Benefits of an Education Degree


An education degree can lead to a career as an elementary, secondary or postsecondary educator. A career in this field offers growth, stability, and a competitive salary at all levels. In today’s economy, growth and stability are top priorities for job seekers. Job growth in the education sector is expected to average between 13-15 percent between now and 2018. This is faster than the average for all occupations. 

Before you can become a member of this respected group of professonals, you will have to earn a bachelor’s degree or higher in teacher education. Very few are accepted into this field with an associate’s degree. In fact, more than 90% of teachers enter this career field with a bachelor’s degree or higher, and most hold a master’s degree or doctoral degree. Around 10% hold a first professional degree.

The level of education attained can have a dramatic effect on earning potential. Doctoral degree holders make 30% more than master’s degree holders, and master’s degree holders make 29% more than bachelor’s degree holder’s. Bachelor degree holders earn roughly 18% more than associate degree holders. Coveted positions that offer greater responsibilities and research opportunities are reserved for masters, doctorate, and first professional degree holders.

Earning an Education Degree

To get started on a career as an educator, you should enroll in an accredited bachelor’s degree program or higher in teacher education. The program curriculum will consist advanced versions of the subjects you plan to teach as well as:

  • -Curriculum Development
  • -Diversity in the Classroom
  • -Diversity on the Workplace
  • -Education of Children
  • -School Law
  • -Leadership and Teaching
  • -Internship

The program should be accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) or other Department of Education approved accrediting agency. This will make fulfilling licensure requirements easier. In addition, most schools prefer graduates from accredited programs, whether the program is through a traditional college or university, or online. 

Other approved accrediting agencies include:

  • -Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA)
  • -Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)
  • -Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP)
  • -Distance Education and Training Council (DETC)

Regional accrediting agencies include Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Western Association of Schools and Colleges, New England Association of Schools and Colleges, and North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

Postsecondary Education Jobs and Salaries

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics:

Median annual earnings of all postsecondary teachers in May 2008 were $58,830. The middle 50 percent earned between $41,600 and $83,960. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $28,870, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $121,850.

Earnings for college faculty vary with the rank and type of institution, geographic area, and field. According to a 2008–09 survey by the American Association of University Professors, salaries for full-time faculty averaged $79,439.  By rank, the average was $108,749 for professors, $76,147 for associate professors, $63,827 for assistant professors, $45,977 for instructors, and $52,436 for lecturers. In 2008–09, full-time faculty salaries averaged $92,257 in private independent institutions, $77,009 in public institutions, and $71,857 in religiously affiliated private colleges and universities.

Faculty in 4-year institutions earn higher salaries, on average, than do those in 2-year schools. In fields with high-paying nonacademic alternatives—medicine, law, engineering, and business, among others—earnings exceed these averages. In others fields, such as the humanities and education, earnings are lower. Earnings for postsecondary career and technical education teachers vary widely by subject, academic credentials, experience, and region of the country.

Many faculty members have significant earnings from consulting, teaching additional courses, research, writing for publication, or other employment, in addition to their base salary. Many college and university faculty enjoy unique benefits, including access to campus facilities, tuition waivers for dependents, housing and travel allowances, and paid leave for sabbaticals. Part-time faculty and instructors usually have fewer benefits than full-time faculty have.

Elementary, Middle School, and Secondary Jobs and Salaries

Educators interested in or with experience working in inner city schools or rural areas will have the most job opportunities in the coming years. If you are willing to commute or even relocate, you can increase your chances of obtaining a lucrative and stable teaching position. The highest paying metropolitan areas for teachers include Columbus, OH; Baltimore, MD; Cleveland, OH; Riverside, CA; San Francisco, CA, and Sacramento, CA. Salaries range from an average of $45,000-$50,000+.


Widespread Layoffs Lead to More Workplace Discrimination Filings

Hearing Impaired Person at Workplace_Wikimedia Commons

It happened after the 2001 recession and it’s happening again. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) released a report stating that workplace discrimination filings increased from 93,277 to 99,922 between September 2009 and the end of September 2010. The 7.2 increase is the highest level of new discrimination cases ever recorded.

