. They help high school students develop critical thinking skills by guiding them through independent work and group projects. In addition to teaching and grading, high school teachers often supervise extracurricular activities and contact parents about their child’s progress.
Bachelors (4 years); public schools require a teaching license
$54,300 (Lowest 10% earned less than $36,300; highest 10% earned more than $80,100)
Middle schools, high schools
Vocational teachers are responsible for delivering lessons about career and technical skills to students. Their teaching methods usually include a lot of hands-on instruction and labs where students can practice skills like welding or greenhouse management. Vocational teachers instruct students in classes like auto mechanics, computer repair and home economics.
Bachelors (4 years) or masters (2 – 3 years of graduate school); public and private schools require a teaching license and special education endorsement
$54,810 (Lowest 10% earned less than $36,600; highest 10% earned more than $86,400)
Elementary schools, middle schools, high schools
Special education teachers help students with a variety of learning disabilities to study and navigate the school system. They work with families and school staff to identify students’ specific learning disabilities, which may include physical and mental challenges as well as learning disabilities like ADHD and dyslexia. They use teaching methods like individual instruction, special accommodations and small group work to help students meet the unique learning goals that are listed in their Individualized Education Programs.
What is the job outlook for teachers?According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), there were about 3,476,200 elementary, middle and high school teachers employed in the United States in 2008. Overall employment for teachers is expected to grow by 13% through 2018, which is about as fast as the average growth for all occupations. Job prospects will be best for teachers who are willing to work for rural or inner city school districts or who teach mathematics, science and foreign languages, which are typically difficult positions to fill. In addition, vocational teachers should see about 9% growth and special education teachers are projected to experience 17% growth.
|Profession||Employment 2010||Projected 2020||Average Growth|
|Middle School Career Education Teacher||14400||15700||9%|
|Career/technical Education Teacher||88600||89600||1%|
|Elementary School Teacher||1476500||1725300||17%|
|Middle School Teacher||641700||750000||17%|
|Secondary School Teacher||1037600||1109500||7%|
|Self-enrichment Education Teacher||252800||305600||21%|
|Elementary School Special Education Teacher||222800||270200||21%|
|Middle School Special Education Teacher||98100||117900||20%|
|Preschool Special Education Teacher||222800||270200||21%|
|Special Education Teacher||222800||270200||21%|
|Secondary School Special Education Teacher||138700||148800||7%|
|Teacher Or Instructor||880500||996600||13%|
|Adult Basic Or Secondary Education Or Literacy Teacher||86900||99600||15%|
Average Salary Growth 2006 - 2011
|Agricultural Sciences Teacher||77190||80280||77770||80790||81760||83480|
|Anthropology Or Archeology Teacher||68240||69420||73410||75530||80040||81860|
|Area, Ethnic, Or Cultural Studies Teacher||63710||67770||70560||75130||76720||79840|
|Art, Drama, Or Music Teacher||58250||61050||65030||68230||70850||72660|
|Biological Science Teacher||82110||84130||83270||87220||86570||86060|
|Middle School Career Education Teacher||46650||48460||50150||51520||54160||56100|
|Career/technical Education Teacher||51050||52250||53700||54420||56010||56330|
|Computer Science Teacher||65000||69660||74050||75860||78190||80460|
|Criminal Justice Or Law Enforcement Teacher||55310||57510||59830||62750||65590||65690|
|Elementary School Teacher||48700||50040||52240||53150||54330||55270|
|English Language Or Literature Teacher||57320||60580||63610||65860||67920||68760|
|Environmental Science Teacher||71980||75220||74610||73700||78490||84140|
|Foreign Language Or Literature Teacher||60050||62540||65280||63300||66520||66720|
|Forestry Or Conservation Science Teacher||66970||67530||67400||72290||81120||82640|
|Graduate Teaching Assistant||30190||30080||31710||32770||34660||33180|
