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INNOTECH publishes report on Teacher Motivation Study

On 2 October 2020, INNOTECH held the annual Teachers’ Forum in line with the celebration of the National Teachers’ Month (NTM). At this year’s forum, INNOTECH shared the results of its recently concluded research project on the motivation of Filipino Teachers. The research project’s report is now published on the INNOTECH website.

(Related article: DepEd and INNOTECH conducts teacher motivation webinar)

The Teacher Motivation Study was a response to the call of the Philippine Department of Education (DepEd) for a research focusing on what motivates Filipino teachers to enter and stay in the profession. DepEd Secretary Leonor M. Briones emphasized the importance of understanding teachers’ motivation during SEAMEO INNOTECH’s Governing Board Meeting back in 2017. The INNOTECH research team worked closely with DepEd for the said project since 2018.

During the two years of the project, a series of in-depth interviews and online surveys were done throughout the Philippines to gather data. The data gathered contributed to the development of a teacher motivation framework that captures the teachers’ reasons for joining, remaining, and possibly leaving the teaching profession.

Although the teachers involved in the study were diverse in terms of characteristics, experiences, and contexts, the study found out a commonality on their motivation to join the teaching profession—their motivation is strongly influenced by intrinsic drivers. One of the most prominent reasons why teachers chose to teach is because of its rewarding feeling. Being able to help students and contribute to their communities give them a sense of fulfillment. Similarly, the opportunity to be able to shape a learner’s future is one of their reasons for staying in the profession.

But aside from personal advocacies and passion, teachers also identified external factors such as employability or job security as their reason for joining the profession. Education-related courses are often more affordable compared to other courses. And teaching is also seen as a job that will always be there. The perks of being a teacher, like being able to continuously learn and having school holidays, also motivate them to stay in the profession.

The research study also got to explore the reasons why teachers would leave the profession. Most often, teachers cited external factors as possible reasons for leaving teaching, like low salary, workload, and unsupportive systems and environments. The study also found out that intrinsic drivers can sometimes run dry. Teachers mentioned that sometimes, they do not feel the same sense of fulfillment anymore due to burnout. These reasons are something to be taken seriously. The recognition that teachers have different characteristics, needs, and contexts should also be considered in developing measures that could strengthen motivations to become teachers and in encouraging the current crop of qualified teachers to keep on teaching, whether these be “para sa bata, para sa bayan, o para sa pamilya.”

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