With the difficulties of 2020, many teachers are looking for ways to increase their income and make themselves more marketable. One of the best avenues to do this is to obtain a secondary education degree that enables any educator to move to middle school or high school teaching. Additionally, teachers with a secondary education degree can specialize in particular teaching areas, such as adult education, in areas where state licensing allows. First-time education degree earners may consider a secondary education degree to allow for more flexibility in the teaching realm.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there is an expected 4% job increase for high school teachers over the next ten years. In 2019, the average median pay for a high school teacher was $61,660 compared to an elementary teacher at $59,420. As the possibility of the new normal of online teaching grows, the job outlook could increase significantly as educators who are less comfortable with technology retire from teaching.
Another factor attributing to the perfect timing for continuing education is the availability of online schools. Many colleges are now offering more opportunities to fit your schedule. Obtaining a new degree can be challenging while working, making time for family, and weekend activities. Taking online classes to achieve your goal is easier now more than ever. With more distance learning accessibility, secondary education degree students can earn a quality education from expert teachers and nationally recognized schools.
Our Top Ranked Schools
To make the school selection process easier, we have put together a list of colleges with a little information about each one.
- Great Basin College – Elko, Nevada (50 points) Great Basin College is known as ”The Gold Standard in the Silver State.” It offers online and campus-based classes in ten Nevada counties. The school offers a Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary Education. Students can choose from the following specialty areas: Biological Science, Business Education, English, Mathematics, and Social Sciences. Great Basin collaborates with six rural school districts and early childhood locations to ensure students receive plenty of hands-on experience inside the classroom. Tuition starts at $185.50 per credit hour, and the graduation rate is 93%.
- Murray State University – Murray, Kentucky (44 points) Murray State University is the racer’s home. From Heritage Hall to the Susan E. Bauernfeind Student Recreation and Wellness Center to the many dorms and apartments, the college presents a beautiful campus. While earning a secondary education degree, students select a concentration area such as art, music, Spanish, English, Mathematics, French, Biology, or Chemistry. Students pay the tuition of $305.00 per credit hour, and the graduation rate is a whopping 91%.
- The University of Alabama – Birmingham, Alabama (42 points) A college rich in history, The University of Alabama, was founded in 1859. It has grown into a nationally recognized university and is the only four-year degree-granting public college in Birmingham’s busy metropolis. The school offers a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in High School Education. Offered content areas are social studies, science, language arts, or math. The tuition rates are $357 a credit hour, and 90% of them graduate within the allotted time.
- Clemson University – Clemson, South Carolina (40 points) Home of the largest secondary education program in South Carolina, Clemson University is known for its ACC football team, the Clemson Tigers. The school boasts of a proud heritage of training educators, counselors, and school leaders of children born to high school. Attendees will receive over 100 field hours before student teaching. History, math, English, and Spanish are the areas of specialty offered. Pricing for tuition starts at $471.00 per credit hour—92% of the students who attend Clemson graduate with a degree.
- William Patterson University – Wayne, New Jersey (tied with 36 points) Located on 370 acres of wooded land, William Patterson University is just 20 miles from New York. It is bordered by 1,200 acres of woodland and wetland. The famous Patterson Great Falls is only three miles away for a fun weekend adventure. The 10,000 students who attend William Patterson University are studying at one of five different colleges: Cotsakos College of Business, Education, Arts and Communication, Humanities and Social Sciences, and Science and Health. The undergraduate and graduate programs in secondary education furnish a wide array of concentrations, including traditional Math, Science, History, and English. They also offer Chinese, Japanese, French, and Spanish. This diverse offering costs $455 a credit hour with an 85% graduation rate.
- The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill – Chapel Hill, North Carolina ( tied with 36 points) Supporting sustainability, The Carolina Tree Heritage, is a partnership between UNC’s Institute for the Environment and Carolina’s Facilities Services. Whenever a tree on the campus dies or becomes a hazard, The Carolina Tree Heritage takes charge. The downed tree is used to construct sculptures, furniture, and other wood structures that are then sold and the funds used to sponsor student grants. As a student at UNC, you should expect to pay $300 per credit hour. About 78% of students complete their degree at UNC.
