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Attitudes of Student Teachers at the University of Petra toward Teaching Profession and Its Relation to Their Teaching Competences Observed during Practical Training§

Mahmoud Jamal Al-Salkhi
American Journal of Educational Research. 2019, 7(3), 224-231. DOI: 10.12691/education-7-3-6
Received January 06, 2019; Revised February 19, 2019; Accepted March 10, 2019

Abstract

This study aimed at exploring the attitudes of the student teachers at the University of Petra toward teaching Profession, and its relation to their teaching Competences observed during practical training. In order to meet this objective, the study sample contained 35 female student teachers. The sample was split into two groups: 23 participants specialize in class teacher, and 12 participants specializing in child education. The researcher used the attitudes measure towards the teaching Profession and a notebook to write the observed teaching Competences. The study concluded the existence of a positive attitude toward the profession prior to and post of field training, in spite of a decrease in the attitude level after training. Also, the study showed the existence of a statistical indicative difference between the attitude average of the participants toward the teaching profession attributed to the difference in their specialties. The study results were in favor of the students specializing in the class teacher. Additionally, the study has showed that the level of teaching Competences of the female student teachers was high, and there is no statistical indicative difference between the teaching Competences of female student teachers as viewed by the advisors of field training based on specialty. Finally, the study does not indicate any relation between their attitude toward the teaching profession and teaching Competences during the practical training.

§Apart of this paper was presented as a verbal presentation at the International Conference on Business, Economics, Social Sciences & Humanities, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 17-18 January, 2017.

1. Introduction

The teacher is considered an important and effective element in the teaching process. Therefore, he should be well trained and competent in order to execute his duties in a professional manner because training is based on scientific and technical basis. 1 Also, the teacher is considered a significant milestone in the educational process in general, and in the secondary education in specific. Therefore, our responsibility is to give him special attention, and to develop his Competences to become well qualified in the academic, educational, and professional fields 2.

In order to achieve the above objectives, the governments established the educational colleges and teachers training institutes. Getting a degree from an educational college or a diploma from a training institute becomes a pre-requisite for acceptance in the teaching career. This requirement is applied in many countries. It was expected that the special attention given to the teachers’ training programs would promote their teaching skills. But, unfortunately, the quality of learning is going down in all educational stages in most Arab countries 3.

The Scientific Educational Division was established in the University of Petra in 1991. It cooperates with other educational divisions in the Jordanian universities for developing the education and promoting its effectiveness by attracting excellent graduates in various science and knowledge fields with special emphasis on Class Teacher and Child Education specialties. The first specialty aims at preparing teachers specializing in teaching the first three elementary grades. Whereas, the Child Education aims at preparing teachers specializing in teaching and taking care of the kinder garden children.

In order to meet the objective of the Scientific Educational Division, a special course called “Practical Training” is offered. This course carries nine credit hours and is scheduled three hours per day (Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday) during a full academic semester. The importance of the Practical training is attributed to the fact that it takes place in the real field through which the actual attitudes of the student teacher toward teaching profession is clearly observed and developed. Also, the Practical training provides a good opportunity for gaining and developing the required skills so that the student can teach the material of his specialty. It is worth mentioning that through serious and on-going practice of the teaching basics, the student teacher will acquire the fundamentals of the teaching profession 4.

In addition, the Practical training aims at achieving the following objectives such as: applying the theoretical knowledge on the actual teaching environment. Thus, the student teacher will acquire the teaching skills that enable him to practice the teaching profession effectively. Also, the Practical training contributes in promoting his positive attitudes toward teaching and developing his Competences that help him in solving any teaching problems or challenges that he may face in his career 5.

Also, the researcher is of the opinion that the attitude toward teaching profession has an effective influence on the school environment, teacher behavior, job satisfaction, methods of their school interactions, student assistance, and finally the achievement of the educational aims.

A study conducted by Tizke & Tairzi 6 aimed at disclosing the attitudes of the student teachers in the University of Mairsin in Turkey toward teaching profession, and the factors that affect these attitudes. The results of this study reported positive attitudes toward teaching profession.

Another study conducted by Kotosu & Wykiz 7 to know the attitudes of the chemistry student teachers toward teaching profession. For this purpose, 31 students were selected from two different universities in Turkey. In spite of their positive attitudes toward teaching profession, the teachers were concerned about their future.

