Math Teacher Education Programs
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Below is a directory (broken down by state) of all of the Math Teacher Education programs we could find, from over 1,700 accredited colleges and universities across the US.
Does the Pythagorean theorem give you goose bumps? Can you solve quadratic equations in your sleep? Would you enjoy making these mathematical concepts come alive for the next generation of scientists, mathematicians, and engineers? If so, you may have what it takes to be a math teacher.
Offers a Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction with a concentration in Mathematics
Offers a range of Bachelor’s, Master’s and Post-Baccalaureate programs in Math
Offers a range of Master’s programs in Mathematics
Offers a Bachelor’s in Elementary Education and a Bachelor’s in Secondary Education with Math concentrations
Mathematics Education Job Description
At the elementary level, math instruction focuses on mathematical basics such as number basics and order of operations. Teachers at this grade level may teach math along with other core subject areas. At the secondary level, math teachers typically teach only math. Courses are divided into the various branches of math such as algebra, geometry, calculus, and trigonometry. Instruction emphasizes concepts, problem solving, reasoning and proof, making connections across disciplines, and using graphs, tables, and charts to represent mathematical ideas.
Math teachers are responsible for planning and conducting lessons that teach students math concepts and math problem-solving skills in age-appropriate ways. They employ a variety of teaching strategies to engage students in challenging, meaningful math work. They also devise assessment strategies for evaluating student achievement. In addition, math teachers must encourage confidence and a positive attitude toward math. J. Michael Shaughnessy, president of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), recently wrote that math teachers must work to get rid of the statement "I'm bad at math."
Mathematics Education Requirements
To be a math teacher, you must meet state certification requirements. These vary from state to state but include a bachelor's degree in education from an approved teacher education program, a student teaching internship, and a passing score on a competency test such as Praxis.
No matter what grade level they teach, math educators must have an in-depth knowledge of mathematical concepts, an understanding of how students learn mathematics, and extensive knowledge of mathematics curriculum and standards. At the lower grade levels, the NCTM recommends that math teachers should have completed the equivalent of at least three college-level mathematics courses. Another option is to earn an endorsement as an elementary math specialist. EMS teachers may teach math in one or more grade levels, or they may provide math instruction to pullout groups of students.
At the middle and high school levels, math teachers typically have a degree in math education. The NCTM says math teachers at this level should complete mathematics coursework equivalent to what is required for a major in mathematics outside the education department. Math is a rapidly changing and developing field, so math teachers should be committed to lifelong professional learning.
Mathematics Education Career Outlook
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the teaching field in general is expected to grow about as fast as the average for all occupations. Yet, there is a considerable shortage of math teachers according to a 2008 study by the American Association of Employment in Education, so qualified applicants will find plenty of opportunity. Job prospects will be even better in less desirable and rural school districts. As for salary, the American Federation of Teachers reports that the average teacher salary in 2007 was $51,009. Keep in mind that teachers can boost their wages by taking on supplemental contracts for coaching or sponsoring extracurricular activities.
Mathematics Education Trends
A thorough understanding of mathematical skills is crucial to students' future success. Because US students lag behind other industrialized nations on international math assessments, teachers can expect national and state initiatives to promote more rigorous math education.
Online Math Education Programs
According to the Department of Education, many states are experiencing critical shortages of math teachers. For current and aspiring math teachers, a wide variety of online programs are available, including bachelor's degrees at the elementary and secondary levels, master's degrees, doctorate degrees, post-baccalaureate degrees and even supplemental certificates for current teachers.
Online programs in math education differ somewhat depending on the school and the degree program, but usually the curriculum is broken into units and each unit is assessed separately. A capstone project and/or internship is generally required at the program's conclusion. Online math education courses may cover data-driven pedagogy, methods of teaching, curriculum development and assessment methods. Depending on a student's work ethic and schedule, online bachelor's degree programs in math education may be completed in three to four years; online master's, doctorate, post-baccalaureate and certificate programs may take 18 months to two years to complete.
Online degree programs are not for everyone; those who require the structure and discipline of daily or weekly classroom attendance may prefer to enroll in on-campus courses. Online programs are best for individuals who are self-directed, and are also ideal for those who wish to maintain their current employment while pursuing higher education.