Workplace discrimination cases are typically filed when a worker feels he has been unfairly treated based on sex, race, religion, sexual orientation, disability, or other protected category. The EEOC report shows that the largest increase in filings was from disabled workers. According to a recent NYT report, “this increase may be linked to recent changes in the legal definition of disability to make it more expansive. The Obama administration’s growing reputation of greater interest in discrimination cases than its predecessor may also have increased filings. But experts say the chief reason for the increase in accusations of prejudice is most likely tied to the broad layoffs of the last few years.”

Many employer’s feel that most of the discrimination case filings with the EEOC  are “spurious attempts by workers with no job opportunities who have not experienced discrimination.”

“The majority of the time, the EEOC is still finding no reasonable cause for the charges being filed,” said Michael S. Burkhardt, an employment partner in the Philadelphia office of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius who represents employers in discrimination class-action suits. “In some cases, people are just upset that they were terminated, and they happen to be in a protected category. Even if that has nothing to do with why they were terminated, they still file a charge.”

He added that employers have had to become increasingly careful about how they structure layoffs when they reduce their work forces, as many have done since the financial crisis began several years ago.

If you feel that you have been discriminated against in the workplace, contact the U.S. Employment Opportunity Commission at 1-800-669-4000 (1-800-669-6820 TTY) or visit the official EEOC website at


Fastest Growing Careers: Top Thirty for 2008-2018

Retail Sales

People from all educational backgrounds and varying skill sets might discover that what they’re good at (or could be good at) is probably one of the fastest growing careers for the 2008-2018 projections decade. Published by the U.S. Department of Labor, the top thirty careers for 2008-2018 list includes jobs that require as little as short-term on-the-job training to as much as a doctoral degree. So, if you are a recent (or not-so-recent) graduate looking for a job, and your preferred career field is slow-growing, you might want to consider a sure thing while you wait for your first choice to bounce back.

The thirty occupations with the largest employment growth for 2008-18, (In Thousands)

1. Occupation: Network systems and data communications analysts
Employment 2008: 292
Employment 2018: 448
Change: 53.4%
Source of Education: Bachelor’s degree

2. Occupation: Home health aides
Employment 2008: 922
Employment 2018: 1,383
Change: 50%
Source of Education: Short-term on-the-job

3. Occupation: Personal and home care aides
Employment 2008: 817
Employment 2018: 1,193
Change: 46%
Source of Education: Short-term on-the-job

4. Occupation: Computer software engineers
Employment 2008: 515
Employment 2018: 690
Change: 34%
Source of Education: Bachelor’s degree

5. Occupation: Medical assistants
Employment 2008: 484
Employment 2018: 648
Change: 33.9%
Source of Education: Moderate-term on-the-job training

6. Occupation: Management analysts
Employment 2008: 747
Employment 2018: 925
Change: 23.9%
Source of Education: Bachelor’s degree or higher

7. Occupation: Registered nurses
Employment 2008: 2,619
Employment 2018: 3,200 
Change: 22 %
Source of Education: Associate degree

8. Occupation: Physicians and surgeons
Employment 2008: 661
Employment 2018: 806
Change: 21.8%
Source of Education: First professional degree

9. Occupation: Accountants and auditors
Employment 2008: 1,291
Employment 2018: 1,570
Change: 21.7%
Source of Education: Bachelor’s degree

10. Occupation: Licensed practical and licensed vocational nurses
Employment 2008: 754
Employment 2018: 909
Change: 20.7%
Source of Education: Postsecondary vocational

11. Occupation: Construction laborers
Employment 2008: 1,249
Employment 2018: 1,505
Change: 20.5%
Source of Education: Moderate-term on-the-job training

12. Occupation: Nursing aides, orderlies, and attendants
Employment 2008: 1,470
Employment 2018: 1,746
Change: 18.8%
Source of Education: Postsecondary vocational

13. Occupation: Landscaping and grounds-keeping workers
Employment 2008: 1,206
Employment 2018: 1,423
Change: 18%
Source of Education: Short-term on-the-job training
14. Occupation: Customer service representatives
Employment 2008: 2,252
Employment 2018: 2,652
Change: 17.7%
Source of Education: Moderate-term on-the-job training

15. Occupation: Elementary school teachers, except special education.
Employment 2008: 1,550
Employment 2018: 1,794
Change: 15.8%
Source of Education: Bachelor’s degree

