Studies & Degrees in Pedagogy
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Pedagogy (or educational study) is a field of study applicable to anyone wishing to pursue a career in educational instruction. It is a study mainly concerned with teaching styles, learning strategies and professional development, grooming students for roles in teaching. The term pedagogy is usually used to describe educational studies in music, dance, sport, language or art education, as opposed to general, science or math education. However, pedagogy studies alone are not always enough to become a certified teacher.
Universities and colleges provide pedagogical courses in both general studies and specific content areas. Students who pursue degrees in pedagogical studies can earn an associate, bachelor or master’s degree. A degree in pedagogy, however, will usually be accompanied by another focus or major under titles such as ‘Bachelor in Education’ – an integrated course that will allow the student to apply for full-time teaching positions.
There are also colleges that specialize specifically in pedagogical studies. These are known as pedagogical colleges, but they are rare in some countries.
Non-profit and international organizations provide multiple training and employment opportunities for those interested in pedagogical studies. Many of these programs provide several years of education and hands-on experience in multiple countries. It is also sometimes possible to study pedagogical studies independently, gaining certification through a national or local educator’s exam. Students may also attend seminars and online workshops.
Skills, Qualifications, and Prerequisites for Studies in Pedagogy
To study pedagogy at a college level, candidates will need to meet the admission requirements to higher education institutions. This usually requires some version of a secondary school completion certificate, and/or a passing score on an aptitude test or entrance exam. To complete pedagogical studies at a college or university, students are often required to complete a teaching internship or student teaching placement.
Non-profit organizations and educational centers may not require any prerequisites for their programs, aside from some previous secondary education. Seminars can be public, but are sometimes only offered to college students or graduates, while the same is true for workshops.
Students pursuing this study need to have patience, perseverance and a love of learning, as their careers will entail working with students and teaching various subjects. Expertise in their preferred content area (such as the ability to play an instrument, if the area is music) is highly beneficial.
Skills and Qualifications Acquired from Studies in Pedagogy
Expertise and acquired skills in pedagogical studies will depend on the level of education the student desires to teach at (primary, secondary, post-secondary) and their chosen areas of focus. A general pedagogical study typically provides expertise in the following areas:
- Children and adult psychology.
- Pedagogical theories and practices.
- Development of teaching philosophy.
- Conceptual knowledge and mental process of learning.
- Technological and tradition tools for teaching.
- Cultural competence and understanding.
- Social norms, expectations and perspectives.
- Curriculum development and applicability.
- Content expertise (in music, art, dance, etc.)
Careers for Studies in Pedagogy
Individuals who study pedagogy mainly search for careers in educational fields. They can become teachers at multiple educational levels, from primary to secondary to post-secondary. Since pedagogical studies are typically used in specialty areas, many students become music teachers, art teachers, dance instructors, language teachers, media experts, physical education or social studies teachers.
Some students of pedagogy do not pursue teaching, but instead find employment as relief workers, lecturers, government educational analysts or athletes.