Date of Award

Spring 2008

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educ Foundations & Leadership


Educational Leadership

Committee Director

William A. Owings

Committee Member

Jack E. Robinson

Committee Member

Steve W. Tonelson


Public school divisions face daunting challenges today. One such challenge is the ability to recruit and retain highly qualified and effective teachers. Endemic teacher shortages coupled with escalating national education standards make it imperative that school divisions hire and retain teachers who can positively and immediately impact student achievement. Schools without effective teachers face possible sanctions, which could include re-staffing of the school, parental choice that would allow the student population to attend more successful schools and loss of funds.

At the same time, colleges and universities have begun alternative certification programs in an effort to compensate for teacher shortages Programs such as Career Switchers and Troops to Teachers represent efforts address teaching shortages by targeting non-traditional teacher candidates. The use of alternative programs and nontraditional candidates has sparked concern and debate among education analysts, especially those who favor traditional teacher preparation programs.

This study surveyed 165 secondary-level social studies teachers in two urban divisions in Virginia to determine the association between student scores on statewide examinations and teacher route to certification... Using a one-way ANCOVA, students' raw scale Standards of Learning social studies examination scores and teacher route to certification were analyzed. Results indicated no difference between the three groups (Career Switchers, Troops to Teachers and Traditional Licensure Programs). Limitations and recommendations for future research are discussed.