- The University of Maryland – College Park, Maryland (32 points) From a rudimentary start on Charles Benedict Calvert’s plantation in 1856, The University of Maryland has grown from the original 34 students to a thriving, public college. Its dedication to excellence has resulted in liberal arts and engineering school that breaks barriers in education and sports. The school’s Secondary Education Bachelor of Arts program is targeted towards English Language Arts and includes World, American, British, and Minority literature, rhetoric, communication, language, and linguistics. Tuition rates begin at $359.00 a credit hour, and they have a 78% graduation rate.
- Appalachian State University – Boone, North Carolina (29 points) Set against a backdrop of the stunning Blue Ridge Mountains, Appalachian State University aims to prepare its students locally and globally. The atmosphere is focused on purposefulness, diversity, and inclusion while stoking a passion for knowledge. With an entire page dedicated to activities, clubs, and adventure, the campus provides more than enough to do outside the classroom. The secondary education program is a Bachelor of Science Degree with a concentration in English. Students pay the tuition of $515.00 a credit hour, and the graduation rate for the school is at 83%.
- Arizona Christian University – Glendale, Arizona (tied with 28 points) With an average school year temperature of 80 degrees, you are likely to find a host of outdoor activities on the campus of Arizona Christian University. Located just 30 minutes from Phoenix, students can partake of delicious foods in unique restaurants, test out new coffee flavors in one of the many local cafes, enjoy art, music, and sports. Secondary degree learners will choose from various emphasis subjects, including business, English language arts, history, math, physical education, political science, and science. The tuition rates for Arizona Christian are $450.00, with a 59% graduation average.
- The University of Southern Mississippi – Hattiesburg, Mississippi (tied with 28 points) With two campuses, one in Hattiesburg and the other in Gulf Port, the University of Southern Mississipi students experience both worlds’ best. The Hattiesburg location features 300 acres of walk-friendly space, a vibrant arts community, and the All American Rose Garden. A 52-acre beachfront campus, the Gulf Port location is the only public 4-year college on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The school provides a unique type of secondary education degree called the Secondary Alternate Route Teacher Education Pathway. Non-licensure undergraduates may apply to this program in their Junior or Senior year and take one graduate-level teacher education course each semester. Upon completion of a bachelors degree, the student is eligible for a Mississippi secondary license and may teach in one of the following areas: BiologyBusiness Education, Chemistry, English Language and Literature, French, Health Education, Home Economics, Library Media Specialist, Mathematics, Physical Education, Physics, Social Studies, or Spanish. Tuition costs $296.00 a credit hour, and graduation ranks at 41%.
- Warner School of Education, University of Rochester – Rochester, New York (tied with 27 points) Located in Rochester, the Warner School of Education is just part of the University of Rochester’s campus. Rochester and surrounding areas offer various outdoor activities, including sailing, rowing, skiing, and hiking. Students can find everything from jazz festivals to films to food trucks to sports with a walkable downtown area. The school is smaller, with only 12,000 students, but provides several secondary teaching options, school leadership, and administration. Tuition rates are high at $1,598.00 a credit hour, but the graduation rate is also high at 88%.
- The University of Washington – Seattle, Washington (tied with 27 points) This multiple-campus giant in colleges has locations in Seattle, Tacoma, and Bothell offers over 1,800 undergraduate courses in any given quarter and grants over 12,000 degrees a year. The state of Washington is a progressive area, and The University of Washington isn’t an exception to this rule. Students wishing to pursue a secondary education degree will find just what they need here. Future teachers will learn about adolescent-specific subjects, support youngsters in poverty-stricken areas, and help youth emerge as responsible adults in society. At UW, the tuition rates start at $777.00 a credit hour, and graduation successes are at 84%.
