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Education Specialist Degrees in Alaska

Education Specialist Degrees in Alaska

The schools of Alaska serve hundreds of thousands of students in any given year, a huge task when you consider Alaska’s large, often sparsely populated terrain and wide variety of educational needs. With Alaska’s test scores and performance measures fluctuating in response to federal changes, teachers are the key to a strong educational future in this state.

With an education specialist degree, you can expand your knowledge in a specific area of teaching. This is a fairly diverse certification, since you may choose to focus on a subject area, an age range, or another area of education entirely.

Role of Educators With an Ed.S Degree in Alaska

Ready to change Alaska education for the better? Take your career to the next level by contacting education specialist programs below.

In Alaska, the Department of Education and Early Development oversees teaching certification and educational requirements for each grade level. As an education specialist, you may help your students, your school, and the entire community enjoy the results of high-quality education.

A long-term goal of Alaska education is based on making education affordable and sustainable for all children in the state (News Miner, 2016). Legislators and advocates note that education is an obligation of the state. Devoting your time to further training may have long-reaching effects on your students.

Helping your students learn more now may strengthen the field of public health. Research out of Alaska shows that consistent, reliable education may cut an individual’s dementia risk (Alaska Dispatch News, 2016).

While education for all ages is prioritized in Alaska, early childhood education is particularly important. Ongoing data shows that providing children with early childhood education reduces crime rates, improves health outcomes, and increases overall earning potential (News Miner, 2016).

There are many ways you can enrich your knowledge with an education specialist degree. Now is the time to learn more about getting your edu. specialist degree. AK options are listed below.

Getting Your Educational Specialist Degree in Alaska

The type of specialist degree you earn may be influenced by the type of teaching you currently do. These programs are only available to licensed teachers with a Master’s degree in education, since classroom teaching experience is required and you must have a graduate-level understanding of your area of study. Across Alaska, most programs can be completed in under two years. They range from 24 to 33 credits.

Numerous degree options allow you to choose a specialized subject that aligns with your previous teaching experience and your future career plans. Alaska colleges and universities offer education specialist degrees in elementary education, special education, learning design and technology, superintendent certification, educational leadership, and reading, amongst others.

This degree is highly focused, to the point that you may not have any courses in common with education specialist students in other subjects. At the Master’s degree level, you should already have an in-depth knowledge of educational research, technology, and ethics. This allows you to move right into specialized courses. The curriculum for each certificate is unique.

For example, a reading education specialist curriculum may include the following courses:

  • Reading and Cognition
  • Reading Instruction and Assessment
  • Reading and Literacy in the Content Areas
  • Teacher as Leader
  • Developing Reading for ECE-12

Classroom experience is critical in this type of degree. As a licensed, working teacher, you may be able to use some of your current working hours for your degree requirements. Otherwise, you may find another classroom in your school where you can complete your hours, particularly if you have support from your administrators with regard to your ongoing education.

Non-classroom specialties are the exception. If your degree focuses on administration, curriculum development, or technology, you may need to complete fieldwork rotations in an area relevant to your certification.

Other than your classroom or fieldwork hours, most courses do not, by design, required physical attendance. For that reason, a number of Alaska colleges and universities allow you to earn your degree via a conventional program or online Ed.S programs.

The highly specialized nature of this degree should provide you with skills, research, and knowledge that you can immediately apply to your classroom work. Depending on your chosen subject, you may learn new ways to teach challenging information, discover techniques for reaching students with diverse needs, or come up with practical ways to apply current research. For your students, this often means more personalized instruction with long-lasting information retention and usage. For your school, this may lead to better testing outcomes and improved funding.

Working With an Education Specialist Degree in Alaska

For many Ed.S graduates, the goal is simply to work more effectively and efficiently in the classroom. In this case, you may choose to keep your current position after graduation and make more of your teaching hours. Otherwise, you may look into positions that focus on curriculum development, administration and leadership, or educational technology.

Some common career options are listed below with projected job growth through 2022 and average salary information:

  • Education administrator: 10% expected job growth; $103,400 average salary (O*Net, 2016)
  • Special education teacher, kindergarten and elementary: 10% expected job growth; $66,200 average salary (O*Net, 2016)
  • Instructional coordinator: 8% expected job growth; $67,600 average salary (O*Net, 2016)

Once you have earned your education specialist degree, you may qualify for additional certifications in Alaska. Through the Department of Education and Early Development, you may apply for a Master teacher certificate, which is valid for 10 years. If you specialize in administration, you may apply for a Type B Administrative certificate.

With your teaching career, you can leave behind a meaningful legacy. Make the most of your skills and training with ongoing education. Get started by contacting education specialist programs in Alaska.

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