The recent increase in the number of universities in Turkey has speeded
up the transition of teachers who receive graduate education to the academia.
However, this rapid transition brought a variety of problems. The present study
focused on the experiences regarding the transition from teaching to the
academia from a holistic perspective. The qualitative research method and the
phenomenological design were employed in the study. The participants were seven
academics who passed to the academia from a teaching career. Convenient
sampling and snowball sampling were used in the selection of the participants.
The research data were gathered through an interview form. An audio-recorder was used not to lose data
during the interviews. In the analysis of the data, the descriptive analysis
technique was employed. As for the reliability and validity of the study, data
triangulation, external revision, direct quotations and referee evaluation were
put into practice. Three themes were revealed as a result of the data analysis.
These themes were the teaching profession and process, graduate education
process and the process of becoming an academic. The findings of the study are
as follows: The teaching profession was practised willingly and with a
human-oriented approach. Teaching was seen as a way for serving the society
through students. Graduate education was regarded as a difficult process, but
expectations overcame the difficulties. Since the participants had to work as a
teacher and learn as an undergraduate student at the same time could be
challenging both financially and psychologically. Academicianship was perceived
as a place for critical and scientific thinking. The transition to the academia
was followed by the efforts to adapt to the new institutional and physical
environment. Based on the study, it can be suggested that the teaching
profession should be made more development-oriented through graduate education,
and legal regulations should be made to ease the bureaucratic difficulties
teachers experience while receiving graduate education.
Academia, Phenomenological design, Academicianship, teaching