Concern over teacher shortages has become a perplexing and persistent problem in schools. Teachers are constantly leaving the profession and new entrants into the teaching profession have decreased in recent years, creating a need for recruiting qualified individuals to become teachers and to retain those who are already in classrooms. The purpose of this study was to identify factors that best predict whether high school students are considering teaching as a career and factors that predict whether students' parents would encourage their children to become teachers. A review of the literature revealed potentially influential factors on teacher recruitment and a survey instrument was developed using those factors. All 41 school districts in Utah were invited to participate, with 9 giving permission to administer surveys to parents and juniors and seniors in high school. In all, 285 high school juniors and seniors and 495 parent surveys were analyzed. The survey of high school juniors and seniors focused on two research questions: 1) which factors predict whether high school students are willing to consider teaching as a career and 2) which factors predict whether high school students feel teaching is the best career option for them? Results indicated that high school students were more likely to consider teaching when they had confidence in their ability to be good teachers, when family members and others outside their families encouraged them to become teachers, and when they felt their community supported teachers. The survey of parents addressed two research questions: 1) what factors predict whether parents will encourage their children to consider becoming a teacher, and 2) which factors predict whether parents believe teaching would be the best career option for their children? The results of the analysis indicated 4 factors that are statistically predictive of a parent's willingness to encourage their children to consider teaching. Parents are more likely to encourage their children to become teachers when people outside the family had encouraged the children to teach, if the parents believed their child would be a good teacher, and if parents thought that expectations placed on teachers were reasonable. Results also showed, however, that when considering other professions, parents were much less likely to encourage their children to become teachers in favor of other professions.
College and Department
David O. McKay School of Education
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Christensen, Steven Scot, "Teacher Recruitment: Highs School Students' and Parents' Perceptions of the Teaching Profession" (2020). Theses and Dissertations. 8722.
teacher education, teacher recruitment, teacher profession, teacher shortage, high school students, career choice