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Highly-Qualified Teachers Make a Substantial Impact on Students
Do high-quality, dedicated teachers make a difference in the lives of their students? If you are looking to advance your career as a teacher, or are considering changing careers to become a teacher, then you know the answer is YES. Now let’s back that up with some data.
First off, the term high-quality teacher is both a descriptive adjective as well as a defined requirement for teachers with primary responsibility for direct instruction in one or more of NCLB’s core content areas. (NCLB refers to the No Child Left Behind Act.)
Let’s start with the descriptive adjective of “high-quality”: A recent study by the National Bureau of Economic Research (Chetty, Friedman, & Rockoff, 2011) found that highly-qualified teachers do, in fact, make a substantial impact on the lives of children and young adults. Taking school data for 2.5 million children in grades 3 through 8 and linking it to tax records and adult outcomes, Chetty and Associates found that children with excellent teachers were more likely to attend college, less likely to become pregnant in their teen years, and more likely to have higher salaries in adulthood. The research found that great teachers can have huge impact on quality of life and academic achievement.
This study makes a very compelling argument for choosing to become a teacher. Moreover, highly-qualified teachers and educators with diverse or nontraditional backgrounds are in great demand. Many states have recognized that people with experiences in government and the private sector offer unique perspectives and understandings that can be passed onto their students. Therefore, these states have alternative certification programs for those who have a bachelor’s degree outside of education.
Saint Joseph’s University offers an Online Teacher Certification Program (OATCERT) that offers a secondary teaching certification for those who are looking to become teachers quickly, but are not yet certified. The program is designed to be convenient and flexible, so that those with a dedication to the lives of children and young adults have a pathway to this influential career. Teachers who complete the OATCERT program and pass the Praxis II test are considered a Highly-Qualified Teacher, according to NCLB’s standards.
Conversely, if you are already a teacher looking for a specialized master’s program to maintain certification or marketability, Saint Joseph’s University offers an MS with a major in Education. This program is completely online and will help you refine classroom delivery skills while preparing you for new educational challenges.
Choosing a teaching career that significantly affects the lives of young people can be a fulfilling and rewarding choice. For more information in becoming a teacher, contact our Program Managers.
Chetty, R., Friedman, J. N., & Rockoff, J. E. (2011). The Long-Term Impacts of Teachers: Teacher Value-Added And Student Outcomes In Adulthood. Cambridge, MA: National Bureau of Economic Research.