Teacher assistants work under a licensed teacher’s supervision to give students of all ages additional attention and instruction, either one-on-one or in small groups. Teacher assistants— also called teacher aides and paraprofessionals— monitor students’ progress, and help them to learn the material that teachers present. Assistants may grade tests and check homework, or for young children at childcare centers, they may supervise playtime, and help with feeding and basic care. Some teacher assistants work only with special education students. Assistants may adapt material to the student’s learning style and help with understanding, while for students with more severe disabilities, teacher assistants help with basic needs, such as eating and personal hygiene. With young adult students who have disabilities, assistants may teach skills necessary for finding a job or living independently after graduation. Some teacher assistants supervise students in a specific location, such as computer labs, recess, or in the lunchroom. Part-time schedules are common for teacher assistants, sometimes including riding the bus with students before and after school. Many work the nine-month school year, though some also work summers. Teacher assistants have a high rate of illnesses and injuries. Teacher assistants typically need to have completed at least two years of college coursework, or an associate’s degree.
What they do:
Perform duties that are instructional in nature or deliver direct services to students or parents. Serve in a position for which a teacher has ultimate responsibility for the design and implementation of educational programs and services.
On the job, you would:
Tutor and assist children individually or in small groups to help them master assignments and to reinforce learning concepts presented by teachers.
Teach social skills to students.
Supervise students in classrooms, halls, cafeterias, school yards, and gymnasiums, or on field trips.
Arts and Humanities
Education and Training
teaching and course design
Safety and Government
public safety and security
listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
talking to others
teaching people how to do something
understanding people's reactions
communicate by speaking
listen and understand what people say
Ideas and Logic
notice when problems happen
order or arrange things
People interested in this work like activities that include helping people, teaching, and talking.
They do well at jobs that need:
Concern for Others
You might use software like this on the job:
Data base user interface and query software
Data entry software
Special Education Student Information System SESIS
Computer based training software
Children's educational software
Text to speech software
Device drivers or system software
Screen magnification software
Screen reader software
certificate after high school or some college usually needed
Get started on your career:
New job opportunities are very likely in the future.