|Health Specialties Teacher||91260||95440||102000||103340||103960||99210|
|Home Economics Teacher||60630||63790||70420||68210||69060||68080|
|Library Science Teacher||57550||59690||61630||64270||66950||69870|
|Mathematical Science Teacher||62790||65450||68130||70550||73480||74460|
|Middle School Teacher||49470||50630||52570||53550||54880||55780|
|Nursing Instructor Or Teacher||58690||60850||62660||65240||66010||67810|
|Philosophy Or Religion Teacher||60180||61700||65140||67610||69150||71620|
|Political Science Teacher||69040||70350||75960||76990||78620||80980|
|Recreation Or Fitness Studies Teacher||54020||57540||60700||60580||63760||63820|
|Secondary School Teacher||51150||52450||54390||55150||55990||56760|
|Self-enrichment Education Teacher||38470||39600||40920||41360||41210||41070|
|Social Sciences Teacher||69640||70000||74720||77040||85400||82750|
|Social Work Teacher||57990||61140||64680||67410||68630||71030|
|Elementary School Special Education Teacher||49710||51230||52970||53770||55220||56460|
|Middle School Special Education Teacher||52550||51610||53540||54750||56500||58420|
|Preschool Special Education Teacher||49710||51230||52970||53770||55220||56460|
|Special Education Teacher||49710||51230||52970||53770||55220||56460|
|Secondary School Special Education Teacher||52520||53020||55050||56420||58080||59080|
|Teacher Or Instructor||35370||37840||40770||41110||38940||37260|
|Adult Basic Or Secondary Education Or Literacy Teacher||46690||47830||49830||50390||51080||51350|
|Vocational Education Teacher||47110||49150||50870||52030||52790||53480|
Salary By Percentile
|Agricultural Sciences Teacher||$43480||$59200||$79900||$103690||$128280|
|Anthropology Or Archeology Teacher||$42530||$56670||$75460||$98970||$132160|
|Area, Ethnic, Or Cultural Studies Teacher||$33730||$50080||$69130||$95220||$141970|
|Art, Drama, Or Music Teacher||$33400||$45370||$62330||$88290||$124880|
|Biological Science Teacher||$40650||$53450||$74110||$104320||$147950|
|Middle School Career Education Teacher||$36740||$43600||$54050||$67110||$78660|
|Career/technical Education Teacher||$37130||$44350||$54660||$67270||$79200|
|Computer Science Teacher||$37890||$52530||$73090||$101370||$136750|
|Criminal Justice Or Law Enforcement Teacher||$34230||$45380||$59480||$78660||$108410|
|Elementary School Teacher||$34910||$42410||$52840||$66330||$81230|
|English Language Or Literature Teacher||$33000||$44390||$61410||$85350||$115520|
|Environmental Science Teacher||$42560||$55640||$75050||$104890||$140870|
|Foreign Language Or Literature Teacher||$33670||$44560||$59630||$80950||$110290|
|Forestry Or Conservation Science Teacher||$42950||$57000||$80330||$101450||$130040|
|Graduate Teaching Assistant||$17330||$19470||$31230||$42550||$55410|
|Health Specialties Teacher||$39210||$53560||$79860||$126130||$187200|
|Home Economics Teacher||$32900||$44650||$64540||$87830||$110650|
|Library Science Teacher||$42730||$51950||$65110||$83990||$106380|
|Mathematical Science Teacher||$35630||$48440||$66680||$91710||$127810|
|Middle School Teacher||$35760||$42900||$53130||$66460||$81620|
|Nursing Instructor Or Teacher||$39580||$50790||$63900||$81210||$103380|
|Philosophy Or Religion Teacher||$35030||$48370||$65100||$88030||$116970|
|Political Science Teacher||$36420||$51430||$71470||$100570||$138140|
|Recreation Or Fitness Studies Teacher||$27840||$40870||$57840||$80600||$110640|
|Secondary School Teacher||$35940||$43540||$54270||$68150||$84000|
|Self-enrichment Education Teacher||$18630||$24800||$36100||$52350||$71260|
|Social Sciences Teacher||$41250||$54760||$71600||$96050||$145150|
|Social Work Teacher||$36780||$49840||$63480||$86690||$118680|
|Elementary School Special Education Teacher||$35170||$42890||$53440||$67200||$84320|
|Middle School Special Education Teacher||$37370||$44350||$55000||$69520||$87230|
|Preschool Special Education Teacher||$35170||$42890||$53440||$67200||$84320|
|Special Education Teacher||$35170||$42890||$53440||$67200||$84320|
|Secondary School Special Education Teacher||$37760||$44860||$55990||$70790||$88290|
|Teacher Or Instructor||$17940||$21730||$29290||$44410||$66000|
|Adult Basic Or Secondary Education Or Literacy Teacher||$27790||$36240||$47370||$64350||$81990|
|Vocational Education Teacher||$27110||$36150||$48790||$66540||$87230|
How long would it take me to become a teacher?
