Date of Award

Spring 1993

Project Type


Program or Major


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

First Advisor

Michael D Andrew


This study addresses the need for more research to help resolve the issues of the nationwide debate between advocates of state sponsored alternative certification programs, and advocates of collegiate sponsored, teacher education programs. The State of New Hampshire has both alternative certification and teacher education programs that are representative of those in other states.

A random sample of four hundred ninety-two teachers was selected. Two hundred ninety-five responded to the teachers' questionnaire, a 60% rate. Two hundred thirty of the respondents gave permission for their principals to rate their performance on a second questionnaire. One hundred sixty-one principals responded, a 70% response rate.

Data analysis results indicated that teachers from collegiate sponsored, teacher education programs were rated significantly higher by their principals on instruction and planning. The fact that Alternative 4 candidates had significantly more years of teaching experience at the time the judgments were made makes these two results remarkable.

Teachers from collegiate sponsored, teacher education programs rated their programs significantly higher with regard to coursework, practicum supervision, and overall preparation. They rated their preparation significantly higher than Alternative 4 teachers on ten of the fourteen competencies used by the New Hampshire Department of Education to certify all Alternative candidates. All of the significant differences relating to these competencies favored teacher education programs. Six of these competencies are the same as those rated highly by the principals when they rated the teacher education candidates more favorably on both the Instructional Skills and the Planning and Preparation subscales. This means that there is considerable agreement between teachers and principals with regard to preparation on these New Hampshire Department of Education competencies. The principals who rated teachers from teacher education programs were in agreement with them that they were prepared in these six competencies. The principals' ratings were also consistent with those of the Alternative 4 candidates that they were prepared to a significantly less degree. Teachers from teacher education programs also had more child-oriented reasons for entering teaching.