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Secondary Science Education

Accelerated Programs

Our accelerated science education programs give students a competitive edge when seeking positions as middle or high school science teachers. Duquesne University is the only university in the Pittsburgh region that enables students to earn a B.S. in Biology, Chemistry or Physics and an M.S. in Education in just five years.

Throughout five years and one summer, students will obtain 70 to 80 hours of field experience in the high school classroom while taking courses toward their M.S. in Education. These field hours include student teaching in the final semester. There are opportunities for year-long paid internships where students can teach a class of their own.

With both degrees, our students are highly qualified for science education positions and command more competitive starting salaries than others with only undergraduate education degrees.

Critical Nationwide Demand for STEM Teachers

As school enrollments surge and the baby-boom generation retires, the U.S. faces a teacher shortage – especially in math and science. Jade Leung, a 2005 Biology graduate, is a biology and physics teacher at Shaler Area High School, north of Pittsburgh. Leung enjoys teaching in a dynamic classroom setting where students are asking questions and performing lab experiments to gather and analyze data. “Education is very much like the field of science, because there is a constant pursuit of knowledge, because the field is always changing and growing as new ideas are explored and discovered,” says Leung.

In choosing one of the three tracks (biology, chemistry or physics), students will combine a rigorous background in the basic science discipline with strong teacher training that together will enable them to become leaders in science education.

According to Leung, science teachers today need to be very energetic and dynamic. “In our world science is expanding at a rapid rate, and teachers must be able to relate science to real world applications to motivate students,” Leung explains. “Teachers cannot expect students to be able to acquire these skills unless they have mastered them first in their university studies. Rigorous science programs are able to produce the best science teachers because these educators are coming from a background in which they have been fully immersed in hands-on research and understand how to set up experiments.”