This study inquires into the practicum experiences of 10 second career pre-service teachers who were enrolled in two accelerated graduate teacher education programs at a well established university in Ontario Canada. The objective was to understand the actuality of the teaching experience for teacher candidates with previous careers. The data collection drew on a semi-structured interview format and spanned nearly a six month period. The results suggest that second careerists draw heavily on their experiences from first careers and these experiences continue to shape their interpretations, attitudes and beliefs about teaching during and after the practicum. The conclusions recommend that the traditional performance based model of the practicum be replaced with a more self-directed constructivist practicum model.


Peer-reviewed, practicum, second career, mature age teachers, career changers

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