Supporting Emerging Teacher Identities: Can We Identify Teacher Potential Among Students?

May. 21, 2010

Source: European Journal of Teacher Education, Volume 33, Issue 2 May 2010 , pages 167 - 184.
The current research focuses on Estonian university students' emerging teacher identity and their interest in becoming teachers.

Five hundred and sixty-five first, third and fifth year students participated in the survey.

The results suggest that pedagogical reasons for entering teacher education and clear motives for studying are significant indicators of teacher potential. The article elaborates the pedagogical reasons for entering teacher education or the teaching profession and the wish to function as a change agent in the society. These reasons were related to academic self-efficacy beliefs and the belief that the teacher expertise is mainly pedagogical in nature.

However, at the point in their studies at which the students are able to choose their masters program and entry into teacher education, their likelihood of choosing teacher education remains low. This indicates that there is a need to develop pedagogical content, study counselling and career guidance services to encourage students' continued interest in and entry to teacher education and the teaching profession.

Updated: Aug. 01, 2010