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ERIC Number: EJ999820
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1463-9491
Can a Childcare Practicum Encourage Degree Qualified Staff to Enter the Childcare Workforce?
Thorpe, Karen; Millear, Prudence; Petriwskyj, Anne
Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood, v13 n4 p317-327 2012
Concern to ensure that all children have access to high-quality educational experiences in the early years of life has instigated policies to increase the qualifications of staff in the childcare workforce, and in particular, to increase the number of degree qualified teachers. However, existing data suggests that employment in childcare is viewed less favourably than alternatives in the education sector by those undertaking Early Childhood Education degrees. For most, childcare is not a preferred place of employment. This study asked whether a practicum in a childcare setting would improve attitudes towards childcare and willingness to work in childcare settings. In a study of a cohort of Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood) students, measures of attitudes to childcare and willingness to work in childcare were taken before and after practicum. Additionally, students provided accounts of their practicum experiences. Results indicate a trend in which there was a group increase in positive attitudes and willingness to consider work in childcare, but considerable individual differences influenced by the quality of the practicum experience. The relationship with, and model provided by, centre directors and group leaders in the practicum class was identified as a key influencing factor. Results are discussed in term of models of pedagogical leadership. (Contains 1 table and 2 figures.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia