College Math Teacher: Career and Salary Facts

Research what it takes to become a college math teacher. Learn about education requirements, job growth and salary to find out if this is the career for you. Schools offering Teaching - Math degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Career Information at a Glance

College math teachers provide instruction in courses ranging from precalculus and probability to math history and actuarial science. To learn what's required for a career in this field, take a look at the table below:

Degree Required Master's or doctoral degree
Education Field of Study Mathematical science or a related field
Key Skills Strong communication and critical-thinking skills, mathematical reasoning abilities
Job Growth (2012-2022) 11%*
Average Salary (2013) $74,210*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Types of Math Are Taught in College?

You could potentially teach a wide variety of courses if you choose to become a college math professor. First of all, there are courses that involve standardized mathematics, such as precalculus, calculus, finite mathematics, probability, numerical analysis and the history of math. You also might teach conceptual math, statistics or even actuarial science and finance. A very common path is to become a professor of mathematical science.

What Education Do I Need?

If you want to become a college math teacher, a good way to do this is to major in mathematics or mathematical science during your undergraduate years. A few of the classes you might encounter are linear and abstract algebra, geometry and computer science. In order to teach at the collegiate level, you'll need to continue your education in a master's or doctoral degree program in mathematical science or a related discipline. Doctorate programs in mathematical science are typically very competitive to enroll in.

What Is the Job Market Like?

The number of positions available for postsecondary mathematical science teachers was expected to grow 11% between 2012 and 2022, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). This would amount to 7,300 new positions. However, fierce competition is expected for tenure-track positions at 4-year colleges and universities. When a college teacher is granted tenure, they have the contractual right to not have their job terminated until retirement without just cause.

What Salary Can I Expect to Make?

In May 2013, the BLS reported that the average annual wage for postsecondary mathematical science teachers was $74,210. However, the amount you can expect to draw varies from state to state. For example, the average salary for postsecondary mathematical science teachers in Idaho was $47,780, while the average annual wage in Massachusetts was $93,490.

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