Social studies is an interdisciplinary topic that includes history, government, sociology, psychology, economics, and geography. This program can enah2le a student to focus on advancing their knowledge and expertise in a single topic or study to add additional suh2ject-matter endorsements to their teaching credentials. It is also preparation for leadership roles in curriculum planning and instruction.
Interview with a Masters in Social Studies Degree Graduate
Social studies is an interdisciplinary topic that includes history, government, sociology, psychology, economics, and geography. This program can enable a student to focus on advancing their knowledge and expertise in a single topic or study to add additional subject-matter endorsements to their teaching credentials. It is also preparation for leadership roles in curriculum planning and instruction.
Why did you decide to pursue an M.Ed. degree?
I decided to pursue my Master’s in education in order to increase my content knowledge and pedagogical skills. In New York state, you must obtain a Master’s degree within five years of receiving your initial teaching license, so I decided to work on my Master’s before I began employment as a full-time teacher. Given the tight market for teachers in New York and the ongoing hiring freeze in the New York City public school system, I decided to concentrate in gifted education. When I graduate in May 2011, I will have the NYS extension to teach in an approved gifted program, which should improve my chances of gaining full-time employment.
What is your primary area of interest within the field of education?
I am certified as a social studies teacher and I will continue to study history, the social studies, and the related pedagogy. I also enjoy working with gifted students and 4 out of my 11 classes are related to the education of the gifted.
Please describe the Masters in History Education program you chose to attend
The MA program in social studies education at Hofstra is specifically designed for certified social studies teachers who are learning more on the teaching journey and, on a practical level, completing their Master’s to comply with New York State’s certification requirements. The program is flexible so students can explore their own interests. I am pleased that I will be able to obtain my gifted extension while completing the requirements for my Master’s. I have taken classes about race and gender in the United States, designing a projects-based American History classroom, and interdisciplinary curriculum and instruction. All MA students need to complete a curriculum project and I am working on a project about school segregation on Long Island.
Why did you choose the school you attended?
On Long Island, Hofstra definitely has the best reputation and the primary professor, Alan Singer, is very well known in the field.
What were the strategies for teaching social studies that you enjoyed?
I like all of the classes that I have taken, and that is obviously the most important part. I like that Professor Singer is very practical in terms of classroom strategies but also about his students gaining their first teaching jobs.
What did you not like about the program?
Since it’s a private institution, the cost is high but I know I’m getting a superior education.
Were you employed while taking classes? If so, how did you manage your time?
I work for the Great Neck UFSD as a home instruction provider and I provide home instruction for the Jericho UFSD and Syosset CSD through an outside agency. I also work as per-diem substitute teacher in a few local Long Island districts. I didn’t find it hard to manage my time, and I was glad that while I was working on my Master’s I was able to stay current with the curriculum, gain the valuable experience of working with school phobic children, and maintain relationships with school districts that could possibly employ me full-time when I complete my Master’s.
Did you participate in any research or special projects while in school?
All Master’s students help edit articles for the New York State Council for the Social Studies docket and I am working on a Master’s curriculum project entitled Long Island School Segregation: Roots and Implications.
What should a student look for when deciding if they want to be teaching social studies?
They should make sure that the classes are fulfilling, relevant to their interests, and interesting. They should ask a lot of questions before enrolling and sit in on classes as well as talk to as many current students and recent alumni as possible. Students should also find out about what the field experiences and student teaching requirements will be like if they are entering a program without initial certification.
Do you plan on teaching social studies in middle schools or elementary schools?
I intend to teach in Long Island or New York City.
Did you make use of your school’s career services office during your job search?
Hofstra has very b relationships with local school districts and they frequently become aware of jobs that are not widely advertised. When I graduate, I intend to use Hofstra’s network for me to procure employment.