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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.
Hispanic or Latino11.7%
Black or African American2.4%
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Average Length of Employment
University of Houston9.6%
University of South Florida6.1%
University of Texas at Arlington6.1%
Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis5.2%
University of Phoenix5.2%
Montclair State University5.2%
University of Georgia5.2%
New York University4.3%
Wayne State University4.3%
University of New Hampshire4.3%
Michigan State University4.3%
University of Delaware4.3%
Ohio University -3.5%
University of North Carolina at Greensboro3.5%
University of Texas at San Antonio3.5%
University of Alabama at Birmingham3.5%
Unfortunately we don’t have enough data for this section.
|Job Title||Company||Location||Start Date||Salary|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||University of California, Davis||Sacramento, CA||Jul 07, 2014||$120,000|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||Case Western Reserve University||Cleveland, OH||Jan 09, 2014||$110,000|
|Physics Teacher for Secondary School||La Fondation Du Lycee Francais International de Wa||Bethesda, MD||Sep 02, 2014||$109,200|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||University of Michigan||Ann Arbor, MI||Feb 03, 2014||$102,666|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||University of California, Berkeley||Berkeley, CA||Feb 25, 2014||$99,200|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||New York University||New York, NY||Sep 22, 2014||$95,000|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||University of California, Berkeley||Berkeley, CA||Mar 26, 2014||$94,000|
|Physics Teacher-Secondary||Baltimore City Public Schools||Baltimore, MD||Jul 15, 2015||$90,841|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||University of California, Berkeley||Berkeley, CA||Feb 19, 2013||$90,100|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||University of California, Los Angeles||Los Angeles, CA||Feb 20, 2013||$90,000|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||Yale University||New Haven, CT||Feb 18, 2014||$90,000|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||Massachusetts Institute of Technology||Cambridge, MA||Jun 27, 2013||$90,000|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||Massachusetts Institute of Technology||Cambridge, MA||Jun 19, 2013||$90,000|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||University of Massachusetts Amherst||Amherst, MA||Mar 19, 2014||$76,149|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||University of Hawaii||Urban Honolulu, HI||Jun 05, 2013||$76,000|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||Washington State University||Pullman, WA||Sep 02, 2014||$76,000|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||State University of New York at Binghamton||Binghamton, NY||Jan 15, 2014||$76,000|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||University of New Mexico||Albuquerque, NM||Mar 04, 2014||$75,000|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||University of Massachusetts Amherst||Amherst, MA||Jan 17, 2014||$75,000|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||Texas Christian University||Fort Worth, TX||Mar 20, 2014||$75,000|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||West Virginia University||Morgantown, WV||Jul 23, 2014||$75,000|
|Mathematics and Physics Teacher||Nettleton School District||Nettleton, MS||Sep 01, 2014||$61,066|
|Upper School Physics Teacher||Friends School of Baltimore, Inc.||Baltimore, MD||Jun 20, 2016||$60,910|
|Physics Teacher||Ivymax, Inc.||Diamond Bar, CA||Sep 27, 2013||$60,606|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||New York Film Academy Ltd.||Burbank, CA||Feb 06, 2014||$60,410|
|Science/Physics Teacher||Magnolia Educational & Research Foundation||CA||Sep 11, 2016||$60,055|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||Western Kentucky University||Bowling Green, KY||Sep 16, 2014||$60,048|
|Physics Teachers, Postsecondary||Georgia Gwinnett College||Lawrenceville, GA||Mar 21, 2014||$60,000|
|Mathematics and Physics Teacher||Starkville School District||Starkville, MS||Aug 01, 2014||$58,582|
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What can you do with a physics degree? Take 2
So You Want a Degree in Physics
Becoming a Physics Teacher