It normally takes 4 to 5 years to become a teacher through the traditional route, which requires you to earn a bachelors degree and complete a state-approved teacher training program. Most teaching programs require students to complete supervised student teaching practicums of 1 to 2 semesters in order to be licensed.
However, many states also offer alternative routes to licensing, which are meant to entice people into teaching positions that are hard to fill, like advanced mathematics, physics and chemistry. Alternative routes allow people who have a bachelors degree in the field that they want to teach to work under a provisional license until they demonstrate effective teaching skills. These alternative programs typically take 1 to 2 years after earning a bachelors degree.
What can I expect to learn while pursuing teaching?
As you pursue a degree in teaching, you will gain knowledge and skills that are unique to the subjects and the age group that you want to teach. But students in any teaching program will learn the following:
Curriculum design is the process of preparing the format, content and sequence of lessons. Courses in curriculum design discuss factors that teachers need to consider when planning lessons. Curriculum design will cover topics like how to set realistic goals for students, how to cover essential content on schedule, and how to use interesting learning materials and methods to add value to lessons.
Teaching strategies are the methods of instruction that teachers use to present information. A variety of teaching strategies are used to help students who have different learning styles to understand course material. Some teaching strategies that educators frequently use include small group projects, lectures, class discussions and games.
Child development refers to the way that children change as they grow into adolescents. Child development theories discuss how and when certain physical, emotional and intellectual changes should occur when children mature normally. In addition, child development covers the essential nutritional and environmental needs of healthy children.
Educational psychology studies how people learn and what factors motivate them to do so. It considers the different ways that students perceive, process and recall information. Modern educational psychology builds on the work of past researchers like John Dewey, Jean Piaget and Benjamin Bloom.
Instructional technology addresses the ways that teachers can use technology like computer software and the Internet to enhance student learning. Some common uses of instructional technology are the creation of blogs, PowerPoint presentations, online project collaboration and computer games that teach rote memorization skills like typing.
Teachers of all age groups need strong classroom management skills in order to maintain control of their students and create a positive learning environment. Your teaching curriculum will help you to develop and implement age-appropriate strategies that promote the appropriate behavior of your students and constructively alter their negative behavior.
Effective time management is essential for teachers. Your classes will teach you to run an organized classroom so that you can maximize your instruction time. Some time management strategies that you will learn include creating lessons that have clear introductions and closures, training students to follow routines during transition times and being prepared for every class.
Students learn in different ways and at inconsistent paces. As you progress through your teaching curriculum, you will develop the ability to alter lesson plans for your gifted or challenged students. You will learn how to modify parts of instruction like a lesson’s content, your teaching process, the assignment itself or the student’s environment in order to help students to succeed.
Your teaching program will give you the skills that you need to communicate with a variety of people. You will learn to take direction from administrators and to cooperate with other teachers. You will also be able to relate to your students and to actively listen to their parent’s concerns as you discuss their progress.
A teaching degree will provide you with the skills that you need to become a leader in your classroom and your community. You will discover ways to motivate your students and you will learn to trust your own judgment when you make decisions about classroom management and instructional techniques.
What academic levels are available in the field of teaching?
Teachers most commonly choose to earn a bachelors degree, although you can earn teaching credentials at nearly every level of education. If you want to earn a teaching degree, your options include associates, bachelors, masters and doctoral degrees. You can also earn graduate certificates in certain areas of teaching.
