What do secondary trainee teachers say about teaching as a profession of their "choice" in Malawi

Peter Mtika, Peter Gates

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


This interview-based qualitative study is concerned with the recruitment of secondary teachers in Malawi. This study shows a range of perspectives for pursuing a teacher training course: failure to follow a desired career, springboard to other careers, to upgrade, and teaching out of vocation. It shows that trainee teachers held a range of images about teaching: its ability to enhance knowledge; low pay with no incentives, low status profession, and lack of trust of male trainee teachers. Teacher educators and policy makers need to consider the perspectives of trainee teachers to reduce resource wastage and support trainee teachers appropriately.

Research highlights
¿ Quality teacher education remains a critical component as well as a prerequisite for the attainment of universal access to quality free primary education and education for all in developing countries. ¿ Trainee teachers’ dispositions are central to recruitment and retention within the teaching profession. ¿ The framework of “factors influencing teaching choice” is useful in understanding framework trainee teacher motivation for teaching. ¿ The insights into the perspectives of trainee teachers offer teacher educators and policy makers meaningful ways to grapple with the complex realities which may contribute to higher trainee teacher retention.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)424-433
Number of pages10
JournalTeaching and Teacher Education
Issue number2
Early online date25 Oct 2010
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2011


  • trainee teacher
  • teaching profession
  • teacher recruitment
  • teacher retention
  • Malawi


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