University Level Teaching?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Mr. Bob, Jul 16, 2007.

  1. Mr. Bob

    Mr. Bob New Member

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    Jul 16, 2007

    I was just wondering what it takes to teach at a college/university level. It seems a doctorate in a field is a must, but I was wondering about experience "requirements". For example, is previously teaching at a high school or secondary school not necessarily required, but suggested? Do teaching licences cover the university level? I suppose there are different kinds of licences for different levels...

    What I'm trying to get at is that I do want to teach at the university level someday, but I don't want to teach lower levels, if that's not enough of a paradox.

    Originally my plan was to teach elementary, or a lower level, while I study for masters/doctorate, then get the positition. The only reason I would teach a lower level is to support myself and pay for tuition, but I've been rethinking this; pondering whether I would have to teach at all before being able to hold tenure at a university.
     
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  3. janlee

    janlee Devotee

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    My future daughter-in-law is studying for her doctorate. I don't know how she would have taught and gone to school. She did 4 years undergraduate at Rutgers in which she took classes that enabled her to also get her masters degree. She is currently in her 2nd year at the Uni. of Ill. Champaign-Urbana where she will get her Doctorate next may. She is now getting ready to apply for her post doctorate placement. Then she will apply for a teaching position somewhere. She, too, is planning on teaching at the university level. She has no teaching experience other than the TA that was assigned to her for 1 year. I wish you luck.
     
  4. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Teaching experience in a secondary or elementary setting is basically worthless when it comes to higher ed. They are two completely different animals. While I don't think it would hurt a candidate to have taught high school, it definitely wouldn't help.

    You do not need a teaching license to teach in a university. There isn't actually any sort of university-level certification. What you need is an advanced degree. You can sometimes teach at a university with just a Masters degree, but you won't advance on the salary schedule. You'll likely remain at a "Lecturer" type position. And Lecturer positions are almost always relegated to lower-level courses. You pretty much must have a PhD or similar degree to teach the advanced-level courses.
     
  5. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Sorry, posted too soon.

    I recommend entering a graduate program where you can earn an advanced degree while working as a TA, GA, or associate instructor. I worked as an AI while getting my MAT--I got a monthly stipend, full tuition coverage, health insurance, and a slew of other benefits. It worked out just fine.
     
  6. MisterG

    MisterG Comrade

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    Jul 17, 2007

    Maybe its just me, But I personally would not choose a class by someone whose goal seemed to be to go to college, and advance in degrees left and right only to end up teaching college level courses with little to no experience. What Can I learn from someone who has nothing to really teach me? I liked the classes I took at my college as my instructors were former teachers or administrators. They had lots of experience. One gal had taught for I think 4 or 7 years in the elementary setting before she taught at our college. I thought that still was too young. Teaching Elementary can be helpful if you want to teach at a Univ teaching potential teachers.

    If you want to teach and get respect from your students...have plenty of experience in your field. Plenty...a lot...tons...oodles...great vast amounts.
     
  7. janlee

    janlee Devotee

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    Yes, I agree that experience in the field you wish to instruct others in is very good. But I strongly feel that trying to work full time, especially in the lower grades, and at the same time working towards a doctorate would be extremely hard. Someone would surely suffer. My future daughter-in-law must be "published" prior to receiving her doctorate. She is also asked to attend conferences, sometimes out of the country. These are not options. ALso, how would you work and do your post doctorate work? They are requirements. I'm sure people have done both. Perhaps it depends on what field you wish to receive your doctorate in. Has anyone worked full time while pursuing a doctorate degree?
     
  8. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Jul 17, 2007

    I know someone who is doing it now.

    He teaches full time, tutors on the side, and coaches the Debate team at his school.

    His wife is counting the days until he has his doctorate!!
     
  9. USMCTCHR

    USMCTCHR Companion

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    Jul 17, 2007


    The program at the university near where I am at allows you to do that. You have three six week "internships" (one is overseas) and those are done in the summer. Getting your doctrate is a LONG process and takes a lot of hard work and dedication. If it weren't so difficult, we'd all be doctors! :)

    It would be much easier to not have to work though. (But same goes when getting your BA or your masters.)

    Also, all of my college instructors for my elem. ed. classes had years of experience. You can't teach HOW to teach if you have never done it.

