Having an associate’s degree can prove to be useful in a lot of professions. But what about in education? Can you be a teacher with an associate’s degree? How about other careers in education?

The short answer is that, in education, an associate’s degree will qualify you for a selected number of different careers. However, they can be limited compared to what students can qualify for with a bachelor’s degree or higher. 

Let’s look at this in some more detail.

Can You Be a Teacher With an Associate’s Degree?

Associate’s degree holders can become substitute teachers, preschool teachers, teacher’s aides, paraeducators, and etc. An associate’s degree in education can be a great initial step if you want to start your career in education.

With this degree, you can earn some teaching experience. And you’ll learn a lot of skills and knowledge in educational theory. It also helps open the door to a bachelor’s program. 

Why Get an Associate’s Degree in Education?

Some students choose to get an associate’s degree in education because it is faster to complete. This degree only requires 60 credits, and it usually takes only two years to complete. 

This means that students who are looking to get a degree quicker, so they can get a job faster, may want to pursue an associate’s degree. Getting an associate’s degree can also happen even faster for those who choose to take courses in the summer.

Early Education

Some online courses also offer an accelerated online associate degree in education. The most popular associate’s degree in education is in early education. 

It helps prepare students to work with toddlers up to children through age eight. While earning an associate’s degree, students will be trained in a variety of education and pre-education settings or environments. 

Most courses cover different topics including child psychology and learning theory, communication skills, child development, effective teaching techniques, child health and safety, teaching strategies and more. 

Careers in Education for Those With Associate’s Degrees

Now, let’s dive in deeper to the careers students can take with an associate’s degree in education. 

Teacher’s Assistants

A teacher’s assistant, or a teacher’s aide, helps classroom teachers in different settings. The classroom teacher will usually be in charge of setting the role for their assistant. 

Most common tasks include taking attendance, chaperoning field trips, working with students in small groups and/or one-on-one, tracking curriculum, grading papers, monitoring student behaviors, recording student grades, organizing class materials, and more. 

Usually, a teacher’s assistant’s salary falls between $21,700 and $26,300 a year. 

Child Care Workers

Getting a job in child care centers allows those with an associate’s degree to work with children in different age groups. The age groups are wider than what teacher’s assistants work with. 

A child care worker’s job is also more varied compared to a teaching assistant. Some of the tasks a child care worker does include leading activities for kids including games, projects and crafts, supervising, feeding, policing children, helping kids with their hygiene, observing a child’s behavior, and more. 

The current annual salary of a child care worker falls anywhere between $23,200 – $24,000 per year.

Preschool Teachers

Preschool teachers work with children between the ages three to five. A preschool teacher’s role is to guide and develop important social and motor skills for students. It’s a very rewarding job, too, because teachers will help shape their student’s early skills. 

The average annual salary of a preschool teacher is anywhere between $23,200 to $38,500.

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