Dissertations and Theses @ UNI


Open Access Dissertation


Teachers--Training of--United States; Junior high school teachers--Training of--United States;


This research investigated the importance of selected aspects of the professional preparation for middle school teachers. The purpose was to determine perceptions of middle school teachers concerning the importance of twelve frequently recommended teacher preparation courses. Differences in perceptions were explored for subgroups identified by type of endorsement held (elementary or secondary), sex, and years of teaching experience.

The sample consisted of Iowa middle school teachers employed during the 1986 spring semester. The sample was stratified and proportional among districts, random within districts.

The data were collected through the use of a questionnaire, constructed in two parts. The initial section used a Likert scale to assess the perceptions of the sample relative to twelve curricular components in teacher preparation programs. The second section of the questionnaire requested demographic data.

Data were analyzed using the chi-square test of independence, with significance set at the 0.05 level of confidence. Data were also reported descriptively, with mean importance values provided for each of the twelve courses individually and by categories of academic, experiential, and combined course indices.

The sample respondents believed that eleven of the twelve courses were desirable teacher preparation for middle school teachers, with "Classroom Management," "Student Teaching," and "Field Experiences" rated as most important. These three courses were classified as experiential courses; the sample perceived the six experiential-oriented courses to be of more importance than the six academic-oriented courses for inclusion in preparatory curriculum for middle school teachers.

The responses of the importance of the twelve courses were analyzed for three subgroups: endorsement, sex, and years of teaching experience. Responses were found to be significantly different for three courses with reference to endorsement, with elementary-prepared respondents rating the courses higher; six courses in terms of sex, with females rating the courses higher; and two courses in reference to years of experience, with the most experienced respondents rating the courses higher.

These perceptions of Iowa middle school teachers may provide information to Colleges of Education considering preservice and inservice programs designed to prepare middle school teachers. State departments of education may also utilize the data in considering criteria for middle school teacher certification.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Doctor of Education


Department of Curriculum and Instruction

First Advisor

Charles R. May

Second Advisor

Mary Nan Aldridge

Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (vi, 123 pages)



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