Career Key

Author: Career Key's President and CEO, Juliet Wehr Jones, GCDF, J.D.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Theory vs. Reality in the Grad School Decision

Because I'm interested in education, I read the recent NYT's Room for Debate online panel discussion, "Do Teachers Need Education Degrees?" Basically it spiraled into education reform arguments: what makes a good teacher? A degree or experience? Views were so passionate that one writer even used the word "baloney!" Wow.

And never mind all the theory and abstract discussion. If my predominant Holland personality type is Social and I decide that I want to be a middle school teacher, what does all this mean for me?

This controversy leads to 3 observations:

1. Research your state and local teaching certification requirements.
2. Informational interview at least 3 teachers in your geographic area at different types of schools (public, private, charter) who work in the subjects that interest you. Do they have a grad degree? What impact does it have on the hiring process? Where did they get theirs? What lessons did they learn?
3. Be critical when evaluating educational programs' claims and promises. As noted in the NYT article, school administrators do not view all programs as created equal.

We suggest many more activities to learn about the jobs that interest you at our website.

Both my parents were teachers so I can appreciate the complexity and challenges (and rewards) of this career choice. Along those lines, any typos or grammatical mistakes you find in this blog are not my parents' fault!

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