Select the degree level you are interested in:
You can earn graduate certificates in teaching, which state that you have received formal graduate training in a particular sub-field of education. Certificates are a good option for both elementary and secondary teachers who want to enhance their teaching credentials without pursuing a full masters degree program. But they are not the same as subject area endorsements, which require more intensive study. Graduate certificates are also very different from state-issued teaching licenses, which are sometimes called teaching certifications. A graduate certificate provides additional education to teachers but does not take the place of a state-issued teaching license or certification. Graduate certificates in teaching are available in many areas, including:
- Educational Leadership, which introduces you to the theories and practice of school administration
- Educational Technology, which prepares you to integrate technology and multimedia concepts in classroom instruction
- Literacy and Reading Specialist, which trains you to use reading strategies and language arts skills to diagnose reading problems and to help children learn to read
- Special Education, which teaches you how to help students with physical, mental or emotional disabilities to succeed in the classroom
What are the different types of certificates that I can earn in teaching?
You can only earn graduate certificates in specific concentrations in teaching. You cannot earn undergraduate certificates in teaching because you must earn a bachelors degree to teach in both public and private schools.
How long will I have to study to earn my certificate in teaching?
Graduate certificate programs in teaching generally require students to complete 12 to 18 credit hours of graduate-level study. Most students complete their graduate certificates in 6 months to a year.
What types of courses will I take while studying for my certificate in teaching?
The types of courses that you take to earn a graduate certificate in teaching depend on the specific certificate program that you choose to pursue. For example, if you choose to earn a certificate in special education, you will take classes about diagnosing learning disabilities, instructional methods for teaching children with special needs and ways to include those children in regular classroom instruction. On the other hand, if you choose to earn a certificate in educational technology, you will take courses in advanced computer applications, how to use multimedia in the classroom and how to design online learning environments. But there is no standard curriculum for graduate certificate programs, so the coursework that you are required to complete may vary slightly between programs.
What types of jobs can I hope to secure with a certificate in teaching?
Graduate certificates in teaching enhance your credentials and can help you stand out among other job candidates, but they do not qualify you for jobs outside of teaching. They are best used to fulfill your continuing education requirements or to pursue your personal interest in a specific area of teaching.
What are the requirements for admission to a graduate certificate program in teaching?
In order to be admitted into a graduate certificate program, you need to be a licensed teacher. That means you must hold a bachelors degree and a valid teaching license.
What about getting an online certificate in teaching?
Many professional educators choose to earn online teaching certificates in order to enhance their teaching credentials. A lot of graduate teaching certificates programs are mainly based in theory, so they do not require teachers to participate in hands-on activities. Therefore, there is no reason that experienced teachers should not earn their teaching certificates online. However, if you are earning your certificate with little classroom experience, it may not be a good idea to complete your teaching program online. New teachers benefit from working with experienced educators and practicing techniques in person. Finally, you should be careful not to confuse online teaching certificates with teaching licenses, which are issued by the state. You cannot earn teaching licenses online because they require extensive field experience.
A few schools offer associates degrees in education, but these degrees will not qualify you to be a teacher. If you want to teach kindergarten through twelfth grade, you must earn a bachelors degree.
What are the different types of associates degrees that I can earn teaching?
Associate of Arts AA
An AA degree in education has more humanities classes that are designed to give you a broad education. This degree is a good option if you plan to transfer to a bachelors degree program.
Associate of Science AS
An AS degree in education has more mathematics and science classes, but it differs little from the AA degree. It is also a good choice if you plan to transfer to a bachelors degree program.
How long will I have to study to earn my associates degree in teaching?
Associates degrees in education generally require students to complete about 60 credit hours. Most students finish their associates degrees in 2 years.
What types of courses will I take while studying for my associates degree in teaching?
If you earn an associates degree in education, you will take introductory education classes that prepare you to transfer into a bachelors degree program. Some of those classes include human development, mathematics for elementary education and literacy development.
What types of jobs can I hope to secure with an associates degree in teaching?
You will not be able to get a teaching job in an elementary, middle or high school with an associates degree in education. However, in some states you can work at daycare centers, teach preschool or assist the lead teacher in an early elementary school classroom.
What about getting an online associates degree in teaching?
Some schools offer online associates degrees in teaching, although they more commonly called degrees in education. At the associates level, most of your education classes will be theoretical, so there are no significant drawbacks to attending an online teaching program. But keep in mind that an online associates degree in teaching will not prepare you to earn your teaching license. An online teaching associates degree is meant to prepare you to transfer into a bachelors degree program.
