Teacher: Requirements to Be a Teacher

Published Sep 02, 2009

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Teachers are expected to be positive role models and skillful instructors for their students, imparting knowledge about academics and socialization. There are two main routes people interested in teaching can take to become certified, the traditional path and alternative certification. This article explains both methods of becoming a Teacher.

Teacher Career Summary

Teachers work in public or private schools where they specialize in providing academic and social instruction. Teachers instruct students in the pre-kindergarten, elementary school, middle school or high school age range. Those who teach prekindergarten or elementary students instruct the same group of students throughout the duration of the school day in all required subjects, including science, reading, mathematics and English. Teachers who work in middle schools or high school usually stick to one subject, and their students rotate among several teachers in a given school day. Teachers employ a variety of instruction methods, like lectures, group assignments and demonstrations to conduct their lessons.

Education Required to Become a Teacher

The educational requirements for becoming a Teacher vary by state. Traditionally, Teachers earned a bachelor's degree in education before becoming certified, but most states now allow Teachers to hold a bachelor's degree in any subject. Bachelor's degree programs in education include classes over teaching pedagogy and educational theory. States that don't require Teachers to major in education do make Teachers take a test on teaching pedagogy.

Job Training and Certifications Required to Become a Teacher

Each state requires Teachers to pass certification criteria as well as educational requirements. The traditional route to Teacher certification is for students to become certified during the course of earning a bachelor's degree in education. Most states now have alternative programs that allow people with a bachelor's degree in a field other than education to become certified Teachers. Alternative certification programs (ACPs) provide college graduates interested in teaching with training on education theory and teaching pedagogy. ACP graduates must take state tests covering the specific grade levels and subjects they'd like to teach as well as testing that covers general teaching pedagogy.

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