Three options for online degrees in math education include Grand Canyon University, Liberty University and Western Governors University.
Grand Canyon University's Bachelor of Science in elementary education, with an emphasis on math, prepares students for a teaching career in grades K?8, including both elementary and middle school. The online learning system is available 24 hours a day, allowing students to create their own learning schedule.
Liberty University offers a Master of Education - program specialist degree with a focus on math. This program is designed for individuals who already have a bachelor's degree and requires licensure at the middle or secondary school level. While the majority of the curriculum is offered online, this program includes three on-campus intensives in addition to a supervised internship.
The Bachelor of Arts in teaching mathematics (5-9 or 5-12) program offered by Western Governors University prepares individuals for certification and careers in education at the middle or high school level. Completion of the program includes a student teaching requirement.
Curriculum Information for Math Education Programs
Your math education program may combine mathematics content and education in secondary school teaching. By blending mathematics and critical education theories, you can learn how to teach math in an organized and effective manner. In addition to general education courses outlined by your specific program, you can experience a core curriculum that targets education courses and classes that assist you to teach math and secondary education. Your course curriculum may have the following courses:
Introduction to Teaching Secondary Education
This course examines the learning environment, teaching methodologies and learning theories that are required to teach at the secondary level. Content includes curriculum selection, design and integration. Prospective teachers are provided with the resources and knowledge to become confident, professional and effective teachers in grades seven to twelve.
The introduction to educational research provides aspiring teachers with proven methods to design lesson plans, assignments and appropriate course literature. The philosophy of pedagogy and learning objectives are also presented. In addition, the current trends in legislation, politics and the economy that impact teachers are presented for discussion.
Methods for Teaching Mathematics at the Secondary Level
Math is a specific subject that must be presented with organized patterns and lessons based on educational research. Prospective educators are provided with methods of presentation, awareness of exceptional students, the writing of daily lesson plans and microteaching methods for individual math lessons. Time management is crucial in mathematical studies.
This course also provides instruction on strategies for teaching the concepts, principles and best practices for math presentation in the classroom. The emphasis is on teaching problem solving skills, planning methodologies and learning theories that meet an individual student’s needs. Prospective teachers will design math curricula and test learning effectiveness with educational research techniques.
Research in Classroom Teaching of Mathematics
This course is designed to provide aspiring teachers with the research tools to design and evaluate students’ requirements and prepare corresponding lesson plans. Emphasis is focused on classroom practice and the use of educational research to analyze the effectiveness of teaching methods. Various research methods are presented that address teaching contemporary mathematics.
Methods for Practical Experience in Teaching Math
Math instruction requires practical applications to ensure that students learn effectively from presentations of lessons and lectures. This course includes the practice and methods of teaching math to students in a classroom. Presented as a seminar, the class uses peer critiques and research methodologies to assist aspiring math teachers to develop and demonstrate effective teaching methods.
Learning theories are used to design and evaluate the validity of lesson planning and presentation. Strategies for microteaching are also evaluated for effectiveness with individual students. Aspiring teachers practice and test their teaching skills in an array of research methodologies and developmental theories.
Learning Technology in the Classroom
For aspiring teachers who appreciate technology rich classrooms and the advantages of mathematical software and online learning programs, research-based technologies are explored in this class. Adolescents are usually advanced users of various technologies that can be an advantage to the math teacher.
Studies have shown that adolescents are more engaged and learn at a faster rate with interactive technology. Prospective teachers are provided insight and the practical applications of effective technologies used in the classroom. Applications include remedial software and online math libraries and centers for self-help remedial assistance and challenging mathematics for advanced math students.
An Alarming Shortage of Math Teachers
Mathematics is a highly valued skill in today’s world. Education reform has recommended that students in elementary, middle and high school increase their mathematical skills to gain a higher aptitude and stay globally competitive. Math teachers are in short supply and are highly sought by educational administrators that offer competitive salaries to teach at public and private institutions. States are taking bold measures to attract math teachers as reported by Michigan Live News that the state superintendent announced he would offer highly lucrative salaries to gain math teachers for schools across the state.
If you want to help students prepare for tomorrow’s challenges through math education, use our listings to request information from our featured schools. Be sure to view multiple programs to make sure you make the right choice!
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