ERIC Number: ED243640
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Nov
Reference Count: 0
The Problem of Recruiting and Retaining Teachers for Rural Areas: An Application of Anthropological Concepts and Methods in a Department of Education.
Lahren, S. L., Jr.
In response to declining enrollment in teacher education programs and a mandate from the Regents of the Montana University System to accept special responsibility as a Rural Education Center for the State of Montana, the Education Division of Western Montana College (Dillon, Montana) in 1980 hired an applied anthropologist to evaluate the existing teacher education program, make and implement suggestions for change, and design specific courses to meet the needs of prospective rural teachers, with emphasis on understanding human behavior. The anthropologist identified rural problem/conceptual areas (recruitment, retention, isolation, multi-grade instruction) by consulting faculty members, and used these concepts to search the ERIC database for relevant material, which was then given to education faculty to read. A Rural Teacher Training System flow chart was created and a student questionnaire developed to gather baseline data on teacher education majors. An Introducton to Cultural Anthropology course was added to the required curriculum for education majors. The faculty decided to create a Rural Education Option, including two new courses, one addressing pedagogical aspects of rural teaching, and one, designed by the anthropologist, on problems of teacher adjustment in rural communities. The rural option was included in the 1983-85 college catalog. New courses, intended to expose sophomores to actual teaching situations and help students understand communities as social systems, were added to the general teacher education program. (MH)
Descriptors: Adjustment (to Environment), Education Majors, Educational Anthropology, Educational Assessment, Educational Change, Educational Innovation, Evaluation Methods, Higher Education, Needs Assessment, Preservice Teacher Education, Program Evaluation, Required Courses, Rural Areas, Rural Education, Rural Schools, Small Schools, Student Educational Objectives, Teacher Education Curriculum, Teacher Education Programs
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Applied Anthropology; Western Montana College
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association (82nd, Chicago, IL, November 16-20, 1983).