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ERIC Number: EJ1139340
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Reference Count: 19
Get in the Teacher Zone: A Perception Study of Preservice Teachers and Their Teacher Identity
Dassa, Lori; Derose, Diego S.
Issues in Teacher Education, v26 n1 p101-113 Spr 2017
Teacher attrition has been a global concern for many decades, with teachers leaving the profession at a higher rate than those entering. The largest group effected by this attrition issue is the beginning teacher. (Hong, 2010). In fact, in the United States, 30-50% of new teachers leave the field within the first five years. Many studies have been conducted to find out why this is occurring year after year--and the themes of "demographic characteristics and school contexts" (Hong, 2010,p.1531) often surface. Interestingly, although these themes are popular reasons, neither of them truly clarify how teachers identified with their classroom or daily school experiences, how they internalized the external conditions, or how they perceived themselves as educators. These thoughts need to be investigated to determine if they actually impact the final decision to leave the teaching profession (Hong, 2010). Hong (2010) researched the retention issue further and reported that in fact "such a career decision tends to be closely associated with the teacher's own sense of self and identity as a teacher" (p. 1531). The strength of this identity appeared to be the foundation needed to handle the other issues addressed as reasons for the low beginning-teacher retention rate. He felt it was therefore "essential to focus on the continuously developing teacher identity, which may lie behind the dropout phenomenon" (p. 1531). If this is true then the four real questions teacher preparation faculty need to ask are: (1) Are students creating their teacher identity when they establish education as their major of study; (2) Are students delaying the creation of their teacher identity till they enter the field as new teachers; (3) How can faculty pinpoint the time frame of engagement in this teacher identity process; and (4) How can faculty help build the strength of teacher identity for future resiliency in the field?
Descriptors: Preservice Teachers, Beginning Teachers, Professional Identity, Self Concept, Faculty Mobility, Teacher Persistence, Practicums, Student Surveys, Pretests Posttests, Student Satisfaction, Student Teacher Attitudes, Teacher Effectiveness, Experiential Learning, Outcomes of Education, Statistical Significance
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
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