10 SES 06 A, Professional Identity & Teacher Identity: Motivations
The importance of training competent and knowledgeable future teachers has become evident in many countries not least because of the impact of the large scale international assessments such as PISA and TALIS. Nonetheless, globally we still lack a comprehensive picture of what the motivating factors are for choosing teaching as a career. This would be important to know, as previous research has indicated that motivations among prospective teachers remain relatively stable over time (Roness & Smith, 2010). Previous studies seem to suggest that the motivations for becoming a teacher typically relate to extrinsic, intrinsic, and altruistic reasons where the two latter ones are dominating. The studies highlighting extrinsic reasons consider, for example, long vacations or secured employment immediately after graduation as primary drivers for choosing teaching as a career (e.g. Papanastasiou & Papanastasiou, 1997). Intrinsic and altruistic reasons for choosing the teaching profession include, for instance, personal fulfilment, desires to work with children in order to make a difference in their lives, making a contribution to society, and the fulfilment of a dream (e.g. Manuel & Hughes, 2006). Trying to take into account this diversity of the motivating factors of becoming a teacher, Watt and Richardson (2007; 2012) developed a multidimensional instrument called FIT-Choice (Factors Influencing Teaching Choice) Scale.
However, research in this field in Finland and in Germany seems to be limited. The access to teacher education programmes widely differs between these countries. Whereas Finnish universities apply strong selection, the access to most German teacher education programmes does not bear any serious barriers. Hence, the aim of the study is to explore Finnish and German undergraduate students’ motivations for choosing teaching as a career. The students will represent various teacher education programmes (i.e., preparing primary, secondary, and upper secondary school teachers). The research questions are formed as follows:
- Do Finnish and German students in teacher education differ in terms of their motivation to become a teacher?
- Are there any different patterns of extrinsic, intrinsic or altruistic motivations to be observed between Finnish and German students in teacher education?
- Are there any differences between students of various teacher education programmes?
Manuel, J., & Hughes, J. (2006). ‘It has always been my dream’: Exploring pre‐service teachers’ motivations for choosing to teach. Teacher Development, 10(1), 5–24. Papanastasiou, C. , & Papanastasiou, E. (1997). Factors that influence students to become teachers. Educational Research and Evaluation, 3(4), 305–16. Roness, D., & Smit, K. (2010). Stability in motivation during teacher education. Journal of Education for Teaching, 36(2), 169–185. Watt, H.M.G., & Richardson, P.W. (2007). Motivational factors influencing teaching as a career choice: Development and validation of the FIT-Choice scale. Journal of Experimental Education, 75, 167–202. Watt, H.M.G., & Richardson, P.W. (2012). An introduction to teaching motivations in different countries: Comparisons using the FIT-Choice scale. Asia-Pacific Journal of Teacher Education, 40(3), 185–197.
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