Michigan invested about $18 billion in revenue and expenditures for elementary and secondary education in 2012, the ninth most in both categories in the United States. Those who want to become a teacher in this state can choose from a handful of Michigan schools ranked among the top universities in the nation for education studies.
University of Michigan
The education program at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor was ranked eighth best in the nation by U.S. News & World Report in 2015 and 20th best in the world in 2014 by QS Top Universities. The university offers a range of programs from certificates and nondegree work to bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees. A renovation program is planned from 2014 through 2015 to modernize the 100-year-old education department with technology enhancements and collaborative learning spaces. The school has 12 research groups and centers, including the Center for Highly Interactive Classrooms, Curricula & Computing in Education, which brings together computer scientists, psychologists, scientists and learning specialists for the purpose of education reform.
Michigan State University
U.S. News & World Report ranks Michigan State University in East Lansing the 15th best education program in the country, and QS Top Universities ranks it 21st in the world. The school offers a range of degree programs and specializations. The bachelor’s program includes a mandatory fifth-year post-graduate internship with full-time teaching and 24 graduate level credits. Those credits can carry over to postgraduate study. Michigan State's Urban Educators Cohort Program covers power structures and poverty, cultural differences and community-building schools critical for teachers in low-income urban neighborhoods in cities such as Lansing, Grand Rapids, Detroit or Chicago.
Western Michigan University
The education program at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo is listed as the 112th best in the nation by U.S. News. Undergraduates can choose from 27 different majors, including family studies, industrial technology, music education and textile and apparel studies. The school offers 13 education minors and dozens of master’s and doctoral choices. The school has an academic resource center for extra help in subjects such as biology, chemistry, math and music, as well as a writing center.
Western Michigan is the only university in the state with a TeachLive Lab. Developed at the University of Central Florida, TeachLive allows students to practice teaching in front of a computer-generated class. Instructors can control the virtual students to reflect different personality types depending on the lesson.
Wayne State University
Ranked 116th in the nation by U.S. News for 2015, Wayne State University has 37 undergraduate and graduate programs which include more than 600 courses. Supervisors and cooperating teachers in the Detroit metro area rate 96 percent of Wayne State education students proficient or exemplary by the end of their student teaching experiences.
The Wayne State experience calls for breaking education students into "communities of learning," small groups with similar interests working closely together, possibly living in the same residence hall. The school offers bilingual and bicultural educational programs. Wayne State enrollees have student-taught in Finland, Russia, Sweden, Australia, France, England, Turkey and Greece, and participated in a Holocaust Education program in Poland and Amsterdam.
Rudy Miller has been writing professionally since 1996. Miller is a digital team leader for lehighvalleylive.com, a local news website and content provider to the Express-Times newspaper in Easton, Pa. Miller holds a Master of Arts in English from the University of Miami.