Also, Al-Zo’abi 8 conducted a study aimed at measuring the attitudes of students at the Teachers’ Colleges in Saudi Arabia toward teaching profession and its relation to the excitation balance and academic achievement. The study sample consisted of 396 students. The study results reported high positive attitudes toward teaching profession. These attitudes revealed the existence of statistical indication differences.

A study conducted by Bqaiai & Kassab 9 to get familiar with the attitudes of the UNRWA teachers toward the teaching profession in Irbid area. The study sample consisted of 331 male and female teachers. The study results revealed that their attitudes were positive on the attitudes measure toward teaching profession. Another study was conducted by Abu Salim 10 to get familiar with the attitudes of the students at the Physical Education College students at Al-Aqsa University in Ghaza toward teaching and training profession. The sample consisted of 95 male and female teachers, and the study results showed a general positive attitudes of the sample students toward the teaching and training profession.

Also, a study was conducted by Osunde & Izevbigie 11 to reveal the attitudes of teachers toward the teaching profession in the Middle West Nigeria. The study sample consisted of 400 teachers selected randomly from 40 elementary schools covered by the study. The results reported negative attitudes toward teaching profession.

In addition, a study was conducted by Rimm-Kaufman & Sawyer 12 that aimed at revealing the beliefs of the Elementary Grade teachers regarding their self- Competences and their attitudes toward teaching profession, especially if they are assigned to adjacent classrooms. The study sample consisted of 69 teachers who teach students in the Kinder Garden until the 3rd elementary grade. The study results revealed that the teachers displayed high beliefs regarding their self-Competences in addition to positive attitudes toward teaching profession. Whereas, a study conducted by Mohammed & Ahmed 13 showed a clear weakness in the attitudes of the graduates of Teachers College in Al-Baha, Saudi Arabia prior to and during their practice of teaching profession.

The achievement of an effective teaching in the learning process requires many skills and the ability of the teacher to utilize them in achieving the targeted aims. The milestone of a successful learning process is based on a group of values and Competences that the teacher of the 21st century should be familiar with include: comprehensive knowledge of the specialty material, and planning, executing & evaluating learning outcomes. Also, it includes class management, effective two-way communications with students, and getting their feedback 14. The teaching Competences can be defined as the ability of the teacher to demonstrate teaching behavior perfectly through the knowledge, skills, and attitudes acquired by a programmed preparation of teaching operations 15.

Due to the importance of the teachers’ Competences, the conference of the national standards for the professional development of teachers was held in Amman in 2006, with active participation of local and international universities and educational institutes. The conference was concluded by giving the following recommendations:

Ÿ Adopting a number of standards regarding the preparation and development of teachers.

Ÿ Planning and executing the teaching process.

Ÿ Evaluating the learning of students and the teaching process.

Ÿ Evaluating the self-development and ethics of the teaching profession.

The Ministry of Education & Teaching in cooperation with the local public and private universities have established work frame to prepare qualified teachers in light of the adopted standards 16.

Previous studies showed interest in the teaching competences. For example, a study conducted by Al-Qararah 17 aimed at revealing the teaching competences of the student teachers specializing in the class teacher at the Technical University of Al-Tafeela. The study tools were applied on (43) students. The study results showed that most competences acquired by the students were related to formulating aims and displaying teaching material. Whereas less competences were related to thinking promotion, self-evaluation, and offering feedback.

Another study conducted by Bhargava & Pathy 18 aimed at investigating the teaching competences needed by the student teachers to succeed in the teaching profession from their point of view. A study sample was formed covering (100) student teachers specializing in education in the University of Ratchi in India. The study results showed that self-confidence was the most needed competences. Whereas, the most professional competences needed was the knowledge of the teaching material they will teach in the future.

Also, 19 conducted a study aimed at evaluating the teaching competences of the female student teachers specializing in Physical Education in the University of Alexandria in the light of academic quality standards. The study sample consisted of (59) trainee students in the cooperative schools. The study results noted that the female student teachers have three high training competences as follows:

Ÿ Knowledge competences: such as formulating the common and special aims.

Ÿ Performance competences: such as creating an effective and comfortable classroom environment.

Ÿ Emotional competences: such as respecting the student’s personality.

