A 2-year associate's degree in teaching provides a basic overview of education, while introducing the student to important topics such as early childhood and special education. Internships may be required. College prep courses in science, foreign languages and math may improve an individual's chances of being accepted.
While an associate's degree is not sufficient for licensing as a school teacher in public schools, degree holders can work as teacher's assistants or paraprofessionals. In every state, public teachers need at least a bachelor's degree and other state-specific requirements to become licensed. Master's and doctorate degrees in the field are also available.
Associate's Degree in Teaching
The curriculum for this degree typically covers general education courses in the natural sciences, mathematics, humanities and social sciences. Common courses may include the following:
- Education fundamentals
- Child nutrition and health
- Child growth and development
- Teaching methods for elementary education
- Teaching methods for secondary education
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
Over the years 2014-2024, employment of teacher assistants is projected to grow 6%, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov). The BLS reported the average salary of teacher assistants is $26,550 as of May 2015.
Continuing Education Information
Associate's degree holders who want to become licensed teachers need to earn at least a bachelor's degree in teacher education and then earn state licensure; students may have better job prospects with a master's degree. Many public university systems offer transfer programs for community college graduates, particularly in the field of education.
Associate's degree programs in teaching are offered at various community colleges across the U.S. Curriculum includes education units in topics like teaching methodology and childhood development, which prepares graduates for work as teacher's aides.