University of Tasmania
whole_MacleanRupertDonaldIan1989_thesis.pdf (21.73 MB)

Career and promotion patterns of state school teachers in Tasmania : a sociological analysis

Download (21.73 MB)
posted on 2023-05-26, 20:17 authored by Maclean, RDI
Using a research framework derived from the sociology of occupations, this study aimed to achieve an improved understanding of teachers as an occupational group by undertaking a case study of the promotion and career patterns of state school teachers in one Australian State, that of Tasmania. The theoretical assumption upon which the study was based is that the career movements of teachers are not random: rather, they move in patterned ways between competing positions. It seeks to describe and explain differences and similarities in the career patterns of those occupying different promotion positions (men and women teachers, - graduates and non-graduates, and those employed in different types of schools and sectors of the school system); and to ascertain their perceptions regarding a career and promotion in teaching. The survey population consisted of 770 full time teachers in promotion positions, 675 (87.7%) of whom were employed in schools and 95 (12.3%) in non-school supervisory, advisory and administrative positions in the Education Department of Tasmania. The research methodology adopted was one which blended together quantitative (structural) and qualitative (phenomenological) data. Information on the career histories of teachers was obtained from Education Department records, while data on individuals perceptions about the school teaching career was obtained through a questionnaire and by conducting semi-structured individual and group interviews. In essence, the main findings of the study are: the career movement of teachers, in both the horizontal and vertical mobility sense, are not random but generally planned and patterned; both horizontal and vertical mobility are important features of the school teaching career; there are substantial differences in the career patterns and perceptions of teachers according to their age, level of experience, gender, marital status, academic and professional qualifications, promotion position occupied and sector of the Education Department in which they are employed; teachers conveived of the teaching career as consisting of a number of distinct stages these differing markedly in both number and content to those identified in other studies; school teaching is an occupation that offers a number of different types of careers; the most successful teachers in gaining promotion develop a career map, strategy and career timetable; teachers develop a 'career anchorage perspective' which influences the level of promotion that satisfies their career needs, this perspective being reassessed and readjusted by the individual at different stages in their career; and the fact that teachers develop a career perspective which recognises that there is both an internal (phenomenological) and external (structural) aspect to an individual's working life.


Publication status

  • Unpublished

Rights statement

Copyright 1987 the author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s). Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Tasmania, 1989. Bibliography: leaves 404-425

Repository Status

  • Open

Usage metrics

    Thesis collection


    No categories selected


    Ref. manager