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KEEPING TRACK OF THE PREFERENCES IN WOMEN CONCENTRATED PROFESSIONS/JOBS: SCHOOL TEACHING
(A Research in Turkey)

Abstract :


In “Humanizing Globalization” the philosophy of young generation and their feeling of security in work life are very important because those two factors affect each other vice versa. For the female population, female concentrated professions/jobs are also important because in those areas they feel safe and secure. Therefore the satisfaction of the candidates of such professions, when they are first employed is a motivative factor for their future career. For this reason, the preference of profession of young female generation and the reasons of choice become an important issue.
Secondly, school teachers are one of the critical professional careers in a society which is mostly female concentrated. So “Human Security” topic, both for themselves and for the young population they teach is crucial.
This paper presents the findings of part of a research on “Need Assessment” of female concentrated professions. It focuses on reasons of choice as a career, of school teaching. It studies the priority of choice factors.
Those preferential factors can be used by:
·-- Government officials
·-- Man power planners
·-- School administrators and
· --Entrepreneurs investing in education
· --School guidance authorities and
· --The future candidates of school teaching
· --Also by responsibles who try to higher the quality of teaching

Objective:


The main objective of this research is to find out the preferences of candidates of a profession in making their choices. Secondly within the interest area of this research is to see:
·-- How gender in a profession especially female population change in percentage in time.
·-- What it means to be concentrated in a profession genderwise.
·-- To develop a model of tracing the changes in a profession in relation to sex.
· --To see the examples of above items from Turkey.


Methodology :


Both primary and secondary sources will be used for the research. How the female population, interested in teaching profession in primary and secondary schools change in time will be reflected through statistical data. This will reflect the change in the trend of demand towards teaching. For this, data about students choosing teaching schools, graduates and those employed will be used.
Secondly, a field research based on primary resources will try to find out the preferences of teacher candidates and the reasons of preferences.


Use of :


The findings of this research will be beneficial to Human Resource planners, human power planners, those who are working for the motivation of teachers and to those who are trying to find out and develop the attractiveness criteria for a profession.

AN ANALYTICAL MODEL FOR THE FOLLOW UP OF GENDER STRUCTURE IN PROFESSIONS:


If it is for somebody’s interest to keep track of male and female population for various reasons, one can develop various models of analysis. One model might be as we did here. The first step might be deciding whether to plan and then analyze or to let – everything – go and then analyze. The objective of the first one might be to “direct or guide” the situations, people etc. towards a desired result. The second one, “let- it – go” case and then analyze the situation will show the effect of the natural tendencies. Whichever model is used, the situation and situational analysis has to be made, the preferences, the needs of all sides, have to be analyzed. (Figure1)
In this paper the profession chosen is “teaching” and only the preferences of those who become candidates by choosing teacher training schools are searched in Turkey. The society accepts teaching as a female profession. At first step, the statistical analysis of traced back data will show if the society’s supposition is true or not. The next step will define the concept of the study and the third step will be the results of a research on the preferences of the students in the Teaching Faculty of Marmara University who will be called the candidates of teaching.
Concentration is a comparative situation. When one says female population is concentrating in a profession, it might mean:
1. Increase ratio in total population
2. 50 % or more population
3. Continuous increase in either numbers or ratio etc
Sometimes after statistical analysis it can be seen that some professions which are believed as female concentrated or simply female work/job are not really so or vice versa.
The questions here are: in the time period how many of the candidates, graduates and of the employed been female? What were the nations’ rate of change and in what direction. Concentration how to be defined? Then of course comes preferences

