Graduates with a master's degree in science education can pursue teaching careers with high schools and colleges. The research skills and teaching methods learned in this degree program can also be easily applied to educational positions outside of a school setting. Below is a list of some of the related careers for those with a master's degree in science education.
Careers Options for a Master's Degree in Science Education
|Job Title||Median Salary (2016)*||Job Growth (2014-2024)*|
|High School Teachers||$58,030||6%|
|Park Naturalists||$61,810 (for all conservation scientists)||7% (for all conservation scientists)|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)
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High School Teachers
High school teachers need at least a bachelor's degree, but some states require these teachers to earn a master's degree once they've been certified. Teachers with a background in science education will likely teach various science courses, such as biology, chemistry, physics and more, to children in the 9th through 12th grades. High school teachers must plan their lessons and adapt activities for the size of the class, as well as enforce classroom rules. They may also work with students individually to help them succeed and update parents on a student's progress.
A master's degree and related experience as a teacher or school administrator are common requirements for instructional coordinators. Graduates of a science education master's degree program would likely have the research and teaching skills needed for this career, which involves helping develop a school's curriculum to meet required teaching standards. These coordinators could help train teachers to implement methods for teaching science and then work with administrators to measure the effectiveness of any instructional changes. They may also help develop or find new learning materials if needed.
Postsecondary teachers typically need a doctoral degree to work in 4-year colleges or universities, but smaller institutions, such as community colleges, may only require a master's degree. Individuals with a background in science education may be qualified to teach courses in environmental science, biology, chemistry, physics, geoscience and more. Postsecondary teachers are required to develop their own curriculum, exams and assignments for each course they teach. Depending on the size of the institution, they may be required to advise undergraduate students concerning their class schedules and degree paths.
Some park naturalists hold a master's degree, and those who complete a science education program specializing in natural and environmental sciences could be well prepared to educate the public about the various features in a park. Park naturalists may work at national, state or local parks to plan and conduct educational programs for park visitors. The programs may cover a wide variety of topics, such as the natural or historic features of a park. These professionals also develop informational material about the park, answer visitors' questions and prepare educational programs for local schools that may come to visit.
Curators of a museum usually need a master's degree, and those with a background in science education may find positions in science-based museums or large museums that offer various areas of specialization. Curators are not only responsible for the management of a collection, which includes storing, buying or selling pieces, but also for developing education programs for the institution. This is where a background in science education could prove beneficial, as curators help conduct tours and workshops for the public and even oversee research projects the institution is undertaking. Curators also oversee and coordinate the work of other museum staff members.
Individuals with a master's degree in science education can find several jobs within the field of education, though they may also find work with museums, public parks and other settings that offer an educational outreach component. Many of these careers are expected to have positive job growth in the future and vary greatly in the median salaries they offer.