Besides an interest in math and working with children, to become a high school calculus teacher requires a bachelor's degree in a math subject as well as a state-issued teaching license. Students can choose to combine math and education in their undergraduate studies to better prepare themselves for the teaching experience.
Public school calculus teachers are required to have a bachelor's degree and a teaching license. Licensure requirements vary from state to state, but usually include student teaching experience that involves training under an experienced math teacher.
After completing their student teaching experience, prospective teachers should be able to work with students, create lesson plans and grade tests. They need a strong foundation in calculus and other math topics. An aspiring high school calculus teacher may also be required to teach less advanced math topics, like geometry or algebra.
|Required Education||Bachelor's degree in a math-related field; teaching license|
|Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)*||6% for all high school teachers|
|Median Salary (2015)*||$57,200 for all secondary school teachers|
Source: *U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics
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There are multiple undergraduate major options for prospective calculus teachers, including a bachelor's degree in secondary mathematics education. Students can also major in mathematics with an education concentration, or they can major in education or secondary education with a mathematics concentration. Coursework for any of these options would combine general education requirements, mathematics classes and professional education courses.
Bachelor's degree programs may not necessarily be tailored specifically for prospective calculus teachers, but degree programs commonly include three or four calculus courses, covering differential equations, exponential functions and partial differentiation. Additional topics covered in college mathematics courses commonly include the history of mathematics, geometry, linear algebra, discrete mathematics and applied statistics.
Professional teacher education topics may include secondary education instructional methods, adolescent development and developmental psychology. Teaching degree candidates also learn classroom management and teaching skills for working with exceptional students. For private school teachers, licensure may not be required, but educational requirements are typically comparable.
Further Education and Advanced Careers
Master's degree programs in teaching mathematics are available for prospective high school calculus teachers. Some programs are designed for prospective math teachers who have very little professional education in teaching or classroom experience. Others are for practicing teachers looking to advance their skills.
Master's degree programs in mathematics may also prepare graduates to teach calculus at community colleges. Doctorate programs in mathematics or mathematics education are also available. These programs may prepare graduates to teach at the four-year university level, where a doctorate degree is typically required.
Calculus teachers usually choose either an undergraduate program leading to a degree in education with a minor in math, or vice versa. Either way, their curriculum usually includes several calculus courses. Their undergraduate program will provide young teachers with classroom preparation and teaching experience. No matter which direction they choose, a strong understanding of classroom management, teaching methods, and mathematics is necessary.