teacher characteristics, mathematics, recruitment, national dataset, pipeline
Increasing numbers of mathematics teachers must be recruited in coming years, because of a growing student population, teacher attrition, calls for smaller class size, and the need to replace out-of-subject teachers. Recruitment can be made more effective and efficient, if better information on career paths is provided to decision makers. This study attempts to analyze the academic decisions which lead to the outcome "becoming a mathematics teacher". Four groups were compared and contrasted: mathematics teachers, science teachers, other teachers, and non-teachers. Science teachers were removed from the "other teachers" category because of their many similarities to mathematics teachers on the variables examined. The question of whether these groups differ in ways that could help predict the outcome of interest was examined using the NCES dataset Baccalaureate &Beyond:93/97, which provides thousands of variables on academic path, demographics, and labor market histories for over 8,000 individuals. It was analyzed using the NCES online analytic tool DAS to generate tables showing percentage distribution of the four groups on variables organized according to the concepts demographics, family environment, academic path, and academic achievement. Further examination was conducted by entering the variables into a discriminant analysis. Mathematics teachers were found to differ from teachers of other K-12 fields on all of the four conceptual categories. However, only a few such differences were statistically significant. More significant differences were observed when the analyses were conducted separately for women and men. The trend observed was that those who became mathematics teachers were more likely to have attended public high schools and to have first attended two-year colleges; to have lower GPAs, more mathematics credits, and midrange CEE scores; and to be female.
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Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
College of Education
Teaching and Learning Principles
Length of Campus-only Access
Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)
Lowry, Kimberly, "The Paths To Becoming A Mathematics Teacher" (2006). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 1030.