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How to Start a Career as an Educator

Teachers are some of the most valuable members of our society. They help to shape and guide the next generation and provide them with the lessons and skills that they need to achieve the most out of life. Moreover, there are so many different avenues that one might choose to take via a career in education. Some wish to work in the classroom directly with students, while others might want to work on the administrative side of things.

Whatever your specific calling in the field of education may be, now is the time to get your career in education started. With a shortage of educators across the nation, there is a need for passionate and dedicated teachers now more than ever.

If you are interested in starting a career as an educator, here are a few things that you will need to do.

Earn a Relevant Degree

The first thing that you will want to consider on your road to becoming an educator is the type of degree that you want to earn. You need to know your subject well to teach it. You can’t analyze a book in terms of the four main literary genres, for example, if you don’t know them. Therefore, higher education in a major is necessary. All educators must at least possess a bachelor’s degree, with some earning additional degrees down the line depending on the level at which they wish to teach. 

If you know already what sort of grade levels you want to teach or even what type of subject, you should look to earn a degree that is specifically tailored to those. Otherwise, you might wish to earn a broader education degree that allows you to make more concrete decisions down the line. 

Some degrees are offered at four-year universities in a more traditional manner. You would earn your bachelor’s in much the same way as countless other university students do. However, this isn’t the only option available to you. You might also want to consider online teaching credentials as these can provide you with the skills and knowledge that you need to succeed in the world of education without having to go through the traditional college experience.

Student Teaching

Another important aspect of becoming an educator is that of student teaching. This is the experience that you get in the field under the supervision, guidance, and mentorship of a qualified teacher at a school. The teacher in this situation is meant to help educate you on how to deliver a lesson plan and keep a classroom in order. This will essentially be your first experience taking the reins, so to speak, in the classroom setting. The fact that your mentor teacher will be there to supervise and give feedback is what makes student teaching such a valuable learning experience for future educators.  

Obtain a State License

Once you have your credentials in order and have completed the necessary student teaching, you will need to apply for a teaching license in the state in which you wish to work. Each state will have its requirements set down by its department of education. However, you can expect to have to pass a licensing exam in the process.

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