Finding the Right Teacher Education Program
Teacher education programs are widely available in practically every state. If you already have an undergraduate degree, then you might look for a masters level degree with a teacher certificate. Whether you are looking for a teacher education program online or at a local university, there are plenty of sources that provide information on where to find help. In getting a teacher degree, you should consider the following factors in finding the program that is right for you.
Accreditation and Reputation
First and foremost, look for a school that is nationally accredited. The National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) has a list of accredited schools in the United States. Ask teachers, family and friends to recommend schools that have good teacher education programs.
Quality of Instruction
Consider the experience level of the teachers who provide the class instruction. A good portion of the teachers should be well experienced and have good command of the requirements by the state on new teachers.
A good, reputable teacher education program will give you a balance of education, psychology, and subject content courses. The program should also give you a year of practicum that requires you to assist in an actual class with an experienced teacher. The practicum should also require you to research and write a paper on your experience. This is important because it helps you to solidify what you learned and also to get published, which can be used to get your first teaching job.
A good program should adequately prepare you for licensure in your state. Most teacher programs will have a course taken at the end of studies, which prepares you for the licensing exam in your state. So the best case is that you can walk out of the teacher education program with a degree in education and your state licensure.
Job Placement Opportunities
Programs at most large universities will have great job placement in the form of teacher recruitment job fairs and school visits. Most teachers find it rather easy to find work as an entry-level teacher within the local public school system. Finding a teaching position in private school may require more years of experience.