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ERIC Number: EJ1061121
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 18
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 37
ISSN: ISSN-0313-7155
Teachers' Career Decisions: Perspectives on Choosing Teaching Careers, and on Staying or Leaving
Howes, Loene M.; Goodman-Delahunty, Jane
Issues in Educational Research, v25 n1 p18-35 2015
For early-career teachers in particular, teacher attrition and retention has been the focus of international research. We aimed to provide a more holistic view of teacher attrition and retention in an Australian educational context by including the perspectives of a cross-section of current and former teachers with various lengths of teaching service. We explored the similarities and differences in considerations about past career decision points reported by the teachers in different groups. Australian teachers (N = 133) who were staying in teaching (n = 59), or undecided about staying (n = 34), and former teachers who had changed careers (n = 40) completed free-response questionnaires about their decisions to choose and to stay in (or to leave) teaching careers. Thematic analysis suggested that three overarching themes were salient across all three groups of teachers at different decision points in the career. These overarching themes were personal fulfilment, practical considerations, and lack of alternatives or barriers to change. Strategies to retain teachers should aim to foster collegial relationships, address workload, respond to needs for job security or flexibility, and provide new opportunities within teaching.
Western Australian Institute for Educational Research Inc. 5/202 Coode Street, Como, Western Australia 6152, Australia. e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Secondary Education; Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia