The job everyone thinks they can do : perspectives of lateral entry teachers before, during, and after beginning teaching

WCU Author/Contributor (non-WCU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Carol Davis Douglas (Creator)
Western Carolina University (WCU )
Web Site:
J. Casey Hurley

Abstract: This qualitative study follows career changers, to tell their story and to analyze their experiences. Twelve new lateral entry teachers are tracked throughout their first five years of teaching in order to understand their perspectives of teaching before they began their career, during the course of their new career, and afterward. By careful analysis of these perspectives, educational administrators can provide improved services and support for these teachers. Research reveals that more than half of all new teachers leave the profession within the first five years. By careful analysis of the perspectives of the lateral entry teachers in this study, services and support for this category of teachers can be improved and retention of these teachers increased. The twelve teachers chosen for this study represent a cross section of lateral entry teachers spanning a variety of demographics. These demographics include gender, age, location, subject area, grade level, and backgrounds. This study provides insight into why lateral entry candidates choose teaching as their new career, why they felt they would be successful in teaching and whether or not they were, what perceptions of the teaching profession did these careers changers share, and how, or if, these perspectives changed over a five-year period. In general, this study tells the career changing stories of 12 lateral entry teachers who are or were in the classroom educating our children.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2010
Alternative, Lateral Entry, Licensed, Teachers
Teachers -- Alternative certification
First year teachers
Career changes

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