Undergraduate Programs in Education

The education sector offers many opportunities to enrich the minds and the lives of others. An undergraduate degree in education will prepare you for a career in teaching, school administration, counseling, or other ancillary functions. There are many specialties within the field, ranging from age level distinctions to subject specializations to special education concentration to preparation for advanced degrees and specialized roles in education.

A bachelor’s degree in education will be a four-year program offered by a college or university. The exact curriculum in any program will depend upon the licensing or certification requirements of the state in which the school is located or in which you plan to teach after graduation. A teaching certificate will require some student-teaching experience. In most schools the degree earned will be a Bachelor of Arts in Education (BA), although some schools award the Ed.B. degree.

The need for outstanding teachers is great. Whether you prefer teaching in a public school or a private school, your skill, education and experience will determine your ability to locate a teaching position immediately. Many states pay teachers according to experience and education, although some public and private school systems are incorporating a pay-for-performance approach borrowed from business. In these instances skill and student success become a major factor in determining salary.

A teacher with a bachelor’s degree can expect to earn a salary between $26,000 and $31,000. With experience, teaching excellence and, perhaps, an advanced degree, salaries can go as high as $70,000 annually. Teachers in some states can supplement their salary by working with extracurricular activities, coaching sports, teaching summer school, etc. For the most part, the rewards of teaching tend to be more intangible.

Other areas in which one can major at the level of the bachelor’s degree include: college student affairs, educational leadership, special education, higher education , ESL/Bilingual/TESOL, library and media technology  and counselor education.

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