Motivations for Choosing a Teaching Career and Deciding Whether or Not to Teach in Urban Settings

Yong Yu, George Bieger


This study addressed the ongoing problem of the shortage of highly qualified teachers in many urban schools.  Particularly, the study explored what motivates pre-service teachers’ choice of a teaching career, and to what extent those motivations are related to their intention to teach or not to teach in urban settings. The findings indicated that the desire to “make a difference” and similar ideals are behind the choice to teach in urban settings and it may be that teacher preparation programs need to develop strategies for channeling those altruistic motives into experiences that lead to successful experiences in urban settings.  By capitalizing on the very motives that lead students to seek a teaching career in the first place, teacher education may demonstrate that urban schools offer the opportunity to satisfy the desire to make a difference.


Urban teaching, Motivation to teach, Teacher preparation

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Categories: 2013, Articles - JETEN, Urban Education

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