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The present study investigated how pre-service teachers’ motivation and their sense of teaching efficacy influence their expectation about reality shock during the first year of professional teaching. A total of 533 pre-service teachers at a state university in the US Midwest participated in this study. The results showed that the pre-service teachers’ expectation of reality shock was negatively related to teacher efficacy and intrinsic motivation while it was positively related to introjected and external motivation. The results of a hierarchical regression analysis revealed that pre-service teachers’ sense of efficacy and introjected motivation were strong predictors of their expectation of reality shock, when gender difference was controlled for. There was an interaction effect between intrinsic motivation and teachers’ sense of efficacy in predicting the reality shock expectation. We discussed the educational implications for future research in an endeavour to reduce the reality shock among novice teachers.