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Become A History Teacher

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Working As A History Teacher

  • Training and Teaching Others
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work
  • Getting Information
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Coaching and Developing Others
  • Deal with People

  • Unpleasant/Angry People

  • $53,000

    Average Salary

What Does A History Teacher Do

High school teachers help prepare students for life after graduation. They teach academic lessons and various skills that students will need to attend college and to enter the job market.

Duties

High school teachers typically do the following:

  • Plan lessons in the subjects they teach, such as biology or history
  • Assess students to evaluate their abilities, strengths, and weaknesses
  • Teach students in full class settings or in small groups
  • Adapt lessons to any changes in class size
  • Grade students’ assignments and exams to monitor progress
  • Communicate with parents about students’ progress
  • Work with individual students to challenge them, to improve their abilities, and to work on their weaknesses
  • Prepare students for standardized tests required by the state
  • Develop and enforce classroom rules and administrative policies
  • Supervise students outside of the classroom—for example, at lunchtime or during detention

High school teachers generally teach students from the 9th through 12th grades. They usually specialize in one subject area, such as math, science, or history. They may teach several different classes within that subject area. For example, a high school math teacher may teach courses in algebra, calculus, and/or geometry.

High school teachers may teach students from different grades throughout the day. For example, in one class they may have students from the 9th grade and then in the next class they may have 12th-grade students. In many schools, students are divided into classes on the basis of their abilities, so teachers need to change their courses to match the students’ abilities.

High school teachers see several different classes of students throughout the day. They may teach the same material—for example, world history—to more than one class if the school has many students taking that subject.

Some high school teachers instruct special classes, such as art, music, and physical education.

When they do not have classes, teachers plan lessons, grade assignments, and meet with other teachers and staff.

In some schools, teachers of English as a second language (ESL) and teachers of English for speakers of other languages (ESOL) work exclusively with students who are learning the English language. These students are often referred to as English language learners (ELLs). These teachers work with students individually or in groups to help them improve their English language skills and help them with assignments for other classes.

Students with learning disabilities and emotional or behavioral disorders often are taught in traditional classes. Therefore, high school teachers may work with special education teachers to adapt lessons to these students’ needs and to monitor the students’ progress.

Some teachers maintain websites to communicate with parents about students’ assignments, upcoming events, and grades. For students, teachers may create websites or discussion boards to present information and to expand a lesson taught in class.

Some high school teachers coach sports and advise student clubs and other groups, activities that frequently take place before or after school.

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How To Become A History Teacher

High school teachers must have a bachelor’s degree. In addition, public school teachers must have a state-issued certification or license.

Education

All states require public high school teachers to have at least a bachelor’s degree. Most states require high school teachers to have majored in a subject area, such as science or history. Teachers typically enroll in their institution’s teacher preparation program and take classes in education and child psychology as well.

In teacher education programs, prospective high school teachers learn how to present information to students and how to work with students of varying abilities and backgrounds. Programs typically include fieldwork, such as student teaching. For information about teacher preparation programs in your state, visit Teach.org.

Some states require high school teachers to earn a master’s degree after earning their teaching certification.

Teachers in private schools do not need to meet state requirements. However, private schools typically seek high school teachers who have a bachelor’s degree and a major in a subject area.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

All states require teachers in public schools to be licensed or certified. Those who teach in private schools are generally not required to be licensed. Most states require teachers to pass a background check.

High school teachers typically are awarded a secondary or high school certification, which allows them to teach the 7th through the 12th grades.

Requirements for certification vary by state. In addition to requiring a bachelor’s degree, states require teachers to complete a teacher preparation program and supervised experience in teaching, typically gained through student teaching. States also typically require candidates to pass a general teaching certification test, as well as a test that demonstrates their knowledge in the subject they will teach. Some states require teachers to have a minimum grade point average as well. For information on certification requirements in your state, visit Teach.org.

Often, teachers are required to complete annual professional development classes to keep their license. Some states require teachers to complete a master’s degree after receiving their certification.

All states offer an alternative route to certification for people who already have a bachelor’s degree but lack the education courses required for certification. Some alternative certification programs allow candidates to begin teaching immediately under the supervision of an experienced teacher. These programs cover teaching methods and child development. After they complete the program, candidates are awarded full certification. Other programs require students to take classes in education before they can teach. Students may be awarded a master’s degree after completing either type of program.

Training

In order to receive certification, teachers need to undergo a period of fieldwork, commonly referred to as student teaching. During student teaching, they work with a mentor teacher and gain experience teaching students in a classroom setting. The amount of time required varies by state.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Teachers must collaborate with other teachers and special education teachers. In addition, teachers need to discuss students’ needs with parents and administrators.

Patience. Working with students of different abilities and backgrounds can be difficult. High school teachers must be patient when students struggle with material.

