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Competitive Teaching Assistantship vs. Competitive Degree- Secondary Ed


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Hello there! I was hoping for any advice by those who are at all familiar with the field of Secondary Education. I am going for a Masters degree and so far have been admitted to some great schools, TC of Columbia, Brown MAT, Lynch School of Education.

In addition to this I've been admitted to Colorado State University where I was offered a Graduate Teaching Assistantship that would allow me to teach at a college level and would cover the majority of my tuition.

Financial Aid is a huge deal for me since I'm paying for everything out of pocket. Because of this, and the added experience of teaching freshman composition , I am considering accepting the Colorado State offer. I guess I'm wondering how big of a difference it would make in my marketability as a Secondary English teacher? How important is an Ivy league degree and is it at all comprable to a competitive Graduate Assistantship and two years experience as a teacher of College level english?

Thanks so much! Any insight would be grately appreciated!!

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I'm not a principal, and I only taught high school very briefly, so these are just my thoughts.

The first year of teaching is really, really, hard. I don't think it matters how awesome your program was. So, teaching experience alone is a pretty big deal -- especially if you would get to really teach a section of the class (as opposed to just grading/holding office hours -- which is nothing to sneeze at). So, if you're looking at getting a job, I think it would be easier to market that this isn't your first paid teaching gig, than to market that yes, you're a first year teacher, but you've been well trained.

The nice thing with education is that, because salaries aren't that high, lots of good people can't justify spending the big bucks for a degree, so I don't think the degree location is as important as, say, where you went to law or business school.

Of course, any principals looking to hire would also get an insight into the type of person you are based on the fact that you got into such a selective program, and they only know you got in if that's where you go. If you were to do the CSU offer, maybe you could get the stats so that, on your resume, you can say, "Offered GA as one of the top ___ people in the program" or something like that?

Maybe call up your old high school and get the principal's advice?

Good luck & congrats!

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