You’ve graduated with your master’s degree – congratulations! Like those before you, you pursued a career in education for your own academic fulfillment and, of course, to shape the development of the next generation of children. And though classroom teaching is the most common way to enter the field, there are numerous professional pathways you can take, whether you are an aspiring teacher who wants to enter a training program or an experienced educator who is ready to advance in his or her career. Take a look at some of your options below.
From kindergarten to college classrooms, teachers are responsible for instructing and grading students in specific subject areas. A bachelor's degree in education and state certifications are required for teaching elementary, junior high and high school students, at a minimum. Earning a master’s degree in education can allow you to teach at a two- or four-year college, depending on the position.
2. Departmental Director
Practicing teachers who earn a master's degree gain a competitive edge as they move through their professional careers and are more likely to be considered for leadership positions, such as Dean, Department Chair or Lead Teacher. In these roles, you would be able to impact curriculum and mentor new teachers in their own development.
3. Education Administration
A natural next step after being in the classroom is accepting an administrative-level position such as school Principal or Superintendent. In these roles, you would oversee daily operations, establish school-wide goals, design and monitor a budget and lead the faculty. In addition to a master's degree, an Education Specialist degree or a PhD is typically required.
4. School System Support Staff
Every school is supported by a host of educators who do not spend their days in the classroom, and these positions can offer some of the most direct contact with students. A good example is that of Guidance Counselors who receive extra training to prepare them to help children through emotionally difficult times and oversee testing procedures, among other responsibilities.
At the college level, a Master of Science in Education is often required for student support positions, including Admissions Counselor, Residence Hall Director, Career Center Specialist and International Program Advisor. Different schools will have different educational requirements for these types of careers, so if this is your passion, find out early how to best put yourself in a position to succeed.
5. Set Education Policies
After earning your master's degree, your academic self may feel empowered to begin to impact the very shape of the educational system itself. Some graduates pursue administrative positions that involve researching, planning and managing overall policies, curriculum and assessment strategies. Others become lobbyists to change policy through legislation. These positions are usually available through state and federal agencies such as the Department of Education. If you feel drawn to the academic side of life, these may be the positions for you.
6. Curriculum Development
A Curriculum Developer is responsible for creating the content students learn. This requires advanced knowledge of learning methods, teaching strategies, assessments, educational standards and the latest classroom technologies. Instructional Directors typically work at the district level or for textbook publishers.
7. Early Childhood Education
A master's degree in early childhood education (ECE) focuses specifically on the development of young minds. While preschool teachers work with children ages three to five, daycare directors must understand how to best care for kids who range in age from newborns to sixth grade.
8. Youth Educational Activities
Put your credentials to use after the traditional hours of the workday. As an educator, you might enjoy leading or producing after-school and summer enrichment programs or other youth-centric opportunities such as Resident Camp Manager, Recreation Director, After-School Programming Coordinator or Youth Director.
9. Child Social Services
Education experience, particularly with young children, is a desirable background for the job responsibilities of many social services positions. Nonprofit organizations, youth associations and community recreation centers also target education professionals to guide their training, programming and leadership goals.
10. Training and Corporate Consultant
One of the more lucrative opportunities for education graduates is in the business world. Your knowledge is a good match for employee education initiatives and other corporate training programs. The human resources department or serving as an independent learning consultant are potential opportunities for you.
Find out more about getting a master's degree in education from Graceland University by clicking here.