Teachers
Students
Graduated
Years
Total
Men
Women
Men
Women
Men
Women
1923-24
100
88,11
11,89
79,87
18,41
1928-29
100
71,57
28,43
67,94
32,05
68,24
27,49
1933-34
100
69,18
30,82
65,71
34,29
61,50
29,56
1938-39
100
67,35
32,65
67,71
32,29
61,89
29,11
1943-44
100
68,94
31,06
68,49
31,51
65,86
26,75
1948-49
100
71,72
28,28
64,21
35,79
68,11
28,98
1953-54
100
70,41
29,59
63,22
36,78
66,29
29,48
1958-59
100
72,92
27,08
63,68
36,32
61,95
32,30
1963-64
100
74,26
25,74
62,39
37,61
59,96
32,99
1968-69
100
68,46
31,54
51,06
48,94
57,07
35,71
1973-74
100
63,31
36,69
58,37
41,63
53,58
38,95
1978-79
100
59,42
40,58
56,92
43,08
50,69
41,51
1983-84
100
59,89
40,11
55,38
44,62
50,88
43,82
1988-89
100
59,58
40,42
55,45
44,55
50,53
44,15
1993-94
100
57,96
42,04
55,03
44,97
47,76
43,42
1999-00
100
56,12
43,88
54,13
45,87
59,35
40,65
2000-01
100
56,17
43,83
53,77
46,23
56,19
43,81
2001-02
100
55,87
44,13
53,42
46,58

Source: CAPITAL (November 2003-11) “Cumhuriyet Istatistikleri Eki”
T.C. Basbakanlik Devlet Istatistikleri Enstitüsü

As seen in the trend female teachers are increasing as a percentage. However they haven’t reached even to 50% yet. So this percentage might either be considered as concentration or not.(Table 1)

CHOOSING A PROFESSION :


When a profession is preferred and a school (university) is chosen to start a career, this is preference against other professions. According to Marketing Science all disciplinary definitions of ‘preference’ are useful so, in marketing it becomes an interdisciplinary perception. This window is of a very wide angle and the factors effecting preferences become the multiple variables necessary to be considered. One of the student’s summary table of definitions of ‘preferences’ concentrates on the disciplines and perspectives involved in the definitions.

Figure 1: A Model For Tracing Female Population In Professions Strategically

Figure:2 Summary table of : The meaning of the word ‘preference’

Source: Adapted from Samuel D. Deep, William D Brincloe, Introduction to Business : A system Approach, (1974) Prentice Hall Inc.

As seen in the diagram above psychologists emphasize attitudes, personal needs, psychological processes, sociologists concentrate on social relationships and anthropologists deal with environmental and cultural differences as determining factors of preferences.
If the candidate of the profession is assumed to be consumer of the profession, then the consumer preference of a profession is formulated by two parameters such as; consumer variables (of candidate) and product variables (of profession itself)
In this study the following concepts are important :Expectations and perceptions, preferences, career, profession, security, buying processes/bought idea, segmentation, concentration. The relationship between all these concepts formulate the preference of a profession or job.
Expectations and Perceptions; these are two separate but interrelated and integrated concepts. Why it is said so, can be explained by use of another concept: Observation
Expectations arise under certain conditions. The given conditions might be as such: The classroom environment, the physical social and economic conditions of a workplace, the possibility and impossibility of being heated of the workplace, the preference of high ceiling etc. Although conditions are given, expectations and specifically perceptions change from person to person. For instance a house might be ‘luxurious’ for one person but ‘average’ for another person. A person might consider traveling to Hawaii as richness, the other has to travel around the world by a “love boat” (Queen Elizabeth) to consider herself rich. On the other side if you put those two people to the same plane or to the Queen Elizabeth boat what they observe is different. When people are choosing their professions, what they see in relation to those professions are different. One observes the money s/he might gain the other observes the prestige of the profession. Most often one realizes kids who want to be soldiers, in the army for their uniforms or street sweepers for the same reason. What they observe in this costume, what they perceive is the brightness of apolettes and what they expect is to be in it.


People in their perceptions of the situation usually present what they perceive based on their:
1. past experience which means learnings due to past and present internal and external environment.
2. education
3. family life, street they live in, rural or urban area they are located in
4. economic conditions of their own
5. what they see with their equals
6. what they see in relation to higher status
7. what they see in relation to a lower status


The above 7 items and others show how people see and interpret their position among others. However these definitions change from person to person. Opinions, wants, conditionings, feedbacks received, results experienced and various other factors affect both perceptions and expectations. Therefore it’s natural for preferences to be affected by expectations and perceptions of a person. However there is no guarantee that expectations and perceptions are always reliable. When profession is realized or becomes functional than the satisfaction may lead to a feeling of security or disappointment.
In summary the following table shows the basic concepts and related major and specific disciplines for this study.