A bachelors degree is required to earn a teaching license, so it is the most common route to teaching. However, there are a couple of educational paths at this level that will qualify you to take your state’s licensing exam. For example, you can earn a bachelors degree in education and specialize in an endorsement, or subject area, like mathematics of language arts. Or, you can earn a bachelors degree in the subject area that you want to teach and complete a state-approved teacher training program. Both options normally require you to complete a supervised student teaching practicum.
What are the different types of bachelors degrees that I can earn in teaching?
Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education BA
A BA in elementary education offers liberal arts courses in addition to methods for teaching children in kindergarten to about fifth grade. This degree is a good option if you want to teach elementary school.
Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education BS
A BS in elementary education technically has more science and mathematics classes, but it is essentially the same as the BA. This degree is also a good choice if you want to teach kindergarten to about sixth grade.
Bachelor of Arts in Secondary Education BA
A BA degree in secondary education has more liberal arts classes and provides methods for teaching older students. This is a good choice if you want to teach humanities classes at the middle or high school level.
Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education BS
A BS degree in secondary education requires more technical classes and offers strategies to teach older students. This is the best option if you want to teach middle or high school mathematics and science classes.
How long will I have to study to earn my bachelors degree in teaching?
A bachelors degree in elementary education normally requires students to complete 120 to 130 credit hours, including a student teaching practicum of 1 to 2 semesters. Education students usually complete their bachelors degrees in 4 to 5 years.
What types of courses will I take while studying for my bachelors degree in teaching?
As you earn a bachelors degree in education, you will take classes that prepare you to run your own classroom. Some of the courses that you take will include lesson planning and assessment methods. You will also take courses about educational psychology, child development and classroom management. And if you are studying secondary education, you will take classes that are specific to the subject that you want to teach so that you will be an expert in that area.
What types of jobs can I hope to secure with a bachelors degree in teaching?
A bachelors degree on its own is not enough to qualify you for a public school teaching job, although it may qualify you to teach in a private school. The types of jobs that you will be qualified for with a bachelors degree in education depend on whether you pursue an elementary or a secondary teaching license. An elementary license qualifies you to teach kindergarten through fifth grade, while a secondary license qualifies you to teach seventh through twelfth grade. In addition, you can become licensed in a special subject, like art or music, for all grades. However, some states define their licenses differently. Because teaching regulations vary by state, you should carefully research the teaching license qualifications of the state where you want to teach so that you know what kind of license to earn.
What should I consider when deciding on a school to earn my bachelors degree in teaching?
You may want to consider accreditation when you are searching for a school to attend for your bachelors degree. The organization that accredits teaching programs is the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education, which recognizes programs that adequately train teachers. It is not necessary to graduate from an accredited teaching program to earn your license. But if you do, you can be assured that you will be prepared to be a high quality professional educator.
What about getting an online bachelors degree in teaching?
There are no completely online teaching degrees that lead to licensure. However, many schools offer partially online bachelors teaching degrees, which are a viable option for some students. These programs allow you to learn the theory of teaching online, but you still have to complete field experiences and a student teaching practicum in a classroom. If you want to attend an online teaching program, you must make sure that it offers you the chance to work with students in person and put your theoretical knowledge to the test. In addition, you should look for an online teaching bachelors degree program that is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education so that you know you are getting a quality education.
Masters degree programs in teaching and education have many purposes. Some masters degree programs allow students to earn endorsements in specific concentrations like special education or coaching. Some help professionals who are currently teaching to fulfill their continuing education credits. And they can also serve as your initial path to teacher licensing if you don’t have a background in education.
What are the different types of masters degrees that I can earn in teaching?
Master in Teaching MIT
A MIT degree has advanced classes about teaching theories and methods. It is sometimes called a Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT). This degree is best if you want to earn your teaching license or your endorsement in a specific topic like special education.
Master of Education MEd
An MEd is not a teaching degree. It offers classes in broad areas of education like curriculum, administration and counseling. This is the best option if you are a practicing teacher who wants to become a principal or continue on to a doctoral degree.
How long will I have to study to earn my masters degree in teaching?
