Secondary Education Degrees
Career summary: High School Teachers
National Average, Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics
6% job growth by 2022, which is below average
Earn a degree in secondary education from an accredited college
Why would I want a secondary education degree?
Secondary education is a challenging, yet rewarding, field. A degree in this field will give you the opportunity to work with high school students and prepare them for college and/or to enter life in the real world. If you have a passion for teaching, like working with teenagers, have a desire to make an impact on young students’ lives, then a degree in secondary education would be a good fit for you.
What do people with secondary education degrees do?
The majority of people who earn secondary education degrees become secondary school (high school) teachers. Secondary school teachers teach students ages 14-18 in one or more subjects, such as English, mathematics, social studies, etc.
Secondary school teachers generally only work 10 months out of the year (the two months off are during the break in the summer). They often times, however, work more than 40 hours a week during the school year. This is due to that fact that there are many things that need to be accomplished which are required to successfully run a classroom that cannot be completed during the regular school day. Some of the typical daily tasks include:
- Planning, preparing, and giving lessons
- Preparing, giving, and grading tests
- Assigning and grading homework
- Communicating and working with parents to further their students’ educations
- Work with other teachers to collaborate on projects, discuss curriculum, and implement new ideas
While the majority of people with secondary education degrees become secondary school teachers, there are other professions that they may pursue. The most common professions for people with secondary education degrees are listed below.
- Secondary School/High School Teachers
- Curriculum Designers
- Education Consultants
- Tutoring Service Employees
How much do secondary school teachers make?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for secondary school teachers in 2010 was $55,990. Salaries vary quite a bit from state to state. Another factor in salaries is level of education. Those teachers with master’s degrees and degrees to support teaching and education earn higher salaries.
How popular are secondary school teaching jobs?
Secondary school teaching jobs in certain subject areas tend to have more opportunities than in others. For example, secondary school teachers who specialize in math, science, or foreign languages may see better opportunities as shortages of teachers in these subjects continue to rise according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Job opportunities for secondary school teachers in all subject areas will be good into the foreseeable future, even though the overall growth rate in this field is below average at 9%. This is due to the fact that there will be a large number of teachers retiring over the next decade, which will leave many job vacancies.
How do I become a secondary school teacher?
There are various routes to becoming a secondary school teacher. One of those routes is to get a bachelor’s or master’s degree in the specific field that you would like to teach. Once you have completed the degree (or degrees), you must then get a teaching certificate.
The most efficient way to become a secondary school teacher is to get a degree in secondary education. You will take courses in your specific content area (i.e. English, science, math, etc.), and you also will complete teaching and child development courses, which will prepare you for your teacher certification. Certification for teachers varies by state, so you’ll want to check with your school to make sure you receive proper preparation for certification.
Salary and career outlook data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
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