Also, the results noted that the student teachers have low competences in producing audio-visual aids. The researcher recommended a follow up on the evaluation of the teaching competences of the student teachers upon graduation.

Another study conducted by Shatnawi, 20 aimed at knowing the most important competences of the student teachers specializing in “Field Teacher” in the Educational College in Oman as viewed by them. Also, the researcher used a questionnaire given to (60) female teacher. The responses of participants revealed the need of teacher students for some competences such as identifying humanistic knowledge, organizing self-teaching, and using modern teaching methods.

Additionally, a study conducted by Yeung 21 aimed at investigating the competences of the student teachers during the field training in the cooperative schools. The study sample consisted of (120) students from Hong Kong University. The study results concluded the existence of obstacles and difficulties faced by the student teachers such as; inadequate theoretical and practical background of study subjects. Also, the students lack the experience of applying the motional skills, in addition to the lack of time management skill and the ability of controlling the behavior in the classroom. The researcher recommended increasing the time of field training, and recording the performance of the student teachers by their supervisors.

It has been observed from previous studies that the relation between teaching competences and the attitudes of the student teachers toward teaching profession was not discussed. This is what distinguishes the current study from the previous ones.

1.1. Study Problem

The study problem appears through the researcher’s observation of the clear difference in the attitudes of the female student teachers in the University of Petra toward the teaching profession. Some teachers showed complaints and no interest in practicing this career and talk negatively about it. On the other hand, other teachers showed observable interest through positive comments about the teaching profession and are committed toward it and its individuals. The purpose of this study is to reveal the attitudes of the student teachers in the University of Petra toward teaching profession prior to and post Practical training. Answering the following questions can identify the study problem:

Ÿ What are the attitudes of the female student teachers in the University of Petra toward teaching profession prior to and post Practical training?

Ÿ Are there any statistical indicative differences at the indication level (α =0.05) in the attitudes of the student teachers toward training profession attributed to the specialty?

* What is the teaching competences level of the student teachers as viewed by the field training advisors?

* Are there any statistical indicative differences that exist at the indication level (α = 0.05) between the competences level of the female student teachers attributed to their specialty?

Ÿ Is there any relation between attitudes of the female student teachers toward teaching profession and their competences during the Practical training?

1.2. Study Importance

The perception of the student teachers attitudes in the Educational Division at the University of Petra toward training profession helps the supervisors of the Practical training program in reviewing the bases and future plans of the program. This review ensures the quality of student teachers that can handle the responsibilities of teaching profession successfully, especially in the basic primary stage and kinder garden.

1.3. Study Aims

The present study aims at:

Ÿ Getting familiar with the attitudes level of the student teachers in the University of Petra toward teaching profession.

Ÿ Showing the statistical indicative differences between the attitudes of the student teachers toward teaching profession attributed to the specialty (Class Teacher, Child Education).

* Investigating the teaching competences level of the female student teachers as viewed by the field training advisors.

* Investigating the statistical indicative differences between the competences level of the student teachers attributed to their specialty (Class Teacher, Child Education).

Ÿ Showing the relation between the female student teachers attitudes toward teaching profession and their competences during the Practical training period.

1.4. Study Concepts

Ÿ The attitudes toward teaching profession: Responses of all study sample individuals either by accepting or rejecting this profession.

Ÿ The teaching competences: The competency of the student teachers and her ability to perform all teaching duties successfully and effectively. This can be measured by the score achieved by the student as recorded in her observation card used for this purpose.

Ÿ The Student Teacher; A registered student in the Educational Sciences Division in the University of Petra to achieve A Bachelor Degree in the specialty of either Class Teacher or Child Education. Upon successful completion of the academic and theoretical education requirements, in addition to the completion of her training in a school or kinder garden, she will be awarded the degree.

2. Methods

2.1. Study Group

The study group consists of 35 teacher students registered in the Practical Training course for the first academic semester of 2015/2016. This group has 23 student teachers specializing in Class Teacher, and 12 student teachers with a specialty of Child Education.

2.2. Study Tools
2.2.1. Measure of Attitudes toward Teaching Profession

In order to accomplish the objectives of the study, the researcher used the attitudes measure which he prepared .This measure consisted of 30 items, and a measure is used for each item using three options: agree, reluctant, and hesitant. These options are given three scores: 2, 1, 0 respectively.

