Second in line to health, education is the most important factors of a person’s well-being. Children in school are equipped with the skills they will need to thrive as teenagers, and teenagers acquire knowledge and resources that will ready them for their future in university and later, their careers.
Deciding to become a teacher is a selfless act that means dedicating your life to helping others improve upon themselves, whether it’s teaching a second-grader how to multiply fractions or Fundamentals of Business at a university.
A teacher is able to choose a subject that they are passionate about and spend their lives enriching themselves through the acquisition of knowledge while also sharing that with others.
Whether you are hoping to have your own classroom of eager kindergarten students or dream of instructing hundreds at a prestigious university someday, your career as a teacher all begins with your own degree.
Most graduates who earned their bachelor’s in education want to enter the public school system as a primary or secondary education teacher. The BLS reported that the mean annual salary for a primary teacher to be $53,400, and for a secondary school teacher to earn $55,050 on average.
A Bachelors in Education can also prepare students for a variety of other careers, such as positions in school administration. These roles include that of principal and vice principal, administrator or school counselor. Usually these jobs require extra certificates or advanced degrees, but the majority of them all link back to a four-year undergraduate degree in education. The BLS reported the median annual earnings for someone employed in school administration to be $87,760 in May 2012.
There are also careers in business and non-educational fields that can be started with a bachelor’s in education. There are oftentimes entry-level employers that don’t require a specific bachelor’s degree, but instead cite only the completion of an undergraduate program. A student who studies education in university may be able to apply the skills and discipline that they learned over the course of their studies to other jobs and grow beyond that through work experience.
In 2017, expect one of the top teaching degrees to become more available online: the Masters in Education Online. Universities are quickly realizing the interest in a Masters in Education, especially for existing teachers or recent graduates.
All K-12 teachers are required to have at least a bachelor’s degree. A four year program in elementary education is needed to teach children from kindergarten and beyond, while a preschool teacher may be able to find a job and begin teaching with an associate’s. However, in today’s competitive job market and the advancement of education resources and training, a bachelor’s degree is preferred among employers.
Bachelor of Elementary Education
A Bachelor of Elementary Education can prepare you for a future of working with children in kindergarten through 6th grade. You will learn how to teach them the skills they need to develop across a variety of core subjects and such as language arts, mathematics, science, social sciences and electives.
Psychology and communication skills are also highly important to be a successful teacher, because beyond having the academic knowledge, you will need the problem-solving capabilities and social techniques that work well with children and will help you engage students as well as maintain a leadership position in the classroom.
Bachelor of Secondary Education
If you would prefer to teach high school students, a challenging position with the potential to be incredibly rewarding, then your professional journey will begin with a Bachelor of Secondary Education with a subject-specific concentration. Over the course of the general degree, you will learn about various teaching methods and skills needed to educate and intrigue students, as well as the particular needs of adolescents.
Teaching them can pose a particular challenge as the age period of secondary school students presents a variety of emotional, physical and psychological changes that affect every aspect of a teenager’s life. A high school teacher needs to be flexible, compassionate, understanding and willing to learn as much as teach.
Teaching internships and intensive study of your concentration will also come into play, and you’ll gain a broad as well as focused insight on the particular area of academia that you want to teach. Biology, chemistry, English literature as well as foreign languages are all possibilities. Spanish high school teachers, for example, may enter not knowing more than a few words but graduate fluent and ready to begin instructing others.
Master of Education
A Master of Education degree is directed toward teachers who want to advance their careers and knowledge in the classroom or who already have a teaching degree but want to become qualified to teach beyond the traditional classroom setting. Some of the common focal areas for a master’s degree in education include classroom technology, educational psychology, economics and policy, museum education, higher education, school counselling and bilingual education.
All teachers are required to be certified, though the specific licensing and certification required varies among states. The Praxis Series is the most important of teacher certifications, offered in over 40 different states by the Educational Testing Service. Although each state has individual requirements and baseline qualification scores, the typical pathway is passing the Praxis I and Praxis II exams.
The National Evaluation Series (NES) is administered by Pearson, a computer-based testing provider. Although it is not offered in every state, the NES exam is a solid test to consider for certification as it is offers a thorough and inclusive test of teachers on a variety of different topics, including several academic subjects.
Finally, for instructors who want to go even further, the National Board Certification exam can be taken to demonstrate a teacher’s exemplary knowledge of a specific subject. This certification provides advancement opportunities as well as the potential for salary bonuses and is administered through the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.
Careers with a Teaching Degree
The type of undergraduate degree you earn will determine which professional pathway you take, and there are several options to consider right from the start. An elementary school teacher, high school teacher and ESL teacher are the most common teaching positions that provide educators with constant face-to-face interaction with students in both public schools and private institutions.