Table 2 : Summary Table of Key Concepts and Related Disciplines in the Study

CONCEPT RELATED DISCIPLINE
  MAJOR SPECIFICALLY
1- Profession Selection Human Resources Environmental Issues

Career development Individual development Personal development

2- Perception

Psychology

Marketing

Advertisement

Personality

Mental Health

3- Observation

Marketing

Marketing Research

Consumer Behavior

Research methods

Anthropological approaches

4- Expectations Strategic Planning Behavior Consumer Behavior
5- Preference Marketing Logic Consumer Behavior
6- Buying Marketing

Purchasing

Sales Management

Consumer Behavior

7- Segmentation Marketing

Positioning

Planning

Approaches

8- Planning Management MarketingStrategic Management

Measurement

Development

9- Biosocial Biology

Genetics

Medical Health

Development

10- Interpretations

Communication Sciences Research

Mass Communication

Advertisement

Public Relations

11- Career Human Resources Management Personality Psychology
12- Security (individual, work, job) Human Resources

Social Security

Work Law

13- Others: Satisfaction/Motivation etc. Psychology Behavior Organizational BehaviorConsumer Behavior

CHOOSING A PROFESSION IS A PREFERENCE


‘Preference’ is putting forward or giving priority to setting to prior position in comparison to other things. It implies ranking and an order of choice. It also implies worthiness in the perception of the preferer. People prefer their occupation/profession or their jobs. The jobs or work they do, besides other factors (like experiences with the external and internal environment or information and knowledge they develop etc. ) develop their career. Dictionary defines the concept of career as ‘general course of action or progress of a person through life. It says there is moral, intellectual action, like, evaluation, development in this selection process. This conscious or unconscious preference process is framed and expressed outloud when one chooses the school to go for the future earning of one’s life. While coming to that stage, the internal and external environment with its rules and regulations, norms and traditions, work and process on the person to form the preference action.

In the manpower/human power/workforce market, these preferences of individuals cause concentrated areas of occupations/professions based on different variables like age, gender, graduation levels and school titles etc.
However the development of such markets is not simply the end result of the choices of work/job seeking individuals but also of the preferences of demanding part. Sometimes the decision makers, planners also play a great role in the development of concentrated markets through affecting the preferences. Beliefs, subjective values, presuppositions, as well as scientific research to find out rational principles, to increase productivity and profitability etc. contribute to this concentration. Examples are as such:
· Because women are caregiving they are best for the profession of a nurse, teacher
· Because women are delicate they cannot work as engineers, in construction business or be a porter.
· Because they have tender fingers they are better than men in cotton yarn industry
· Because they complain less and they do not require health services or legal applications as much as men do…
In summary: the work force market is developed by three basic forces: preferences of supplier, demander and planner and concentration develops out of the inter and intra affections of the preferences of these sides/parties. Besides environment affects all. For instance when the Ministry of Education places the women in all educational books as a nurse but not as a genetic engineer or as a home sweeper but not as the person who uses a male helper in the house, he is using conditioning for the future. The same is true when the pictures of men show heavy luggage carrier, president or director but not a secretary; it is difficult for a man to be a secretary. When crisis comes to a society even if there is demand in the market in secretarial positions it is difficult for the male population to accept the position because expected male role is different.