    However, if you want to go and teach psych, history, or whatever than I wouldn't teach the younger students first. But if you plan on teaching classes to upcoming teachers than you need experience yourself. Good luck! This is something I hope to do one day....many years from now. :D
     
  10. janlee

    janlee Devotee

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    Is this man going for his doctorate in education? Liz (son's girlfriend) is getting hers in microbiology. She is going straight through school to get it. She did not stop to work. I know there are different requirements for the doctorates.
     
  11. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Yes, I think it's in education. If not that, then it's History.
     
  12. USMCTCHR

    USMCTCHR Companion

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    I guess I should clarify this. You have the internships, but also have classes to take. They spread it out so you only take 1 or 2 a semester. Just taking all of the tests and trying to get into the program scares me! LOL

    I know that none of my psych, biology, history, etc. professors taught at an elementary level. However, I don't think they need to.

    I do know that the community college where I live and the university here will allow you to teach with your masters. I think somebody already mentioned it though that you would only be considered a lecturer and not a professor until you earned your doctrate. But, it is an option while you are working on getting it.
     
  13. janlee

    janlee Devotee

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    Jul 17, 2007

    I wish your friend much success. I see you teach in NY. I teach in Greenwood Lake, NY. border of NY and NJ about 40 minutes from the city. Where are you in NY?
     
  14. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Who, me??

    I'm on Long Island, also about 40 minutes from Manhattan :)
     
  15. MisterG

    MisterG Comrade

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    Jul 17, 2007

    Well, I don't know much about the requirements for microbiology. Maybe one needs a doctorate in order to get a job? I dunno.

    I know for teaching, it seems quite a few decide to go right through their four years and then without even teaching, get their masters in Education. Now the thing is...and this is from my personal perspective. That a masters and a doctorate are just classes that you pay for in order to, in the end, get more money. Depending on the program, there might be different requirements. I know for a masters, one of my asst. principals a few years back had the option of getting his stuff published or doing a.....whatever that really long research paper is called, lol.

    Im not saying getting a masters can be easy. Depending on where you go and what your job is...it might be rather hard...same for a doctorate. But the thing is that a masters says "Hey...I'm mastering in this area of expertiece" and a doctorate says "Hey...Im Lord Geek of all when it comes to this stuff"...but what does it really say when without even working in that field to get that necessary experience, you go and chuck some more $$ out to get a higher degree. We all know and every single one of us has said that the first day teaching taught us more than the previous 4 years of school combined. This is the same for any field. And getting a masters or doctorate without first having substantial experience is rather silly in my opinion.

    But then again, maybe there are some fields were you need to get the Doctorate first in order to even land a job.
     
  16. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    It's true that my first year of teaching taught me more than my teacher education program did, but I still value my Masters degree. My MAT is in Latin, which means that I have significant content area knowledge, which means that I don't struggle as much as some of my peers with teaching the content of my courses. I'm confident about being able to teach AP classes without having to look anything up.

    Furthermore, I didn't shell out one cent for my MAT. I was awarded an associate instructorship which allowed me to teach classes at the university while taking classes there. I had full tuition coverage, a monthly stipend, and health insurance.

    Just sharin'! :)
     
  17. holliday

    holliday Comrade

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    Jul 17, 2007

    I got accepted into a doctoral program at OSU...but I've been on the fence about whether or not to do it because I'm not sure if it's worth the cost of tuition. I'd love to teach at the univ. level but how much does that typically pay?
     
  18. Mamacita

    Mamacita Aficionado

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    Jul 18, 2007

    At the community college level, you can teach almost any course with a Master's degree, as long as you have at least 18 credit hours in the subject itself.

    I recommend that everyone get a Master's in a subject area, with an education endorsement, just in case you decide to switch levels, or even teach a night class or a summer session at the college level.

    A Master's in nothing but education won't cut it.
     
  19. holliday

    holliday Comrade

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    Jul 18, 2007

    But what if you want to teach education classes? Shouldn't a Master's in ed. be enough then?
     
  20. HMM

    HMM Cohort

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    Like others have said you don't need teaching experience to get a job as a professor (but it helps sometimes). If you want to teach at a research school (one that has a Ph.D program in your field) then teaching experience usually isn't that important. If you want a smaller 4-year college/university then teaching experience is almost a must.

