Australian first-year teachers’ need for support in their transition to work during the Covid-19 Pandemic


  • Zixi Liang Monash University
  • Hongzhi Zhang Monash University


Australia, teacher education, first-year teachers, transition to work, need for support, Covid-19 pandemic


Teacher education has been disrupted considerably by the Covid-19 pandemic. In the Australian context, the placement days required to meet the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL) standards were reduced among the 2020 final year graduate teachers. Meanwhile, the complexities of schools were increasingly demanding after the Covid-19 disruptions, posing significant challenges to first-year teachers. This study investigated the ways that the Covid-19 pandemic has shaped three first-year teachers' need for support in their transition into Australian schools. Data for the study were generated through semi-structured interviews and analysed with thematic analysis. The findings revealed a tension between the unpredictability of the classroom realities and the insufficient practical skills of first-year teachers. Besides, first-year teachers need support in handling workload, managing students’ behavioural issues and differentiating instructional strategies for students with special needs. These findings accentuate the urgent need to embed a comprehensive school support structure to facilitate first-year teachers in their transition to the teaching workforce.