ERIC Number: ED394933
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995-Nov
New Perspectives Regarding Reasons for Becoming a Teacher: A Study of Teachers and Undergraduates in Education.
Gee, Jerry Brooksher
This study was conducted to survey undergraduates majoring in education and teachers in the field regarding reasons for becoming a teacher and to determine levels of variance in response between these two groups. In the Spring of 1994, a survey instrument containing 10 reasons for becoming a teacher was pilot tested with 110 teachers and 152 undergraduate education majors. Chi-square and bivariate correlation-regression were used to analyze the data obtained. Findings revealed that classroom teachers perceived value to society as the primary reason for being a teacher; a preference to work with children was second. For undergraduates, a preference to work with children was the prime motivator, with social value ranking third in importance. Informal interviews with the undergraduates were conducted to obtain additional insights into why these students chose to become teachers. A second set of instruments rated the results of the first instrument with specific statements gleaned from the interviews as rationales; it was administered to 96 undergraduate education majors and 74 teachers. The most common rationale given by both was an opportunity to reach the social problems of children and young adults. Distinctive disagreement was found regarding the value or significance that an educator can make to society. It was concluded that the first instrument offered results that agreed with the common literature, while the second part offered additional insight into the rationales of the first instrument. (NAV)
Descriptors: Comparative Analysis, Education Majors, Elementary Education, Higher Education, Professional Development, Social Development, Student Teacher Attitudes, Surveys, Teacher Attitudes, Teacher Morale, Teacher Role, Teacher Student Relationship, Teaching Experience, Teaching (Occupation), Undergraduate Students
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Mid-South Educational Research Association (24th, Biloxi, MS, November 8-10, 1995).