Identifying reasons for science students to not pursue a teaching career; why students don’t want to become teachers.
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This study investigates the perception of science bachelor students towards science teaching as a career. Using a questionnaire with open and closed questions on 137 first- and second-year students from different science bachelors on a large Dutch university, we found that general perceptions on being a science teacher did not significantly differ between students that had previously considered becoming a science teacher and students that had not. It was also found that low salary, high workload and problems related to working with adolescents are perceived as the biggest negative aspects of a career as a science teacher. Strikingly, working with adolescents is also the perceived positive aspect most often mentioned by students that have considered becoming a science teacher. Based on this data, recommendations are given to tackle some of the clichés and preconceptions students have about teaching science. Limitations of this study are also discussed, as well as recommendations for further research.