- Vanderbilt Peabody College – Nashville, Tennessee (26 points) Designated as a National Historic Landmark, Vanderbilt Peabody College spans 340.7 tree-filled acres. Its more than 300 varieties of trees and shrubs earned it the status of an arboretum in 1988. The school is known for its innovative, diverse education options as well as collegiate sports competition winnings. Many of the Vanderbilt alumni have become prominent members of society, including Nobel Peace Prize winner Al Gore, several government officials, CEOs, attorneys, physicians, and sports figures. Vanderbilt’s secondary education vision is to educate teachers in justice and build bridges, both educationally and equitably. The tuition cost at the college is $2,025.00 per credit hour, and the graduation rate is high at 93%.
- University of Wisconsin – Madison, Wisconsin (25 points) With a well-developed downtown area, Madison is the perfect college town. With art, food, beer, and music, the city has plenty of entertainment. Additionally, the five lakes located throughout the area provide boating and fishing opportunities, over 200 miles of biking and hiking trails, and 12.7 parks for every 10,000 people to ensure everyone is getting outside and enjoying the fresh air. The secondary education degree encompasses ESL certification and a concentration in English, Science, Mathematics, or Social Studies. Tuition rates are low at $495 per credit hour, with a 70% graduation rate.
- Judson College – Marion, Alabama (24 points) Judson College is a private Christian, four-year degree-seeking college specifically for women. Marion is a historic small town with quaint restaurants that offer your mama’s barbeque, burgers, and southern food. Home to Perry Lakes Park and Barton’s Beach, students and residents alike enjoy the sweet atmosphere of this sweet Southern town. The secondary education degree offers five areas of concentration: Language Arts, Social Science, Math, General Science, or Choral Music. Student tuition is $479 a credit hour, and the graduation rate is 54%.
- Middlebury College – Middleburg, Vermont (23 points) Middlebury College sits in Vermont’s Champion Valley between the Green Mountains and the Adirondacks. This atmosphere nurtures refreshment and uplifts the soul of many a student, teacher, and faculty. Not only is Middlebury College prominent in the U.S., but there are also many international campuses around the world. The school is committed to diversity and respect for all peoples. The education studies program allows for, upon completion, teaching in the K-12 arena in the following areas: Modern and Classical Languages: French, German, Russian, Spanish; Computer Science; English; Mathematics; Science; Social Studies: and Art. Tuition rates for a credit hour at Middlebury are $1,929, with 87% graduation success.
- Drake University – Des Moines, Iowa (tied with 19 points) A mid-size university, Drake has access to the many cultural and recreational opportunities in Des Moines. The downtown Farmer’s market features local produce and live music for a fun weekend activity. For more outdoor fun, The Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden features a plethora of plant displays and a geodesic dome. Drake’s secondary education degree offers many endorsement options, including traditional subjects and art, economics, journalism, music, STEM, a combination of speech, communication, and theater, and others. The cost for tuition at Drake is $1,472 per credit hour, and the graduation rate is 71%.
- Ohio State University – Columbus, Ohio (tied with 19 points) The home of the Buckeyes, Ohio State University, has been around for 150 years. Both the campus and the city of Columbus offer a plethora of entertainment. From the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium to the North Market to the Ohio Stadium, residents, students, and visitors enjoy fun, food, and culture. OU’s secondary education degree offers the following concentrations: math, chemistry, life sciences, physics, and earth sciences. Students should expect to pay $738 a credit hour, and the percentage of graduations is 41%.
- Villanova University – Villanova, Pennsylvania (18 points) For well over 100 years, Villanova University, has represented the Roman Catholic church with a commitment to truth, unity, and love. The beautiful, historic campus contains a 222-acre arboretum where students can relax and study. The city of Villanova, named for the college, is rich in history. Secondary education students choose from these content areas: Biology, Chemistry, English, French, Latin, Spanish, Mathematics, Physics, or Social Studies. The tuition rates are high at $3,152 but so is the graduation rate of 85%.
