What Do Forestry and Conservation Science Teachers, Postsecondary Do?
Any position as a college instructor is both challenging and rewarding. The goal of these professionals is twofold. Firstly, they focus on passing on knowledge to the next generation of students. Additionally, they work towards new discoveries and new ideas through research and publishing opportunities. Teachers in the forestry and conservation discipline instruct courses in the science of forestry management and conservation principles. It is their goal to continually improve education in order to improve the care and use of the environment.
Forestry and Conservation Science Teachers, Postsecondary Skills and Abilities
When you teach at the college level, you must have an extensive knowledge of educational principles, including curriculum design and multi-method instruction. You will be training students in the management and care of forestlands, so you must have a background in biology and be an expert in forestry. You will need impeccable communication skills, both oral and written, for your everyday interactions with students and peers alike. It also helps if you are proficient in the use of computers for record keeping, email communication, research and classroom use.
Forestry and Conservation Science Teachers, Postsecondary Duties
You will choose your own course materials, as well as design your curriculum based on course objectives. Instructing students in forestry resource policy, forest pathology and mapping will be your first priority. Giving constructive feedback on student examinations and assignments is an essential element of this position, and you may have a student assistant to aid you in these duties.There is much more to a college or university teaching position than just your time in the classroom. You can also expect to carry out some, or all, of the following:
- Supervise student lab work
- Maintain regularly scheduled office hours to assist students
- Advise students on career or academic issues
- Review papers for colleagues and scientific journals
- Serve on academic committees for your institution
- Write grant proposals
Keeping up with advances in your field is also expected for professors at any institution.
Forestry and Conservation Science Teachers, Postsecondary Tools and Technology
Although you will often be in the classroom, you will still need to be able to use and understand the tools of a forestry professional. Be prepared to use and instruct others about the following equipment:
- Saws of many varieties
- Secateurs or pruning shears
- Lifting hooks
- Lumbering equipment
- Measuring tapes
Keeping records, communicating with staff, and instructing students will all require you to be computer proficient. You will use training software such as Desire2Learn, Blackboard Learn, or Sakai CLE during lectures. A knowledge of map creation software and other industry-specific software will also benefit you in teaching and research applications.
Education and Training for Forestry and Conservation Science Teachers, Postsecondary
You will need at least a Master’s Degree to teach at the postsecondary level. Most instructors go on to receive a Doctorate Degree as well. Competition for positions can be aggressive, but conducting research and publishing in peer-reviewed journals will help you to become more marketable.
Forestry and Conservation Science Teachers, Postsecondary Salary
As an instructor at this level, you should expect to make a good wage. The national median salary for this position is $84,100 annually. Those in the top tier, or highest 10% of earners, bring home a median yearly salary of $132,100.
Forestry and Conservation Science Teachers, Postsecondary Jobs by Geography
Nationally, there is a 10% expected increase in the demand for these instructors. Georgia, Washington and Colorado have the highest growth rate for this career, while Arizona, Pennsylvania and Virginia have the most available positions. Oregon, Georgia and Tennessee offer the highest average salaries to forestry professors.