Midcareer Entrants to Teaching: Who They Are and How They May, or May Not, Change Teaching

Midcareer Entrants to Teaching: Who They Are and How They May, or May Not, Change Teaching

Issue/Topic: Teaching Quality--Induction Programs and Mentoring; Teaching Quality--Recruitment and Retention
Author(s): Marinell, William; Johnson, Susan Moore
Organization(s): Harvard University
Publication: Educational Policy
Published On: 10/13/2014

No previous studies have used national data to examine midcareer entrants' personal and professional characteristics, their rates and routes of entry into the profession, or the positions they secured on entering teaching. Thus, policymakers have had little research in which to base decisions.

To assess the potential of midcareer entrants--teachers who enter the profession from careers outside of education--to diversify teaching, staff public schools, and fill vacancies in high-need subjects

Researchers found that although midcareer entrants were more likely than first-career entrants to be male and from minority backgrounds, they have not reduced the gender imbalance among first-year teachers nationally, and they appear to be only partially responsible for introducing slightly more racial diversity into the teaching force. Other findings:

About midcareer entrants Gender and racial diversity Teaching roles
Policy Implications/Recommendations:
Midcareer entrants have not dramatically changed the gender and racial composition of the entering teaching force. As a result of these findings, researchers recommend that states and districts seeking to increase the diversity of their teachers should consider the following:

Recruitment & Preparation Supports Research
Research Design:
Longitudinal, cross-sectional study

A sub-sample of 3,266 full-time, first-year teachers, including both first- and midcareer entrants.

Year data is from:


Data Collection and Analysis:
Data from NCES' Schools and Staffing Survey (SASS), a cross-sectional survey of a nationally representative sample of K-12 teachers, principals, and district personnel in public and private schools

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