The problems of beginning teachers: a theoretical approach

Parrell, Elizabeth Marie (1979) The problems of beginning teachers: a theoretical approach. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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The research reported in this paper studies the relationship of three independent variables, namely; experience, training, and methods, to eleven environmental dimensions of the school. These dimensions fall into three general socialization categories, namely; (1) students’ formal subenvironment (containing five dimensions), (2) students’ informal subenvironment (containing two dimensions), and (3) the teachers’ subenvironment (containing four dimensions). – The sample (N=55) was drawn from twenty-three Newfoundland schools and included thirty beginning teachers who were matched with twenty-five experienced teachers. A questionnaire type of instrument was administered to all subjects for data gathering purposes. – The analysis of the data resulted in the following findings. New teachers experienced no more problems per dimension than experienced teachers. In fact, new teachers experienced fewer problems in two areas; (1) the student opportunity to learn dimension (p<.01), and (2) the student academic involvement dimension (p<.005). Training was related significantly to the ‘student authority dimension’ only (p<.05), with internship students experiencing fewer problems than non-internship students. It was also found that interns experienced more difficulties in relation to ‘opportunities and encouragement to learn’ their new role, although the findings were not statistically significant (p<.07). Regarding teaching methods, activity oriented teachers experienced fewer problems in the ‘students’ socialization environment’. Acceptable levels of significance were found in the ‘student reinforcement dimension’, ‘the student identification dimension’, and the ‘student academic involvement dimension’ (p<.01 in each case). In ‘teachers’ socialization environment’, however, activity oriented teachers generally experienced more problems than their passively oriented counterparts. – A review of the literature yielded very little knowledge about where beginning teachers seek help in their new environment. Consequently, for exploratory purposes, twenty-nine items on the questionnaire contained a section requesting teachers to indicate what they considered to be most helpful for that particular problem area. Basically no help was sought in the ‘students’ socialization environment’ in most instances. In the ‘teachers’ socialization environment’, principals, vice-principals and other teachers provided most of the help. Teachers seem to find education courses most beneficial in the areas relating to curriculum and student evaluation. – It is conclude, from the findings of the present study, that beginning teachers are generally well educated and adequately trained to cope with the difficulties inherent in their new role.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Item ID: 11204
Additional Information: Bibliography : leaves 112-120.
Department(s): Education, Faculty of
Date: 1979
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Classroom management; Teachers; Teaching.

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