Pin Me

Tips on Choosing a Specialty in Secondary Education

written by: Trent Lorcher•edited by: SForsyth•updated: 8/31/2012

When choosing a secondary education career, you have to focus in a specialty. Here are some tips that will help you make that choice.

  • slide 1 of 4

    I got beat up the other day.

    Some people were complaining about their jobs. I had just finished listening to my "Be a Positive Thinker" self-help collection and I thought I'd try out some of their suggestions. I went up to the complainers and told them I absolutely loved my secondary education career and started laughing -- that's what cd 3 recommended.

    "Careers in education provide great hours! I have fun! I get to take vacations to South Carolina," I told them. I then laughed hysterically--that's what cd 9 said to do.

    That's when disgruntled worker #1 punched me in the face and disgruntled worker #2 kicked me in the stomach. I heard them cursing my career choice and asking me if my Education classes had taught me anything about facial reconstructive surgery. I must have blacked out. All I remember is disgruntled worker #3 hung me on a coat rack by my underwear.

    I should have finished cd 14. It said never laugh hysterically at roofers and iron workers.

  • slide 2 of 4

    Tips for Picking an Education Speciality

    With a new respect for roofers and iron workers, I returned to work, bandaged heavily. That didn't stop me from sharing these tips with my complaining colleagues:

    1. Do something you love.
      If you enjoy working with struggling students, specialize in education. If you are motivated by teaching reading, become a reading specialist. If you choose to specialize in something you love, you'll work because you choose to, not because you have to. (That's cd 4, in case you're wondering.)

    2. Specialize in what you're good at.
      Although I would love to specialize in dance education, I can't dance. If you have no patience with slow learners, don't specialize in teaching children with learning disabilities. If you can't spell, don't become a reading specialist.

    3. Assess the education requirements.
      Make sure you know what you're getting into before you decide to specialize in it. Is there a University nearby that offers the program you need? Can a degree be earned online? Are you able to dedicate the time necessary to complete the requirements?

    4. Assess needs.
      Make sure there's a need for what you want to do. I would love to teach about the Civil War all day, but there is zero demand for a high school teacher who specializes in the Civil War, so I've had to let go of that unrealistic dream.
  • slide 3 of 4

    What's in Demand?

    Having a specialized skill makes you more valuable, especially in these areas:

    1. Special Education:
      The Americans with Disabilities Acts guarantees an education for those with special needs. Public education does a good job, but special education administrators and teachers are in high demand.

    2. Autism:
      Teaching children with autism can be a rewarding profession. Autism is, sadly, on the rise, and as demand increases, so might the pay.

    3. Literacy Specialists:
      Reading level is the most accurate indicator of success in school. The United States, however, is becoming less literate every year. Literacy specialists, therefore, are in great demand.

    4. Education Technology:
      Schools have been accused of being stuck in the stone age. A growing number of schools are turning to technology specialists to help public schools catch up to the private sector.

    5. Math and Sciences:
      Math and Science teachers are always in high demand, always.
  • slide 4 of 4

    Specializing in something that you enjoy, that also has future demand, will keep you motivated, positive... and employed.