Professional Development Centre, BRAC University
Satisfaction in teaching is an important policy issue since it is associated with teacher effectiveness which ultimately affects student achievement. There are many factors that act as key determinants of career satisfaction among academic professionals in primary institutions in Bangladesh. Determining those factors and their influence on teacher satisfaction is the focus of this chapter. The study was conducted using ethnographic research where job satisfaction was revealed through investigating the organization of teacher’s professional and personal lives. Considering the availability of rich, authentic data, one teacher was selected in a purposive way from a rural primary school and shadowed for three consecutive days. Each day, data was gathered through direct observation of the activities of the teacher, through collection of artifacts like timetables, policy documents, lesson plans, students' work and other key documents. Different theories of satisfaction and motivation were chosen to analyze variables as well as preparing the conceptual framework for this study. The key factors identified which lead to job satisfaction and dissatisfaction were categorized under major themes: individual factors, organizational factors, professional factors, teaching learning factors, scope/opportunity and interpersonal relations. The findings of this empirical study showed that the causes of dissatisfaction were poor salary structure and social status, poor prospect of promotion, corruption in the process of recruitment, training and transfer, little scope for innovation and lack of autonomy due to a centralized administration system, heavy workloads, teaching of several subjects outside of his area of interest, unfavorable working conditions and lack of material reward, etc. On the other hand, teaching a disadvantaged group of students, being honored by parents and key stakeholders in the community, their harmonious interpersonal relation with him, etc. led to satisfaction. Therefore, the findings of this study will contribute to improving the level of primary school teachers’ job satisfaction in Bangladesh.
Job Satisfaction, Primary Education, Teacher, Professional Factors, Personal Factors, Ethnography.