How Old do You Have to be to be a Professor? (Answered 2023)

How Old do You Have to be to be a Professor? (Answered 2023)

Ever wondered about becoming a professor after seeing your professor in a college or university? Well, it is common and being a professor is a dream of many. As most of the professors are around 40s or 50s you may drop out of the plan of becoming one. It is a great confusion among the students that they have to be in their 40s or 50s to become a professor, which is totally wrong. So, how old do you have to be to be a professor? Here we will help you to discuss it and also how you can become a professor.

Quick Takeaways

  • The age of a professor depends upon various factors like area of living, type of professor, etc.
  • You can become a professor even in your early 20’s if you make proper efforts.
  • The average age of the professors in the US is about 50.
  • To become a professor you will need to get your undergraduate degree, master’s degree and the PhD and thus will need to give around 10-12 years. 

However, you must read till the end so that you do not miss any important facts related to the age of becoming a doctor.

How Old do You Have to be to be a Professor? (Answered 2023)

How old do you have to be to be a professor?

The age of the professor will vary with a lot of different factors like type of institution, area of living, type of professor, etc. just like the pay you get as a professor. There are different levels of professorship like a lecturer, professor, associate professor, etc. which require different qualifications and thus have different ages. The minimum requirement to become a professor is to have at least a master’s degree. It means that you can become a professor once you complete a master’s degree.

Usually, you complete your master’s degree in your early 20s. After that, you must first try to gain some experience in the related field and participate in various research. Once done apply for the job role depending upon your qualifications. However, on the other hand, some higher educational institutions may need a professor who has done their PhD in the related field. In such a scenario you will have to give your 2-3 years more after completing the master’s degree. It means that you should be between 24-26 to become such a professor.

According to various studies, students start becoming a professor during their 30s. On the other hand, there are people who become full-time professors at the age of 40. Therefore there is no specific age to become a professor. It all depends upon your efforts and how much time you give to become a professor.

How Old do You Have to be to be a Professor? (Answered 2023)

What is the average age of a professor?

The average age of a professor used to be 40 years earlier. However, with time there has been a change in the average age of becoming a professor. According to the latest research, the average age of a professor is around 50-55 years. There can be several reasons why there is a shift in the average age of the professor. The most common are students getting out of school at later times. Many students are getting married at an early age and having babies.

How to become a professor?

The following are the things that you need to become a Professor –

1. Earn a Bachelor’s degree

The first thing that you need to become a professor is earning your bachelor’s degree. You will need to get a three-year undergraduate degree in your related subject. It will help to act as a base for your higher education. However, even if you want to get into another career field you will have to get your bachelor’s degree.

How Old do You Have to be to be a Professor? (Answered 2023)

2. Select your specialization

You will need to choose a particular branch of your chosen subject to get specialization in it. Suppose you have studied economics in your undergraduate degree, you can choose microeconomics, macroeconomics, financial economics, etc. in your master’s degree. It is important to choose your branch as you will be teaching that particular subject to the students. 

3. Go to graduate school

When you choose the subject you want to specialize in, you will need to attend graduate school in that particular subject. It is the most common and basic requirement to become a professor and you must complete it. You can also complete a major in education for a particular subject.

4. Try to assist a professor

After completing your master’s program try to assist your professor. You will have to take part in their research projects and work closely with them. In addition to that you will also need to assist the students if they are having any problem. It not only helps you to gain knowledge but also helps you to gain more experience.

How Old do You Have to be to be a Professor? (Answered 2023)

5. Pursue PhD

The last thing you need to do is to get your doctoral degree. It is the highest degree and earns you the doctor’s title. You will need to take part in different research have your own publications and get experience.

6. Apply for the role

Once you get your doctoral degree you must apply to different institutions. Becoming a professor with a doctoral degree is easy as every institution wants to have a professor who has high knowledge in their related field. 

How much time you will take to become a professor?

The time taken to become a professor depends upon whether you are applying after getting the master’s degree or getting your Ph.D. In addition to that, it also depends upon when you started studying your undergraduate school. Generally, it will take around 10-12 years depending upon how much time you are taking to complete your graduate school and your Ph.D. However, if you want to become a professor at the senior level, you will need to spend 3-4 more years gaining experience.

How Old do You Have to be to be a Professor? (Answered 2023)

Conclusion

The age of the professor will depend upon different factors like when they start getting their undergraduate degree, master’s degree, etc. It will also depend upon when they complete their PhD and start applying at the institution. The average age of a professor in the United States is around 50 years. However, many students become a professor just after completing their masters which means that they are around 22 or 23. Thus we can say that you can become a professor even at the age of 22 if you complete your education in the right manner.

FAQs

Can a 25-year-old become a professor?

There is no doubt that you can become a professor if you are a 25-year-old student. The basic requirement of becoming a professor is to get a master’s degree and when you get your master’s degree, you can start applying to the institutions. Even if you complete your master’s degree when you are 23 or 24, you can apply for the position of professor by 25.

William Christie
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