What Education Do You Need To Be An Occupational Therapist – Most of us have a favorite teacher from childhood; maybe it was the teacher who taught you to read or the one who taught you to value diversity or even the one who taught you to play kickball. Maybe that teacher is your inspiration for wanting to become a teacher yourself. If you’re asking yourself what degree you need to become a teacher and are ready to learn about the steps to becoming the teacher you want to be, check out this guide on how to become a teacher!
We’ve broken down the steps to becoming a teacher, including what degrees you need and what exams you need to pass. Although there are many different paths to becoming a teacher, they all begin with a bachelor’s degree – but they don’t all end there.
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Well, the first step to becoming the teacher you want to be is enrolling in an accredited bachelor’s degree program, such as those offered through Gwynedd Mercy University’s School of Education.
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Most public school districts and other education employers require at least a bachelor’s degree in addition to state certification to teach in their schools
Pennsylvania requires aspiring teachers to pass state-required exams that assess general knowledge and basic skills, along with professional knowledge and specific subject area knowledge.
At all first-year students who want to become a teacher start the education course where you complete your first 45 credits. Once you have completed at least 45 credits with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0, you must demonstrate a core competency in math, reading and writing as required by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.
(Note: will not require students to submit standardized test scores for Fall 2022! Read more here.)
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Once you have demonstrated your core skills in maths, reading and writing, you will be able to enter one of their early education degrees.
Most bachelor’s degree programs in education require you to spend at least one semester in a real classroom. During your student teaching experience, you will have the opportunity to practice managing a classroom while still having the support of a cooperating teacher and your college professors. This real-world experience will boost your confidence and prepare you for a successful teaching career after graduation.
When choosing where to earn your bachelor’s degree in education, be sure to choose a school that has a strong student-teacher placement program.
At , for example, we have a dedicated Field Placement Director who will support you throughout your student teaching experience.
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To become a certified teacher, you must take the teacher certification exam that applies to both your course of study and the state in which you wish to become certified. While passing scores may vary from state to state, all prospective teachers take the same exams.
When choosing where to earn your bachelor’s degree in education, you’ll also want to choose a school that has a strong program in place to prepare you to pass these exams:
While a bachelor’s degree in education is the minimum level of education you need to become a teacher, you have many options for what and where to teach. You can specialize in special education, upper secondary education, middle level education or early childhood education. Secondary education certification prepares you to teach in a high school setting, so you’ll also choose a specific field, such as science, math, or history.
Although there will always be a need for competent, qualified teachers, the need is greater in some subject areas than others. According to US News, there is a growing need in special education, math, science and bilingual education.
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In most cases, having a bachelor’s degree is only the first step to becoming a teacher. Most states and school districts require teachers to pass the teacher certification exam, called Praxis, before beginning employment.
Once you’ve landed your dream job in the classroom, you can choose to continue your education and earn an advanced degree. The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) found in 2011–12 that 56 percent of teachers in public schools had a master’s degree or higher. Also, NCES found that the base salary of those teachers who had their master’s degree was almost $11,000 more than teachers who only had a bachelor’s degree.
In Pennsylvania, the difference in pay between classroom teachers with a bachelor’s degree and those with a master’s degree is comparable to the differences nationally. In the chart below, you can see the average salaries of classroom teachers in Pennsylvania for the 2015-2016 school year, per openpagov.org.
In general, it will take at least four years to become a teacher. Your individual timeline depends on your course of study when you decide to take your state certification exams, what subjects and grades you want to teach, and where you are located.
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Most school districts require at least a bachelor’s degree, which takes at least four years to complete. During that time, you will gain real-world experience through student teaching and classroom observations. After your four years, you will feel prepared and ready to inspire future students! There are more career paths in education than just teaching. Our Careers in Education guide can help you find the best path.
But even before you start your bachelor’s degree, you need to decide what you want to teach. Are you interested in taking a double degree in a subject such as history, maths or special education? You should also think about what grade level you are interested in teaching; do you see yourself working in a preschool or elementary school, or would you rather teach high school students? These are important things to consider before enrolling in a teacher preparation program. If you’re not sure which direction is best for you, take a few minutes to complete the What Kind of Teacher Should I Be? quiz.
As part of your bachelor’s studies, you will sit for the state certification exams. These exams will test both your specific content knowledge and your academic knowledge. Teacher certification is generally required to work in public schools and is state specific. So if you plan to teach in Pennsylvania, for example, you should make sure your Praxis scores are sent to the Pennsylvania Department of Education.
Earlier we presented the steps to become a teacher. However, teacher requirements vary from state to state. So while the basic requirements are similar to what you read above, Pennsylvania has some specific requirements for all teachers, which are spelled out below:
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Teacher salaries in the state of Pennsylvania will vary by region and school district, but the Bureau of Labor Statistics has compiled a list of average annual salaries for teachers in the state:
For the 2016-2017 academic year, the state of Pennsylvania had a statewide teacher shortage in the following academic disciplines or subjects:
In addition to the degree you hold, there are some other factors that affect a teacher’s salary, including geographic location. As you can see, the average annual salary for teachers in 2015 was higher in the Philadelphia area than nationally.
After earning your bachelor’s degree and state teaching certifications, you may decide to go on to earn a master’s degree in education. If you’ve taught for a few years, a master’s degree in educational administration can prepare you for the role of principal or vice-principal, or a master’s degree in special education can prepare you to offer specialized support to students if you’re looking for another way to make a difference in your school community, you may decide to take a master’s degree in school guidance.
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Master’s degrees are usually at least 30 credits and can be taken online or in a traditional classroom setting. The number of classes you take at once can determine how long it takes you to complete your master’s degree.
No matter what degree you seek, as a teacher, you are destined to be a lifelong learner. With each new topic or lesson you teach, your perspective will change and grow. Throughout your teaching career, there will be new strategies to try, new regulations to implement, and new research on how to better reach students. Communicating with other teachers, collaborating on lessons, and checking in with students will help you become the teacher you want to be.
At s School of Education, we have assembled a team of dedicated professors committed to helping you hone your own superpowers in your quest to become a teacher. With tools like the Teacher Apprentice Program (TAP) and student tutoring, you’ll get the hands-on experience needed to change the lives of your students.
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The Level 3 Award in Education and Training is known as the AET course. Previously this course was known as PTTLS (Preparing to Teach in the Lifelong Learning Sector) but was revised in 2013 and is now known as the award
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