In order to confirm the reliability of the measure, it was reviewed by arbitrators from the faculty of the Scientific Education Division of University of Petra and their observations were taken into consideration. Also, to confirm its consistency, the measure was applied on a sample of 12 student teachers from Al-Zaytona University using Cronbach’s Alpha method, and the reported consistency coefficient was 0.78.


2.2.2. Observation Card of Teaching Competences (Planning, Execution and Evaluation)

The observation card is used to make sure that the female student teachers posses and utilize these Competences inside the classroom. To confirm this, the supervisor of the Practical training used a card of 13 items and a measure is used for each item. The measure offers five options for each student response: strongly agree, agree, not sure, disagree, and strongly disagree. The following scores were given to the options: 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 respectively.

In order to confirm the reliability of the measure, it was reviewed by a group of arbitrators who are specialized in curriculum, teaching methods and evaluation. All members accepted the measure tool. Also, to confirm its consistency, the measure was applied on a sample of 12 student teachers from Al-Zaytona University using Cronbach’s Alpha method, and the calculated internal consistency coefficient was 0.84.

The following statistical graduation was used to distribute the arithmetic averages of the measure items into three levels according to the group range of (1- 5) as follows:

- Low Level: 1-2.33 degree

- Average Level: 2.34-3.67 degree

- High Level: 3.68-5.00 degree

2.3. Statistical Treatment

Statistical methods were used to answer the following study questions: The Arithmetic Means, Standard Deviations, Independent Sample T and Pearson Correlation Coefficient.

3. Study Results and Discussions

3.1. Results Regarding the First Question

What are the attitudes of the female student teachers in the University of Petra toward teaching profession prior to and post Practical training? To answer this question, the researcher calculated the Arithmetic Mean and Standard Deviation of the rating of the study sample participants in the items of attitudes measure toward the teaching profession prior to and post of the Practical training. The measure elements were arranged in a descending order of the Arithmetic Means of attitudes measure as shown below.

In order to find the range of statistical indication of these differences, the T-test was conducted to rate the study individuals on the attitudes measure toward teaching profession prior to and post of the Practical training. Table 2 shows these results.

It has been observed from the above table that the overall Arithmetic Mean of the students’ rating on the post attitudes measure toward teaching profession is (1.4181) and the Standard Deviation (0.37533). The Arithmetic Mean value indicates that the attitudes of the student teachers toward teaching profession are positive. Also, it has been observed that the overall Arithmetic Mean of the students’ rating on the pre- attitudes measure toward teaching profession is (1.5219) and the Standard Deviation (0.39324). It was clear from these results that their attitudes toward the teaching profession are also positive.

It has been noted based on the above results of T-test that there is a statistical indicative difference (α = 0.05) between the average of responses of students on the attitudes measure toward teaching profession prior to Practical training (1.5219) and post of Practical training (1.4181). It is obvious that this difference in the two Arithmetic Mean values was in favor of the students’ responses prior to the Practical training were better than those after training.

The low attitudes of the study participants toward teaching profession after completing the Practical training is attributed to the fact that some students in the specialty of Class Teacher and Child Education are not interested in both of them. This was the feeling of the researcher during his follow up and classroom visitations in the cooperative schools. Also, the low attitudes of the teacher toward teaching profession as reflected by their responses would be attributed to the following reasons:

ŸUncomfortable teaching environment in the cooperative schools such as the relatively large number of students (35) in each class.

ŸLack of serious cooperation of some teachers at the cooperative schools in connection with teaching competence such as lesson planning, execution, and evaluation.

ŸFeeling that teaching is a very demanding job that requires a lot of work and responsibility.

ŸBelieving that teaching is not a rewarding job due to its slow promotion and salary growth.

ŸLooking at teaching as a non-prestigious job as viewed by the society.

The obtained results are in agreement with the study results of Kutoso & Ikis (2011) who noted that in spite of the positive attitudes of students toward teaching, yet they are deeply concerned about their future as teachers. Also, the results are in agreement with those of Tizki & Terzi (2011), Al-Zo’abi (2010), Bqaiai & Al-Kassab (2010), Rimm-Kaufman& Sawyer (2004) and Abu Salim (2010). The results of these studies showed that student teachers showed positive attitudes with statistical indication toward teaching profession. However, the researcher’s results disagree with the study of Osunde & Izevbigie (2006), and Mohammed & Ahmed (2002). These results revealed clear weakness in the attitudes of Teachers’ College graduates toward teaching profession prior to and post Practical training.

