Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Distance Learning and Teacher Certification


Katie Wilson from DistanceLearningNet wrote a blog post for us about distance learning and getting your teacher certification online. I think this post will prove very interesting for students in the US who want to work while getting their teacher certification via distance education.

In Canada, it is still best to get your Bachelor of Education or PDPP at one of the many reputable teachers colleges, but that's just my two cents.

On to Katie's blog post:

Getting your teacher certification online can be a relatively painless endeavor. Here are some helpful notes that may guide you along the way.

Now that you’ve chosen to take the step towards getting certified to become a teacher you will have to outline the exact plan you will use to get there. Keep in mind that all your hard work in planning and goal setting will pay off in the end, so don’t short change yourself and skip good research first.

Two Categories

Those interested in getting a certification to become a teacher generally fall into two broad categories:

1) Those already with degrees.
2)Those without.

It’s easy to understand which one you fall into, but in the case of those who are already actively pursuing a degree it may be a little trickier. Often times, depending on how far along you are with your studies, and what state you live in, you could classify yourself in either category.

1)Those who already have a BA
If you have a Bachelor of the Arts (or Science) in any subject you can become a teacher. Though you will still have to apply and be accepted to an approved certification course, you are not far away from being in a classroom. Most certification programs allow you to teach while you are studying, so you can fulfill all your requirements and still get valuable on the job training.

Certification requirements are largely controlled and dictated by state governments, so according to the region or state you are in there will be specific guidelines that determine how long it will take you. In some states, certification after you already have a BA can take as little as six months; others can take over a year.

Prices for distance learning teacher certification can range up to $6000.00 for the entire course, so be sure you have made a choice you intend to stick with. It’s also important to know that employers and school boards may also affect your eligibility to teach before you are certified, so make sure you are in the know.

2)Those who don’t already have a BA or can tailor their degree plan to get certified.
If you don’t already have a Bachelor of the Arts then don’t fret, you have just as much potential to become a teacher as those who do have a BA. The only major difference is that you will have to spend a little more time seeking out your degree, with a focus on education.

Online degrees generally start in the 15 to 20 thousand dollar range and can take several years, but in some instances can be much cheaper depending on the requirements of the region.

Again it’s important to familiarize yourself with your home state’s requirements, as well as look into requirements of schools and school boards in the area where you want to teach. Getting the right information could save you lots of money and wasted hours of study, so do all your homework and pick an avenue that fits your needs.

This post was contributed by Katie Wilson, who writes about the best ranked distance learning program. She welcomes your feedback at KatieWilson06 at gmail.com.

Thanks Katie! We really appreciate Katie's support and interest in helping our readers understand more about distance learning.

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Thanks for sharing your two pence!

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