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Education, General


Programs in general education teach people the theories of learning and teaching. Students learn how to plan a curriculum.

Education programs include topics such as:


In education programs, students may be able to specialize in specific subjects they would like to teach in fields such as:

People who want to teach in middle and high school are usually required to select areas of specialization.


Many colleges and universities offer bachelor's degrees in education. A bachelor's degree usually takes about four years of full-time study.

Many universities offer graduate degrees in education. A master's degree typically requires one or two years of study beyond a bachelor's degree. Doctoral (PhD) degree programs usually require two or more years of study beyond the master's degree.

See schools that offer this program.

Related Educational Programs

Related Careers

Careers Directly Related to this Program of Study

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Program Admission

You can prepare for this program by taking courses in high school that prepare you for college. This typically includes four years of English, three years of math, three years of social studies, and two years of science. Some colleges also require two years of a second language.

Program admissions vary. However, for all programs, you need good grades. You also usually need to complete some combination of the following requirements:

Program requirements may vary depending on if they focus on a particular style of education (e.g., Montessori, Waldorf)

Below is a list of high school courses that will help prepare you for this program of study:

Graduate Admissions

Admission to graduate programs is competitive. You need a bachelor’s degree with significant course work in education, good grades, and good test scores.

Additional requirements at some schools include:

Typical Course Work

Program Courses

Your undergraduate courses will vary greatly depending on the specific subject(s) you wish to teach. If you know your particular area, it's a good idea to visit the related program of study. For example, if you wish to teach mathematics, check out the mathematics program of study description.

Typically, your education courses typically include:

You may also take courses that focus on a specific age group, such as middle school or high school students.

Graduate Program Courses

Graduate programs that lead to a master's or doctoral degree typically include:

The core courses are often either a more thorough or more directed study of issues and topics that are introduced in undergraduate courses for this program. You also take courses in research methodology and statistics to prepare you to do independent research.

Most programs require you to complete a student teaching practicum, which is a hands-on opportunity to apply what you've learned in one of a variety of education settings, from public elementary schools to private Montessori or Waldorf preschools. Whatever the setting, you benefit from the guidance and direct supervision of an experienced teacher.

Many programs also offer a pre-practicum course. This exposes you to education before you are given the responsibility of teaching a course. You would work closely with a teacher and an advisor from your program, observing, discussing, and assisting.

Things to Know

You can earn a bachelor's degree in your chosen field (such as history) and then earn a Master in Teaching (MAT) degree. This degree usually requires about one additional year of study.

You need to be licensed to teach in public schools. All states require you to have at least a bachelor's degree and a certain amount of supervised practice teaching experience. Some states also require that you have a master's degree.

Part of the licensure requirements of many states includes one or more tests such as the Praxis exams. Passing these exams helps show your competency to teach.

Because some states don't have official certification processes, you should develop a teaching portfolio. This showcases to potential employers your teaching vision, achievements, and competency. As a student, you can start compiling samples of syllabi and student work that you've graded, as well as other materials that reflect your growth and development as a teacher. You should also include a statement of your teaching philosophy and career objectives.


East Side Area

Central Washington University

Walla Walla University

Washington State University - Pullman

King-Snohomish Area

Antioch University

Bellevue College

Columbia College - Naval Station Everett/Marysville

Northwest University

Seattle Pacific University

Seattle University

South Seattle College

University of Washington - Bothell

University of Washington - Seattle

Kitsap Area

Brandman University - Bangor

Olympic College

Southern Illinois University - Bangor

Spokane Area

Eastern Washington University

Gonzaga University

Whitworth University

Tacoma Area

Evergreen State College, The (Tacoma Campus)

Pacific Lutheran University

University of Puget Sound

University of Washington - Tacoma

Tri-Cities Area

Washington State University - Tri-Cities

Vancouver Area

Washington State University - Vancouver

West Side Area

Columbia College - Whidbey Island

Evergreen State College, The

Saint Martin's University

Skagit Valley College

Western Washington University

Yakima Area

Heritage University