Last Sunday, I was washing my hands in the restroom of my church, which proved to be a challenge since the sink was practically overflowing. An older woman who has been a member of the church for decades was experiencing similar difficulties, and she commented on the fact that these kinds of problems used to be addressed quickly because there was always someone in the church with hands-on skills – in this case, plumbing. But she pointed out that not as many people are entering those trades anymore, hence our overflowing sink. [Read more...]
If you’re already in the teaching field or pursuing an education career, working as an online instructor or online teaching assistant can put your skills and know-how to good use. Working remotely also can provide flexibility, if you are still pursuing an advanced degree, and you will be learning what it takes to connect with students virtually today.
As you get started by searching online for “online instructor” or “online teaching” jobs, you’ll also want to look at job openings at universities and community colleges in your town, your alma maters, and for-profit online universities.
Generally, you’ll find that major universities require online instructors to have the same type of advanced degrees as traditional classroom instructors: a doctorate degree in the field. If you’re pursuing your master’s degree or a doctorate, one opportunity is to work as a teaching assistant for an online instructor.
Online classes offered by community colleges or online-focused schools often seek adjunct professors to work on a part-time basis, by teaching one or two courses a semester. Those schools are typically looking for online instructor job candidates to have a master’s degree, at least, in that specific field.
Job openings and other reports about online adjunct positions note that average pay per course for an online instructor is $1,500-$1,700. Some adjuncts work for multiple schools, so that they can earn enough to be teaching full time.
Three recent job listings for part-time online adjunct professors reflect what type of skills and education is required to get the jobs:
• Campbell University, a private school based in North Carolina, is hiring part-time adjunct faculty members to teach online courses in psychology, accounting, English, and business for undergraduates, and requires a doctoral degree in those disciplines.
• Northeastern State University, a public institution in Oklahoma, is seeking faculty to teach hybrid and online classes in a variety of subject areas. Instructors need a master’s degree to teach undergraduate students and doctorate degrees to teach graduate-level courses.
• Ross College Online, which offers an associates degree in medical assisting, is hiring individuals with at least a bachelor’s degree and previous online teaching experience for courses in areas such as psychology, nutrition, pharmacology, and medical law and ethics.
There are some rare cases where adjunct professors may only hold a bachelor’s degree, but they are working professionals brought on by colleges because of their success in a certain industry and the lessons they can share with students.
You can also find work as an online high school teacher, and a bachelor’s degree may be all that is required to be an online instructor.
In addition to meeting degree requirements, working as an online instructor requires knowing how to communicate online. You’ll need knowledge of specific technology that schools use as well as general strong written communication skills, since there is little to none face-to-face contact with students.
Colleges are seeking online instructors who can provide the same quality education experience for students that they have offered in the classroom. With the right degrees and skills, it could be a good fit for you.
A new study from the Georgetown Center on Education and the Workforce implies that your degree choice can have a big impact on keeping a job. According to the findings, risk of unemployment for recent graduates varies considerably depending on their major.
You can check out the full report, Hard Times, College Majors, Unemployment and Earnings: Not All College Degrees Are Created Equal, but here are some of the takeaways we’ve gleaned from it:
- Specializing is great, but develop skills that can be applicable in a number of ways. Case in point: The highest unemployment rate in the study was for architecture graduates (13.9 percent), a direct reflection of the struggling real estate market, and there’s little work outside of that industry. On the other hand, those with financial or computer expertise can transfer those skills to work for most any corporation or organization.
- Now might be a good time to get that advanced degree you’ve been mulling over. The overall unemployment rate for people with graduate degrees is just 3 percent.
- Look for ties to strong industries. Recent graduates in Engineering, the Sciences, Education, or Healthcare are tied to stable or growing sectors, and therefore, offer opportunities with the most staying power (with just a 5.4% unemployment rate).
On the bright side, any degree is still better than not having one at all. Recent bachelor’s degree earners have an 8.9 percent unemployment rate, while job seekers with just a high school diploma are at 22.9 percent, and high school dropouts are at 31.5 percent.