Source: European Journal of Teacher Education, Vol. 39, No. 3, 340–354, 2016
(Reviewed by the Portal Team)
This article aimed to examine the factors that influenced the decision for three researchers to make the move from primary teaching to higher education.
The participants were three teachers , who decided to move from primary class teacher to Teacher Education (TE) lecturer in a Scottish Teacher Education Institution. All the participants had five years or more teaching experience.
The authors used a self-study case study methodology to investigate the factors that encouraged, and potentially inhibited, this career change.
The authors collected data utilized auto-ethnographic narrative.
The authors identified three common, key themes leading to the participants’ career change: exploration and reinvention, key figures and lifelong learners.
The first theme referred to the participants’ desire to explore opportunities and in the process reinvent themselves professionally and personally.
The second theme referred to key figures who influenced the participants’ transition to becoming a teacher educator. These key figures were friends, colleagues and family members.
The final theme referred to lifelong learners. The authors identified the participants’ positive view of learning and a good example of this was multiple references to continuing professional development (CPD).
The results suggest that the participants felt a sufficient degree of competence to pursue a career as a teacher educator within higher education and so made the decision to apply for a position.
The primary implication from this research is the relevance to each participant’s professional development. The findings suggest that the identification and classification of the needs that influence intrinsic motivation are demonstrated by the needs of competence, autonomy and relatedness for each participant.
Furthermore, the teachers’ understanding and skills as researchers have also developed and should in turn impact the teacher education students they will support in future.
The authors argue that the experiences of the three teachers in this study would suggest that, although they had the tools to make the move, this is not a common experience and so greater awareness of the range of professional development opportunities available to teachers is required.