Career and Education Opportunities for Instructional Systems Specialists in Lancaster, California
If you want to be an instructional systems specialist, the Lancaster, California area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. About 14,500 people are currently employed as instructional systems specialists in California. By 2016, this is expected to grow by 29% to 18,700 people employed. This is better than the national trend for instructional systems specialists, which sees this job pool growing by about 23.2% over the next eight years. Instructional systems specialists generally develop instructional material, coordinate educational content, and incorporate current technology in specialized fields that provide guidelines to educators and instructors for developing curricula and conducting courses.
The income of an instructional systems specialist is about $32 hourly or $67,760 per year on average in California. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $27 hourly or $56,880 per year on average. Compared with people working in the overall category of Specialized Education, people working as instructional systems specialists in California earn more. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Specialized Education nationally. Jobs in this field include: supervisor of instruction, instructional designer, and content specialist.
The Lancaster area is home to 210 schools of higher education, including two within twenty-five miles of Lancaster where you can get a degree as an instructional systems specialist. Given that the most common education level for instructional systems specialists is a Master's degree, you can expect to spend about six years training to become an instructional systems specialist if you already have a high school diploma, or just 2 years starting with a Bachelor's degree.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Instructional Systems Specialist
In general, instructional systems specialists develop instructional material, coordinate educational content, and incorporate current technology in specialized fields that provide guidelines to educators and instructors for developing curricula and conducting courses.
Instructional systems specialists formulate and conduct teacher training programs and conferences dealing with new classroom procedures, instructional materials and equipment, and teaching aids. They also conduct or participate in workshops and conferences designed to promote the intellectual and physical welfare of students. Equally important, instructional systems specialists have to recommend, order, or authorize purchase of instructional materials and visual aids designed to meet student educational needs and district standards. They are often called upon to research and ready recommendations on curricula and materials for school systems. They are expected to observe work of teaching staff to review performance, and to recommend changes that could strengthen teaching skills. Finally, instructional systems specialists interpret and enforce provisions of state education codes, and rules and regulations of state education boards.
Every day, instructional systems specialists are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to speak clearly. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.
It is important for instructional systems specialists to design tests and procedures that measure the effectiveness of curricula, and use these tools to establish whether program objectives are being met. They are often called upon to ready or approve manuals, guidelines, and reports on state educational policies and practices for distribution to school districts. They also advise and teach students. They are sometimes expected to ready grant proposals and program policies and goals, or help in their preparation. Somewhat less frequently, instructional systems specialists are also expected to design classroom-based and distance learning training courses, using needs assessments and skill level analyses.
Instructional systems specialists sometimes are asked to address public audiences to explain program objectives and to elicit support. They also have to be able to direct efforts of staff working on cataloging and maintaining educational materials and equipment in curriculum libraries and laboratories and talk with members of educational committees and advisory groups to obtain knowledge of subject areas, and to relate curriculum materials to specific subjects, individual student needs, and occupational areas. And finally, they sometimes have to formulate and conduct teacher training programs and conferences dealing with new classroom procedures, instructional materials and equipment, and teaching aids.
Like many other jobs, instructional systems specialists must be able to take change and lead and believe in cooperation and coordination.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Lancaster include:
- Elementary School Teacher. Teach pupils in public or private schools at the elementary level basic academic, social, and other formative skills.
- English Professor. Teach courses in English language and literature, including linguistics and comparative literature.
- Farm Management Adviser. Advise, instruct, and assist individuals and families engaged in agriculture, agricultural-related processes, or home economics activities. Demonstrate procedures and apply research findings to solve problems; instruct and train in product development, sales, and the utilization of machinery and equipment to promote general welfare. Includes county agricultural agents, feed and farm management advisers, home economists, and extension service advisors.
- Graduate Research Assistant. Assist department chairperson, faculty members, or other professional staff members in college or university by performing teaching or teaching-related duties, such as teaching lower level courses, developing teaching materials, preparing and giving examinations, and grading examinations or papers. Graduate assistants must be enrolled in a graduate school program. Graduate assistants who primarily perform non-teaching duties, such as laboratory research, should be reported in the occupational category related to the work performed.
- High School Teacher. Instruct students in secondary public or private schools in one or more subjects at the secondary level, such as English, mathematics, or social studies. May be designated according to subject matter specialty, such as typing instructors, commercial teachers, or English teachers.
- Middle School Teacher. Teach students in public or private schools in one or more subjects at the middle, intermediate, or junior high level, which falls between elementary and senior high school as defined by applicable State laws and regulations.
- Teaching Assistant. Perform duties that are instructional in nature or deliver direct services to students or parents. Serve in a position for which a teacher or another professional has ultimate responsibility for the design and implementation of educational programs and services.
- Vocational Instructor. Teach or instruct vocational or occupational subjects at the postsecondary level (but at less than the baccalaureate) to students who have graduated or left high school. Includes correspondence school instructors; industrial, commercial and government training instructors; and adult education teachers and instructors who prepare persons to operate industrial machinery and equipment and transportation and communications equipment. Teaching may take place in public or private schools whose primary business is education or in a school associated with an organization whose primary business is other than education.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Instructional Systems Specialist Training
University of Southern California - Los Angeles, CA
University of Southern California, University Park, Los Angeles, CA 90089. University of Southern California is a large university located in Los Angeles, California. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 33,747 students and an admission rate of 22%. University of Southern California has bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree programs in Curriculum and Instruction which graduated zero, zero, and six students respectively in 2008.
Cerritos College - Norwalk, CA
Cerritos College, 11110 Alondra Blvd, Norwalk, CA 90650-6298. Cerritos College is a large college located in Norwalk, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 22,228 students. Cerritos College has an associate's degree and a two to four year program in Educational/Instructional Media Design which graduated one and zero students respectively in 2008.
Certified Instructional Technologist: The Certified Instructional Technologist Program is an increasingly recognized voluntary credential; based on the Instructional Technology component of the Certified Environmental, Safety and Health Trainer (CET) certification; a voluntary certification measuring instructional knowledge and confirming extensive experience as a trainer; a proven way to achieve personal and professional satisfaction for demonstrated competency and accomplishment; .
For more information, see the National Environmental, Safety & Health Training Association website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Lancaster, California
Lancaster is situated in Los Angeles County, California. It has a population of over 145,469, which has grown by 22.5% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Lancaster, 130, is far greater than the national average. New single-family homes in Lancaster cost $144,700 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, two hundred ninety-six new homes were constructed in Lancaster, down from eight hundred six the previous year.
The three most popular industries for women in Lancaster are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, transportation equipment, and public administration. The average commute to work is about 32 minutes. More than 15.8% of Lancaster residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 5.6%, is lower than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Lancaster is 17.6%, which is greater than California's average of 12.3%.
The percentage of Lancaster residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 58.1%, is more than both the national and state average. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Southern Baptist Convention and the LDS (Mormon) Church.
Lancaster is home to the Los Angeles County Animal Shelter Number 5 and the Lancaster City Hall as well as Mays Field and Mariposa Park. Shopping centers in the area include Antelope Valley Center Shopping Center, Antelope Valley Plaza Shopping Center and West Lancaster Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Lancaster can choose from Best Western Antelope Valley I, Aloha Motel and Bonaire Motel for temporary stays in the area.