CHOOSING A PROFESSION IS A “BOUGHT IDEA”


Preference is a kind of “bought idea”. This idea bought, is a behavioristic response and goes through all the steps of the buying process which is: unawareness, comprehention, conviction, decision, actual buying and satisfaction or dissatisfaction after sales. (Figure 3)
Preference made, causes the person to leave or give up other preferences. However after the realization, personal approval, regret or relief or ‘I would do it again’ feelings occur.
Preference is also based on expectations. Choice among alternatives is affected by related expectations and the possibility of actualizing these expectations. The smaller the gap between expectations and actualization, the higher the satisfaction (success) is. Thus the person is closer to the feeling of either personal approval or ‘I would do it again’ situation. Therefore the reasons of selecting (preference) a profession gains importance for macro human resource power planning in a society which reflect or imply cost benefit gained by the buying process.
The selling and buying process is effected by external and internal environment of the person and also by inter and intra environmental factors. How much of the choices is genetic or the ‘bio’ relations of the end results occurring by the attainment of the profession is questionable. However it is rational or logical to say that the greater the dissatisfaction in fulfilling the expectations by the choice made, the greater the sensational and mental health questions will be.
With this background information this paper chooses a female concentrated area: school teaching, to see the reasons of preferences of female population to be a teacher. In future this research may continue as the need evaluation of candidates of school teaching.

To give a slight idea about the market in Turkey for school teachers one can say: it develops both from private and public sector. (see the trends in Turkey on page2)

Figure 3: Buying Process

Source: Adapted from Kotler and Armstrong, 467.

CHOICE OF PROFESSION DESERVES MARKETING THOUGHT


In the ‘marketing management’ concept one sees four different developmental stages of tendency evolution. One is product orientation, the other is sales orientation. The third evolution is marketing orientation. (Jobber and Lancaster , 12) However this philosophy of marketing sometimes called ‘customer orientation’ first included only the concept of outside customer and considered only the ‘external’ customer. Later, the ‘customer’ concept revised itself and included the internal customers who are workers, managers and shareholders etc. This stage, which is called ‘customer orientation’, is the fourth evolution step.
Professions, defined as products/services, never moved to the further stages of production orientation as mentioned above. We say this because although sometimes the expectations of students are given credit, macro planners of profession creators have never given credit to all customers (internal and external) based on a wholesome research. What the reflections show as a given need of a society are: following the world tendencies, student and parent expectations, business world expectations but not the expectation and satisfaction of profession selectors. Of course this is one of the reasons of the movements of human resources also. International or national migration or job changes occur with the expectation or satisfaction search of profession selectors.
If profession/job is the product/service, teachers are the internal customers or in a different way the inputs which will guarantee the production effectiveness and efficiency (of students or of coming generations) In the marketing of products/services (meaning: product/service development, differentiation, selling and researching at each stage) the decisions take into consideration product attributes, branding, packaging, labeling and product support services, in general.(Kotler; 1994, 281-283) In literature product quality, product features, product design are considered as the product attributes.
If profession is the ‘product’, then one has to be talking about product features and product benefits as the composition that is bought.(Table 3) This is the ‘purchasing package’. The teacher (customer of the profession) is buying the composition or the benefits and features of the teaching profession when s/he chooses the profession. The chooser is buying because s/he is paying for that profession and rather than choosing other alternative professions. S/he is deciding on this purchase.
Concrete examples of product/service features and benefits can be seen in the following table. (Table 3)

Table 3: Product Feature and Customer Benefit Examples

PRODUCT FEATURE CUSTOMER BENEFIT
· Automatic defrost refrigerator · Easiness of work, time saving
· Visual mobile telephone

· You don’t loose time for looking for a telephone booth.

· You see who is calling you, therefore message effectiveness because of face to face communication

· It helps you not to feel homesick.