A masters degree in teaching or education requires students to complete 30 to 36 credit hours, which can take 1 to 2 years.
What types of courses will I take while studying for my masters degree in teaching?
If you decide to earn a masters degree in teaching, you will take a mix of theoretical classes and courses that are designed to help you develop specific skills. Some theoretical classes that you are likely to take include social justice issues, literacy and child development. You will also take classes about assessment methods and curriculum design. Prospective teachers will also be required to complete a supervised student teaching practicum.
What types of jobs can I hope to secure with a masters degree in teaching?
You do not need a masters degree to teach, but it will help you stand out among other job applicants and will qualify you for a raise. Depending on your masters concentration, some of the jobs that you may be qualified for include special education teacher, school administrator or school counselor.
What should I consider when deciding on a school to earn my masters degree in teaching?
If you are considering a masters degree in teaching, you should consider whether the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education accredits the program that you want to attend. Accreditation is not mandatory, but you can be sure that you are getting a top-quality education if you attend an accredited school. In addition, most people earn a masters degree in teaching or education so that they can earn endorsements in subjects like special education. But many schools do not offer programs in every endorsement, so you should make sure that the schools you apply to can provide you with the specialized education that you want.
What are the requirements for admission to a masters degree program in teaching?
All teaching schools require that masters degree applicants hold a bachelors degree, but it does not have to be in education. In addition, some programs require applicants to pass state teaching exams or hold current teaching licenses. Therefore, you should research the programs that you are interested in several months in advance in order to make sure that you have time to meet all of the admissions requirements.
What about getting an online masters degree in teaching?
Many people choose to earn online teaching masters degrees because they are able to complete their education without interrupting their careers. There are no major drawbacks to earning an online teaching degree if you currently hold a valid teaching license. But if you do not hold a teaching license and you want to become a teacher, you should only earn a partly online teaching masters degree through a blended program. In a partly online teaching program, you will learn the theory of education online, but you will also participate in a student teaching practicum in person. The practicum is important because most states will not issue you a teaching license until you have completed a student teaching practicum.
A doctorate is the highest degree that you can earn in the field of teaching and education. People who earn doctoral degrees usually teach and research at the university level or become school administrators.
What are the different types of doctorates that I can earn in teaching?
Doctor of Philosophy PhD
A PhD in teaching is designed to prepare students to be leaders in education. This option is best for people who want to become university faculty or school administrators.
Doctor of Education EdD
An EdD degree is not a teaching degree. It is the best option for students who want to pursue educational research at the doctorate level.
How long will I have to study to earn my doctorate in teaching?
Doctoral programs in teaching and education usually require students to complete about 90 credit hours. Students typically finish their degrees in 4 to 7 years.
What types of courses will I take while studying for my doctorate in teaching?
The exact courses that you take in your doctoral program will vary by school, but you will take classes that help you develop your research methods and your understanding of education policy. For example, you may take classes about policy analysis, comparative teaching methods and curriculum design. Most doctoral programs also require students to write a dissertation.
What types of jobs can I hope to secure with a doctorate in teaching?
A doctoral degree in teaching or education mainly prepares you to teach and research at the university level. You may also be qualified to be a school administrator.
What are the requirements for admission to a doctorate program in teaching?
Most schools require applicants to a PhD in teaching program to hold masters degrees. In addition, many schools will only admit students who have at least 3 years of professional teaching experience.
What about getting an online doctorate in teaching?
You should not earn an online teaching doctorate. PhDs require heavy research and you will not be able to work closely with faculty members through an online teaching program.
However, some schools offer blended, or partially online teaching PhDs, which may be a viable option. Partly online teaching programs let students learn the theory of teaching online. However, they require students to meet in person several weekends per year to collaborate with peers and faculty, so they still require commitment. If you decide to earn an online or partly online PhD in teaching, make sure that it is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education so that you know you are earning a degree that your peers will respect.
What else should I keep in mind when considering studying teaching?
Individual State Requirements
All 50 states require teachers to earn a license, but the requirements for that license can vary considerably from state to state. You should research the requirements of your state carefully before you decide to become a teacher so that you are aware of the education, field experiences and exams that you need to take in order to be qualified to teach the age level and the subject area that you prefer.
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