Top Jobs in Education That Aren't Teaching

Top Jobs in Education That Aren’t Teaching

While teaching is one of the most common careers with an education degree, it is far from the only option. People with educational backgrounds have developed highly transferable skills in areas like leadership, communication, curriculum development, and more that open the door to numerous careers both inside and outside the field of education. This article explores some of the top careers in education that don’t involve teaching in a traditional classroom setting. It covers roles like instructional designers, educational administrators, and library scientists among others.

1. Instructional Designer

Instructional designers create educational content and devise instructional strategies to meet student learning goals. They work to make lesson plans more engaging and ensure curriculum is delivered effectively whether that’s in a classroom, online course, or corporate training program. This role focuses more on developing high-quality educational materials rather than direct teaching. A master’s degree in instructional design or a related field is ideal preparation for this career.

2. Educational Administrator

Educational administrators take on leadership roles within school systems at various levels from elementary schools to universities. This umbrella term covers positions like principals, superintendents, and deans who are responsible for the overall management and vision of their educational institutions. They oversee tasks ranging from academic programming and budgeting to student support services and community outreach. Administrative jobs typically require a master’s degree in education with several years of prior teaching experience.

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3. Career Counselor

Career counselors help clients of all ages discover their interests and values to guide career decisions and map out education plans. They provide individualized academic, personal, and professional advising through activities like resume/cover letter reviews, practice interviews, and internship/job placement assistance. Though many work in school settings, career counseling is also common in employee assistance programs, workforce development organizations, and private practices. A master’s in school counseling is the typical minimum educational requirement.

4. Non-Profit Director

Non-profit directors oversee entire organizations focused on various education missions. This could mean leading after-school enrichment programs, advocacy groups working to strengthen public education, foundations that award scholarships, museums with educational programming, and more. As the top executive, roles involve diversified tasks from strategic planning and fiscal management to community partnership development and team leadership. Non-profit directors often have a combination of relevant master’s degrees and work experience.

5. Human Resources in Education

Education institutions also employ human resources professionals to handle personnel administration, employee relations, and training/development. Those interested in both education and HR can find roles as recruiters who look for top teaching candidates, benefits coordinators who assist staff, or trainers who provide professional learning opportunities. A bachelor’s is typically the minimum preparation, though some positions prefer a business-related master’s or HR certification.

6. Library and Information Science Jobs

For those who love research, books, and helping others, librarian jobs are ideal non-teaching options utilizing an educational background. This encompasses everything from cataloging collections and supervising library operations to developing programming for students/teachers and collaborating with faculty on research projects. Librarians are found in public libraries, school media centers, museums, zoos, hospitals, and more! Most jobs require a master’s in library science.

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What transferable skills do education degrees provide for non-teaching careers?

Education backgrounds cultivate abilities in communication, critical thinking, data analysis, and adaptability – all valuable assets across various fields. Education also fosters competencies essential for roles involving training, advising, program development, and project management.

Do I need teaching experience for non-teaching education jobs?

While not mandatory, classroom experience is beneficial for many careers covered in this article from an administrator’s perspective. Certain careers like instructional design may not require prior teaching but appreciate an educator’s mindset and expertise. Direct experience is less crucial for library/museum jobs and human resources roles.

What education is required for the different careers discussed?

Requirements range from bachelor’s to master’s degrees depending on the specific job. A master’s is typical for administrator, counselor, and librarian work. Instructional design, training, and curriculum roles sometimes only require a bachelor’s but preference is often given to candidates with a master’s in an education-related field like instructional technology.

Can I pursue a non-teaching career while still teaching part-time?

For some jobs like instructional design, it’s very possible to begin the transition slowly by taking on projects as an adjunct designer while maintaining a partial teaching load. Other careers such as administrator positions will likely require fully committing your time, but starting as an assistant principal could still allow some classroom involvement at first. Discuss options with potential employers.

How much salary variation exists between these career paths?

Salaries fluctuate based on factors like location, level of experience, and specific role or employer. As a general estimate, jobs like administrators and library directors earn $60k-$100k on average while positions involving roles like career coaching or non-profit work pay within the $50k-$70k range. Instructional design salaries range quite widely from $40k-$90k depending on sector and job responsibilities.

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The careers highlighted here represent just a sampling of possibilities that let people leverage an educational background without classroom teaching. Fields from human resources to healthcare to technology also continue welcoming new professionals who gained skills through their education coursework and experiences. For those seeking a positive change from traditional teaching, careers like these open doors to remain engaged in shaping futures through new roles both inside and beyond the education world.


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