Resourcefulness. High school teachers need to explain difficult concepts in terms students can understand. In addition, they must be able to engage students in learning and adapt lessons to each student’s needs.

Advancement

Experienced teachers can advance to be mentors or lead teachers. In these positions, they often work with less experienced teachers to help them improve their teaching skills.

With additional education or certification, teachers may become school counselors, school librarians, or instructional coordinators. Some become assistant principals or principals. Becoming a principal usually requires additional instruction in education administration or leadership. For more information, see the profiles on school and career counselors, librarians, instructional coordinators, and elementary, middle, and high school principals.

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History Teacher Career Paths

History Teacher
Social Studies Teacher Special Education Teacher Lead Teacher
Center Director
7 Yearsyrs
Social Studies Teacher Special Education Teacher Adjunct Professor
Assistant Principal
10 Yearsyrs
Social Studies Teacher Math Teacher Adjunct Professor
Department Chairperson
7 Yearsyrs
Student Teacher Lead Teacher Director
Education Director
7 Yearsyrs
Student Teacher Lead Teacher Assistant Principal
Elementary School Principal
12 Yearsyrs
Student Teacher Adjunct Professor Assistant Principal
School Principal
10 Yearsyrs
Special Education Teacher Education Consultant Principal
High School Principal
9 Yearsyrs
Tutor Consultant Principal
Athletic Director
5 Yearsyrs
Tutor Administrator Assistant Principal
Middle School Principal
11 Yearsyrs
Tutor Team Leader Assistant Director
School Director
6 Yearsyrs
Instructor Program Coordinator Education Consultant
Educational Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Instructor Lead Instructor Education Director
Campus Director
7 Yearsyrs
Instructor Adjunct Instructor Associate Dean
Academic Dean
10 Yearsyrs
Coach Adjunct Instructor Department Chairperson
Vice Principal
8 Yearsyrs
Physical Education Teacher Program Coordinator Educational Programs Coordinator
Education Program Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Coach Adjunct Faculty Education Consultant
Student Dean
7 Yearsyrs
Adjunct Instructor Human Resources Manager Recruitment Director
College Director
6 Yearsyrs
Teacher And Coach School Administrator Elementary School Principal
Curriculum Director
8 Yearsyrs
Coach Faculty Department Chairperson
Academic Director
7 Yearsyrs
Teacher And Coach School Administrator Student Dean
High School Assistant Principal
10 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a History Teacher?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Secondary Teacher 5.0 years
Math Teacher 4.2 years
Science Teacher 4.1 years
Teacher 3.9 years
Economics Teacher 3.1 years
Geography Teacher 3.0 years
History Teacher 3.0 years
Peer Teacher 2.9 years
Humanities Teacher 2.5 years
Government Teacher 2.4 years
Top Careers Before History Teacher
Teacher 22.7%
Internship 5.9%
Tutor 4.6%
Instructor 3.4%
Coach 2.6%
Volunteer 2.3%
Assistant 1.9%
Top Careers After History Teacher
Teacher 24.1%
Tutor 4.0%
Principal 3.8%
Instructor 3.5%
Volunteer 2.5%
Coach 2.5%
Owner 2.4%
Director 2.2%
Assistant 2.1%
Manager 2.0%
Head Coach 2.0%

Do you work as a History Teacher?

Average Yearly Salary
$53,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$34,000
Min 10%
$53,000
Median 50%
$53,000
Median 50%
$53,000
Median 50%
$53,000
Median 50%
$53,000
Median 50%
$53,000
Median 50%
$53,000
Median 50%
$81,000
Max 90%
Highest Paying City
New York, NY
Highest Paying State
New Jersey
Avg Experience Level
3.3 years
How much does a History Teacher make at top companies?
The national average salary for a History Teacher in the United States is $53,151 per year or $26 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $34,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $81,000.

