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Degree Overview: Bachelor of Science Degree in K-12 Education

Majors Overview October 23, 2014

Those with an interest in teaching students in kindergarten to high school should look into bachelor’s degree programs in education. Usually, these programs are divided into three sections: secondary, middle, and elementary school. State licensure or certification is required to begin a teaching career.

Job and Wage Outlook

A job growth rate of 17% has been predicted for middle school, elementary, and kindergarten teachers over the 2010 – 2020 decade (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). Over the same period, a 7% job growth rate has been predicted for secondary school teachers.

In May 2012, secondary school teachers brought home the highest average annual wages of $58,260, while middle school teachers banked $56,280 (BLS). Kindergarten teachers grossed $53,030, and elementary school teachers banked an average annual wage of $56,130.

Continuing Education Choices

Each state may have its own licensure or certification requirements for teachers. However, certification candidates are typically required to pass a general praxis examination, provide proof of student teaching experience, and complete an accredited teacher training program that spans a four-year duration.

Passage of an exam is also required of licensure candidates; the exam has to be taken in a particular subject area, such as science or history, especially if the candidate aspires to teach at the high school or middle school levels.
Graduates of the bachelor’s programs may wish to earn a master’s degree that may lead to better employment prospects and higher wages. The master’s degree may be required by others in maintaining licensure or securing tenure. An area of expertise, such as art, science, reading, or special education, is typically the focus of graduate programs in education.

Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary School Education

Students enrolled in bachelor’s degree programs in secondary education are typically trained in instructing high school-aged students. An area of specialization, such as the arts, writing, math, or English, must usually be chosen by bachelor’s degree students.

Coursework

Coursework covers pedagogy and liberal arts topics along with coursework that supports the chosen specialty of the student. Most curricula include student teaching in a high school environment. Core coursework may include topic areas such as:

•Educational leadership
•Personal health
•Curriculum and instruction for high school-aged students
•Effective teaching practices
•Psychology of education

Bachelor’s Degree in Middle School Education

Students enrolled in bachelor’s degree programs in middle school education are typically trained in teaching grades 4–9. An emphasis is sometimes chosen by prospective teachers at this level; this could be social studies, science, math, or English. A minimum of one student teaching experience has to be completed by incoming students to bachelor’s degree candidates in middle school education.

Coursework

Coursework may generally cover numerous core liberal arts subjects, including writing, reading, English, and math, in addition to program-specific coursework relevant to middle school, including:

•Human development
•Middle school curriculum
•Discipline courses
•Psychology in early adolescence
•Philosophy in middle childhood education

Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education

Students enrolled in undergraduate degree programs in elementary education are trained to become teachers that are adept at designing and executing classroom education for juvenile students enrolled in kindergarten through sixth grade.

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a GED certificate or a high school diploma. Placement testing may also be required to be completed by teaching candidates.

Coursework

Coursework typically covers fieldwork within elementary schools, general education coursework, and classes specifically devised to suit the needs of elementary-aged children. These include topic areas such as:

•Child development
•Incorporating health and activity in early childhood
•Assessment of young children in educational settings
•Collaboration in early childhood
•Language development in young children

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  • Offers over 230 programs online, from the certificate to the doctoral level.
  • Has a student-faculty ratio of 25:1, and 42.3% of its classes have fewer than 20 students.
Show more [+]
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  • Online Courses
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
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  • Established in 1918 with the mission, “to improve learning in urban education locally, nationally, and globally.”
  • The first major research university to offer an online M.A.  in teaching program.
  • Offers certificate through doctoral programs in teaching, counseling, and more.
  • All programs taught with the guiding principles of leadership, learning, accountability, and diversity.
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  • Live, online classes of no more than 15 students

  • A virtual campus that allows students to easily collaborate with professors and fellow classmates

  • NYU’s online master of science program in Communicative Sciences and Disorders provides aspiring speech-language pathologists (SLPs) with a comprehensive professional education that integrates evidence-based methodology and research.

  • As a Speech@NYU student, you’ll experience a combination of real-world clinical training, interactive online classes, and course work that can be completed based on your schedule.

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