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Advice about my future

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I found a school that I want to go to when I graduate from UW-Platteville but i don't know what I want to go into. I entered Platteville to become a math teacher but the school of education was to hard to get into here so I ended up dropping from the math education program and going into just math instead. Last year I found out I have a real talent for psychology so I decided to pick up a psychology minor when I found out that it could be completed with out adding any time to my schooling. I figured that since the school of education thing kind off fell though that I would persue a degree in psychology once I graduated with my degree in math, which would become pretty much useless. I was only getting that degree because my dad wouldn't let me change majors because it would have added another year to my schooling. Instead he would allow me to go to another school for psychology but I would have to pay half.

This was the plan until about a week ago when I found out that the school I wanted to go to for psychology also has an education program. The education program looks really easy on paper and I would from what I can see online would be pretty easy to get into seeing how I would already have a degree when I enter the program. It would take 2 years to complete(with one 6 credit semester), and I would have my teaching degree.

I don't know what I want to do. I have a real talent in psychology and I had made up my mind about helping obease teens as a clinical psychologist. But...teaching was my first goal and I have a talent there also. Psychology would mean a much larger paycheck assuming i finish all the schooling necessary to be able to see patience in a clinical setting(about 6 years I am guessing). Teaching would only take 2 years and I would be out in the work force, but making MUCH less money.

I enjoy both things equally so its kind of hard to decide and I can honestly see my self going into both and finding success. If I get the teaching degree(a license essentially) it will mean that the last 4 years of studying math wouldn't go to waste but...again its less money. But I think it would be really neat to show everyone who thought I wouldn't be anything in life that I am a doctor(if I go with psychology).

Any Advice?

I am schedualed to visit the school on August 5th and would like to tell them what i am going into but if I still haven't figured it out its not a huge deal because I can't apply to the school until November. I am not going to graduate Platteville until May.
post #2 of 8
You have an academic advisor?? That person should give be able to give you some direction.
I would go into a field that does have a good job outlook and that you would enjoy working in.
post #3 of 8
Why not start out with teaching so you can be out there and making some money (even if it's not a lot) and continue your education while you're teaching and go on to be a psychologist? A lot of teachers do that. And it's good experience. But you never know, you may find out you like teaching so much you stay with it (and it's not like we can't use more teachers who enjoy teaching!). Teaching is a pretty important job too, and will show you "made something" of yourself. Go for whatever your heart tells you is right.
post #4 of 8
I would think you're set up to be a teacher/counselor, with that training.
post #5 of 8
A good friend of mine got his teaching degree. Instead of getting a job right then, he took sup positions where they opened and got his masters. Now, he can't find a regular teaching job because he is "over qualified" so they can't afford to pay him for a teaching position. There is no guarantee the school system can hire a "psychologist" for counseling.

I would say get the teaching degree, get a job, and take classes for psychology on the side. If you have your foot in the door, you may actually be moved up into that position before you're finished. You are young and can continue your education for however long it takes to reach your goals.
post #6 of 8
here's my : which are you more drawn to? teaching or counseling?
teaching is a low paying field - especially considering the amount of education you'll have - but it's incredibly stable & very rewarding.
counseling is also rewarding, but much more costly to begin [setting up your practice, attracting clients, establishing a reputation] so, money-wise, might be less than teaching - at least initially.
but if one seems more attractive to you than the other, then that's the one you should choose, regardless of what additional schooling is required, or what the potential salary is.
post #7 of 8
Our district requires teachers have their masters - or be working on it - to get a job. All of our counselors started out as teachers in the district. They know the school system and resources.
Secondary math teachers, from a good school, often qualify for signing bonuses and higher salary than other teachers.

Some friends were having a discussion the other about college majors. In our part of the country, a psych major is going to have a hard time getting a job or starting a practice. The math degree and the teaching certificate wil get you further.
post #8 of 8
Originally Posted by Mom of 4 View Post
Our district requires teachers have their masters - or be working on it - to get a job.
just curious - how much over base do they pay? because ours pays VERY little over the district salary for a master's. they pay some over base - but i think master's gets you $500 more ANNUALLY. not worth going back for that little piddly amount.
if i ever went back to college, it would be to do 1 of 2 things - teach at the college level, or change my concentration to a different teaching area.
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