- Tufts University – Medford, Massachusetts (17 points) Tufts is a U.S. school and has a campus in France. The stunning Medford location is only 15 minutes from Boston. It is described as picturesque and very accessible. The Mystic River’s natural beauty, Middlesex Fells Reservation, Wright’s Pond, and the many walking trails are a great backdrop for this college. Tufts offers a variety of options for secondary education. The tuition starts at $1,985, and graduation rates are at 82%.
- Corban University – Salem, Oregon (tied with 16 points) The name Corban’s meaning is “a gift dedicated to God.” Since 1935, when Corban University was started as a small Bible college in Arizona, this Christian school has been dedicated to teaching students how to make a difference in the world. Now located in Salem, Oregon’s capital city, the college is surrounded by restaurants, State Capitol Mall, many historic areas, and outdoor walking trails. The secondary education degree offers several different concentrations, including music, math, health, biology, language arts, physical education, and social studies. Students pay $1,106 per credit hour, and the graduation percentage is 45%.
- The University of Florida – Gainesville, Florida (tied with 16 points) Located in sunny Florida, The University of Florida is well-known for its competitive sports and Gatorade’s invention. The 2,000-acre campus has more LEED-certified buildings than any other university, making it a green space leader. The town of Gainesville is very obviously a college town and has everything from restaurants, bars, coffee shops, art, music, and entertainment. Students in the secondary education program at UF can teach math or science at the high school level. The cost for UF is $516 a credit hour, and the graduation rate is 39%.
- Albright College – Reading, Pennsylvania (11 points) A private liberal arts college, Albright College, is associated with The United Methodist Church. The 118-acre campus is small compared to other colleges, but the offerings pack a big punch. Accounting, Business, Communications, Environmental Studies, Fashion, Film, Anthropology, Marine and Aquatic Science, and much more, this school has something for everyone. The city of Reading, where the campus is located, offers many opportunities for adventure and fun. Secondary education students have many specialties from which to choose. The tuition is high at $1,779 per credit hour, and the graduate percentage is about 42%.
- Fairleigh Dickinson University – Teaneck, New Jersey (10 points) With two campuses in the United States, one in Canada, and one in England, Fairleigh Dickinson University, is a private, not-for-profit school. The college competes well with other larger schools to provide over 100 associate, undergraduate, graduate, and doctorate programs. The two locations in Teaneck allow students to enjoy the many parks in the area. Secondary education students endorsements include Art, Biology, Chemistry, Creative Writing, English Language and Literature, History, Mathematics (either BA or BS program), Physics, or Science. Tuition rates are $1,285 for a credit hour, and the graduation rate is 25%.
- Baylor University – Waco, Texas (7 points) Known for its sports successes, Baylor University, is a private Baptist college founded in 1845. The student body consists of around 16,000 students. The school is set on 1,000 acres in Waco, home of the HGTV show, ‘Fixer Upper,’ starring Chip and Joanna Gaines. The city is also the famous Magnolia Silo Shoppes, Magnolia Table (restaurant), and the Magnolia Press (coffee shop). At Baylor, secondary education degree seekers get to pick a concentration area such as Physical or Life Science, Math, Social Studies, English, Business, Music, Deaf Education, and more. The tuition rate at Baylor is $1,856, and the graduation rate is 38%.
We factored in the tuition costs per semester hour, combined with each of the above colleges’ graduation rates. The first ranking was the tuition costs with points for lower tuition. The second-ranking was the graduation rate with points for the highest percentage rate. This methodology was evenly distributed so our viewers could determine what school has the lowest tuition with the highest graduation rates. Several schools were tied with the number of points, so we indicated that information in this case.
Best Value Schools knows how difficult it can be to find a school that offers the concentrations you want for a Secondary Degree education combined with reasonable tuition, an acceptable graduation rate, AND a fun, interesting location. We have done the leg work here, so you don’t have to worry about that part of it. Let us help you find the college you want and need for your education.