Teaching and commitment: a study of Newfoundland teachers.

Small, Doris Patricia. (1970) Teaching and commitment: a study of Newfoundland teachers. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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The theoretical background for this study centers in two concepts: career and commitment. Our chief concern is occupational careers, with emphasis upon careers in teaching. Career is seen in terms of both objective and subjective components. Commitment, which comprises a major portion of the study, is a contingency of the subjective career. An attempt is made to illustrate the various aspects of the teaching career, such as career stages and career switching and to demonstrate that continuance commitment exists among members of the teaching profession; that is, teachers often remain in the profession because they believe they will be faced with penalties if they attempt to abandon it. Continuance commitment is contrasted with value commitment. -- The study is exploratory, and, within the theoretical framework provided, the constant comparative method of qualitative analysis is used in carrying out the research. The study takes place among high school teachers employed in a rural and an urban area. They fall into two groups: those having over twenty years' experience and those having fewer than twenty years' experience. The data are gathered by means of an unstructured interview schedule. -- There are a number of revelations from the investigation about the early stages of the teachers' careers. For example, half of the respondents decided to become teachers while in high school. A large proportion of them never considered an alternative to teaching. Most have engaged in no other occupation. The majority have, at some time, crossed career lines, and most expect to cross in the future. -- It is shown that over one-fourth of the teachers hold a continuance commitment orientation toward the profession, that one-half are ambivalent about their positions, and that fewer than one-fourth hold a value commitment orientation toward their teaching role. Considerable data are presented that suggest a lack of positive attraction to the teaching profession. A total of ten hypotheses are generated from the study. One of these is that many teachers would like to be otherwise employed. The others center in penalties that teachers believe they will encounter should they leave the profession. The thesis concludes with an examination of the implications of the findings, together with suggestions for future research.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/11440
Item ID: 11440
Additional Information: Bibliography : leaves 84-86.
Department(s): Education, Faculty of
Date: 1970
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Teachers--Newfoundland and Labrador.

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