· Automatic gear car

· Comfort

· Easiness of driving

· Time saving

· Profession of teaching(how much modern or classical)

· Production effectiveness and efficiency

· Developed generations and developing of others by these generations

· Knowledge and skills expected to be gained

· Wage and salary expected

Source: Adapted from Jobber and Lancaster pg. 107

Product support services think and meet the needs of customers. At this point a continuous research to rank the customer needs and expectations is important. Among professions the ones which provide services to satisfy the needs of profession selectors will gain competitive advantage. If we give examples from turkey the extensive management trainee programs of the banking sector to newly graduates, before they choose and employ the needed human resource, in the second half of 1990’ s which really was a training program of masses were the attractiveness criteria of the sector.
Another one was the possibility of having the chance of joining the education and training programs abroad. Some companies from different sectors offered those as promotional factors. Summarizing and adapting the above information to teaching profession: branding, labeling, packaging and product support services will be listed as such:

Branding: Gaining importance of teaching departments (majors) in the society or in the world
Of science in time
Labeling: Majors in teaching, preschool, science, physics, foreign languages etc.
Packaging: Curriculum of teaching schools
School facilities
Side benefits of being a teacher
Product Support Services: Education and training programs pre and during employment.

Field Research:
Table 4: Priority of The Reasons For Preferences

Reasons Order of Priority (repetition time)

1. No other choice

2. Job security

3. Sensational reasons

4. Mission idealism Direct effectors/influencers

5. Work security

6. Sex role of profession

7. A dream of childhood

8. Other

9. Suits the personality

10. The prestige of profession

11. Unknown

67

63

42

37

37

36

30

26

15

13

10

3

Preference of choosing a profession form the product features. As seen in Table (4) the first priority is given to hopelessness (no other choice). A very close reason is the expectation of job security. Then love of children, mission, direct effectors and work security comes. Product features and expected customer benefits reflect themselves in the expectations and preference reasons of a profession.
The field research with 276 teacher candidates in Marmara University, in teacher training Faculty resulted with 218 workable questionnaires. That means %79 of the sample population. The profile of the sample age is not taken as a variable because it is considered to be in the same interval. However, grade was important because a face to face interview show the change of ideas during the education years. So students from different grades are included. What we are actually concerned with are the items and explanations showing the preference reasons. Although an open ended questionnaire. The Table (5) shows the results. The reasons of preference groups are detailed as to y-the statements of candidates.

Table 5: Preference Factors Stated By Teacher Candidates

1) Having no other choice because of:

· Family enforcement· The rules of national university

· Entrance exam

· Mistakes in listing preferences

· By chance

· Economic situation of the nominee

· Classification/position/of the secondary school of graduation

· All by mistake

2) Sensational reasons

· Love for children

3) Mission / Idealism

· Believing that all problems will be solved by education in a society

· Being able to reach the community

· Leading the people to truth

· Guiding / coaching the future

· Contributing to the development of the new generations

· Wishing to communicate with masses

· Wishing to be useful/beneficial to people/society

· Wishing to contribute to the country/nation

· Wishing to teach

4) A dream of childhood

· The profession I love

· Love for education and training

5) Direct effectors/influencers

· Previous teacher(s)

· Admiration of a teacher

· Because either one or both of the parents or most of the relatives are teachers

· Parent’s, relatives’ affect

· Family tradition

· Friendship environment

· Past personal work experience

6) Job security

· The easiness of finding work/job

· Sustainability of the profession

· Reliable and easy to reach working environment

· Employment guarantee

· Continuous wage and salary

· Belief to the State

· More confidence on the State rather than private sector

7) Work security

· Creative

· Not tiresome, not putting excessive stress

· Appropriate working hours

· Have time for other work/job/activity

· Plenty of vacation/holiday

· Reduced dependence to boss

· Not being guided by others.

8) Gender role of the profession

· Properness/fitness for a female

· Working conditions proper for female

· Working in clean and suitable environment

· Proper for me (statement by female)

9) The prestige of the profession

· Respectability

· Image in the society

· Holiness of the profession

10) The skill and ability of teaching

· Personal skill

11) Accepting the profession suitable for his/her personality

· I am an idealist

· I’m fit for the profession physically and psychologically

· I personally like telling stg/explaining

12) Economical Freedom

· (mostly expressed by female)

13) Others

· Wish to move to a big city

· Wish to receive a university diploma

· Have the possibility of getting a chance to post graduate study

· Wish to be university student at once

· Wish to be loved by the children

· It is easier to deal with children rather than dealing with grown ups

.· The fact that everybody loves teachers

· This is not a profession but a lifestyle

14) Unknown

As seen above the reasons of preference reflect natural needs and high expectations. However there might be contradictory arguments to the stated reasons. The following Table (6) will give examples to those.

