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Major Overview: Teachers

Majors Overview November 6, 2014

Teachers will educate adults and children at different stages of life. They will be able to teach various subjects at postsecondary, secondary, elementary, and preschool levels. Those interested in becoming a teacher are given the chance to pick a major related to the subject and level they want to teach.

Majors to Look Into for Aspiring Teachers

Aspiring teachers would need at least a bachelor’s degree in order to obtain licensure, which is mandatory for those that want to work at public schools. Teacher licensure is usually granted by the State Board of Education, and a respective state’s requirements must be checked by students before they decide on a major.

Bachelor’s degree programs in different aspects of education are offered by numerous universities and colleges. Students have a range of choices that vary according to the age and subject they seek to teach.

Hands-On Experience

During senior year, coursework typically includes student teaching. Student teachers can use these field experiences to gain hands-on experience with active students in real classrooms. Such practical training is delivered on the watch of certified teachers. In many states, student teaching has to be completed to obtain licensure.

Aspiring teachers may seek teaching jobs at four levels:

Postsecondary Level

Those that want to teach at the university or college level would benefit from a master’s or doctorate degree. At the undergraduate level, they can choose to major in any subject they seek to teach.

Secondary Level

Those that want to teach older students (sixth through twelfth grade) can seek specialization in secondary education and also opt for a concentration in a particular liberal arts field, such as physics, American history, calculus, or English literature.

Elementary Level

Those that want to teach students at the elementary level (kindergarten through eighth grade) would benefit from a major in elementary education that includes specialization in a particular subject area, such as science, history, math, or English.

Early Childhood Level

Those that wish to teach students from pre-kindergarten to third grade levels would benefit from a major in early childhood education. They will not only learn to become educators, but also role models before playing a crucial role in the early childhood development of their wards.

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