The differential aptitude tests as predictors in Education I at the University of Manitoba

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Friesen, David Henry
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It has for some time been recognized that faculties od eduction, teacher colleges, normal schools, in fact, most teacher training institutions have ceased to be particular in the type of students they accept. In the last decade the demand for teachers has been of such magnitude that almost any teacher who has shown some ability in classroom management has been accepted into the profession. The practice of selecting special applicants, if it ever existed, seems to have been negletcted in the field of education. However, in spite of this insatiable demand for teachers there appear at teacher training centres students who, after all the lowering of standards, still fail to make the grade. The reasons for this, as far as can be ascertained, have not been clarified. The only fact that stands out is that students who apparently have the ability and the academic achievement are unable to qualify for the teaching profession and are rejected; but this only after a year of training in the field of education. This suggests rather serious shortcomings in the selection of candidates for teacher training centres. Firstly, this represents a waste of human resources. The student spends a full year of training in a field of endeavour in which he will not be actively employed. How much better would it be if he could be directed to the field where he would be capable of performing positively and with success. Secondly, the training of students who are not going to be active in the educational field places an unnecessary burden on the teacher training institutions. Thus it is evident that a real problem exists in the training of candidates for the teaching profession who for some reason or other fail to become active teachers. This problem need a solution. Immediately questions arise. What is this something which some students lack which makes them fail on a teacher training course? Is its nature academic, social, personal or psychological? Can this shortcoming be isolated for further study so that incoming students could be screened in regard to it? Are there any tests available which would be able to predict which student would fail a teacher training course? Certainly if one considers that the cost to be a student for one year of university training is in the neighborhood of twelve hundred dollars, one must admit that the choice of the proper faculty is a real problem for him. Efficient selection of students and helpful direction and guidance is something that society owes its youth...