3.2. Results Regarding the Second Question

Are there any statistical indicative differences at the indication level (α =0.05) in the attitudes of the student teachers toward training profession attributed to the specialty?

To answer this question, the Arithmetic Means and Standard Deviations were calculated for the responses of student teachers on the attitudes measure toward the teaching profession. Also, to know if there is any difference in the average attitudes attributed to the specialty, the T-test was applied on two independent samples as shown in the next table.

The above table shows the existence of a statistical indicative difference between the attitudes average of the student teachers specializing in Class Teacher and those with a specialty of Child Education. This is clear from the calculated “T” value of 2.261 at the indication level of (0.031).

Also, Table 3 indicates that the student teachers with a specialty of Class Teacher have more positive attitudes toward teaching profession than those specializing in Child Education. This is due to belief that their career will guarantee a more promising future for them. Also, this result could be due to the poor perception of the society regarding teaching career of pre-schooling stage which weakens the attitudes of the Child Education teachers towards their career.

3.3. Results Regarding the Third Question

What is the teaching Competences level of the student teachers as viewed by the field training advisors?

To answer this question, the researcher calculated the Arithmetic Average and the Standard Deviation for the evaluation of the sample individuals of the female student teachers as viewed by the advisors of field training. The evaluation covered the items of teaching Competences s included in the observation card. The measure items were arranged in a descending order according to the arithmetic averages of the teaching Competences registered in the observation card as in Table 4.

The Table 4 shows the arithmetic averages of the teaching Competences for the female student teachers as viewed by the field training advisors are in the range of (3.4571-4.2000). Also, the standard deviations of these Competences are in the range of (0.86772-1.12047). In addition, the above table shows that the level of teaching Competences of the female student teachers was high with an arithmetic average of (3.7890) and standard deviation of (0.75354).

It seems that the competency level of the lesson material taught by the student teacher was high with an arithmetic average of (4.2000) and standard deviation of (0. 86772), and this level occupied the first rank. This result is attributed to the theoretical knowledge acquired by the student teacher during her study. This indicates the effectiveness of the educational courses included in the study plan of both Class Teacher and Child Education in general.

The Competences of raising questions to stimulate thinking skill of students occupied the last rank with an average level. The arithmetic average of this skill was (3.5143) and its standard deviation was (1.01087). Also, the Competences level of using different evaluation methods and tools was average, with an arithmetic average of (3.4571) and standard deviation of (0.816840. Furthermore, the Competences level of using educational technology was average, with an arithmetic average of (3.5143) and standard deviation of (1.01087).

The above results indicate the existence of defects in the development of thinking ability that is considered one of the most important aims of teaching students of the primary stage. Also, the educational technology as well as the evaluation skills are of the same importance as the thinking skill. Also, there is a defect in teaching courses pertaining to thinking skills, computer, and evaluation. Therefore, more attention and emphasis should be given to the development of these courses in order to achieve the required objectives.

The above results agree with those of Al-Qarar’a (2014) which addressed the need of thinking and evaluation requirements for more attention and emphasis. While the results of Bhargava & Path (2011) and Shatnawi (2007) gave more emphasis to the Competences knowledge of teaching material.

3.4. Results Regarding the Fourth Question

Are there any statistical indicative differences that exist at the indication level (α = 0.05) between the Competences level of the female student teachers attributed to their specialty? To answer this question, the arithmetical averages and standard deviations were calculated to estimate the supervisors on the educational competency scale. To find out if there is a difference in the average level of educational Competences due to the specialty, the T - test was applied on two independent samples as shown in the next table.

It is clear from the Table 5 that there is no statistical indicative difference between the teaching Competences of female student teachers as viewed by the advisors of field training based on specialty. As shown in the table, the arithmetic average of teaching Competences was (3.8361) and standard deviation of (0.86635) for female students specializing in Class Teacher. Whereas the arithmetic average of teaching Competences was (3.6987) and standard deviation of (0.49031) for female students with specialty of (Child Education).