Table 6: Table Of Contradictions In The Field Research Findings

Stated Contradictory Arguments
1 – Fit for women Statistics imply a greater percentage as men
2 – Work guarantee Not in fact after graduation. They have to go through a series of procedures like a central exam or assignment by State.
3 – Work security

Yes but after being assigned to State schools. Private sector puts extreme burden on teachers like related to

· Working hours

· Variability in job definition

· Formal and informal, written and verbal or unstated expectations, etc.

4 – A comfortable profession because:

-Working hours are limited

-Administrative responsibility is limited

-Vacation period is long

But:

-You take work home like reading papers or getting prepared for lessons

-Other responsibilities to the child parent, society, state are high

-In fact that is for students because teachers go through seminar or take office work in vacation periods.

5 – Satisfactory working place Not satisfactory depends on the organization
6 – Prestigious A relative concept compared to other professions because if the individual’s prior value is income (money earned) then other professions govern.


Professional preferences of the young generation are closely related with the ‘Human Security’ concept and via this concept it is also closely related with the national security. First of all professional preferences are made with the intention of satisfaction (Maslow’s motivation factors). Starting from the primary need satisfaction up to self-realization and actualization the gains of a profession has to create this personal and individual security. If the majority of the population feels safe and secure about their preferences (of course built by macro human power planning policies also) and live this security, then it is easier to step to understanding global security.
Profession means, possibility of work
possibility of good and guaranteed earning to live
possibility of realization
expectation of satisfied and happy life etc.
The above factors mean feeling of security. Therefore if a profession is the product/service or idea offered, then the demand has expectations when preferring which is implied in the preference factors (reasons of preferences). If this profession is teaching, the reasons of choosing and their fulfillment become more important because this market will educate and train the coming generations. They will take prior role in EFA pathways. One has to guess what will happen for instance if the future teachers are pessimistic, under stress or in depression and with no aspirations. Besides if this profession is mostly preferred by female population and if the environment sees it fit for a female the slightest dissatisfaction causes drastic synergistic negative effects projected to the whole society.
Form the point of view of the ‘empowering women’ orientations, women concentrated professions have to be closely traced and those professions have to be firstly under critical analysis. Consumer preferences should be analyzed in relation to consumer and product variables. Secondly perceptions of security of consumers based both on individual physical/biological and individual mental health and national security, based on contemporarily qualified and satisfied population have to be integrated and logical.

Resources:
· Jobber, David and Lancester Geoff, (2003).
· Selling and Sales Management
England : Prentice Hall, 51.
· Kotler Philip, Armstrong Gary, (1994). Principles of Marketing.
USA : Prentice Hall, 467
· Runyon, Kenneth E., (1982) the Practice of Marketing, Columbus, Ohio: Charles E.
Merill Publishing Comp, 278-301
· Moorhead, Gregory, Griffin, Ricky, (1989)
Organizational Behavior. USA : Houghton Mifflin Comp., 636-663
· Mowen, John C., (1993) Consumer Behavior.
Newyork : Macmillan Publishing Comp.
· Keegan, Warren J. (1989). Global Marketing Management
Newjersey : Prentice Hall
· CAPITAL (November 2003-11) “Cumhuriyet Istatistikleri Eki”
T.C. Basbakanlik Devlet Istatistikleri Enstitüsü
· Samuel D. Deep, William D Brincloe, Introduction to Business : A system Approach, (1974) Prentice Hall Inc.
· Prof. Kenneth W. Wachter, Bio-Social Opportunities for Surveys, University of California, Berkeley (http://www.demog.berkeley.edu/~wachter/WorkingPapers/biocat.html)


(c)copyright Prof.Dr.Mehtap Sümersan KÖKTÜRK 2004 Istanbul

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