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Re: [teacherartexchange] degrees and salaries


From: Diane C. Gregory (dianegregory_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Thu Aug 25 2005 - 04:11:01 PDT

Hi All,

At the university level even though it is understood that the MFA is the
terminal degree in studio art, the Ph.D./Ed.D. is regarded as the "real"
terminal degree. There is a general perception/misperception that the MFA is
still a masters degree. Academics can be such snobs.

Even within the Ph.Ds. A Ph.D. in Education is not nearly as highly regarded as
a Ph.D. in Science or Math, for example. And a Ph.D. from Harvard is more
highly regarded than a Ph.D. from the University of Missouri-Columbia, where I
went to school. And, tall, white good looking males make more money in this
society than anyone else. But if you are a Dallas Cowboy you can make an
outrageous salary...yes there are great inequities in life.

There is a general lack of understanding of studio/performance degrees in
general. The BFA is treated the same as the BS/BA, even though in studio art
this is considered the professional art degree. An MFA is treated or thought of
the same as the MA/M.Ed/MS.

I do like the approach of giving financial rewards for credit hours taken/with
or without a degree. This approach rewards lifelong learning.

The current pay structures at most schools do not provide many financial rewards
or incentives for continual learning. There is a ceiling usually in most salary
schedules and no matter how many degrees you get or hours you take for
self-improvement your salary stays the same except for cost of living raises or
when the legislature, like in Texas, decides to raise the salary schedule a mere

It is hard to swallow when we see others with lesser credentials make more in
their salaries. Maybe along the way, I should have picked up a law degree to
make money and continued to teach because I love it. :-)



Dr. Diane C. Gregory
Director, Undergraduate & Graduate
Studies in Art Education
Texas Woman's University
Denton, TX  76204
Quoting Maggie White <>:
> Betty,
> I would be surprised--and impressed!--if your district retroactively
> paid someone for credit she'd earned before she was hired, unless that
> was negotiated at the time of hire.  I had an MA when I was first hired,
> but also had a reading endorsement on my certificate; when I got more
> savvy I tried to request a raise based on those extra hours, but it was
> turned down.   I know, it doesn't seem fair someone can get a master's
> by attending a class one night a week for a year.   There are so many
> rather dubious colleges and universities out there that offer relatively
> easy teaching certification programs, as well.  It's a different world,
> that's for sure.   And yes, it does gall me that I have as many grad
> credits as a law-school graduate, but made much less after 20 years than
> a new lawyer made her first year.
> Maggie
> Betty B wrote:
> ><snip>
> >
> >Now my school is offering a program where teachers
> >can, for $4,000, watch a distance-learning TV thing
> >one night a week and get their masters in a year. This
> >is great for them, but I confess it has made me think
> >about asking for the doctorate pay. (As a teacher
> >pointed out, a former teacher who had graduated law
> >school got doctorate pay for the same amount of years
> >I'd put in)
> >
> >
> ---
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