Also, the table shows a T-value of (0.506) at the indication level of (α = 0.05). This is due to the special attention of the faculty in the educational Sciences Div. at the University of Petra to the specialties of Class Teacher and Child Education. Also, it is attributed to the required teaching Competences that should be demonstrated by the student teachers.

3.5. Results Regarding the Fifth Question

• Is there any relation between attitudes of the female student teachers toward teaching profession and their competences during the Practical training?

In order to answer this question, the Pearson Correlation Test was used as shown in the following table:

This result indicates non-existence of a relation between attitudes of students toward teaching profession and their teaching competences. This means that student teachers of higher attitudes are not necessarily more qualified than those of lower attitudes and vice versa.

4. Recommendations

In the light of the results obtained by the researcher, he recommended:

Ÿ Intensify the visitation of the specialized supervisor to the kinder gardens to follow up on the performance of the student teachers and solve their problems.

Ÿ Conduct a study to establish criteria for selecting the cooperative schools due to their impact on the students’ attitudes and their teaching competences.

Ÿ Conduct training sessions for teachers of the cooperative schools to promote their competences.

Ÿ Apply a small-scale teaching method in preparing student teachers prior to their Practical training.

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Published with license by Science and Education Publishing, Copyright © 2019 Mahmoud Jamal Al-Salkhi

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Normal Style
Mahmoud Jamal Al-Salkhi. Attitudes of Student Teachers at the University of Petra toward Teaching Profession and Its Relation to Their Teaching Competences Observed during Practical Training§. American Journal of Educational Research. Vol. 7, No. 3, 2019, pp 224-231. http://pubs.sciepub.com/education/7/3/6
MLA Style
Al-Salkhi, Mahmoud Jamal. "Attitudes of Student Teachers at the University of Petra toward Teaching Profession and Its Relation to Their Teaching Competences Observed during Practical Training§." American Journal of Educational Research 7.3 (2019): 224-231.
APA Style
Al-Salkhi, M. J. (2019). Attitudes of Student Teachers at the University of Petra toward Teaching Profession and Its Relation to Their Teaching Competences Observed during Practical Training§. American Journal of Educational Research, 7(3), 224-231.
Chicago Style
Al-Salkhi, Mahmoud Jamal. "Attitudes of Student Teachers at the University of Petra toward Teaching Profession and Its Relation to Their Teaching Competences Observed during Practical Training§." American Journal of Educational Research 7, no. 3 (2019): 224-231.
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  • Table 1. Arithmetic Means, Standard Deviations, and Ranks of the female teacher students’ attitudes prior to and post of the Practical training
  • Table 2. Results of T-tests for rating the student teachers on the attitudes measure toward teaching profession prior to and post of Practical training
  • Table 4. the Arithmetic Average and the Standard Deviation for the evaluation of the sample individuals of the female student teachers as viewed by the advisors of field training
  • Table 5. The results of T-Test of the participants on the educational competency scale based on specialty
  • Table 6. Pearson Correlation Coefficient and statistical indicative relation between the attitudes of students toward teaching profession and their teaching competences
[1]  Sa’fan, M & Mahmoud, S. (2002). Teacher Preparation and Status and Roles in Public Education - Special Education-Psychological Counseling , Dar Alkitab al-Hadith.
In article      
 
[2]  Zaggot, Mohammed. (1998). Trends Faculty Members of the Islamic University in Gaza towards the Students evaluate them, The Journal of Psychological and Educational Measurement and Evaluation - No. 12.
In article      
 
[3]  Abdallah, Abdul Rahman. (2004). The Practical Education and its Place in Teacher Education, Dar Wael for publication, Amman
In article      
 
[4]  Alsalkhi, M. (2009). The Problems of Practical Education as Viewed by the Female Student Teachers at Petra Private University, MU'TAH Lil-Buhuth wad-Dirasat,Humanities and Social Sciences, 25(6), 199-234.
In article      
 
[5]  University of Ottawa. (2012). Practicum Handbook. Retrieved from: 7. http://www.Education.uottawa.ca/assets/te- practicum- handbook.
In article      
 
[6]  Tizke, Erdogan and Tairzi, Ali Riza. 2010. An Examination on the Attitudes Toward Teaching Profession on the Students of Secondary School Branch Teacher Training Programs, e-journal of New World Sciences Academy, 5 (2), 367-388.
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