Gathering views on probationer teachers' readiness to teach

The broad aim of the project is to explore the views and perceptions of whether probationer teachers are ready to teach.

Response Rate

Probationer teachers

All probationer teachers (2,386) who completed the TIS in 2015-16 were included in the survey. 237 completed the online questionnaire, a response rate of 9.9%.

The number of primary and secondary probationer teachers from session 2015-16 who completed the on-line questionnaire was:

  • primary 139 (59%)
  • secondary 98 (41%).

Graph 1 – the percentage of primary and secondary probationer teachers
Graph 1 – the percentage of primary and secondary probationer teachers

Probationer teachers were asked to select the university they attended for ITE to give an overview of the geographical distribution of probationer teachers, table 2. The relative percentage of probationer teachers broadly corresponds to the overall percentage of student teachers graduating from each ITE provider.

Table 2- University attended for Initial Teacher Education

University attended Response Percentage
University of Aberdeen 13.8%
University of Dundee 8.3%
University of Edinburgh 14.2%
University of Glasgow 20.8%
University of Stirling 2.9%
University of Strathclyde 27.5%
University of the Highlands and Islands 1.7%
University of the West of Scotland 10.8%

The geographical distribution of probationer teachers in local authorities for the TIS placement for the probationer teacher cohort session 2015-16 was also collected. The detailed breakdown by local authority can be found in Appendix 2, data table 24.

Survey participants were requested to supply some brief details about their gender, age and registration category. Table 3, shows those demographics for the probationer teachers from session 2015-16.

Table 3 Probationer teachers by gender and age range

Gender Sector Total number Age profile
21-30 31-40 41-50 51-60
Female Primary 121 77 23 18 3
Secondary 60 49 6 5 0
Male Primary 18 8 8 2 0
Secondary 36 28 6 2 0
Prefer not to say Primary 0 0 0 0 0
Secondary 2 1 1 0 0
  total 237 163 44 27 3

Data relating to disability and protected characteristics was also gathered to help identify or gain insights into any possible issues that may arise for individuals.

A number of respondents (n=6) declared themselves to have a disability.

Of the 10 who declared protected characteristics, these were reported as follows:

  • Disability (1)
  • Prefer not to say (4)
  • Other (5).

Probationer supporters

A total of four semi-structured interviews were conducted with a total of 24 probationer supporters. The semi-structured interviews involved probationer supporters from the following local authorities.

  • Aberdeen City Council
  • Aberdeenshire Council
  • Clackmannanshire/Stirling Council
  • Falkirk Council
  • West Dunbartonshire Council.

Local authority probation managers

In the eight focus groups, 28 local authorities were represented from the 32 local authorities across Scotland, giving a response rate of 87.5%.


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