How do personal and professional experiences influence second-career alternatively certified teachers’ decision to stay in teaching?

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Dawn C. Poole (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Kathy Hytten

Abstract: The purpose of this study was to examine the personal and professional experiences of successful second career alternatively certified teachers who stay in teaching beyond the four years required to obtain a professional license in North Carolina. In this qualitative study, seven successful teachers shared their personal and professional experiences that influenced their career choices. After collecting data through observations, document analysis, interviews, and focus groups, three overriding themes emerged. First, the working environment simultaneously supports and dissuades alternatively certified teachers. Second, personal temperament shapes reaction to first year professional experiences. And finally, the assets second career teachers bring to education may be counterintuitive to what logic suggests. A list of thirteen personal and professional characteristics shared among the study’s participants could help administrators when considering teaching applicants. Unfulfilled experiences from first careers worked as a motivator in participants considering teaching as a second career. And, while difficult to measure, the most important asset these teachers bring to teaching could be their desire to make a difference in the lives of others. The implication of this study involves how school administrators approach interviewing and hiring alternatively certified teachers as well as which support mechanisms are most likely to increase the likelihood of their staying in teaching.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2018
Alternative, Certification, Second-Career, Teacher
Teachers $x Alternative certification $z North Carolina
Teacher turnover $z North Carolina
Career changes $z North Carolina

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