With about 1 in 4 Americans enrolled in educational institutions, educational services is the second largest industry, accounting for about 13.3 million jobs. Most teaching positions, which constitute almost half of all educational services jobs, require at least a bachelor’s degree, and some require a master’s or doctoral degree.Retirements in a number of education professions will create many job openings.
Lifelong learning is important in acquiring new knowledge and upgrading one’s skills, particularly in this age of rapid technological and economic changes. The educational services industry includes a variety of institutions that offer academic education, vocational or career and technical instruction, and other education and training to millions of students each year.
Because school attendance is compulsory until at least age 16 in all 50 States and the District of Columbia, elementary, middle, and secondary schools are the most numerous of all educational establishments. They provide academic instruction to students in kindergarten through grade 12 in a variety of settings, including public schools, parochial schools, boarding and other private schools, and military academies. Some secondary schools offer a mixture of academic and career and technical instruction.
Postsecondary institutions — universities, colleges, professional schools, community or junior colleges, and career and technical institutes—provide education and training in both academic and technical subjects for high school graduates and other adults. Universities offer bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees, while colleges generally offer only the bachelor’s degree. Professional schools offer graduate degrees in fields such as law, medicine, business administration, and engineering. The undergraduate bachelor’s degree typically requires 4 years of study, while graduate degrees require additional years of study. Community and junior colleges and technical institutes offer associate degrees, certificates, or other diplomas, usually involving 2 years of study or less. Career and technical schools provide specialized training and services primarily related to a specific job. They include computer and cosmetology training institutions, business and secretarial schools, correspondence schools, and establishments that offer certificates in commercial art and practical nursing.
This industry also includes institutions that provide training, consulting, and other support services to schools and students, such as curriculum development, student exchanges, and tutoring. Also included are schools or programs that offer nonacademic or self-enrichment classes, such as automobile driving and cooking instruction, among others.
[ Excerpted from Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Career Guide to Industries, 2008-09 Edition - Educational Services ]