Real History Teacher Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
History Teachers, Postsecondary Yale University New Haven, CT Sep 17, 2014 $203,200
History Teachers, Postsecondary University of California, Berkeley Berkeley, CA May 13, 2013 $126,000
Teacher, History and Geography The French Japanese Educational Institute of New York Inc. New York, NY Dec 08, 2016 $85,692
History Dual Immersion Teacher-Spanish Glendale Unified School District Glendale, CA Jul 31, 2015 $82,494
History Teachers, Postsecondary Dartmouth College Hanover, NH Sep 03, 2014 $82,000
Chinese History Teacher Princeton International School of Mathematics and Princeton, NJ Sep 12, 2013 $80,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary Boston College MA Jul 29, 2013 $80,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary American University Washington, DC Mar 07, 2014 $78,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary Cornell University Ithaca, NY Jan 31, 2014 $77,773
History Teachers, Postsecondary Cornell University Ithaca, NY Sep 09, 2013 $76,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary Leland Stanford Jr, University Stanford, CA Apr 19, 2013 $75,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary Long Island University Brookville, NY Apr 23, 2014 $75,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary Northeastern University Boston, MA Sep 23, 2013 $74,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary Indiana University Bloomington, IN May 16, 2014 $67,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary Providence College Providence, RI Feb 20, 2014 $65,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary The Johns Hopkins University Baltimore, MD Apr 14, 2014 $65,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary University of Connecticut Storrs, CT Jun 17, 2014 $65,000 -
$80,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary University of Connecticut Storrs, CT Jan 13, 2014 $65,000 -
$80,000
Upper School History Teacher Archer School for Girls Inc. Los Angeles, CA Aug 17, 2016 $64,570 -
$72,000
Mandarin & East Asian History Teacher Beaver Country Day School MA Nov 21, 2016 $64,267
History Teachers, Postsecondary Washington University In St. Louis Saint Louis, MO Apr 25, 2014 $64,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary Loyola University New Orleans New Orleans, LA Oct 25, 2013 $56,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary University of Minnesota Duluth, MN Apr 16, 2014 $56,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary Washington State University Pullman, WA Aug 20, 2014 $56,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary The Curators of The University of Missouri Columbia, MO May 24, 2013 $56,000
Teacher of Armenian History Mashdots College Glendale, CA May 27, 2013 $55,050
History Teachers, Postsecondary Bronx Community College of The City University of New York New York, NY May 01, 2014 $55,017
History Teachers, Postsecondary University of Cincinnati Cincinnati, OH Apr 28, 2014 $55,000
History Teachers, Postsecondary James Madison University Harrisonburg, VA Sep 05, 2014 $55,000

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Top Skills for A History Teacher

  1. Curriculum Development
  2. Classroom Management
  3. World History
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Participated in collaborative curriculum development and grade-level activities.
  • Used interactive lessons and positive classroom management techniques to keep an upbeat and interesting learning environment.
  • Developed extensive lesson plans in American and World History content areas, executing evaluations based on student proven skill level.
  • Combined discipline plan with effective measures and various lesson plans to increase concentration, participation, and progress student accountability.
  • Collaborated with colleagues regularly to ensure best practices for student learning are continually implemented.

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Top 10 Best States for History Teachers

  1. California
  2. Connecticut
  3. Alaska
  4. Massachusetts
  5. New York
  6. New Jersey
  7. Michigan
  8. Rhode Island
  9. Oregon
  10. Minnesota
  • (3,113 jobs)
  • (276 jobs)
  • (33 jobs)
  • (392 jobs)
  • (479 jobs)
  • (706 jobs)
  • (478 jobs)
  • (28 jobs)
  • (133 jobs)
  • (328 jobs)

History Teacher Demographics

Gender

Male

50.4%

Female

38.7%

Unknown

10.9%
Ethnicity

White

61.3%

Hispanic or Latino

16.1%

Black or African American

12.5%

Asian

6.4%

Unknown

3.8%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

50.8%

French

8.7%

Russian

6.2%

Italian

5.1%

Chinese

5.1%

German

5.1%

Portuguese

4.1%

Arabic

3.1%

Mandarin

1.5%

Korean

1.5%

Ukrainian

1.5%

Greek

1.5%

Japanese

1.5%

Hebrew

1.0%

Turkish

0.5%

Romanian

0.5%

Dutch

0.5%

Khmer

0.5%

Hungarian

0.5%

Wolof

0.5%
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History Teacher Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

9.3%

Grand Canyon University

7.6%

National University

6.2%

Nova Southeastern University

6.2%

New York University

5.5%

Texas A&M University

5.5%

University of South Florida

5.2%

Liberty University

4.8%

American University

4.8%

George Mason University

4.5%

Northern Arizona University

4.5%

Teachers College of Columbia University

4.5%

University of Alabama

4.2%

Temple University

4.2%

Harvard University

4.2%

University of North Texas

3.8%

University of Texas at Arlington

3.8%

Virginia Commonwealth University

3.8%

Walden University

3.8%

Florida State University

3.5%
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Majors

History

22.6%

Education

14.7%

Elementary Education

10.4%

Educational Leadership

9.1%

Secondary Education And Teaching

5.3%

General Education, Specific Areas

4.9%

Political Science

4.4%

Business

3.9%

Special Education

3.4%

English

3.0%

Curriculum And Instruction

2.7%

Social Sciences

2.3%

Law

2.2%

Fine Arts

2.0%

Liberal Arts

2.0%

Theology

1.8%

School Counseling

1.4%

Kinesiology

1.4%

Psychology

1.3%

Management

1.2%
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Degrees

Masters

44.5%

Bachelors

31.1%

Other

12.4%

Doctorate

5.5%

Certificate

4.1%

Associate

1.7%

Diploma

0.4%

License

0.3%
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Top History Teacher Employers

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