Examining Perspectives of Entry-level Teacher Candidates: A Comparative Study
AbstractThis study examines entry-level teacher candidates on career choice, professional goals and view on a teacher’s role. The candidates were enrolled in two elementary teacher education programs in the People’s Republic of China and the United States of America. A total of 66 participants responded in writing to three questions about why they decided to become a teacher, what they wanted to accomplish as a teacher, and how they viewed the role of a teacher. Major differences were found between these groups in their responses to the first two questions but the participants used similar terms to describe a teacher’s role. Characteristics of these participants are highlighted and discussed, and educational implications on teacher education career preparation, teacher/student relationship and impact of cultures and policies are provided.