16. Occupation: Receptionists and information clerks
Employment 2008: 1,139
Employment 2018: 1,312
Change: 15.2%
Source of Education: Short-term on-the-job training

17. Occupation: Postsecondary teachers
Employment 2008: 1,699
Employment 2018: 1,956
Change: 15.1%
Source of Education: Doctoral degree

18. Occupation: Food preparation and servers
Employment 2008: 2,702
Employment 2018: 3,096
Change: 14.6%
Source of Education: Short-term on-the-job

19. Occupation: Security guards
Employment 2008: 1,077
Employment 2018: 1,229
Change: 14.2%
Source of Education: Short-term on-the-job training

20. Occupation: Truck drivers
Employment 2008: 1,798
Employment 2018: 2,031
Change: 13%
Source of Education: Short-term on-the-job training

21. Occupation: Carpenters
Employment 2008: 1,285
Employment 2018: 1,450
Change: 12.9%
Source of Education: Long-term on-the-job

22. Occupation: Executive secretaries and administrative assistants
Employment 2008: 1,594
Employment 2018: 1,799
Change: 12.8%
Source of Education: work experience n a related occupation

23. Occupation: General office clerks
Employment 2008: 3,024
Employment 2018: 3,383
Change: 11.9%
Source of Education: Short-term on-the-job

24. Occupation: First-line supervisors/managers of office and administrative support
Employment 2008: 1,457
Employment 2018: 1,618
Change: 11%
Source of Education: Work experience in a related occupation

25. Occupation: General maintenance and repair workers
Employment 2008: 1,361
Employment 2018: 1,509
Change: 10.9%
Source of Education: Moderate-term on-the-job training

26. Occupation: Child care workers
Employment 2008: 1,302
Employment 2018: 1,444
Change: 10.9%
Source of Education: Short-term on-the-job training

27. Occupation: Teacher assistants
Employment 2008: 1,313
Employment 2018: 1,448
Change: 10.3%
Source of Education: Short-term on-the-job training

28. Occupation: Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing
Employment 2008: 2,064
Employment 2018: 2,276
Change: 10.3%
Source of Education: Moderate-term on-the-job training

29. Occupation: Retail salespersons
Employment 2008: 4,489
Employment 2018: 4,864
Change: 8.4%
Source of Education: Short-term on-the-job

30. Occupation: Waiters and waitresses
Employment 2008: 2,382
Employment 2018: 2,533
Change: 6.4%
Source of Education: Short-term on-the-job training


Job market showing signs of life

We’ve been hearing anecdotal evidence that hiring has been picking up, and today’s job numbers confirm the trend with some good news on the jobs front.

Employment in the U.S. increased in March by the most in three years and the unemployment rate held at 9.7 percent as companies gained confidence the economic recovery will be sustained.

Payrolls rose by 162,000 last month, less than anticipated, figures from the Labor Department in Washington showed today. The March increase included 48,000 temporary workers hired by the government to conduct the 2010 census, as well as job gains in manufacturing and health services.

The government revised January and February payroll figures up by a combined 62,000, putting the March gain at 224,000 after including the updated data. Caterpillar Inc. is among companies adding staff, indicating the recovery that began in the second half of 2009 is starting to foster the jobs needed to lift consumer spending and sustain the expansion.

Let’s see if this can be sustained. Much of the stimulus money is still in the pipeline, so we can expect more hiring resulting from those federal dollars and they work their way through the economy. Also, manufacturing seems to be picking up, so that could also have a very positive effect.


Tough jobs report for December

While the pace of job losses has declined dramatically, we haven’t turned the corner yet.

The job market remained in a deep funk in December, according to a government report Friday showing that employers view the economic recovery as too weak and too fragile to begin hiring again on any large scale.

The pace of layoffs has slowed sharply in recent months, but businesses still cut 85,000 net jobs in December, the Labor Department said. The unemployment rate was unchanged at 10 percent, but economists suspect this is only because hundreds of thousands of frustrated workers stopped looking for jobs.

The key is that the trend in is the right direction. The recovery is going to be a little choppy, but hopefully the trend continues in the right direction. If you’re unemployed, the key is to continue being persistent. Don’t give up!


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