    Also, if you want to teach upper level classes then you definitely need a Ph.D.. The people in my department that don't have a Ph.D. only teach the lower level classes. I get one or two upper level classes each semester.
     
  21. HMM

    HMM Cohort

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    http://chronicle.com/stats/aaup/ratingscale/2007aaupratingscale.htm
     
  22. holliday

    holliday Comrade

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    Thanks! According to the salary chart, looks like it could actually make financial sense to pursue a Ph.D. and move up to the university level.
     
  23. HMM

    HMM Cohort

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    Not bad for 7.5 to 8 months of work. (4 to 5 weeks off at x-mas and 3 to 3.5 months off in the summer)

    It's hard to beat :)
     
  24. Edelweiss

    Edelweiss Rookie

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    Jul 18, 2007

    I can't speak for all fields, but I know that in the literary community "experience" refers to publication rather than time in front of a classroom. As a matter of fact, the most effective instructor I had, bar none, was a gentleman with no real teaching experience whatsoever. Of course, he was a TA while he completed his Masters and Ph.D., but that didn't make him a great teacher. What made him great was his passion for and knowledge of his field, the development of which is the purpose of advanced degrees in the first place.
     
  25. Mamacita

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    Jul 18, 2007

    I know absolutely nothing about elementary education (as you all well know) but I do know that a degree in education without an academic subject is pretty much worthless at the college level, even if you are teaching an education course. We have an opening right now for a full-time Early Childhood Experiences instructor, and elementary teachers are applying like mad, but they are apparently not reading the qualifications carefully because it's clearly stated that applicants must have an academic major (preferably psychology but others will be considered) PLUS an education degree. Sigh. It's college.
     
  26. MsWK

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    Jul 18, 2007

    Hi, Mr. Bob. Check out higheredjobs.com & chronicle.com. They're websites that advertise for university-level positions.

    I have a Master's in Early Ed. & I'm starting a doctoral program this fall. I know what my dream job is, so I've been watching the ads for it on those websites for a couple of years, to help me tailor my experiences to that position. Each year, they post about 7-9 of my "dream jobs." I know, for example, that I'll need the PhD, plus 3-5 years of experience at my current job, to be eligible for any of my "dream jobs."

    I also know, that since there's only 7-9 of these positions each year, that I'll have to be willing to move to wherever I get the job once I start applying. Luckily, my husband's job is very portable--as long as we're near a big city / college town / tourist destination, he can find work--quickly.

    As for your question about whether teaching experience is helpful, well--it depends on your subject. If you're planning on teaching education, then, hell yes it's important. No student in their right mind will buy anything you say about teaching if you've never done it. If you're in some other subject (say, Biology, English, or Psychology), then the previous teaching won't help or hurt you (you'll get the job because you're a scholar in your field).

    As for teaching elementary--don't do it unless you really want to [and it will be hard to do it without a license anyway].
     
  27. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Jul 18, 2007

    :D :D

    Well said!
     
  28. MsWK

    MsWK Habitué

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    Thanks, Alice, I try. ;)
     
  29. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    If others will be considered, I am considering this. :) I think it varies by state. From what I have seen, junior or city colleges in Chicago want nothing more than experience in field, and in most cases a masters degree.

    Many of my instructors have masters degree in ECE, or Child and Family Studies. I have also had adjunct professors who were full time ECE or elementary teachers, and only taught part time.

    It is my experience that the teachers in the field are more interested in making sure you pass the course, whereas the full time teachers in college are more interested in advocacy, and current trends. In otherwords, it's more of a them vs. us mentality.

    This is why I would be leaning towards college teaching. I see what is going on out there, and I am learning more. Trouble is, what is discussed in college doesn't occur in schools. People are fighting it. I think if a better approach is presented, teachers will be more likely to use it. The fact that I have taught opposed to other instructors who have not will give me a better perspective. I think my future students will appreciate this!

    So, for my :2cents: , I think you need both. Degrees and experience. And when you get to the point where you don't want to be in administration, but you do want more $$$, college seems to be the answer. I've seen some teachers jump from 2nd grade to high school! :eek: They say they were bored or got burned out. I would rather grow in the direction of helping other teachers, instead of moving up or down a grade level.

    Pre-K 4ever!!
     

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