A Route Less Traveled: Principals’ Perceptions of Alternative Licensed CTE Teachers

Scott R Bartholomew, Emma P. Bullock, Louis S. Nadelson


The shortage of teachers prepared to teach career and technical education (CTE) courses, or willing to work in certain locations (e.g. inner city, rural), has motivated the desire to explore solutions such as alternative routes to teacher licensure (ARL). Most ARL programs bypass colleges of education and provide a different approach to preparing individuals to teach, leaving many to wonder about the quality and knowledge of these teachers. Specific areas, such as CTE, have seen a large influx of ARL teachers in recent years. We sought to determine school principals’ perceptions of ARL CTE teachers. We found principal support for ARL teachers as well as perceptions of a lack of preparation and effectiveness when compared to traditionally-prepared teachers. We also found differences in perceptions of ARL teachers by the principals’ school level and school SES level.

Full Text:



ACTE. (2016). CTE basics. Retrieved on May 9, 2016 from https://www.acteonline.org/cte/

Cotton-Flanagan, K. (2011). A study on becoming an alternatively certified career and technical educator. Dissertations. Paper 361. Retrieved on May 9, 2016 from http://scholarworks.wmich.edu/dissertations/361

Darling-Hammond, L. (2000). How teacher education matters. Journal of Teacher Education, 51(3), 166-173, https://doi.org/10.1177/0022487100051003002

Duncan, D. W, & Ricketts, J. (2008). Total program efficacy: A comparison of traditionally and alternatively certified agriculture teachers. Journal of Agriculture Education, 49(4), 38-46, https://doi.org/10.5032/jae.2008.04038

Duncan, D. W., Cannon, J., & Kitchel, A. (2013). Teaching efficacy: A comparison of traditionally and alternatively certified CTE teachers in Idaho. Career and Technical Education Research, 38(1), 57-67. https://doi.org/10.5328/cter38.1.57

Fletcher, E. C., & Zirkle, C. (2011). Career and technical education's role in alternative teacher licensure. In V. Wang (Ed.), Definitive Readings in the History, Philosophy, Theories and Practice of Career and Technical Education (pp. 84-102). Hershey, PA: Information Science Reference. https://doi.org/10.4018/978-1-61520-747-3.ch006

Fletcher, E. C., Jr., Gordon, H. R. D., Asunda, P., & Zirkle, C., (2015). A 2015 status study of career and technical education programs in the United States. Career and Technical Education Research, 40(3), 191-211, https://doi.org/10.5328/cter40.3.191

Henry, G. T., Purtell, K. M., Bastian, K. C., Fortner, C. K., Thompson, C. L., Campbell, S. L., & Patterson, K. M. (2014). The effects of teacher entry portals on student achievement. Journal of Teacher Education, 65(1), 7-23. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022487113503871

Hoepfl, M. (2001). Alternative routes to certification of technology education teachers. The Journal of Technology Studies, 27(2), 35-44, https://doi.org/10.21061/jots.v27i2.a.2

Hopkins, G. (2015). What qualities do principals look for in a new teacher? EducationWorld. Retrieved on May 9, 2016 from http://www.educationworld.com/a_admin/admin/ admin071.shtml

Lindqvist, P. & Nordanger, U.K. (2016). Already elsewhere – A study of (skilled) teachers' choice to leave teaching. Teaching and Teacher Education, 54, 88-97, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tate.2015.11.010

Nagy, C.J., & Wang, N. (2007). The alternate route teachers' transition to the classroom: preparation, support, and retention. National Association of Secondary School Principals Bulletin, 91(1), 98–113, https://doi.org/10.1177/0192636506299153

National Education Association (2016). Research spotlight on alternative routes to teacher certification. Retrieved on May 5, 2016 from http://www.nea.org/tools/16578.htm

National Research Council (2010). Preparing teachers: Building evidence for sound policy. Washington, DC: National Academies Press.

Nusbaum, C. (2002). Principals' perceptions of the effectiveness of alternatively certified and traditionally certified teachers in Hampton Roads Virginia. Thesis. Retrieved on May 9, 2016 from https://theses.lib.vt.edu/theses/available/etd-12092002-183209/unrestricted/ Chp4-5.PDF

Rocca, S.J. & Washburn, S.G. (2013). Comparison of teacher efficacy among traditionally and alternatively certified agriculture teachers, Journal of Agriculture Education, 47(3), 58-69. https://doi.org/10.5032/jae.2006.03058

Ruhland, K.S., Bremer, C.D. (2003). Perceptions of Traditionally and Alternatively Certified Career and Technical Education Teachers. Journal of Vocational Education Research, 28(3), 285-302, https://doi.org/10.5328/JVER28.3.285

Sass, T.R. (2014). Licensure and Worker Quality: A Comparison of Alternative Routes to Teaching. Journal of Law and Economics, 58(1), 1–35. https://doi.org/10.1086/682904

DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/jet.v5i2.12503


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2018 Scott R Bartholomew, Emma P. Bullock, Louis S. Nadelson

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Journal of Education and Training      ISSN 2330-9709

Copyright © Macrothink Institute

To make sure that you can receive messages from us, please add the 'macrothink.org' domain to your e-mail 'safe list'. If you do not receive e-mail in your 'inbox', check your 'bulk mail' or 'junk mail' folders.

If you have any questions, please contact jet@macrothink.org.