Biology Teacher: Job Duties & Requirements

Mar 26, 2019

Job Description for Biology Teachers

High school biology teachers teach biology basics to high school students at private and public schools. They develop engaging curricula including lab experiments and other scientific investigations; they also present lessons and evaluate student performance. High school biology teachers are also in charge of preparing and grading examinations, working with parents on student performance, and supervising student behavior.

High school biology teachers work in teams with the rest of their faculty to prepare standardized tests. They participate in the planning of and implementation of their school's policies and regulations for all students. High school teachers typically work ten months of the year, but some work during the summer. Additionally, high school teachers should plan on being available for clubs and other school-related activities before and after school hours.

Education Bachelor's in biology with education emphasis
Job Duties Develop curricula, present lessons, evaluate student performance
Median Salary (2017)* $59,170 (all high school teachers)
Job Growth (2016-2026)* 8% (all high school teachers)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Educational Requirements

High school biology teachers typically have a 4-year Bachelor of Science in Biology with an education emphasis or minor. Courses in a biology program with an education emphasis may include math, chemistry, teaching methods, and physics. Public high school biology teachers must be licensed by the state in which they teach. Private schools may not require licensure.

Required Skills

High school biology teachers must be able to keep their students on task and engaged. They need to employ various teaching methods to meet students' individual needs. Being bilingual may give a high school biology teacher an advantage in the job market.

Employment and Salary Outlook

High school teachers can expect average job growth of 8% between 2016 and 2026, according to the BLS, with the greatest demand expected in the South and West. Additionally, the BLS reported that the median annual salary for high school teachers was $59,170 in 2017.

Alternate Career Options

Similar career options in this field include:

Postsecondary Teacher

Normally requiring at least a master's degree in their field of study, these educators teach students beyond high school in a variety of vocational and academic subjects. Many conduct research and publish books and professional papers.

The BLS projected much faster than average employment growth of 15% for teachers at this level in general, from 2016 through 2026. According to BLS records, postsecondary teachers overall earned a median annual wage of $76,000 in 2017, and those teaching biological science earned $78,240.

Biological Technician

With a bachelor's degree in biology or a similar field and laboratory experience, these technicians assist medical and biological scientists in their lab experiments and tests. As of May 2017, biological technicians earned a median annual salary of $43,800 and could expect faster than average job growth of 10% from 2016-2026, according to the BLS.

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