460 newly qualified teachers join the teaching force on Tuesday

Some 460 newly qualified teachers graduated from the National Institute of Education on Tuesday.

Speaking to the graduates at a ceremony held at the Nanyang Technological University, Education Minister Heng Swee Keat reminded them to "hold fast" to their motivations for becoming a teacher.

Mr Heng said that he was heartened by NIE's research that showed that teachers here join the profession "for the right reasons". For instance, a study in 2011 found that close to 96 per cent of a sample of pre-service teachers indicated that they wanted to be teachers for "altruistic" or "intrinsic" reasons. "Altruistic" motivations refer to having the desire to help others, while "intrinsic" means to have a strong interest in the teaching profession.

A total of 2,037 teachers will receive their certificates this week.