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More than education

School, social affairs, associations, business … Graduates of courses in the fields of teaching, education or training and further education can take many paths. Those who sharpen their profile early have better chances.

Whether classroom or lecture hall, consulting room or training room, music school or ministry – experts with pedagogical expertise, empathy and interest in promoting people are needed everywhere.

The working world: from education to teaching

In the occupations of the world of education, training, further education, you work with young people or adults who want to advance professionally. As a professional pedagogue, you lead company-based training and further education courses for companies or associations. The work as a kindergarten manager or educational advisor is very different – in the world of work “education, pedagogical work with children and adolescents” it is primarily about the pedagogical support of adolescents. If you want to work in school, studying for a teaching post is the right thing. The focus here is on the transfer of knowledge, depending on the type of school and age of your students, there are also educational tasks.

Almost all of the professions presented here are about supporting and promoting others and helping them to expand their knowledge and skills. In doing so, you consider in advance how you can best achieve these goals. You try to assess the level of performance of your pupils, students, customers or clients, find the suitable teaching materials or scientific literature together and develop a corresponding concept.

It is important to motivate your counterpart – be it an entire school class, a group of trainees or a single music student – to learn and collaborate and to evaluate performance. In adult education, teachers also organize accompanying events or offer advice. In higher-level positions with managerial responsibility, for example as an education manager or school head, your work focus shifts to administrative and organizational tasks related to knowledge transfer.

Communicate, motivate, organize

Anyone who decides to pursue an educational profession must have good communication skills and be able to motivate others. A structured way of working and good self-organization are also important. Educators should have good nerves, be patient and assertive and require a high degree of psychological and emotional stability. Those who care for others professionally should also display a pronounced sense of responsibility.

Willingness to learn is also necessary in working life, both in terms of subject matter and pedagogical methods. As a teacher or research assistant, you search through specialist books and newspapers for new developments in your field, as a company pedagogue you keep up to date with e-learning software. Especially those who work in adult education should be able to assess which offers and topics are currently and in particular in demand in the future.

In addition to public and private educational institutions such as day care centers, schools and universities, possible employers are also social institutions. In addition, educators can gain a foothold in private-sector training and further education, but also in the HR departments of large companies. Employment opportunities also arise with publishers who produce teaching materials, as well as in research and teaching. Self-employment is also possible, for example as a freelance HR consultant or as a trainer in adult education.

"In view of the increasing social and economic importance of education and training in the age of digitalization, the professional opportunities of graduates in this area are fundamentally good," reports Ralf Beckmann from the Federal Employment Agency. The expert adds: “From the applicant’s point of view, the job market is positive. However, part-time offers and temporary positions are often typical features in these occupations."

Entry into teaching position

In the teaching profession, the training paths vary from state to state – in some cases access has been changed to a bachelor’s and master’s degree; After completing your studies, you usually start as a teacher trainee. If you want to become a teacher, you should thoroughly inform yourself beforehand about the training paths and the needs in the various school types and subjects. There are always big changes here.

For a long time, the teaching profession was considered a secure civil servant position. In some countries, however, many young teachers are no longer employed as civil servants, but as civil servants. Even temporary contracts are no longer uncommon. Sometimes the final grades are crucial for a transfer to civil service. But even with good grades you can no longer automatically assume that you are an official.

Another development is the so-called "school-oriented applications" that were introduced in some federal states. This means that you can no longer apply exclusively to the school authorities, but also specifically to individual schools – with the consequence that in addition to the grades, the individual profile gains importance.

With a Bachelor in education and training

You can start your career with a bachelor’s degree in the worlds of “training, further education, university” and “education, pedagogical work with children and adolescents”. For some management and specialist positions – for example in the management of educational institutions or in science – a master or even a doctorate can also be required. Practical and international experiences are generally welcome.

Depending on the chosen course and focus, the professional prospects in the pedagogical field are different. Orientation internships and the earliest possible decision as to what you want to focus on – as well as further training after graduation – are a possible key to success. Getting started may not be easy, but there are also a variety of options on a wide range of jobs.

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Christina Cherry
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